Cute Mage's Tower

Things I Liked About the 2024 MIT Mystery Hunt

I’m loath to start traditions on this blog because it’s not meant to be any sort of regular content - it’s more here for when my brain decides to write 15 pages about a niche puzzle hunt topic. That being said, if there’s one tradition I’m happy to start, it’s a post talking about all the awesome stuff that I enjoyed from that year’s MIT Mystery Hunt.

As of time of writing, the 2024 MIT Mystery Hunt does not have public access available. Once the hunt is archived, I will add links to all the relevant pages.
For 2024, my Mystery Hunt team name was . No, that’s not a typo. The name consisted entirely of a single Zero-Width Space character. It is pronounced with the absence of sound. Is it going to make some sentences tough to read? Sure. We cause problems.

In the words of the team (well actually, the words they would totally say if I asked them):
It's us. Hi. We’re the problem. It's us.

Puzzles I Liked

Badges Badges Badges Badges

Okay first of all - excellent puzzle name.

Obviously, TTBNL didn’t plan on having tech issues at the beginning of hunt. However, since they did, it was really nice having something to sink our teeth into while we were waiting for the puzzles to appear. I got a chance to try out a decoding app that a teammate wrote for morse, and I got the sequences and bacon by hand. Teammates figured out that there must be a ninth badge that we were missing, and we figured that we would get that when the puzzle unlocked. We were not expecting to get it when TTBNL visited shortly thereafter.

I decoded a bunch of the locations, looked at the list, and then noticed that no one had gone to the one that was right down the hall from us. I went to the billboard, and in the time that it took me to find the poster, two other teams had shown up and we were in the awkward :“everyone is staring at the same location info” zone. I also got to :visit Building 2 and walk down the hall where apparently every other team had their headquarters on my way to find the bulletin board.

However, this puzzle was still interesting, even after it was solved. The bulletin board in Building 1 was almost directly across from the womans’ bathroom that was closest to ‘s HQ, which meant I was going there :a lot. All through the weekend, I would see people standing by the bulletin board, placing a nametag on the relevant poster. It was so great to see folks solving the puzzle the whole weekend. I think most people on the big teams that see the whole hunt don’t realize just how many teams are still working on those opening rounds throughout the whole weekend. It’s absolutely wonderful to see.

Steam Library

When the google docs round dropped, the person across the table from me went “there’s a metamatching puzzle based on video games,” which was basically a siren song for me specifically. I recognized how Portal worked immediately, and then I dived into Terraria and figured out how the mechanics worked even if I couldn’t get to complete the answer. My teammate got the mechanic for Terraria, and I was able to get the IDs and wheel of fortune the answer. Fortunately my teammate was also able to recognize how The Binding of Isaac metameta worked, and we were able to grind through the extraction, even though we kept trying to jump to the answer as quickly as possible.

This is the second time The Binding of Isaac has shown up in the Mystery Hunt in two years, which means that I should probably actually figure out what this game is. I doubt it will be in :next year’s Mystery Hunt, but it will probably show up in smaller hunts now where I’m more likely to be the video game expert.

Temporary Name

I 100% thought that this puzzle was going to be longer than it actually was. That’s not a problem - I just expected that there would be multiple rounds of submitting answers and/or a more complicated metapuzzle. That being said, I don’t think that this is actually a problem for where it was in the hunt. For us experienced solvers, this was a nice quick solve to bring up confidence before working on other puzzles. For newer solvers, this was a great exercise in using the structure of a puzzle to guide ahas, as well as introduction to various different cryptic wordplay types.

Judges of the Underworld

I’ll be honest - I was shocked to see a pure meta here. A good shock - but still a shock. I was also shocked that the ordering was also wholly contained with the answers because it already seemed like it was decently constrained without that detail. That being said, it was a good meta, and it hit the difficulty level for the beginning part of the Hunt pretty well. My only quibble is that the pillars really should have all been the same height. I recognize that the metapuzzles are traditionally tested without the art, but the different heights really wanted to be an ordering, and that is probably too big of an distraction (especially while we’re trying to figure out if the maps are relevant or not to the metapuzzles).


I didn’t spend a lot of time on this meta, as there were plenty of other solvers who were doing good work on assembling the answers to make the paths. I popped in to hear someone mention that it could be “sail/sale” pun, then wheel of fortuned what we had so far to get ESTATE SAILS and freed my team from having to solve the rest of it.

