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Thread: Reverse Engineering the Solution

  1. #131
    Lobster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gizmo2337 View Post
    oops...i wasnt finished yet. Before the clue "don't use anything previous to page 72...." I don't have the book with me, but I think it's page 70..71. Two pages where two questions are both repeated twice and then the girl answers:
    So?...
    So?..
    What do you want?
    What do you want?
    Half.
    Half?

    <proceeds to spurt milk through his nose>
    The irony is that you are using something prior to page 72.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lobster View Post
    The irony is that you are using something prior to page 72.
    The Dutchman might have been 70 years old...but on the other hand..
    I think this was an original clue...one created before the hunt started. The previous to page 72 appeared *maybe* as a new recent clue when Ron got frustrated with the progress.

    This discussion is becoming more interesting, so I'll add some more, this time for Lobster's chapter 12 attempt
    So, we had 12 as a question in C5. It's the number of tickes on the clock and archives, months of the year and many other things. How many other things?
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/12_(number)
    "The Dirty Dozen https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Dirty_Dozen"
    "Most calendar systems have twelve months in a year- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Calendar"
    "There are 12 ounces in a troy pound (used for precious metals) - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Troy_weight"
    "The Twelve-bar blues is one of the most prominent chord progressions in popular music."
    and the most interesting one for chapter 12:
    "King Arthur's round table had 12 knights plus King Arthur himself."

  3. #133
    gizmo2337 is offline Good Twelever Gold gizmo2337 is an unknown quantity at this point
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    I think I finally figured out a couple of clues from chapter 4 that were bugging me.
    Chapter 4ís solution is a bit different than the rest. There are only 5 times that "this" happens. Chose the husband and wife and the solution is yours.
    To decode the solution for chapter 4 a clue is hidden within a line of Kryptos. Lookforapartner.
    I didn't like that the story featured two people with the man asking most of the questions. The husband and wife part of the clue sort of throws you off track into the chapter text questions. The kryptos is hinting at two questions or a pair of questions. I remember finding the word "flicker" in the chapter twice (and in the kryptos), which was in the chapter text, and thought I was onto something. Turns out, I was right and didn't understand what it meant.

    page 73:
    I nod. The fire pops and crackles and the stars high above flicker in reply. Nadine chews on the answer, grinding it into digestible pieces.
    "No one's sure.
    "No one's sure? How could no one be sure?"
    The partner in this case is the word "sure". The husband and wife both end their sentence with it. The alpha and omega questions were the first letter of the sentence. Remember, every one counts...with a little help.

    Then again on page 77 (twice as lucky again)
    The most brilliant beautiful gold nuggest flicker in the sun....
    .....
    ...
    Numb I say, "How far?"
    "Not far"
    There were some other "Steps" question sequences with two questions as well, but the flicker ones make the most sense. I think the sentences end with repeated words between the two five times. This is probably why pages before 72 were eliminated with that clue. That pretty much eliminated the "Half. Half?" part of the chapter text, and was meant to move you into the end of chapter questions.

  4. #134
    Rx Jeff's Avatar
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    I think Kryptos had a question in it and thus we were to look in the questions. This only happens 5 times referred to the 5 questions that were encrypted. Ron even de-crypted them to show even fursther where we were to look for the solution.
    Since we have not heard from Ron yet, I am delaying even working on chapter 6. Endgame starts up again on October 6th and that is where I will focusing my attention.

  5. #135
    dawnplayer8 is offline Junior Twelever +1 Bronze dawnplayer8 is an unknown quantity at this point
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    Does anyone have any thoughts on the solution for chapter 5? I personally don't understand why some of the chapter 5 clues were given. Are they just red herrings meant to throw us off the right track or am I missing a bigger picture?

  6. #136
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    Quote Originally Posted by dawnplayer8 View Post
    Does anyone have any thoughts on the solution for chapter 5? I personally don't understand why some of the chapter 5 clues were given. Are they just red herrings meant to throw us off the right track or am I missing a bigger picture?
    You're not the only one. A good number of the C5 clues don't make a whole lot of sense to me either.

    Let's start at the beginning. Word of warning, I'm going to thoroughly explore clues. I know that people like to say "keep it simple", but if the goal is to squeeze useful information out of these clues we need to be open to more involved/non-obvious meanings:


    "Chapter 5 clue:Riddle me this and riddle me that: the chapter number will play a critical role in where the treasure is at!"

    Ok. "Riddle me this and riddle me that". Pretty clear that it's a reference to the fact that the keys were hidden in the questions, right? But, it wasn't immediately useful. Why? Because Chapter 3's first clue began exactly the same way and had nothing to do with questions. Another example of the frustration of clues in this hunt -- there is no consistency at all. In C3 "riddle me..." signals nothing. In C4 "riddle me..." signals questions. How are you to know that C5 signals questions as opposed to nothing? Hint: you can't. In fact, the most rational conclusion is that since C4 already used questions to hide keys, and each chapter has had keys in a different place, the keys for C5 are not in the questions and must be somewhere new.

    The chapter number is 5. So 5 will play a critical role. +5/-5 it ended up being. Clearly this clue isn't enough to even begin to approach the chapter solution. What about the phrase "critical role"? That seems familiar to me....

    That's because the same term was used in C2: "Teamwork will play a critical role in solving Chapter 2 (3/16/2012)"

    "Critical role" is a weird phrase to use. The most direct way to say this would be to just say "The chapter number is important" or something like that.

