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I got a cryptic (or maybe just junk) message in my inbox today:

Delivered-To: <[email protected]>
From: <[email protected]>
Received: by 3166:673:a796:7652:f6a6:571 with SMTP id 6b7263675f61687a66;
        Thu, 31 Dec 2020 09:34:53 -0800 (PST)
Message-Id: 6368336b2d73336e6472
Signature: 70307a7a30615f677565336e71
Subject: "U cant s0lv th!s haha - who am I?"
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=utf-8
Body: "d0wn by th3 drag0ns e$tuary, wh!ch lay al0ng$!d3 3d!th'$ 3!ght alpacas, n!n3ty-tw0 fact0r!3$ pr0duc3d $3v3n$ 0f f!t $!xty-$3v3n$"

Here's the body of the message:

d0wn by th3 drag0ns e\$tuary, wh!ch lay al0ng\$!d3 3d!ths 3!ght alpacas, n!n3ty-tw0 fact0r!3\$ pr0duc3d \$3v3n\$ 0f f!t \$!xty-\$3v3n\$

It just looks like spam to me, but I'm not sure, because there seems to be a sort of pattern here, but I'm at a loss. The subject asks "Who am I?", but it doesn't seem that there's anything here that says who they are. Can you help?

Hint 1

As I mentioned in the comments, every part (well almost) of the puzzle (the puzzle is everything in the code block, so you don't really have to look at the rest) is related to it somehow.

Hint 2

For example, the line: "Received: by 3166:673:a796:7652:f6a6:571 with SMTP id 6b7263675f61687a66;" contains a hint for the body's text.

Hint 3

Also, the last line of the puzzle, which seems like side-commentry, that everyone has chose to focus on, is also a clue, but, apparently, not a very good one, if that's the first thing that's noticed. It was supposed to be discreetly linking this puzzle to another, which has a (rather blatant) clue for this (and a deeper) part of this puzzle.

Hint 4

The numbers (and symbols) within words are there to confuse you. That said, (as I implied in the comments) you should be able to extract a hexadecimal number from the body and thereby (necessarily) a decimal one, for which the "From" hint will be relevant. The Signature hint is not relevant until you've figured out what the body means.

Hint 5

The "From" clue is meant to just point you in the right direction when it comes to solving the number. So don't think of specific things from The Mandalorian, but rather think broadly: what is The Mandalorian part of? I can say that you don't need to know anything about the Star Wars universe itself to solve this, though some info about the shows/movies themselves might be required.

Hint 6

It is a person


Hopefully this puzzle will be more difficult than the previous one I posted, which was solved in like 30 minutes 😑


I've accepted @Smartest1here's answer because it contains the right solution, though it's only a partial answer. @xhienne deserves credit, though, since they were the one who got to that point in the first place. See their answer for the reasoning behind the puzzle.

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  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @bobble - It's a non-rhyming riddle, if you will. It has everything you mentioned btw--except the poem-like formatting $\endgroup$ Dec 31, 2020 at 22:05
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Also, I'm going to remove your meta-comment about difficulty because it isn't relevant to the question. You may be interested in this meta-post about the many-eyes effect. $\endgroup$
    – bobble
    Dec 31, 2020 at 22:06
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ It is though. Every part of the puzzle is related to it in some way or another $\endgroup$ Dec 31, 2020 at 22:07
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ But I've seen a lot of puzzle give side-commentary, like this one: puzzling.stackexchange.com/q/105969/48389 $\endgroup$ Dec 31, 2020 at 22:09
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ @marsnebulasoup If that comment is part of the puzzle then of course it should stay. But if it's just saying what it seems to be saying, it isn't really adding anything. I'm not sure it's particularly worth the trouble of editing to remove it (and I think the inconsistency you complain about is just a matter of people not always bothering to do marginal tidy-ups) but I'm pretty sure the puzzle would be better without it. $\endgroup$
    – Gareth McCaughan
    Dec 31, 2020 at 22:44

2 Answers 2

4
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Partial answer maybe I am barking up the wrong tree here.

