# Deus Ex crypto puzzle

There is an encrypted email in the recent Deus Ex: Mankind Divided game:

From the game files, this appears to be the string:

FILE: client.pld31bf3856ad364e35.id


If you treat the pipes as column separators, we get 13 rows of 11 characters each:

CecKIjBrWWr
9Vo2DN6DOWK
86lQSYxno0s
6c4yEcxnoGs
FxAgwKsaX0I
SecLIdbTR04
FxAgwMbTQW4
9r2mtqyMtmX
AGVGov0nYGu
8zg5cz0nY0u
EX@DJoCyext
F#6XUkCyN0W


And many pairs of rows appear to share the same substrings:

SecLIdbTR04 (doesn't seem to pair with anything, CecKIjBrWWr maybe)

9Vo2DN6DOWK
9r2mtqyMtmX

CecKIjBrWWr

86lQSYxno0s
6c4yEcxnoGs

FxAgwKsaX0I
FxAgwMbTQW4

EX@DJoCyext
F#6XUkCyN0W

AGVGov0nYGu
8zg5cz0nY0u


I wasn't really able to get anything out of this or if the pairings even mean anything.

I am curious if this stands out to anyone as a particular type of crypto-cipher who may be able to take this further.

• No -- this isn't a required part of the game (I've already 100%'d it / gotten the platinum trophy). This is more of a hidden easter egg that no one has cracked yet. Sep 22, 2016 at 18:22
• i.imgur.com/9MbwnCg.png This image of the same message was taken by a different player and posted online, but there is a character missing (the # symbol) from the last string. @user6865514 Can you recreate this image on your game? Sep 22, 2016 at 19:08
• @Bulldogg6404 not sure if relevant, but that imgur link shows when the message is first found. The screenshot here shows the archive of all messages (in the companion app?). Could be due to a different system, a bug, a different patch, etc. Sep 22, 2016 at 19:21
• Surprised that nobody posted the answer online. So it IS a cipher, and it requires a specific in game item to decode. Go to the Zelen Apartments in the south section of Prague, and look for a boy in a red shirt with glasses. After talking to him, a letter will show up just inside the front door of your apartment. Inside the letter is a Secret Society Decoder Pin. With the pin in your inventory, check the email again. It should be decoded now, and you'll see the message ROT13(Or Fher Gb Qevax Lbhe Binygvar). Obviously, this means that ROT(V'z wbxvat, cyrnfr qba'g qbjaibgr zr gb Uryy)! Feb 10, 2020 at 22:19
• @DavidRobie ROT13(YBY V qrsvavgryl tbg zl ubcrf hc gung gurer jnf na nafjre. V jnf cercnevat gb gryy lbh gb cbfg lbhe pbzzrag nf na nafjre!) Apr 30, 2020 at 0:13

--this looked suspiciously like hexadecimal to me. I removed "pld" (or p|d?) from the front of the string and used this converter: https://www.convertstring.com/EncodeDecode/HexDecode

That gave me: 1¿8V­6N5

Which looks a bit sus to me. I offer that this might be "Snake?!" flipped upside down. (And I guess p|d might be a hint towards this.)

I shall continue to think about the main body of the email!

So, I think I may have a partial answer/ correct line of thought to solve the main body of the cipher.

Essentially, I think that both the "Encrypted" tag on the email and the surface appearance of base-64 are red herrings. Rather, it seems to be a person typing on some kind of inconvenient device or broken keyboard.

I noticed that when you compare the certain similarities that obviously exist between parts of these strings, there are letters that are either close together on the keyboard or look like other symbols that they could stand in for.

Below is what I came up with. You can check and find that a lot of the letters, if not the same, are either potentially similar-looking or within one key on a QWERTY keyboard.

Others may perhaps think that I have convinced myself of a pattern that doesn't exist. (I welcome any comment!)

ct1 = "CecKIjBrWWr"

SENDINGTEXT

ct2 = "9Vo2DN6DOWK"

ILOSTMYCODE

ct3 = "86lQSYxno0s"

ITISNTAJOKE

ct4 = "6c4yEcxnoGs"

??????AJOKE

ct5 = "FxAgwKsaX0I"

   ???????????


   ???????????


ct7 = "SecLIdbTR04"

SENDINGTEXT

ct8 = "FxAgwMbTQW4"

   ???????????


ct9 = "9r2mtqyMtmX"

   ???????????


ct10 = "AGVGov0nYGu"

WHYNOTONYOU

ct11 = "8zg5cz0nY0u"

ISTHISONYOU

ct12 = "EX@DJoCyext"

    ??????????? (possibly an email address, see ct5 and ct8 also)


ct13 = "F#6XUkCyN0W"

THINKINGHOW (or indeed an f-bomb perhaps...)

• please use spoiler tags >! . May 20 at 0:20

Decoded pld31bf3856ad364e35 from

base64

and got:

Wwշw~{~

Maybe similar to www? I wonder why there's symmetry among the letters too, e.g. the two w's and the two ~'s