Turing Tar-Pit

I am not good at compiling esoteric languages, but I am good at recognizing esoteric languages. I identified Chef and Rockstar immediately, and was able to throw them to a teammate who was familiar with getting compilers for them. From there, most of my work involved transcribing the Chef video into the actual code for my teammate to run.

The Entire Hell, MI Round

The gods said that they were going to create suffering specifically for each of us. In my case, it was creating a pseudo-First Day on the Job round. Allow me to describe my reactions upon seeing the round open.

“Oh hey, there’s an akari! I can solve those!”

“Actually, I’m sure this won’t work because it’s the Mystery Hunt, but I’ll stick it in noq to see if it’s unique. I’m sure there’s something extra, but I’ll be able to learn something.”

“Oh. It is unique? That’s worse. That’s so much worse.”

Pretty shortly after that, I extract, get a reference to the chemistry puzzle, and we’re off to the races. I stayed with this round through most of solving the individual answers, but I fell asleep before the meta was solved.

I have some comments about this round in comparison to First Day on the Job, but that will probably wait until my First Day on the Job design post. I will say that it was a fun little side track in the hunt, which is probably good given that it was the rest area. However, Text Adventure is a real stand out from that round. The basic idea is that there are six classic puzzle chestnuts, each of which has been :slightly modified to be impossible. However, the fact that they are all together allows for shenanigans with stuff from one puzzle helping you solve other puzzles. Some of the puzzles require the round shenanigan to solve, but many don’t. The rest of the puzzles in Hell, MI are definitely take them or leave them, but the text adventure is :a shining star.

Isle of Misfit Puzzles

I started work on this puzzle, saw Kallax Isle, got excited at the mentions of Blood on the Clocktower and Spirit Island, and immediately got to work. I quickly realized what was actually happening in the puzzle, solved it pretty quickly, and found the number that was missing in the middle. I put all that info in the spreadsheet, commented that this was going to be a hashi logic puzzle at the end, and then left to work on other puzzles.

I came back to the puzzle later when all of minipuzzles except for one were solved, the hashi was solved, and people were stuck on extraction. It was blocking our Hydra progress, so I picked it back up, and quickly noticed that many of the answers could have the same word put before them. I had one of my trademark dramatic aha moments when I realized that they could be prepended by a size word. That was a very fun puzzle.

How to Quadruple Your Money in Hollywood

This was a light fun puzzle. Someone else had the George Clooney aha, and I was in the middle of exploring quarter designs based on the range of remaining years when someone else confirmed that quarters worked. This was a nice, short puzzle which was a good refresher.

This also led to my quote “I wonder if any of these quarters have accentuated nipples,” which was immediately put to ‘s :#no-context-quotes channel.

5050 Matchups

I was not the person who solved the first version of 5050 Matchups, but I was the person who solved most of the remaining ones. I got to the point where I was solving one of these in like 2-3 minutes, which meant that banging a couple out was a nice thing to do when I was feeling brain dead. I’m really glad that RPS-101 finally made its way into a Mystery Hunt puzzle, and the verbs are an excellent place to extract from.

Throughout the weekend, I kept saying “Fifty Fifty is easy. I can solve it in like five minutes.” This led to some very predictable jokes about :50/50. Yay Mystery Hunt memes.

Hydra Meta

Funnily enough, despite all the time I spent on this, at time of writing I still don’t understand how the final extraction worked. I took on the role of organizing all the info, drawing the tree on our team whiteboard app, and noticing patterns in the top half/bottom half trees. After staring at it for a while and getting nowhere, I decided I was tired of it and passed it off to other people. Shortly after I onboarded a bunch of people onto the meta, they solved it. Teamwork!

In the TTBNL AMA, there was a comment that they were surprised that many teams did a depth-first search as opposed to a breadth-first search. I don’t find this surprising at all, and it was absolutely what I was trying to do. When opened this round, the first thing I wanted to know was “what is the scope of this round?”. At first I was worried that any puzzle could repeat with :a different extraction, but that quickly proved itself wrong. Then I was worried that the puzzles would actually be infinite and computer generated and therefore we would be trying to solve the round with as :few answers as possible. That also proved to be wrong. Once we hit the end of a branch, we had a much better idea as to what we were doing and started our breadth-first search.

Also, I know that TTBNL wanted Cerberus to be the cute mascot of this year, and he is very cute, but let’s be clear: :snek is the best.

