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# Pitfall Harry's Contest of Doom

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Ugh... this is quickly devolving from a fun and challenging puzzle into an exercise in anal retentiveness. I'm not sure how much more I can take.

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Ugh... this is quickly devolving from a fun and challenging puzzle into an exercise in anal retentiveness. I'm not sure how much more I can take.

Do you know Ben's first big contest? There where times where I got stuck and frustrated too, but then Ben or other contestants always helped me out.

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Ugh... this is quickly devolving from a fun and challenging puzzle into an exercise in anal retentiveness. I'm not sure how much more I can take.

Perhaps my categorical breakdown of the possibilities appears anal retentive, but logic at times is exactly that. Try to keep in mind that the entire space of possibilities was not implemented into the puzzle. Only one of the four excruciatingly detailed categories is relavent. Which one it is may be a matter of reconsidering the clues and applying a logical process of elimination.

As Occam's Razor has it, "The simplest explanation is generally the most likely."

Ben

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[Try to keep in mind that the entire space of possibilities was not implemented into the puzzle. Only one of the four excruciatingly detailed categories is relavent.  Which one it is  may be a matter of reconsidering the clues and applying a logical process of elimination.

As Occam's Razor has it, "The simplest explanation is generally the most likely."

Ok, I'm thinking that instances such as FROSTBITE or STAMPEDE that could be bent or straight by one letter were not designed into the puzzle.

The bent words I've been able to find are:

DECATHLON

LASERBLAST

PITFALLII

RAMPAGE

TENNIS

DOLPHIN

BRIDGE

ROBOTTANK

PITFALL

SKIING

KABOOM

OINK (x3)

HERO (also straight)

So, the "secret is in the knees and the number." 13 or 14? There are 13 "bent" words in all, or 15 if you count all the oinks. Perhaps there are more bent words that I am missing?

I've anagram'ed every possible combination of the green letters within these words are come up with nothing so far. I've even applied some of the previous clues (or procedures from the clues) without much luck. I was sure that I was close to a solution of the "knees"... it all seemed so logical, but nothing!

Someone hurry up and solve this so I can stop thining about it! Steve, if I win I will sell you the game for \$20, but don't worry, the chances of me figuring this out are slim to none!

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Bearing in mind that "parody is the sincerest form of flattery"...

Carl Wonders - No. 1

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That was truly inspired, Nathan. Can't wait to see CW No. 2!

Ben

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That was truly inspired, Nathan.  Can't wait to see CW No. 2!

Funny you should happen to mention No. 2...

Carl Wonders - No. 2

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So, the "secret is in the knees and the number."  13 or 14?  There are 13 "bent" words in all, or 15 if you count all the oinks.  Perhaps there are more bent words that I am missing?

Ok let's cooperate a little bit:

IMO HERO doesn't count at all, because it also exists in a straight line. Then we have 12 (= number of gold bars!) titles left. Since Oink exists multiple times, we have 15 "knee" letters, so those letters or positions are out of the 12 range too.

That leads me to the conclusion, that the secret is in the titles of the 12 games. Simply choosing the first letters doesn't help, because we don't have enough vowels then.

So it must be something else...

Or the multiple Oinks are there to have enough vowels. This would also (partially) explain why there are so many 'K's in the map. But I couldn't find any good anagram... :ponder:

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All right. I see now that there is a flaw in my word search puzzle. It would have gone unnoticed by me had it not been for the persistence and thoroughness of Thomas. I was aware of the multiple, single-knee instances of OINK. However, I assumed those multiple instances would not create a problem because the knee in each of those instances was always the same, the letter I. But upon rechecking the matrix for the umpteenth time, I've finally spotted the fourth instance of OINK, the nasty one which had eluded me all this time (I didn't write a program to search the matrix as Thomas has done), the instance whose knee is an unexpected and most unwanted letter N.

At this point, all I can do now is throw up my hands and offer an apology. I should have been more thorough in my QA. I am sorry for the angst this has caused all of you.

Now to clean up this little mess, I have no choice but to give you this fact -- not a clue, but a fact -- as unambiguously as I can:

Consider only a single instance of ANY Category 4 title as being significant. And in particular, assume the relavent instance of OINK has the letter I at its knee.

Again, I apologize for the oversight. Nathan, please. Put the baseball bat away.

Ben

99,000 points.

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Sorry, I meant "Alan Hewston".

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Nathan, please. Put the baseball bat away.

I'm enjoying the puzzle, even though I'm pretty-much baffled by it. I'll take another stab... er, make another attempt at it tomorrow.

Even if I don't manage to solve it myself, I'm intrigued at finding out what the solution is.

(And for those wanting to bend their brains a little further: what old arcade game is Room of Doom probably based on?)

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... But upon rechecking the matrix for the umpteenth time, I've finally spotted the fourth instance of OINK, the nasty one which had eluded me all this time (I didn't write a program to search the matrix as Thomas has done), the instance whose knee is an unexpected and most unwanted letter N...

Ben

a fourth OINK? The "Oink" with the "N" knee is the first one that I found!

It did look suspicious to me though because it was branching from the middle of "Kaboom", also a "knee" title.

I wish I had more time to try and win the contest but I've just been too busy and I get the feeling that Thomas, Room34, and Shawn are the closest to solving this one.

I may get back to this later. "The secret is in the knees" Hmmm.

This reminds me of Monty Python's Holy Grail!

NEE!!..... NEE!! .... NEE!!

Weston

P.S. Those comics are hilarious!

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Ugh... this is quickly devolving from a fun and challenging puzzle into an exercise in anal retentiveness. I'm not sure how much more I can take.

Do you know Ben's first big contest? There where times where I got stuck and frustrated too, but then Ben or other contestants always helped me out.

Yes... I had the notable distinction of being the only person who found the contest on their own.

Of course, I screwed that up by submitting a wrong answer to one of the questions, so I was the third-place winner...

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OINK (x3)

Are you sure about that? I've found 3 occurrences of it too, but one of those three has TWO "knees"...

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Aww, man. I knew I shouldn't have come to the forums today... I was actually going to try to get some work done!

OOH! OOH!
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Yes... I had the notable distinction of being the only person who found the contest on their own.

That was you? Sorry, I didn't remember your name.

BTW: 4x Oink

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No problem. I have changed my avatar about 500 times since then so I understand...

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No problem.  I have changed my avatar about 500 times since then so I understand...

Since I disabled the avatars anyway, that would be no problem for me.

Did you change your alias too?

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I went from room34 to Room 34.

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I've made some major advances on the puzzle thanks to a few of Harry's more recent clues.

I will leave it at that... I don't want to give away my secrets... or, of course, to deny you the excitement of discovering them yourselves.

That said, I think I still have a long way to go.

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Wait, that would make 5 OINKs! (though 2 of them share 3 of the same letters).

I, unfortunately, am not getting any closer.

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I will leave it at that... I don't want to give away my secrets... or, of course, to deny you the excitement of discovering them yourselves.

Yes, those are the real "high lights", aren't they?

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Exactly. Certainly I want to win the prize, but it is more fun to just figure out the puzzles (though I wish they were just a tiny bit easier so I didn't have to rely on Ben giving out obvious clues)!

The minutiae of the knees almost lost me on this one yesterday, but now I am re-energized!