"In het verleden behaalde resultaten bieden geen garanties voor de toekomst"

These are the ramblings of Matthijs Kooijman, concerning the software he hacks on, hobbies he has and occasionally his personal life.

Questions? Praise? Blame? Feel free to contact me.

My old blog (pre-2006) is also still available.

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Day 3: The escape

(Disclaimer: This post is about a game. It is all fiction.)

Last night and today was hell. Fun hell, but still :-) We've finished the puzzle after 15 straight hours around 1500 this afternoon. Today was obviously the die-hard puzzling day...

We started out nice at the meeting last night. Our attempts from the day before were succesful and we were able to penetrate the PCC systems to disable surveillance. So, with surveillance disabled, we would be able to make our escape freely. Since we were the best scoring team so far (738 points vs 690 for the runner up), we had the questionable honour to be the first to make our escape.

With surveillance disabled, we made for the getaway car that was parked just off campus. When we were about half way, two patrol cars full of guards drove in, spreading guards all over. Frantically trying to flee, I ran into the second patrol car, so I had to turn around and was caught by another guard. Me and two of my team members were apprehended for violating the curfew (not for making an escape attempt, fortunately). We were taken a while away and dropped at some random location (I was dropped pretty close, since the car that was supposed to drop me, went missing).

After being released, everybody hurried to the agreed backup location. Once I got there, I let Frank know what I thought about his attempt to betray us and set us up. He obviously saw this coming, so he was a traitor! My teammembers convinced me not to shoot Frank where he stood, which turned out to be rather ok. So far, it seems he might not have know anyway, but I'll be cautious on the meeting tonight.

At the backup location, Frank put forward a captured guard, to be tortured by the especially overflown expert from Russia, Boris (Who has actually worked for Magistor a while, until a rather unfortunate incident with Magistor's wife...). Boris managed to draw information from the guard, who turned out to be a system administrator. He told that they had implanted small tracking devices in everybody at the first meeting. They could track everyone's location, so they knew something was going on.

The guard also mentioned a device which could disable thes trackers, but he didn't know anything about it. Fortunately, the organisation had managed to get some intel on the device, which was given to us for examination. The intel contained a reference to a college time slot and course number as well as ten hexagons containing 3 symbols each.

Solving (part of this) was easy, but I'm not going to discuss this here right now, since a) the deadline has been moved to 2100, so people are still puzzling, and b) I haven't slept since yesterday morning, so I am ready to fall over now... (meeting at 22:30!). I'll add a report of the puzzled solved sometime soon, probably tomorrow, though.

Day 2: Broken technicalities

(Disclaimer: This post is about a game. It is all fiction.)

The monday night meeting was an hour later than Sunday's. Fortunate, since it gave me an extra hour of time to sleep between dinner and the meeting. So arriving there fresh and (a little more) rested, we would receive the next puzzle... and the consequences for the lemon juice afair.

So, after an explanation of Sunday's puzzles, we were called forward. Frank explained the mistake we made and declared our punishment: From now on, we would no longer be team E.V.I.L., but team L.I.E.V. ("cute"). So much for our image. Fun :-).

For another report on the past two days, see Brenda's weblog.

# Puzzles

Our assignment today was simple: The mainframe we found yesterday has an admin interface. We could use our own logins here, but not without a valid pincode. To help us find a pincode, we received an envelope with a clue: A paper with 6 Kakuro puzzles. After making a number of photocopies we went home to solve them. After first starting out with one puzzle each, we quickly realized that this would take too long. As soon as we found out that these damn puzzles were called "Kakuro" puzzles (thanks Diederik!), two people started search for kakuro solvers on the internet. In the end Brenda found a number of solvers, from which the first worked (Which proves you need a woman to actually find stuff...).

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Day 1: It has begun!

(Disclaimer: This post is about a game. It is all fiction.)

Pandora 2006 has begun. Yet instead of the promised "Pandora Paradise", we were "volunteered" into the Pandora Correctional Center. Us being team E.V.I.L, we found the new environment rather familiar :-)

Hidden in a pie we got by mail, we found a letter from three survivors of last year's edition of PCC, as well as a number of metal parts, bolts and rubber bands. The letter told us about the horrors of last year's Pandora Correctional Center and about the survivor's plan for escape. They offered us a chance to join their escape, but for that they want us to help them with some preparations. So, every night from last night to wednesday, they will give us puzzles to show our dedication.

# Puzzles

So, the first puzzle. A letter from upper management to Pandora security that got into our hands, notifying them about a new mainframe. The information was apparently encoded:

":pp[ rrmd rrm tpmykr"


The encoding was cracked within a few minutes: Find every character on your keyboard and replace it with the character on the key to the left of it. You'll get:

"loop eens een rontje" (Take a walk arount)


The first thing you notice here is the wrong spelling of "rondje" (around). So, this "t" is probably a hint. Since there is a building on campus called the "T-house", we went there and arrived first. No hint there, so we widened our search aroun(d/t) the building and a few other nearby buildings.

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