Scylla and Charybdis Meta

This was a case when I was totally overthinking it. I 100% thought that the Cs and Ss couldn’t even touch diagonally and that extraction was going to be a safe path through the grid. In retrospect it was kind of silly to think that since that would’ve made the S&C meta overlap pretty hard with the Charon meta. Fortunately, the work my teammates were doing pretty heavily took me out of that, and I was able to wheel of fortune PUT IT IN DIVE out of their work.

I absolutely loved how every answer in this round was the same length as MISSISSIPPI, and I was really hoping that we could place the answers such that it read MISSISSIPPI on the diagonal. While that didn’t happen, I do appreciate the length lining up.

Oahu Meta

“Every triangle is a love triangle if you love triangles.” - anonymous teammate from

This meta showed off the reason why you need to be making jokes about the puzzles you’re solving.

I was sitting in a group of three staring at this meta, with one more person :online. One of the in-person teammates had done a ton of work getting all the information for this and discovering that fan wikis keep way :too many details about the characters. We were throwing out ideas, trying to figure out how to match up the two halves of our information, when said teammate made a joke: “What if the degrees were measuring the angle that the shorter person had to raise their head to look at the taller person?” Literally the other three of us said “Ohhhhhhhhhhhh” in unison. It was like one of those overly dramatic moments you see in movies, but actually happening. We immediately matched :everyone up, and then got stuck on extraction for 30 minutes until someone said that the answer was literally :written on our spreadsheet and called it in. Okay, so the ending was less dramatic than the middle, but it was still pretty cool.

This was an Event(s)!

Nero Says

Puzzles are cool, and the social environment is great, but my favorite part of Mystery Hunt is the events and other interactive puzzles. The events tend to be experiences that you don’t get anywhere else - games and puzzles that could only exist when you gather all the best people at breaking games in a room and challenge them to break your game. Events are such a wide open space to do all sorts of cool things, and while they can be hit or miss, they are usually pretty fun.

Nero Says was a simon says game on steroids. The basic idea was that as a group, you were trying to survive a simon says game, but the calls were the same every game. This led to situations like the following set of calls:

After the first call, both of your arms :were raised. Then, you had a choice of which arm you lowered for the second call, but the third call required you to raise your right arm. If you lowered your left arm for the second call, you already had your right hand raised by the time the third call came around and therefore couldn’t raise it, so you were out. Now, would this be an unfair thing to do in a normal game of simon says? Yup. However, because the same set of calls were being repeated every game, you know for next time that when you have a choice of which arm to lower, you need to lower your right arm.

When you got out for the first time, you got a sheet of paper with ten questions on it. Most of the answers to the questions reference something that happened during the game, like references that Nero made or actions that we took. However, one of the questions asked what kind of puzzle you would use to get the final answer. I guessed that the answer to that was ACROSTIC, and therefore the answer to the whole thing was OMEGAPHONE.

But perhaps my favorite question on the paper was “What phrase does Nero say if everyone gets out on the first call?” I looked at that question and said to myself “This is not happening unless someone coordinates this.” Well, I have a loud voice, and there’s only like 100 people here, so it might as well be me. When everybody came back to play the second game, I yelled out to everyone really loudly that one of the questions needed everyone to fail on the first call, and tried to enlist everyone into doing it. Each time more and more people were convinced, until the fourth time which had the following series of calls:

Nero: “Nero says touch your philtrum”
Me: “Cute Mage says ‘Don’t do it!’”

Between this and Work Together from the Brown Puzzlehunt, I’m starting to notice a theme develop. I am apparently good at herding random groups of puzzle hunters.

I feel like I’ve been on a bit of an event slump personally. The wavelength event from 2023 was not great, the 2022 events were cool but were totally online which didn’t help, I didn’t do any events in 2021, 2020, or 2019, and the :2018 one was okay, which means that last event I went to that I really liked was the :Charisma event from 2017. This broke that slump, and is honestly competing for the title “Best Event I’ve Ever Attended.”

After the Hunt, I got to talk to the designer of the event, and he mentioned that the inspiration for the event was the :Sam Says episodes from :Game Changer. Honestly, Mystery Hunt events tickle that same part of my brain that Game Changer does, and I’ll probably never get to be on an :actual episode of Game Changer in my life, but the Events will scratch that itch. If I have one piece of advice for future event runners - get your inspiration from Game Changer episodes.

Escaping the Underworld

I think this is the best mid-hunt runaround ever, but I will also admit that my experience with it may be a bit different than others.

The previous title holder for me was the Dog Show runaround from 2016. In that runaround, you were following a set of instructions as usual, but increasing amounts of words in each paragraph were replaced with the word “dog”. It starts off fairly straightforward:

When you get to a pair of Doric dogs, turn right. Down that way you’ll pass a display of dogs written by our notable dogs.

