Decoding challenge meta-puzzle?
In case these are relevant for a future puzzle, this needs to be a relatively spoiler-free discussion. So please don't mention the actual decoded characters from the previous (currently 7) decoding challenges.
To date, ALL of the decoding challenges have had a pair of characters in the puzzle highlighted. Most of them are either part of the puzzle's solution, or else from a necessary part of the decoding process. As in, if you haven't decoded the puzzle already, you won't have been able to deduce these. You have to first solve the puzzle.
So it occurs to me that some way, some how these are going to be required in an upcoming challenge, maybe the 13th? Or perhaps in a bonus 14th challenge? To wit:
- Dreamer: While nothing was otherwise readily apparent, the clock says "07:02". So perhaps the 7th and 2nd characters from the passcode? Or (like "Skeptic") otherwise pointing at something else (ie. "g" and "b")
- Interpreter: Two of the Nemesis glyphs were shown in reverse
- Visionary: In the bottom-left of the challenge image is ??????<*>????, with the 3rd and 5th characters highlighted, suggesting that those characters from the passcode are special
- Skeptic: Two pink sets were unused in the code, one each for the middle and right puzzles, which also give characters if decoded the same way as the puzzle
- Listener: Two of the notes are marked in red, which was a red herring in the puzzle's solution. But perhaps those decoded characters are relevant to the meta-puzzle?
- Humanist: As in 3. above, the bottom-left has ??????<*>????, again highlighting two spots.
- Spiritualist: After getting the first decryption, two spaces are marked in green.
So that's up to 14 characters to date. Most are pulling characters directly from the decoded passcodes, mostly using bits that were not part of the keywords (and therefore making them more difficult to deduce after-the-fact). Looking at them grouped together, I cannot yet see any meaningful patterns.
This whole post is a spoiler. Personally I was keeping that information to myself. :-P
@0X00FF00 I have the same theory but my numbers are diferent.
@starwort is not a big spoiler 😜 there are comments and outside the community we are speculating on it 🤭
07:02 is 2^7=128 that is .... <del>code128</del>
It's also a 7 and a 2. Shapers forbid the puzzlemakers might multipurpose any of their clues?
And for puzzle 8 Omniscient, 4^3 = 64 ; but they're also the only two extraneous characters I can see, because the other ever-present "32" and "64" throughout the puzzle don't seem to mean very much for a meta-puzzle. And "64" is ASCII "@".
Two days after I solving the Explorer chanllenge, I am still guessing what does "RM" mean.
Given that everyone know it was not Reed-Muller, it might be "real map". Yet, could it be part of the meta-puzzle that we are expecting? Well, if it was, that would be too "direct"... which actually makes me think that there is no meta-puzzle instead.
Anyway, just a guess.
As it's a static, near-transparent watermark (rather than simple text), I'd be surprised if it has any meaning other than "Rights Managed".
It's a free stock photo and the image itself is not watermarked - the watermark is a separate element in the PDF.
Well, I did think it was daft to store the watermark as a separate layer (or 2, with the matching mask) but I've seen people make that mistake before. 🙄
Really not sure what the meta data is for Catalyst puzzle...there seems to be something but it's 4, not 2...
@Jimbo9 Now it's relevant, should really post about that in a different thread.
I am not 100% confident in my interpretations for
08 - Omniscient
and have made minor adjustments to some other values