This question is continuation of this one. You might want to read that if you haven't already.

'That's it' I thought. 'B3TA_Z3R0' should be the thief's code-name. Typing that in the 4th monitor's input, took me seconds. But what came after was surprising. A message. Apparently being typed while I stared at the screen, afraid of what was coming next.

'Nice! I thought an easy test was the best way to tell me whom I am dealing with.'

Great. This message was no more than 'Good! But not good'. The next message told me I wasn't getting outta here soon.

'Another test is all I need to see if you are really (anywhere near) my caliber. Oh, and my name isn't B3TA_Z3R0.'

The screen went blank. Then the other too. One by one. Only two lit up again. One with a picture of text (transcribed in the first blockquote) and some text transcribed in the second).

Leet originated within bulletin board systems (BBS) in the 1980s, where having "elite" status on a BBS a user access to file folders, games, and special chat rooms. The Cult of the Dead Cow hacker collective has been credited with the original coining of the term, in their text-files of that era. One theo y is that it was developed to defeat text filters created by BBS or Internet Relay Chat system operators for message boards to discourage the discussion of forbidden topics, like cracking and hacking. Creative misspellings and ASCII-art-derived words were also a way to attempt to indicate one was knowledgeable about the culture of computer users.

Once the reserve of hackers, crackers, and script kiddies, leet has since entered the mainstream. It is now also used to m ck newbies, also known colloquially as noobs, or newcomers, on web sites, or in gaming communities. Some consider emoticons and ASCII art, like smiley faces, to be leet, while others maintain that leet consists of only symbolic word encryp ion. More obscure forms of leet, involving the use of symbol combinations and almost no letters or numbers, continue to be used for its original purpose of encrypted communication. It is also sometimes used as a script language.

URK 41 53 43 49 49 20 38 32 20 31 31 31 20 35 30 20 38 37 20 37 38

The other however, was waiting for my input. A puzzle. Again. Groan. Will I ever be able to solve the puzzle? Or will this room be where I rot?

  • $\begingroup$ I've transcribed the image of text. In the future, please don't use images of text unless there is absolutely no way to use plain text. It makes your puzzle inaccessible to screen readers or anyone who has trouble viewing images. $\endgroup$
    – bobble
    Commented Mar 3, 2021 at 15:33

2 Answers 2


The OP has told me to write down the steps one by one, but I must give credit to the one who did most of the work, @Pepper. Upvote his answer, too!

The steps:

@Pepper did these first parts, as mentioned above. The first part is to realise that some letters are missing from the text, which are the R from theory, the O from mock, and the T from encryption. We know that the above spells ROT. That means that we must think about rot13, which is the most popular in the rotational shift series. And, sure enough, rot13 of URK is HEX, which means hexadecimals. The numbers that follow URK are hexadecimal ascii for "ASCII 82 111 50 87 78", which, sure enough, are again decimal ASCII for Ro2WN.

If we treat Ro2WN correctly, we can realise it's an Imgur link, in which @Lukas Rotter has kindly pointed out in the comments: https://i.sstatic.net/Ro2WN.png. That leads us to this image:

enter image description here

When transcribed, the writing will look like this: 4 |\| O |\| '/ |\/| O |_| 5. This looks a lot like a simple coded writing.

The answer:

ANONYMOUS. Which is certainly disappointing for our hero.


The text in the link is in leet, not the actual. (OP told me to say that)

  • $\begingroup$ Shoot, I was just about to post exactly this but you appear to have beaten me to it by about a minute... $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 3, 2021 at 11:34
  • $\begingroup$ Sorry about that :P $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 3, 2021 at 11:35
  • $\begingroup$ The answer is right in it's essentials, but if possible, please include the steps that got you through to this stage. It helps new users understand how the problem was solved in a much more efficient way. Thanks! $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 3, 2021 at 12:50
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Done! To those who think this answer is helpful, don't forget to give @Pepper some credit too, he did most of the work $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 3, 2021 at 13:37
  • $\begingroup$ It's fine, I doubt I'm the only one who got the first steps right :) $\endgroup$
    – Pepper
    Commented Mar 3, 2021 at 13:43

An incomplete answer:

The missing letters in the text are theoRy, mOck and encrypTion, spelling "rot"

rot13 of URK is HEX

the numbers following "URK" are hexadecimal ascii for "ASCII 82 111 50 87 78"

And in turn, 82 111 50 87 78 is decimal ascii for Ro2WN

I'm not sure where to go from there...

2 is generally associated with Z, so that would mean RozWN. Another possibility is 2 as "to", for RotoWN, which seems more leet-y (oWN), or could be rot(oWN), which has several possibilities rot15 being dLC (maybe Bobby Kotick is the thief) or rot25 being nVM (as in nevermind)

  • 4
    $\begingroup$ spoiler $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 3, 2021 at 11:20
  • $\begingroup$ I doubt I would have found this on my own, thanks! $\endgroup$
    – Pepper
    Commented Mar 3, 2021 at 12:39
  • $\begingroup$ Nevermind, I just re-read the previous question of this serie, and now feel dumb! I guess I shouldn't have skimmed through it the first time :p $\endgroup$
    – Pepper
    Commented Mar 3, 2021 at 12:51
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @Pepper, That's why the warning at the start of the question, see? :) Another thing you might have missed was that in the last sentence, I write, 'Or will this room be where I rot?'. That was a reference to ROT as well. $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 3, 2021 at 12:52
  • $\begingroup$ Yeah I was pretty certain that sentence was on purpose, that's why I was trying to ROT the last part :) $\endgroup$
    – Pepper
    Commented Mar 3, 2021 at 13:45

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