Then it gets a bit harder to follow, but still reasonable:

You’ll see a dogging dog of a different dog than the three dogging dogs you just passed. Go past it.

And it ends with silliness (that is still followable):

You’ll have to turn dog or dog. Dog towards the dog with dog sides, not eight. After twenty-dog steps, turn dog again and enter Dog Dog.

The reason why the runaround works is because as you are following it, context tells you what the words must be. In the first quote, it’s pretty easy to tell that the first “dogs” should be “columns”, but you won’t be able to tell what the “notable dogs” are until you find the Doric columns and turn right.

But enough about that runaround. What about this runaround topped that?

This runaround, like many things about this hunt, was themed around a Greek myth. In particular, it was themed about the tale of Orpheus and Eurydice. In it - Orpheus needs to lead Eurydice out of the Underworld, but Orpheus can’t look back at Eurydice until they’re out of the underworld. In this runaround, one member of the team is Orpheus, and everyone else is Eurydice. The Orpheus member is listening to a soundtrack with instructions, and the Eurydice members are reading off of a set of instructions from the website and making notes as they travel. On this runaround, Orpheus is not allowed to see or hear any of their team members, nor are they allowed to talk to them. (This also means that they have to be careful about mirrors!)

As soon as I saw this open and saw how this worked, I immediately volunteered to be Orpheus. Location/runaround puzzles are best solved with a set of current students/recent alumni and one hunt veteran. The current students/recent alumni are very familiar with the school and are great at noticing things that others won’t, and the hunt veteran can take those thoughts and funnel them into solving a puzzle. When I opened this, I noticed that we were going to need an extra hunt veteran. If you can only have one person listening to an audio recording to lead you on the runaround, you want experience to be there in case something goes wrong. let me be Orpheus and we were off!

It was pretty clear that the puzzle author wrote this by figuring out things that would be fun to do with the setup and putting each of those in once. It started off by telling me to point at a pipe and then Eurydice had to follow the pipe to get some information, but escalated soon afterwards. I was pointing at two different things across the hall from each other, performing charades in the middle of the hallway with no warning, and making a map with my hands to direct my teammates to a specific item on a shelf that I couldn’t see. In the end, we got to the final room where Hermes told us about the second act of the Hunt.

That’s not to say that it went flawlessly - there were definitely some bumps, but those bumps played more on the audio side of things than the actual instructions themselves. The problem with following an audio track with no transcript is that it is hard to look at sections other than the one that you are currently on. There were multiple times where I wanted to listen to a section again to make sure that I followed the directions correctly, and that meant that I had to scrub the audio to the right spot, but the different sections didn’t have timestamps marked. Also, the interface for scrubbing an 18 minute audio file on Safari was not great, and often meant that I would just overshoot what I was aiming for and listen to an extra 30 seconds of audio. Once I got the pacing down, I needed to do this less, but it was a little rough in the first couple minutes of the audio.

But there’s something else to talk about here.

In the vast majority of other situations while solving a puzzle hunt, you can look over all the work that everyone else has done. That’s helpful in some cases to check other people’s work, but more importantly for me, it lets me get a big picture of the puzzle in my head. I often solve puzzles by processing the entire structure, identifying constraints, and searching for how unused pieces of information can be processed into an answer. I am a big-picture structure person, and that brings me comfort while solving. However, in this situation I was specifically stopped by the rules of the puzzle from seeing the whole structure. I could only see my part, and I just had to trust in my teammates that they would get the other part correct. I couldn’t make any inferences based on the whole structure, I couldn’t point out any connections to :previous puzzles, I couldn’t try to jump ahead. I just had to follow the instructions and trust in my teammates.

I don’t want to imply that I don’t trust . In particular, multiple people who I went on the runaround with were also the ones I solved A Trip to the Museum with last year, so I not only know them, but I know that they’re good puzzle solvers. I have literally no reason to distrust them, and every reason to trust them theoretically. However, theory is different from practice.

I hunted with Palindrome for 14 years, solving 13 hunts and writing 1. For a while, those people were my longest friends I was still active with, especially as I moved to New England and was closer to a lot of them. Writing the 2022 Hunt meant that I basically worked a second job with the team, spending a lot of my free time on the Discord server. I even met my wife on Palindrome. I was close to a lot of people on the team. Stick me in any puzzle situation where I need to rely on them, and I have no problem. However, I only joined last year. I had only really interacted with one member of in anything more than a superficial way - everything else I knew about the team was based on reputation and brief interactions during previous Hunts. It was a leap of faith.

