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All right. No more Mr. Nice Grinadel.

Labrycean Navigator

You are currently on: 3F

1F 2F 3F 4F 5F 6F 7F 8F 9F 10F 11F

Second Floor: Conclusion

You had thought Mr. Adams was weird, but Ms. Alperin definitely ups the ante in that department. Like the First Guardian, she congratulates you — with a hint of reluctance clear in her voice — and gives you a plastic object to help you on your quest. But this time, you can't even begin to make sense of its shape, let alone what it might be used for. It is a flat rectangular plate containing several square notches, white but speckled with a fine pattern of pink hearts.

"Oh," Ms. Alperin remarks as she catches your expression. "Don't know what this is? Fine, I'll show you. Give it here. And gimme that other thing too." You hand back both the square plate and the green tablet device that Mr. Adams gave you earlier, noticing too late that the letters of the Playfair grid you just finished using are still etched onto the green object's surface.

"What—?" you sputter, breaking the conventions of the Silent Protagonist for the first time.

"I made this for Mr. Venola upstairs," Ms. Alperin sighs. She prudently fits the square plate over the green device in a certain orientation, and you notice that the indentations in the plate leave three of the grid's letters exposed — the very same three letters, as you later find out, that make up Venola's first name. "It was supposed to be a cute gift... but then... well... it came... it happened... and then, of course, you know where it ended up... where we both ended up... Here you go, kid," she rapidly concludes, giving you back both objects.

Really? On top of all of these deeply entangled ciphers, there's going to be relationship drama? Suddenly, the $100,000 prize just seems that much further away.

Third Floor: Introduction

The featureless, semi-circular elevator opens at the Complex's outer edge, and you make a welcome retreat from Alperin's diatribe. You take a deep breath of climatized air, inhaling faint odors of metal and fuel, and try to catch a moment of relaxation, but the trip is swift and you soon ascend to a curved door on which an illuminated number "21" is visible. The digits are separated as the door slides open from the middle, and you are projected out onto the third floor without further hesitation. The walls are a muted purple, and are more artificial-looking than ever. Your eyes are, of course, immediately drawn to Room 21's central computer terminal.

And they find that somebody is already using it.

Room 21

A gray-uniformed man with long black hair, a mustache, and an ID badge marked Ray Venola is standing over the terminal ahead; as you step off the elevator platform, he is obviously aware of your arrival. Mr. Venola wraps up his terminal tasks, approaches you briskly, and recites what seems to be a brief, plagiarized, and intensely awful poem:
"Look the look,
talk the talk,
walk the walk.
Some things are just so nice,
you can say them twice."

And without another word, he is gone, resuming his brisk motion and departing via the elevator car from which you just emerged. Uncertain as to the meaning of this encounter, you step up to the terminal, but it simply reverts to its standard behavior, with another twenty-five-letter string flashing onto the screen. You read it, noting the letters below, and proceed on your usual quest around the floor.
PERFECTSQUAREROOMTHENHIGH

Room 22

REOTHERSUSETHEROTTHIRTEEN

Room 23

CODEONMULTIPLESOFTHIRTEEN

Room 24

NWODPOTMORFDROWDETALPDAER

Room 25

It's still very early on when you reach this room, and you are unprepared to find another human being in one of these sterile purple cells... least of all one who is performing a cheerleading routine!

Lively but grating music — sounding to you like a Toto greatest hits album remixed with tomtom drumbeats — streams from some invisible speaker as Katherine Ward (you judge that to be her name, based on a brief glimpse you see of her while she is in motion) waves a pompom in the air and yells "Go-Go!" and "Hotshots!" at you, flaunting a tutu she is wearing alongside her normal gray uniform.

All attempts to initiate a conversation with Ms. Ward are fruitless, resulting only in giggles of "Heehee" and shouts of "No, no! I don't want to make a booboo!".

With extreme difficulty, you shut out the distraction and read this terminal's letter string:
PTUERRHBNEIEETSMNTHTECHEO

Room 26

NSGRELBHSVAQSBHEANZRFNOPQ

Room 27

PPLYMULTIPLEOFSIXRULEBEFO

Room 28

CSTHINGUPSIDEDOWNINBSROOM

Room 29

Yet another gray-suited employee occupies this room, and this time, the occupancy is permanent. An immaculately finished wooden desk sits against the outer wall; perched atop it, a metal plate bears the name Clay McAlestor. But your encounter with Mr. McAlestor is, once again, over quickly.

As you are still approaching the terminal, he inspects his watch, exclaims "Oh, man! I've gotta fly!", and blasts off. You're not even sure whether he went through the left door or the right. The room is again still and sterile, and you read off the next string:
FTHEMINASCENDINGSEQUENCEA

Room 30

DIAESRRRLMAEOAAWPTCDNLSMA

The Third Elevator

With your circuit of the 3rd Floor complete, the walls promptly hiss, signaling your ability to advance to the floor's Guardian. Sure enough, as you again proceed into the Complex's hub, a Labrycean employee in a black uniform guards the way ahead. This one is small, blond-haired, and, definitely for the first time, seemingly friendly.