Following hint 4, The IPv6 part and the SMTP ID part:

d0wn by th3 drag0ns e\$tuary, wh!ch lay al0ng\$!d3 3d!ths 3!ght alpacas, n!n3ty-tw0 fact0r!3\$ pr0duc3d \$3v3n\$ 0f f!t \$!xty-\$3v3n\$

Taking the first letters of Down by gets us DB Dragon's Estuary one gets DB+DE, laying alongside Edith's eight alapacas, one gets DBDE+AE8A, ninety-two factories DBDEAEA8A+92F produced sevens DBDAE8A92F+7 of fit sixty-sevens DBDEAE8A92F7+F67. This produces the hexadecimal number DBDEAE8A92F7F67.

Is the person you are looking for:

Anthony Daniels who voiced C3PO, the android that has appeared in all the 9 star wars films?

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  • $\begingroup$ Not quite...guvax nobhg jung yrggref ner urk ahzoref $\endgroup$ Jan 3, 2021 at 16:38
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Probably dbdea8a92f7f67. First letters if hex, ignore digits as per hints, resolve written-out numbers. $\endgroup$ Jan 3, 2021 at 16:47
  • $\begingroup$ I was just doing that:-) $\endgroup$ Jan 3, 2021 at 16:54
  • $\begingroup$ 3 of "3d!ths" probably shouldn't count as an E $\endgroup$ Jan 3, 2021 at 16:55
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I will give Xhienne a bounty if you do that. $\endgroup$ Jan 5, 2021 at 17:19
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Who are you? Hmmm, I bet you are:

George Lucas, the creator of the Star Wars universe.

Delivered-To: <[email protected]>

Not relevant, per OP's comment below. OK, this is the original poster's name. Maybe it hides something? The three words mars nebula soup don't suggest anything to me. They might be an anagram but I didn't find it out. They also might be of some use later (see below).

From: <[email protected]>

If you rot13 the address, you get [email protected] ("The child of Mando")
Refers to Grogu (Baby Yoda), the adoptive child of The Mandalorian.

Received: by 3166:673:a796:7652:f6a6:571 with SMTP id 6b7263675f61687a66;

The IPv6 part must be seen as

a sequence of ASCII codes in hexadecimal:
3166:673:a796:7652:f6a6:571
=> 0x31 0x66 0x67 0x3a 0x79 0x67 0x65 0x2f 0x6a 0x65 0x71
=> 1fg:yge/jeq
... which is the rot13 encoding of 1st:ltr/wrd ("first letter of each word")
As for which words it is referring to, I guess it is the text in the body part but keep in mind those could be the three words in the Delivered-To: field (mars, nebula, soup => mns) hint #2 tells us this is the body part.

The SMTP ID part

follows the same encoding:
6b7263675f61687a66
=> 0x6b 0x72 0x63 0x67 0x5f 0x61 0x68 0x7a 0x66
=> krcg_ahzf
... which is the rot13 encoding of xept_nums ("except numbers")

Message-Id: 6368336b2d73336e6472

This too is a sequence of hex ASCII codes:
6368336b2d73336e6472
=> 0x63 0x68 0x33 0x6b 0x2d 0x73 0x33 0x6e 0x64 0x72
=> ch3k-s3ndr ("check sender" where sender is the From: line)

Signature: 70307a7a30615f677565336e71

Same encoding as the Received: line. 70307a7a30615f677565336e71
=> 0x70 0x30 0x7a 0x7a 0x30 0x61 0x5f 0x67 0x75 0x65 0x33 0x6e 0x71
=> p0zz0a_gue3nq
... which is the rot13 encoding of c0mm0n_thr3ad ("common thread")

SMTP-wise, a thread may refer to References: and In-Reply-To: header lines which are absent here, so it must be something else (unconvincingly: maybe a wordplay that alludes to Ariadne's thread?).

Subject: "U cant s0lv th!s haha - who am I?"

Didn't see anything special. Probably just the goal of the riddle.

