16
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If you're interested in starting the treasure hunt from the very beginning, check out the prologue!


After cracking the code, you catch a flight to Oslo, the capital of Norway. Being on a long flight makes you need to use the restroom badly -- but it's after 10 PM? Dare you risk it? Deciding that risking it is necessary, you relieve yourself, and (luckily) you aren't caught.

On the way out of the restroom, you notice a telltale man in a suit and sunglasses holding a plaque with your name on it. You walk up to him, and he silently hands you a letter.

Tearing into the letter, you read:

Dear [insert username here],

Welcome to Norway! Feel free to spend a couple of hours here enjoying Scandinavia. After all, it's positively gorgeous. You have 48 hours from midnight tonight to reach your next pit stop, at which point anyone not there will be cut from the Treasure Hunt. My suggestion is to spend the day here and sleep on the plane - once you land, it's just a short drive to the pit stop.

You do, of course, have to figure out where you're flying to, though. I've left a puzzle on the back of this note. Solve it when you're ready!

Yours truly,

Bailey M
Puzzlemaster for the Treasure Hunt 'Round the World

You shrug. Better to solve the puzzle now and then spend any remaining time enjoying the city, right? Flipping over the letter, you read:

  • OLD FLAGS
  • FISHY DISH
  • PUERTO RICO
  • ACQUITTED IDIOT
  • 61B2068696E74
  • MANLY PINK
  • BANANA CABANA
  • STREET SMART

DETERMINE THE ODD ONES OUT TO DISCOVER THE WAY


P.S. No, 61B2068696E74 isn't "the odd one out because it's hex and the rest are strings". Think of it as a hint.
P.P.S. Prepare yourself for a long flight -- you're finally leaving Europe!


Where is your next destination?


Hint/Clarification:

The only conversion you need to do is the first hex-to-string. None of the other strings need to be converted for this puzzle to be fully solved.

Hint/Clarification #2:

I've edited the tags. You'll note that is not among them.

Hint/Clarification #3:

I'm not spoiler tagging this one since it's basically a general-knowledge sort of thing. It should be noted that the Puzzlemaster, Bailey M, is an American, and writes his puzzles as such.

Hint/Clarification #4:

The Puzzlemaster typed this puzzle up on a good old-fashioned American keyboard. Apologies to anyone solving the puzzle who doesn't have one on hand.


The story continues in Treasure hunt 'round the world! (Interlude 2)

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  • 1
    $\begingroup$ No typo for 61B2068696E74? I translated it to text and got something weird. Then I removed the b and it said "a hint". $\endgroup$ – mmking Jul 21 '15 at 21:14
  • $\begingroup$ @mmking Not likely ;) $\endgroup$ – LeppyR64 Jul 21 '15 at 21:55
  • $\begingroup$ @LeppyR64 thank you sir. I thought it might be misspelled, but I wasn't sure. :P Also, 3 favorites and no upvotes is very intriguing, indeed! $\endgroup$ – Bailey M Jul 22 '15 at 2:22
  • $\begingroup$ @BaileyM No prob, yes i know the quote is actually about Sweden. $\endgroup$ – LeppyR64 Jul 22 '15 at 13:48
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @BaileyM Your questions are so interesting, I forget to vote by the time I finish reading. Sorry about that! :) $\endgroup$ – mmking Jul 22 '15 at 14:25
6
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We're going to

Cambodia

There's a single odd letter out in each of the clues, and for all but the hex clue, the odd letter out is based on how the word is typed on a QWERTY keyboard.

OLD FLAGS:

O is the only letter typed on the top row of the keyboard. The rest are all on the home row.

FISHY DISH:

D is the only letter in an odd numbered column of the keyboard.

PUERTO RICO:

C is the only letter on the bottom row. The rest are all on the top row.

ACQUITTED IDIOT:

I is the only letter in an even numbered column of the keyboard.

61B2068696E74:

If you remove the letter B and convert from hex to ASCII, you get "a hint".

MANLY PINK:

A is the only letter typed with the left hand.

BANANA CABANA:

A is the only letter on the home row. The rest are all on the bottom row.

STREET SMART:

M is the only letter typed with the right hand.

These letters, when arranged in the right order, give the solution above. I don't think there was a hint to the order, which made it much harder to get the solution without finding all of the letters.