"Heh," he says. "Good job here. I'm Sean Kinsella. I'm the third Guardian of Labryca — sorry, they told me I always have to say that — and I need a password."
"What—?" you ask, quite a popular question from you today.
"Need a hint?" Mr. Kinsella inquires. "Well, please don't ever, ever tell him I said this, but it's six letters."
Despite his encouraging nature, you are now more uncertain as ever. Mr. Kinsella picks up on your quizzical expression.
"Heh," Mr. Kinsella repeats. "Still confused? Only got three letters, maybe. Well, I hate to be a fly on the wall here, but I overheard Ms. Ward doing her thing out there earlier. I'd urge you to pay careful attention to her — ahem — 'quirks', and apply them to the password you got. You really don't want to 'make a booboo', do you?"
And a blank smile tells you that with this last statement, you have exhausted his bank of hints. You are on your own.

What password do you give to Mr. Kinsella to access the elevator?

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  • $\begingroup$ You've made the final step way too obvious. :P $\endgroup$ – Deusovi Aug 3 '16 at 3:59
  • $\begingroup$ @Deusovi There's an instruction I think you might've missed...use "high" prime... $\endgroup$ – Dan Russell Aug 3 '16 at 4:06
  • $\begingroup$ Not everyone in the world is an MIT Mystery Hunt participant... even on here. Also, there is indeed a clue that 29 is the intended prime. $\endgroup$ – A. Mirabeau Aug 3 '16 at 4:06
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    $\begingroup$ Aaand solved! Once again, fairly simple, but very fun to solve. Can't wait for the next installment! $\endgroup$ – Deusovi Aug 3 '16 at 4:26
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    $\begingroup$ Very sorry about this, but the 4th floor is going to involve multimedia and it's going to be complex to set up. You'll know what I mean when I release it. I've written all the text (including the 25-letter strings on all the terminals) and I should be able to get to it within the next two days though. $\endgroup$ – A. Mirabeau Aug 30 '16 at 1:38
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Rules from previous floors that may be helpful:

ON MULTIPLES OF FIVE READ DOWN (received on floor 1, made universal on floor 2)

MULTIPLES OF SIX ARE BACKWARD (received on floor 2)

21:

PERFECT SQUARE ROOM THEN HIGH

25:

PTUER
RHBNE
IEETS
MNTHT
ECHEO

reading down... PRIME THEN CUBE THEN THE REST O

combined 21, 25, 29, 27, 22, and 23

(first room, "square", "high prime", "cube", "the rest" pt 1 and 2):

PERFECT SQUARE ROOM THEN HIGH PRIME THEN CUBE THEN THE REST OF THEM IN ASCENDING SEQUENCE APPLY MULTIPLE OF SIX RULE BEFORE OTHERS USE THE ROT THIRTEEN CODE ON MULTIPLES OF THIRTEEN

combined 24, 26, and 28 (the rest, part 3-5):

READ PLATED WORD FROM TOP DOWN AFTER YOU FIND FOUR NAMES A, B, C, D: C'S THING UPSIDE DOWN IN B'S ROOM

30:

DIAES
RRRLM
AEOAA
WPTCD
NLSMA
ADAMS MCALESTOR ALPERIN WARD

Following Directions

21, 25, 29, 27, 22, and 23 were all rules for reading the rooms: specifically, order and transformations to make them readable.

24, 26, and 28 are directions that we need to follow.

30 is just... a list of the four names of the people on this floor (besides Kinsella, the guardian).

The directions we have are:

Read plated word from top down after you find four names A, B, C, D: C's thing upside down in B's room.

How to follow them:

From room 30 we have four names. The third name is "Alperin".
Alperin's "thing" is the square plate with three holes in it that spell RAY when placed over the playfair cipher from before:
OPEDA
BCFGH
IJKLM
NRSTU
VWXYZ

XXXX
XXXXX
XXXXX
X XXX
XXX X

"B's room" is room 29.

When placed over the grid from 29, the plate highlights letters T, S, and E.

We only have those three letters, but...

we can double them, as hinted (very explicitly) by Ward and Kinsella.

Doing that gives us

the password:

TSETSE.


(Passwords so far are

OPERA, RATS, and TSETSE.

This may be useful in later floors.)

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    $\begingroup$ Wow. Just... Wow. I am speechless. You're going to be a Conqueror someday, I just know it. $\endgroup$ – A. Mirabeau Aug 3 '16 at 4:35
  • $\begingroup$ Just one suggestion I missed earlier due to being blinded by your brilliance: Under the heading "combined 24, 26, and 28 (the rest, part 3-5):" in your post here, you may want to hide the text that you wrote inside a spoiler tag. $\endgroup$ – A. Mirabeau Aug 3 '16 at 14:08
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    $\begingroup$ @A.Mirabeau: Fixed! Next time, feel free to edit it in c: $\endgroup$ – Deusovi Aug 3 '16 at 14:08

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