Dimensionally challenged

Welcome back to the lateish post for Quads II by Shark.  Still in the land without printing, so all of the grid manipulation sounds like it might be easier if I get to start in Crossword Solver, especially since symmetry can be set.

We start off with a carte blance, and a 1 across – not only that but it was F(w)ASTED and we are away!

I got off to a pretty good start with the first part, though the bottom half of the grid came together faster than the top, despite thinking that 30 down was ENTER with the E and N being unindicated.  I guessed FOURTH DIMENSION pretty early on and that helped guide the top left entries in particular.  After two solving sessions I had a starter grid

my first grid for Listener 4414, Quads II by Shark

The next set of instructions proved to be my undoing. I know that the 90-degree symmetry means that certain cells need to be kept, so I shaded those in green.  I started looking for good places to bar off and remove cells, and the creation of EMO/OBI/RET/ITA gave me a starting point, but after an hour of playing, I just could not figure how to remove 40 cells to get to a reasonable blocked grid.  I’ve read the solution and looked at the other blogs, and still don’t see how the blocking out seemed to be so easy.  Oh well… here’s as far as I got.

My attempt at finishing Listener 4414

And so we have a Victory to Shark and the Listener Crossword – there was a lot to do here, but I couldn’t get through that middle step.

2016 tally:  29-2-5.

Feel free to tell me that for someone who blacks out as often as I do I should have been able to finish this one, and see you next week when Ploy gives us a choice of political parties.

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