Content-Type: text/plain; charset=utf-8

Nothing special, this is an expected mail header

Body: "d0wn by th3 drag0ns e$tuary, wh!ch lay al0ng$!d3 3d!th'$ 3!ght alpacas, n!n3ty-tw0 fact0r!3$ pr0duc3d $3v3n$ 0f f!t $!xty-$3v3n$"

In clear text: "Down by the dragons estuary, which lay alongside Edith's eight alpacas, ninety-two factories produced sevens of fit sixty-sevens"

The rule here, according to the decoded Received: line, is to consider only the first letter of each word that is not a number.
You get: d b t d e w l a e 8 a 92 f p 7 o f 67

If we only keep the valid hexadecimal digits (hints #1, #2 and #4) then we get this big hex number:
DBDEAE8A92F7F67

... which translates to this decimal number:
990205778083151719

What does this decimal number means? How is it special?

It contains the years of the nine Star Wars episodes, in the chronological order of the story ("common thread", as suggested by the Signature: line):
1999 The Phantom Menace
2002 Attack of the Clones
2005 Revenge of the Sith
1977 Star Wars
1980 The Empire Strikes Back
1983 Return of the Jedi
2015 The Force Awakens
2017 The Last Jedi
2019 The Rise of Skywalker

Hint #1 and #2:

... refer to the hexadecimal encoding of the text.

Hint #3 and footnote:

... refer to the rot13 encoding.

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  • $\begingroup$ So, I just realized that when I was copy/pasting parts of the puzzle from my computer to PSE, I must have missed a line (the Signature one) somehow. I've updated the puzzle, and luckily it's not an integral part of the puzzle yet; seeing how far your partial answer has gone. $\endgroup$ Jan 2, 2021 at 23:53
  • $\begingroup$ Anyways, rot13(lbh'er zbfgyl ba gur evtug genpx. V jvyy fnl gung gur qryvirerq-gb nqqerff vf abg eryrinag, naq gur erprvirq-ol uvagf jrer zrnag sbe gur obql, naq qrpbqvat gur obql erdhverf fbzr xabjyrqtr bs urknqrpvzny ahzoref naq ubj gurl ner ercerfragrq.) $\endgroup$ Jan 2, 2021 at 23:54
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for your comments. Amended my answer to take them into account, especially the Signature line. rot13(V thrff zl urk fxvyyf ner tbbq rabhtu ohg V zhfg svefg svaq jurer gur urknqrpvzny uvqrf vafvqr gur obql... Naljnl, vs gur xabjyrqtr gnt ersref gb Gur Znaqnybevna be Fgne Jnef havirefr, V'z cerggl fher V jba'g fbyir guvf chmmyr.) $\endgroup$
    – xhienne
    Jan 3, 2021 at 0:43
  • $\begingroup$ Nf V fnvq rneyvre, gur Fvtangher gnt vf n uvag sbe n qrrcre cneg bs gur chmmyr abg lrg ernpurq. Nyfb juvyr gur chmmyr vf boivbhfyl fbzrubj eryngrq gb Fgne Jnef be gur Znaqnybevna, lbh qba'g unir gb or n Fgne Jnef ohss gb fbyir gur chmmyr...gur xabjyrqtr gnt whfg zrnaf vg gnxr n ovg bs fgengrtvp Tbbtyvat :Q $\endgroup$ Jan 3, 2021 at 3:20
  • $\begingroup$ My idea (as a noob amature) for the next step, vf gung gur 'krcg_ahzf' cneg nyfb ersref gb gur qrpbqvat bs gur obql, zrnavat ahzoref (3!tug) fubhyq or vtaberq, nf jryy nf ahzoref ng gur fgneg bs n jbeq (3q!gu'$). Guvf ynfg vqrn vf nf gur r ng gur fgneg bs r$ghnel vf abg n 3, juvyr nyy bguref ner. Vs lbh purpx nyy gur erznvavat svefg yrggref, lbh trg qogqrjynnscs, ohg V unir abg sbhaq nalguvat jvgu gurfr yrggref rvgure. $\endgroup$
    – Xander L
    Jan 3, 2021 at 15:05

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