    So, a rational puzzle solver might conclude that the linkage in phrase from C2's clue to this one is intended and important. At least, in most hunts "unusual phrases" that match others in far flung places are often helpful.

    So is Teamwork useful in C5? Do you need to work with someone else? Are the two halves in different books or something? No.... Does C5 have any other important or "critical" connections to C2 (apart from the fact that it's in 2 parts, which everything to date has been)? No.... Is this connection at all useful therefore? No..... The only conclusion is that the strange turn of phrase is not a clue and is just whoever made up the clues enjoying that term.

    Digging another reference deeper, "teamwork" is only mentioned once in the book (in C10):

    "The two selected a chest and began to haul it back. It was
    heavy, and moving it demanded a good deal of effort and
    teamwork, but they slowly made their way out and emerged to a
    smiling Old Smithy."

    Appears to be another dead end. The cipher had nothing to do with a "pair", and nothing was "hauled back". Same goes for C2, so the "teamwork" reference in C2 doesn't appear to be pointing in any useful manner here. Likewise, no "Smithy" cipher was used in either chapter.

    Feel free to add your thoughts or interpretations....

  7. #137
    gizmo2337 is offline Good Twelever Gold gizmo2337 is an unknown quantity at this point
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    Interesting play on "Critical Role". I had thought about this well before the solution was released. I had narrowed it down to the following list:

    I didn't know which to choose or how to arrange. The most logical guess I had was two presidents and two tens Q7, Q13, Q20. Many of my solutions early on originated with Q7 for alpha....that is until I switched to chapter text again.

    Q3 There are two very large memorials in south dakota one of them will be larger that mount rushmore when complete what lakota chief is depicted in this yet to be finished monument - Crazy horse memorial

    Q7 In 1933 more than 400000 american 20 dollar "double eagle" gold coins were manufactured. They were ordered destroyed by the then President Franklin Roosevelt. Ten of those coins were not destroyed. how many of these coins are still known to exist? - 1

    Q8 What is the name of the captain that took the ship from Jack Sparrow? - captainbarbosa

    Q13 Sam Houston is one of the most famous figures in Texas history. He served as President of the Republic and Senator for Texas. What state was he born in? Virginia

    Q14 A treasure consisting of 2 tons of platinum was believed to have been recovered in Manila in 1995. What is the name of the Japanese General who stole millions of dollars of treasure from south-east asian countries during WWII? - tomoyuki yamashita

    (cryptex) Q20 King tut's tomb was discovered in 1922 after more than ten years of searching. What was the name of the person that discovered king tut's tomb? - Howard Carter
    Who was comissioned to sculpt Mt Rushmore supposedly to cover up the landmarks of the treasure? John Borglum
    Q13. If you google Sam Houston, you find a 3 cent alamo stamp that he is featured on. The alamo was the answer to Q10. You also find him on a 5c stamp. I believe the intent is the 5/10 cipher as the hint, and 3 as the question. Really not enough to go on here...so you need more.

    Q20 The second part of the cryptex gives us another hint at mount rushmore...Q3.

    Q7 You had to use the archives to see this. Q7 features a picture of liberty on the face of the coin in the archives...Q15...our first key. It also features in bold 12m...hinting at the omega question. What is out of place? 12m isn't mentioned in the article? Ironically, an eagle as in reference on this coin is ten, so double eagle is two tens (questions 20 and 7)

    Q8 I wish I had a better explanation, but perhaps the fist letter of Captain hints at 3 or Q3.

  8. #138
    gizmo2337 is offline Good Twelever Gold gizmo2337 is an unknown quantity at this point
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    The start of the solution for this chapter is easier than you can imagine.
    If you are looking for help in solving this one the “Filthy 13” may be able to help you.
    I suppose the reference to dirty dozen sort of makes sense for filthy 13. I think there was another was this was supposed to be done.

    Q2..the chapter poem - Enigma (anagram to imagine)
    Q14 - Japanese general in WWII

    The connection was the Enigma machine that was used to decode in WWII. Q14 was also in the archives. How would one know if its the alpha or omega question, the first key of alpha or omega or the decrypted alpha or omega? I still have no answer for this.

  9. #139
    dawnplayer8 is offline Junior Twelever +1 Bronze dawnplayer8 is an unknown quantity at this point
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    Quote Originally Posted by gizmo2337 View Post
    How would one know if its the alpha or omega question, the first key of alpha or omega or the decrypted alpha or omega?
    So it seems that either 15 or multiples of 5 was the theme of chapter 5. You needed to use questions 3 and 12 (which totals 15) to solve this chapter. You needed to use a +5 and a -5 shift. The alpha string started with 15 then 3, The omega string was 14, 1 which totals 15 and ended in 5.

    The number fifteen is interesting. You can multiply 5x3 or add 5+5+5(triples?) and get 15.

    Looking back now I see that the four letters in the corners of question 3 were T o n e. Dropping the T you would have one, as in first question used, of course I used my time looking for the correct tone.

  10. #140
    gizmo2337 is offline Good Twelever Gold gizmo2337 is an unknown quantity at this point
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    A captain obvious moment hit me....
    The senior brother is 10 years older than the junior
    The sum of what you are looking for adds up to 15.
    Add the digits of the year the Goddess of Liberty was first placed on the Texas State Capitol building, the 4 most helpful numbers in solving this chapter add up to this total.
    J
    O
    Y

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