Really enjoying this so far, kudos. Saw all the 5x5 grids and the early nod to A Treasure Trove, was afraid that it was all going to be too easy with nothing but Polybius squares. Thought I had a couple solved but no dice (hope they're all programmed correctly).
Codfish, I think you're onto something. The grids are the letters of the alphabet with A in the top left and Z in the bottom right, either without a Q or with I/J together I'm not sure which yet. The black squares tell you which letters are important. I was trying to combine all the grids on a page and only use the unique squares as indicators to see if they spelled something out. In the middle section of the book there are a lot of "B1" and "C4" clues, which might help to identify which letters will spell the messages.
I also tried using the "key" word for each Master, translating that into squares on a grid (e.g. 'A' is the top left square) and then entering that into the 52MP grid. Too many words have repeating letters in them so I don't think anything like that will work.
I'm really enjoying this so far! I actually lost sleep over it last night. Why? Because there are so many fun things to solve! I think I'm really close to some solutions, but my enemy is time. I have out of town guests and can't play for a long time. It's killing me! I could easily work on nothing but this for days and enjoy it. Thanks so much for putting this together! Hope I find the time to solve a few.
I keep checking back here but no one seems to be willing to share their ideas. Guess that's typical when prizes are on the line. I've been able to solve a few puzzle and definitely identify a few more where I pretty much know what to do but haven't done it yet. Is it okay to share ideas of how we think things might be solved?
The puzzles that have answers are probably just for fun and unconnected to the contest (except the ones where they're not giving the answers yet which probably are part of the contest). I really like having some puzzles with answers to make me feel better when I can't figure out what's going on with the grids!
Progress continues. I really love the logic of these puzzles. Probably my favorite hunt to date. Yeah, obviously with prizes on the line people are being pretty quiet. Wonder how many are actively participating?
How does everyone feel about the winners not being declared until 8/20? It kind of makes sense. It forces everyone to try to complete them all (which is the spirit of the contest) but it certainly feels a bit more rushed. I feel like I have to spend a lot of time working on the puzzles or else I feel like I'm going to fall drastically behind. If I knew that someone else had already solved it, I would probably be less motivated, so I get the reason. Curious what you all think.
I think a lot of people are playing this. If you look on the Donation page the list of registered players seems to go on forever (I haven't waited until it's gotten to the end but it's a few hundred at least).
Mixed feelings about not announcing winners until 8/20. I think they want to protect themselves in both directions, meaning that if no one can ever solve anything it doesn't end up looking like an impossibly hard contest and if someone solves it quickly it doesn't spoil the fun for everyone else. It's probably the smartest way to do it even though it leaves us in suspense. Actually, I think if there was a place to check if people were solving puzzles I'd be afraid to look at it. It's almost less stressful this way, not that I'm expecting to win anything.
I agree there are a ton of great puzzles in this thing. Both of the doctor puzzles are fantastic (meaning the ones with the pills and that 5-sided medicine bottle...the answer key has both answers showing). Even some things that aren't really "puzzles" are great, like the Titanic story. Which are your favorites?
I think I am technically ineligible for the prizes since I live in Australia, but that doesn't bother me. There are so few quality puzzle sites that I am happy to just get done what I can. I hope you guys keep this up beyond the end of the prize time just to allow latecomers to enjoy the work that has gone into it.
Without giving away too much, here is what I have so far: - not yet solved all the puzzles on the various Master's pages... not too fussed about that as I think MOST of them are flavour and provide supporting info/hints for the "core" puzzles - solved a number of the "core" puzzles in the centre section; :- some give a word (that appears to link back to a specific master in most cases) :- some give coordinates (linked to a specific other coord and related to masters) (won't say much more as I think that would start to get spoilery)
I also really like the quotes on each master page
ETA: Also have some theories (yet to be tested) regarding the cards ETA2: Tested theories. Glad I did. Confirmed I was doing things right
Thanks, Jiladis, Codfish and Reesylou for these thoughts.
From MillTycoon (Steve), the contest editor:
We very much encourage players to share ideas here, but please do not post actual solutions to puzzles. General info is fine, and if people want to privately contact one another and share information, that's also fine, but we feel that if someone posts a solution, everyone who doesn't come here to check that solution is at a competitive disadvantage, and we'd prefer not to have this be the case, and will try to enforce this (on this forum, at least) as necessary.
It is absolutely our intention to keep this free site available for people to enjoy indefinitely. While we are excited about the contest, our primary goal has always been to inspire "enthusiasm-based learning" by providing fun, challenging puzzles for players of all ages and skill levels. Towards this end, we hope that all of you are sharing this site with friends and family.
I agree that the doctor puzzles are both very clever. Wish I had invented one of them.
Overall I'm quite impressed by the programming on the site! Navigation was pretty easy (though I admit I'd occasionally be going, "I need to check the Master Chemist's page...darnit, which one of these little thumbnails in the menu is the chemist..."). The clickable puzzles (Flow Free; the car-movement puzzle, etc.) worked pretty seamlessly.