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  • $\begingroup$ You're right. I thought that the solution would be easy enough to see that you'd be pretty easily able to confirm your answers were right. Maybe that's because I'm an anagram nerd; not sure! Either way, you got it, so good job. :) $\endgroup$ – Bailey M Aug 11 '15 at 13:24
  • $\begingroup$ @BaileyM There were a couple of red herrings, though not too bad. C in ACQUITTED IDIOT is the only letter on the bottom row, and N in BANANA CABANA is the only letter on the right hand, in some typing styles. $\endgroup$ – isaacg Aug 11 '15 at 15:23
  • $\begingroup$ Ah, I type 'B' with my right hand, so I was never ever going to catch that one! $\endgroup$ – Bailey M Aug 11 '15 at 15:24
7
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I could be completely off the mark here. But here goes:

The hint seems to be telling us to convert the text into HEX, so I converted all the words into HEX:

OLD FLAGS - 4f 4c 44 20 46 4c 41 47 53
FISHY DISH - 46 49 53 48 59 20 44 49 53 48
PUERTO RICO - 50 55 45 52 54 4f 20 52 49 43 4f
ACQUITTED IDIOT - 41 43 51 55 49 54 54 45 44 20 49 44 49 4f 54
MANLY PINK - 4d 41 4e 4c 59 20 50 49 4e 4b
BANANA CABANA - 42 41 4e 41 4e 41 20 43 41 42 41 4e 41
STREET SMART - 53 54 52 45 45 54 20 53 4d 41 52 54

To find the odd ones out, I converted the HEX value into DEC and add up all the odd numbers:

OLD FLAGS 298
FISHY DISH 401
PUERTO RICO 452
ACQUITTED IDIOT 665
MANLY PINK 379
BANANA CABANA 457
STREET SMART 446

Total of all odd numbers = 3098

Convert 3098 back into HEX and we get C1A

Sounds like CIA in Virginia, USA.

But I'm unsure why 'B' is in the hint - 61B2068696E74

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  • $\begingroup$ Man, I love this site. This is a totally valid answer and not at all the direction in which you should go to get my intended solution. So you don't spend too much time ripping your hair out, there's no conversion necessary to solve this puzzle. Really cool work though, and a +1 for sure. $\endgroup$ – Bailey M Jul 23 '15 at 14:22
3
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These phrases have particular properties relating to how they are typed on a US keyboard.

OLD FLAGS

O is the only letter on the top row. The rest are on the home row.

FISHY DISH

?

PUERTO RICO

C is the only letter on the bottom row. The rest are on the top row.

ACQUITTED IDIOT

?

61B2068696E74

Not sure what the property for this one is, but it makes legible ASCII when the B is removed.

MANLY PINK

A is the only letter typed with the left hand. The rest are typed with the right hand.

BANANA CABANA

A is the only letter on the home row. The rest are on the bottom row.

STREET SMART

M is the only letter typed with the right hand. The rest are typed with the left hand.

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  • $\begingroup$ There's no real property for the hex, it was just meant as a hint towards 'one of these things is not like the other'. The two your missing are variations on a theme, more or less - I had to get a little creative when finishing this puzzle. Look at what you've already done, and think about how I might have deviated from that... $\endgroup$ – Bailey M Aug 10 '15 at 14:31
  • $\begingroup$ Can't banana cabana also be 'n'? as 'n' is the only letter typed with the right hand. $\endgroup$ – Eli Aug 11 '15 at 2:48
  • $\begingroup$ C in ACQUITTED IDIOT is the only letter in the bottom row. M in STREET SMART is also the only letter in the bottom row. D for FISHY DISH as it's the only letter that is typed a single time by the left hand's middle finger? $\endgroup$ – Echo Aug 11 '15 at 5:42
  • $\begingroup$ @Eli Good point, but I think it makes more sense that each method is used only once, and all of the row methods are used. $\endgroup$ – f'' Aug 11 '15 at 5:54
  • $\begingroup$ @Eli to add some clarity, I type the letter 'B' with my right hand, and I never even considered that other people might not. My mistake! :P $\endgroup$ – Bailey M Aug 11 '15 at 15:25
1
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I think I have an answer:

Kalmykia, Russia

Going off of Eli's answer, we have:

OLD FLAGS - 4f 4c 44 20 46 4c 41 47 53
FISHY DISH - 46 49 53 48 59 20 44 49 53 48
PUERTO RICO - 50 55 45 52 54 4f 20 52 49 43 4f
ACQUITTED IDIOT - 41 43 51 55 49 54 54 45 44 20 49 44 49 4f 54
MANLY PINK - 4d 41 4e 4c 59 20 50 49 4e 4b
BANANA CABANA - 42 41 4e 41 4e 41 20 43 41 42 41 4e 41
STREET SMART - 53 54 52 45 45 54 20 53 4d 41 52 54

And the odd one out is:

FISHY DISH since it's the only one that doesn't have a letter in its HEX encoding.

Following that:

We remove the Odd numbered hex values (odd one OUT) and get 46 48 20 44 48

Which turns out to be:

since 20 is a space, we can make that the split point, which leaves us with 46 48 and 44 48.

Finally,

Putting these as 46.48 and 44.48 into a coordinate locator, (lat, long) we get Kalmykia, Russia

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  • $\begingroup$ This is a cool answer, but I'll reiterate (and note in the question as well) that no conversions are necessary in solving this puzzle, past the given hex. $\endgroup$ – Bailey M Jul 30 '15 at 13:35
  • $\begingroup$ @BaileyM, changed the answer to do something different. Perhaps I got it this time? $\endgroup$ – B1indfire Jul 30 '15 at 14:38

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