Wednesday, 28 March 2007

New ARG-centric t-shirt designs available

Pretty quiet day, so I've added a few designs to the Scribewear shop. First up, there's the tinag-eye designs - with and without teardrop in case you want to choose between showing off your manliness, and proudly displaying your sentimental affinity with nu-literature...

These are both available as normal shirts, cheap shirts (no idea what the quality is like on those...) and ladies' tops.

Then there's the equally-obscure [SPOILER] design on dark blue, available with an opening tag only, or complete with closing tag on back...

Maybe they'll hope to mop up the news that PXC stories has been delayed til June...

Monday, 26 March 2007

Competition Time! Win a PXC Key and other random bits

(Update 3: It's all over! See this post for the winner and the solution.)

(Update 2: Two sets of hints have now been added: see the first and the second.)

(Update: Oops, forgot to set up the e-mail address for entries. Looking through logs, I can only see one entry, but if you sent me mail and I haven't got back in touch, then pleeeease send it again. Sorry about that... [goes off to weep] )

There's nothing better than a bit of altruism, except perhaps for some altruism that's been passed through a puzzle filter and made into a sweaty competition of brains and scissors. So, in celebration of season 1 of Perplex City, the start of season 2, and my feeble attempt to clean out my house before moving, I've decided to hold one of these adrenaline-filled contests. Think 300, but with more clothes and (hopefully) less pits.

This started out as a way to give out a spare key, as inspired by AgentLex, but in the true spirit of "I have too many things", I'm throwing in some other bits that newbies to the ARG may not yet be enjoying. Thus, the list for successful winning is as follows:
  • 1 Perplex City Key, for use very soon over at perplex city stories

  • 1 CD of the Viard album, The Silver City

  • "24 hours in Perplex City", a short tourist's pamphlet introducing you to the city

  • 1 lot of 4 stickers with the now outdated legendary "Lost. The Cube. Reward..." message on

  • 1 copy of "Perplex", volume 0 - "the magazine of Perplex City", with all kinds of fun and games in

  • Most importantly, 1 photo of Coxtin, Idlemichael and Dragonscales DJing at the recent end-of-season-1 party. Take it with you and get it signed by everyone you know!
Oh, yes! I can hear you leaking in anticipation already! So we need a puzzle to get things moving... OK.

Of all the fine people that have appeared in the first season of PXC, which one do these keys hold the key to?

There, that's all you're getting for now. Some handy rules to help you along:
  1. E-mail your answer to on or before Wednesday 4th April Sunday 15th April.

  2. You can e-mail me more than once, but only your latest answer will be used.

  3. I'll do a random draw thing on the 16th, and the first one out will get the stuff.

  4. If nobody's e-mailed me the right answer by the Monday, I'll post a(nother) vague and cryptic clue, and make it first-correct-wins, although any random guessing/brute force will be frowned upon...
Right. It's not that difficult. Stop reading, and go get on with it.

Japanese Puzzles 2.0

CNet has an article on the "democratisation" of puzzle-creation by Japanese puzzle magazine Nikoli. The article goes into how people/readers can submit their own, freshly-invented kind of puzzle for consideration, as well as into some history and reasons for why Japanese puzzles came about.

I, for one, welcome any new Slitherlink overlords that may happen to infiltrate us.

Tuesday, 20 March 2007

Get out of *that*!

OK, I admit it, I'm stuck.

Sphere - "Escape from the locked room" - is a simple point-and-click puzzle thing, with the object of the game being pretty clear. You can click on things to interact, use objects you pick up by clicking on them, look at them closely by selecting the magnifying glass, etc. I've got a fair way in (I think) but I've run out of ideas now. Thankfully, you can also save and load your position to come back to it later.

All in all, a great fun little game - very reminiscent of Myst et al, but any hints as to how to proceed would be greatly appreciated... ;)

Monday, 5 March 2007

New Puzzle number 2

I decided to give the Perplex City "Create-a-puzzle" engine another spin, so this new puzzle is up over there. It's rated a blue:

Countdown to...?

Sunday, 4 March 2007

New Puzzle

Have put a new, fairly simple riddle up over here: Three of a Kind. No prize, no points, just for fun.

It's the third in a series, in case you want to catch up :) More to come soon...

Friday, 2 March 2007

Perplex City 2.0 is Go

So, once again I've been neglecting my blogging duties, tut. The new Perplex City website has been launched a little while ago, featuring a veritable plethora of puzzles that are free to play. These include Japanese puzzles, so all you sudoku, hitori, hashi/bridges/"ponturu", etc fans can get an interactive fix. In addition, there are plenty of word-based puzzles such as crosswords and rebuses (rebii?), various visual puzzles, and some rather addicitive flash games lurking in the sidebar too. Phew. Ought to keep you going for quite a while.

Regarding the ARG and the cards, which were the part of season 1, these look like they're being "separated"s lightly. The first wave of new puzzle cards were released yesterday (and can be bought from many places, including Firebox), although it looks like the PXC technical team are working their socks extra hard, as the functionality to actually enter solves on the site has been delayed until today. (5pm, apparently.) Meanwhile, the ARG side of things is set to go in April, over at Perplex City Stories, with fancy new video and everything. Could be an interesting ride.

So, opinion? The new site has a great range of puzzles that have kept me clicking for hours now. There are a lot of nice and easy puzzles, but a few ones that look pretty evil too. Alas, it does seem that quite a few of particular puzzle types - e.g. wordplay ones - have been taken straight from the board game, so some possible deja vu/spoilers there. What's great though is the integration of the puzzle creation tools. It looks like you're still limited to multiple-choice, which is a shame in a way (although maybe this is for future use in some "Slamboozle" feature they mention...), but it's nice to see the community aspect continue. The cards themselves are looking just as devilish as ever, too. The map of Perplex City on the back has gone, but I won't give away what's replaced it.

So go have a play with it all, if you haven't already. More free puzzles, who can complain? :)