5
$\begingroup$

You nervously take the

right

(Solution to Part X)

passageway and are glad that you don't die! Unfortunately, there's another crossroads [sigh]... but there's also someone else there.

"Excuse me," you say. "But are you that [censored] who's been sending me all over the world with your clues? My mysterious hiker?"

His face lights up, "So someone found them? Yes! And I got through the first fork okay, but I'm really confused about this one."

"And why should I help you?" you reply, rather snottily.

"Well, because if we don't work together, we'll die here!"

You hate that he made a good point.

"Fine. What is it?"


Each of the seven passageways is labeled with a letter:

  • A
  • E
  • L
  • M
  • O
  • R
  • V

There is also an etching on the wall which looks like this: etching

(CRTTTAFEDNMOEIHOL
THDNERCSETOHIEA)


Which path should you take, and why?


YEAH! We found the hiker! It's only gonna get more interesting from here. In the next part, the hiker is going to tell us his story. More importantly, he's going to explain why we're in this labyrinth and what this all has to do with us! Solve away, puzzlers, so we can get to a twisty tale!


Announcement:

Starting with Part XI (this one), I am putting a point system into place! You may earn anywhere from 0-100 points for an answer. Here's how it'll work:

Incorrect answer: 0-30 points
Correct answer: 50-100 points

The more tries you take, the more the amount of points you receive decreases. Also, as I have to post more and more hints, the maximum point values may decrease! The person with the most points at the end of the Hiker's Cabin Myster series (yes, I think we might have an end ;)) will receive a bounty from 50-150 rep, depending on how much I have at the time...

Current Points:
Joshua Bizley -- 24 19 14 points

Shoover -- 15 points

Omega Krypton — 40 points


Hints

Hint 1 (7% point deduction)

Don't look at the letters of the passageways first (e.g. anagrams). First look at the clues and that'll lead you to which letter to take...

Hint 2 (10% further point deduction)

As Joshua Bizley already found out, the etching says "Correct is the total of the hidden name." Think of ways things could be hidden in this puzzle.

Hint 3 (15% further point deduction)

Look very closely at the picture. Very closely, indeed.

Hint 4 (30% further point deduction) <-- maximum possible is now 50

Better check out some of those revisions!

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  • $\begingroup$ rot13(Gur yrggref ba gur cnffntrjnlf ner na nantenz bs 'erzbiny'...) $\endgroup$ – Cloudy7 Jul 27 at 20:00
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @Cloudy7 - Because of the points thing, I'm not going to give away too many things too early so I won't tell you whether you're on the right track or not! $\endgroup$ – Voldemort's Wrath Jul 27 at 21:49
  • $\begingroup$ But wait... rot13(Jnfa'g gur nafjre gb cneg K 'evtug' vafgrnq bs yrsg?) $\endgroup$ – Belhenix Jul 29 at 22:26
7
+50
$\begingroup$

Answer is

O

Obviously the other two answers have made great leaps in ths fine puzzle. I'm just here to give the final blow. So don't forget to upvote their answers (and the question) as well!

Reasoning 1 (@shoover part)

Hint 4 ask us to check the edit history, and lead us to a steganography website. Plugging in the image in the puzzle renders Harrison Ford.

Reasoning 2 (@JoshuaBizley part)

The text is a transposition cipher where you read every 11th letter. It reads "Correct is the total of the hidden name"

Reasoning 3 (@OmegaKrypton part)

So I added the values of the name (Harrison Ford) up using A1Z26. The sum is 145. Since the passageways are labelled with letters, it is obvious that we should find the remainder of 145. 145 mod 26 is 15, and the 15th letter is O. Done!

And...

@Cloudy7 mentioned in the comments that the letters of the passageways anagram to REMOVAL, but it seems like to be a red herring... :)

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  • $\begingroup$ Because of the piggybacking, I’ll make it 40 points. Well done! $\endgroup$ – Voldemort's Wrath Aug 1 at 3:23
  • $\begingroup$ You have to do steganography on the specific image file of what's supposed to be an etching on the wall? Sorry @Voldemort'sWrath but that's an instant downvote from me. This is supposed to be a series of puzzles with a story to it and you're asking for something that literally makes no sense at all in the context of the story. $\endgroup$ – Gareth McCaughan Aug 4 at 21:20
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @GarethMcCaughan - That's okay... I don't mind the criticism! But the point of these puzzles is not the backstory. That's just to add a bit of interest. The main goal is to be able to solve puzzles! But, whatever, you could say you got out your DeStegan Pro 2000 out and figured it out; it doesn't matter. $\endgroup$ – Voldemort's Wrath Aug 5 at 19:56
  • $\begingroup$ Of course I understand that the point is the puzzles! But -- and of course others may differ -- I really dislike backstory that actively conflicts with the puzzle itself. Better to have no backstory at all than that. $\endgroup$ – Gareth McCaughan Aug 5 at 23:31
  • $\begingroup$ @GarethMcCaughan - See the last sentence of my comment above. Also, please remember to tag me next time, because I am just now seeing this comment! $\endgroup$ – Voldemort's Wrath Aug 14 at 21:05
4
$\begingroup$

I would take

M

Previous Reasoning

I initially guessed E. The text is a transposition cipher where you read every 11th letter. It reads "Correct is the total of the hidden name". This is pretty cryptic, and I could be wrong, but my guess is that this relates to the word "censored". If you add all those letters together where A = 1, B = 2, etc, you get 83. 83 modulo 26 is 5: the fifth letter of the alphabet is E.

2nd Attempt:

I can only assume that I have to work out what it is that is censored in the text. I have read through the past puzzles in this series and can't find anything conclusive so I am going to have to go with "troublemaker". My reasoning is that it sounds right and its total length (12) matches the position of one of the letters in the alphabet: L. Obviously I could guess "hiker" but 1. it doesn't look right since hiker is in the next sentence and 2. I believe E is wrong based on my previous answer.

3rd Attempt:

I read through the answers for the first puzzle and now think the word I am looking for is "cryptographer", which has 13 letters; meaning M.

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  • $\begingroup$ Ahh the word is "cryptographer" isn't it... so its M. $\endgroup$ – Joshua Bizley Jul 27 at 18:34
  • $\begingroup$ Sorry, no! I'm afraid I'm going to have to deduct some more points (down to 14)... $\endgroup$ – Voldemort's Wrath Jul 27 at 18:35
  • $\begingroup$ Ha thankfully I am not too worried about the points... I'll let someone else try now though $\endgroup$ – Joshua Bizley Jul 27 at 18:36
4
$\begingroup$

I would take

L

because in hint #

4

we are told

to check out the revisions

which leads us to

view the edit history

which tells us that

the true hint 4 is a link to a (de-)steganography tool

And when we

plug in the image to the tool

we find

that the hidden message is "Harrison Ford"

which has

12

letters.

Or we could go with INDIANA JONES, which also has 12 letters.

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  • $\begingroup$ You're soooo close! (15 points out of current maximum 15) Read what the actual text says in the image. $\endgroup$ – Voldemort's Wrath Aug 1 at 1:32

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