In general, I am terrible at social interactions. I am terrible at reading people, and I come off as awkward in conversation. However, if you give me a game or puzzle or other activity for me to do and be social, I can do it. I understand the goals, I understand the structure of the conversation, I can contribute to the conversation. I was confident about my first impression with the team, but I wasn’t sure how much I would be accepted past that first impression, as conversations went less and less about talking about puzzles and more into personalities and other topics. I’m rambling a bit, but I have a lot of trouble being social with new people, and I for some reason did that with 75 new people at once.

Back when I was suffering from testosterone poisoning, I would go on high ropes courses at boy scout camp. Since they were competent ropes courses, we had harnesses and belayers and safety procedures that we went over every time. However, when you’re actually up there some ridiculous distance off the ground, it feels different. When you’re walking across the rope and you make a small mistake that wobbles the wire and you feel like you’re going to fall, you start to have that “oh no” feeling before you feel the safety equipment doing its job. It’s scary as all heck, but then when you are out of the immediate moment and you can breathe you realize that everything is okay and you can just chill.

The point I’m trying to make here is that I had that exact same “oh no” feeling in the middle of the runaround, but socially instead of physically. I was standing in some random basement hallway in MIT, I didn’t know where I was, and I was trusting teammates that I’ve only known for a short time that I’m not allowed to see or hear to interpret whatever I’ve done correctly in a way that I have no clue about for a puzzle I haven’t seen. What am I doing here? This is a ridiculous position I have put myself in!

But after that short period, I realized a couple things. First, from the team’s point of view, it’s also similarly ridiculous to put me in that position where I am the only person to get some of that information. They obviously trust me a ton. In addition, while I haven’t seen those teammates solving a ton, I’ve seen them enough to know that they’re going to be great. I’ve vibed really well with these teammates. There are people on that I feel like I can open up to without worry. Yes, I absolutely do trust them.

At the end of 2022 I was feeling lost. I knew I wanted something different from my Mystery Hunt experience and why I started searching for other teams. After the 2023 Hunt I said I still didn’t know what I wanted to do for the future, but that I knew that I was going back to for another year. It was in the middle of this runaround where I realized that, yeah, I do really like this team, they’re a great fit for me, and I would be a fool not to stick around. I still don’t know what my puzzling future looks like at the moment, but I know that it definitely involves .

Wait, You Didn’t Write About…

Chess/Magic/TTRPG Puzzles

There were a lot of these, and I managed to solve none of them during Hunt. I know. Shame. I will say that I was absolutely shocked that there were two different Magic the Gathering puzzles during Hunt and that there were four different chess puzzles. I am generally much more free as an editor about allowing puzzles that are similar in topic to both be in the same hunt, but four chess puzzles is a lot.

I spent a lot of time on Triangles and The Champion, and I’m probably just going to look at the solutions for those when they get posted. This is especially true of the Champion, as I basically worked on it until I almost fell asleep and had to head back to my hotel room, and I am not particularly interested in trying to clean up that solve. I am excited to solve the others, especially Queen Marchesa to g4.

The Length of the Hunt

Well yeah - this is the stuff I liked about the Hunt. Honestly, many other posts have spoken about the length of the Hunt. Go search those out. I think that there are some other interesting issues that are better to discuss. Much like the 2023 editing issues, there is no point in rehashing the fact that the Hunt was too long unless it’s directly related to the issue I’m discussing.

Wrapping it Up

What’s next? I’ll tell you what’s not next - a 6-post series detailing individual rounds from the 2024 Hunt. I enjoyed the Hunt and it had cool things, but the content was not comparable to the AI rounds from 2023. That’s okay. Each Hunt is a different beast created by different people, and it’s silly to expect a Hunt to follow in the previous one’s footsteps.

That being said, there are two topics I want to talk about following this Hunt, so you will see them up on the blog. In addition, I have some posts in mind about BAPHL 22 and First Day on the Job, and I have two drafts that I’ve started working on. Plus I have some exciting puzzle projects coming up this year! It’s going to be fun!

Happy Puzzle New Year!

– Cute Mage

:X ActualEpisode

I mean, if I get the chance I will absolutely do it. Even better, if I get the chance to write/run an episode of Game Changer I will absolutely do it. I need to create a game show youtube channel or something like that to scratch this itch.

