Jack Welsby's Minesweeper Page


Here since early 1996, updated once in a blue moon, but at least the design is now "fashionably retro"... (ugh!)

This page contains all sorts of information I've collected relating to Minesweeper, the fun game you get with Windows. I like Minesweeper, but I don't get that much time to play it these days, what with one thing and another.

Oh, and I know these pages aren't the Web's most attractive, but it's information that counts! (So you can't be bothered to learn any new bits of HTML then Jack?)


Best times...

Well, for what it's worth, my best times are now 6, 40, and 176 seconds on Beginner, Intermediate and Expert respectively.

Yes, these times aren't brilliant (so don't e-mail me to tell me so!). If your times are better than these - congratulations, you either have more time to practise or better luck.


6 seconds? That's ridiculous!

Yes, I know. To get times this low, Minesweeper becomes a game of chance rather than of skill. Everything depends on the distribution of the mines (it's far easier to achieve quick times on some boards compared to others) and clicking in the right place.

This is most pronounced on the Beginner level, less so on Intermediate. I reckon that given a reasonable first click I can complete most Beginner boards within 15 seconds and most Intermediate within 60 seconds.

Please don't waste your time trying to get a Beginner score lower than about 10 seconds or an Intermediate score lower than 50. You could do all sorts of other things, like writing your first novel, going for a walk, or monopolising the world computer industry.

That said, there are people out there who do like shaving another second off their Minesweeper scores, and you can meet and greet them on www.metanoodle.com/minesweeper Damien's page. Bear in mind though that you're no-one if you haven't done Beginner in 1 second yet :-)


Could you complete every board?

No. Although in practically all cases you can work out logically where the mines are, there are a few situations where you just have to guess. One (probably the simplest) is illustrated below.

A guessing situation

Unusually, there is a ray of hope in this particular situation. You will notice that you never click on a mine with your first click - kind programmers! If you do click on a square that originally contained a mine, the computer will move it to the top left-hand corner of the board, or the first available square to its right. Hence the mine is more likely to be behind the top square.

In other situations, you just have to guess quickly! Further down the page you'll see that you can actually discover which square the mine is behind - but of course, that's cheating.


Some tips for faster times


How can I make Minesweeper more challenging?


How to cheat at Minesweeper

There are three ways that I know of.


It's as simple as that. Why not try boasting about being psychic and demonstrating it by locating all the mines without clearing any other squares?

Or why not use this cheat to mark all the mines first, then click, click, click on those empty squares? Slash those times in half and then take a screen dump to "prove" to your friends how good you are!

(irony)

A dinky little thing...

Open your WINMINE.INI, and at the end, add the line "Sound=3" (or any small integer greater than 3, I think). After saving, Minesweeper will play a siren sound when you lose a game, and an ascending one-octave scale of B major when you win.

Thanks to www.hlpinc.com/faq.shtml HLP Associates whose page I got this off.


And finally...

If you have any Minesweeper-related information that's not listed here, please mail me at the address below and tell me about it! If it excites me sufficiently (and it usually does) I'll get round to putting it on this page eventually.


Some other Minesweeper pages

The top Minesweeper pages you should visit (aside from this one, of course) are...

Last revision 10 September 2000. Produced by Jack Welsby