I’m currently teaching an introduction to C++ for game programming at the Academy of Art University. Each week, I give the students an assignment to complete, but I wanted to do something extra fun for the midterm.
So instead of just a straight assignment, I set my students up as recent recruits to “Stephenson Security Consultants”, a shadowy organization that offers its services to the highest bidder.
Each student received a packet containing details on 4 “missions” to solve via C++, plus two bonus questions. If you’d like to try your hand at the problems, head here and type “download” into the prompt.
Recently, my girlfriend’s niece turned 5 years old and as such, was invited to become a member of the Puzzle Keepers of Palau.
The puzzle in this case takes the form of a book (“Alice’s Birthday”) with hidden messages, revealed by looking at the illustrations through a red lens. Solving the puzzle requires tearing/cutting through the last page of the book to reveal a lock, with combination being revealed in the secret messages. Once the lock is off, a panel can be removed to reveal a key, which in turn unlocks a briefcase full of treasure.
For a full album of the puzzle process, head here.
A year ago, I created a secret society for my nephew for his 5th birthday, called the “Puzzle Keepers of Palau”. The society is a long-standing group dedicated to seeking out puzzles and solving them. He recently had another birthday, and I created another puzzle for the occasion.
The idea is that he has to use a set of physical components to solve a substitution cipher, which he can then use to solve a web-based riddle.
Check out the physical components here
and the web-based riddle here
While there’s only one copy of the physical clues, anyone with some experience with cryptograms should be able to solve the web-based component without them.
I’ve also put the files for the cryptogram up on github
My nephew recently turned 5, and as it’s his first “big” birthday, I wanted to do something special for him. So, I created a secret society dedicated to ferreting out hidden knowledge, and invited him to join.
My longtime friend and business partner, Blair Erickson was kind enough to help me with the creative, and suggested that the society be set in the Pacific Ocean. And so, the “Puzzle Keepers of Palau” was born.
I’ve been thinking a lot about puzzles recently, thanks to re-discovering the excellent Perplexcity set of puzzles, as well as coming across the Clavis Cryptica blog.
As a result, I thought I’d try my hand at making a puzzle of my own, with the results here. The answer to the puzzle is a single word. Enter your answer into the form field below the image to test it.
A few hints to get you started, should you decide to try solving it:
- Everything you need to solve the puzzle is inside the image
- The colors are important
- The answer is not a simple reordering of the letters