Well, it’s been over a week, which is a long time for blog posts to be delayed after the event they’re documenting in probably all of the world except my blog. So.
I guess this post should start with a bit of background. I’ve been puzzlehunting for… wow, three and a half years now. I was introduced to puzzlehunts from AoPS, when some fellow members got together a team for CiSRA 2011, and I think I’ve participated to some degree in every known internet Australian puzzlehunt since.
But as for my experience with the MIT Mystery Hunt in particular, I sort of hunted with a decidedly uncompetitive AoPS team in 2012 (I think we solved one puzzle exactly), but my serious hunting career began when dzaefn recruited me into the Random team (then Random Thymes) for the 2013 hunt (and I did blog obliquely about it). We didn’t win (and I actually didn’t participate that much because I was traveling with family) but the next year (as One Fish Two Fish Random Fish Blue Fish (1f-2f-17f-255f (I am evidently in a parentheses mood today because as you’ve probably noticed, the amount and depth of parentheses in this sentence are positively alarming (lol)))) we won.
And I do have a half-written post about that which will never get posted (and I also didn’t participate that much, because my family was moving that weekend) but okay, let’s just drop any semblance of chronological coherence on this blog and dump a short version of the list of puzzles and parts towards which I contributed solving, as I wrote them down one year ago:
Well, there had to be something here.
Unfortunately I don’t have time for anything more complex, so here’s a low-effort illogical puzzle for the occasion. (It has been testsolved, at least. Thanks, Yoshiap.) It also features a brand new category, so as not to distract the people on LMI.
If you don’t already know what occasion it is, it’s easy to find out by looking through my archives or possibly anywhere else I’ve left a trail online. Or you could solve the puzzle! (Or you could ) If this puzzle had an answer, it would be a nine-letter word, although like most of mathematics, it’s less about the answer than about the path you take to get there…
So, I somehow managed to get 25 points all by myself in MUMS Puzzle Hunt 2013. Well, I pestered chaotic_iak a little with 3.3 Diagnosus (.html with animated .gif) but we still didn’t recognize all the Pokémon until hint 3, at which point Google sufficed for me.
This is nowhere near the top, but compared to the usual results of whatever AoPS team I form, it’s amazing. By far the best result of AoPS was on CiSRA in 2010 (46th with 58 points), before I discovered puzzle hunts in AoPS; unfortunately due to people getting older and the influx of younger and younger people to the fora, there are less possible teammates each year and they have less time, so here I am by myself. (Also I could have accepted an invitation from a guy in the some-form-of-Elephant team, but I figure if you can win two MUMS hunts in a row you don’t need any more people.)
All in all: Yay!