You receive a mysterious package from someone with a tape inside it. You run the tape into your computer, but it says it's corrupted. You then take the raw bits, and they come out like this:



Someone, possibly the same person, sends you an email that looks like this: WW91IGtub3cgaGUgbGlrZXMgcGlja2xlcywgYW5kIGhlIGxpa2VzIGNhc3Rpbmcgc3BlbGxzLiBIb3cgaXMgdGhpcyBlbmNvZGVkIGFnYWluPyBJdCBzZWVtcyBsaWtlIHRoZSBsZXR0ZXJzIGFyZSBkb2luZyBoYWxmIHR1cm5zLCBzbyBjYW4geW91IHBsZWFzZSBsZXQgZ28gb2YgdGhlIHVzdWFsIGJhc2UncyBzaGlmdCBrZXk/IFlvdSBmb3VuZCBzb21lIG9mIGhpcyBzdHVmZiBpbiBiaW5zLg==


1 Answer 1


The message, when ASCII decoded, says 56574A714948463263534273596D676763335A306147567949474A6F5A79426E645849675932687462586C7950776F67494341674C534242626D6431626D453D, which is VWJqIHF2cSBsYmggc3Z0aGVyIGJoZyBndXIgY2htbXlyPwogICAgLSBBbmd1bmE= when interpreting as a hex-string.
Decoding this with a Base64, we get:

Ubj qvq lbh svther bhg gur chmmyr?
- Anguna
Applying ROT13, we get

How did you figure out the puzzle? - Nathan


this seems to be a final answer, since Nathan is the name of the puzzle creator.


The email is a Base64 encoded message which says: You know he likes pickles, and he likes casting spells. How is this encoded again? It seems like the letters are doing half turns, so can you please let go of the usual base's shift key? You found some of his stuff in bins.
Some thoughts about the email: encoded again = multiple ASCII and Base 64 encodings, half turns = ROT13 (13 is a half of the 26-letter alphabet), shift key = ROT13 again, bins = binary (Base-2) system of the original message.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ In case you wondered, the pickle reference was because I was originally planning to make a Python pickle. $\endgroup$ Apr 6, 2020 at 11:01
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ 'He likes casting spells' was a clue about hex. $\endgroup$ Apr 6, 2020 at 11:02
  • $\begingroup$ I've thought about pickle module, and for casting spells my thought was about the type casting on programming. $\endgroup$
    – trolley813
    Apr 6, 2020 at 11:46

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