:X AsFew

This is basically the Infinite Corridor from MITMH 2021, so it would not be unreasonable for hunters to have that in their mind. Also there was another hydra puzzle from the Microsoft Puzzle Hunt’s Classics round that did actually open up infinite puzzles, so it was a real worry.

:X Bathroom

Trans woman on spiro + nervous + drinking a lot of water = going to the bathroom a lot during the weekend.

:X CharismaEvent

For context, I had been publicly out as a trans woman for a month, and then when I showed up to the event I was told that it was a speed dating event. The event and the environment were strong enough that I still had fun. That is a testament to both the design of the event and how Setec inspired trust in themselves to create a welcoming environment.

:X ConferenceMic

Our team solved the “half is remote/half is in person” issue by getting a whole bunch of conference mics so we can have conversations. It works way better than it has any right to.

:X CoordinationEvent

This was a cool idea for an event, but if you were not one of the people who were actually doing the coordinating for it, it was a kind of boring event. I just kinda stood there with my teammate holding a colored piece of paper while other people did everything. This just seemed like bad luck on my part because the other events looked really cool.

:X DifferentExtraction

It seemed to me that the way the first couple puzzles were constructed, they could be puzzles with the same work but with different extractions. Isle of Misfit Puzzles definitely seemed like it would be easy to change the numbers and change the layout of the archipelago and get a new answer.

:X exceptMU

Okay, except the MI -> MU scepter problem, which is apparently a famous impossible problem from Godel, Escher and Bach. They just put that one in directly.

:X FiftyFifty

For those who don’t know, 50/50 is a puzzle from the 2013 MIT Mystery Hunt that was famously too hard. It involved doing analysis on tens of thousands of coin flips to find parts that weren’t truly random. It ended with generating a picture of a mountain. It was a very cool idea, but needed to be scaled back. Way back. It has since become a meme of a puzzle that is too hard.

:X FortheRecord

For the record, this is a good thing.

:X GameChanger

If you’re a puzzle hunter and you like game shows, then there are two shows you should be watching. The first one is Taskmaster, and the second one is Game Changer. The basic idea is that the game show has different rules every time, and the contestants have to figure out the rules of the game that they are playing while they are playing it. :The first episode sets up the rest of the series beautifully, and you should check it out if you haven’t. Then go subscribe to and watch the five seasons that are currently out.

:X InMyDefense

Okay, so this is my fault here, but also a quick aside here about the one thing that annoyed me about this metapuzzle. The final indices go into the Persona character name, not the actual answer to the puzzle that clues the Persona character. That means that this meta is technically solvable with zero answers. Practically, you’ll need a bunch of the answers to get the reference to Persona, but also it means that you could get a full solve missing a couple answers. Now of course, are you likely to find a Persona character just by knowing their height? Probably not. But if I was looking for someone to do that, I would ask a Mystery Hunter.

It’s just so much easier to make it index into the answer, and it gives the answers additional meaning.

:X KillianCourt

I was ready to run down the infinite corridor to get there from Building 1, and then I remembered that I could just cut across Killian Court and get there much faster. I was proud that I remembered MIT geometry without needing a map, and this made one of the only times all weekend I voluntarily went outside when I didn’t have to.

:X LawofCosines

I am proud to say as a teacher who taught trig for a couple years that I still have the Law of Cosines burned in my brain and can apparently pull it out on notice.

:X LocationStandoff

The correct answer to this is almost always to work with the team you’ve run across, but also to be careful about sharing information that is not directly related to the location so you don’t spoil things. The time spent fighting over a location or stalling another team will not translate into anything meaningful in the end, and it’s just better to be friendly with everyone in the Hunt.

:X NextYearsHunt

I mean, come on. It’s not Magic the Gathering. It’s not going to show up in :every single hunt.

:X NoContext

has a channel that just contains funny quotes that people say while solving puzzles. The main rule seems to be that you don’t put yourself in the channel. While I don’t try to get what I say in the channel, I am very proud when someone adds what I say into it.

:X OneisnotPrime

Remember! One is not a prime number, but two is!

:X PettheWolf

Also, you can pet the Wolf! I would have been disappointed if you couldn’t. Alas, as a teammate figured out, you cannot pet Gödel.

:X Philtrum

I was kicking myself that I didn’t catch the reference to Sam Says here until he brought it up to me. I love those episodes.

:X PreviousRunarounds

Fair warning: if you walk around MIT with me, I will point out different locations that were used for puzzles. It’s second nature at this point.

:X Snek


:X TechIssues

I mean, c’mon. They’re not teammate.

:X TooManyDetails