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 Forum index » Archive » Archive: Perplex City » PXC: General/Updates
Confirmed solve: location of Receda Cube
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Rand0m
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Joined: 14 Mar 2006
Posts: 271
Location: London

Confirmed solve: location of Receda Cube
How the Cube was found, and other stories

Right.

I promised that today I'd start answering questions and talking about what happened. Well, genius here has just discovered that he left his wallet and cash cards at his parents' house yesterday so now I have to drive off to get them and it'll probably be evening before I can start posting. Embarassed

But until then, here's a link to my Flickr set with pics from:

* Thursday's exploration of Fineshade.
* Friday morning's discovery of the Babel 'quadruped' and first digging session in Wakerley (though not the second as it was after dark had fallen)
* Sunday's unsuccessful trench
* The finding of the Cube at about 1.15pm on Sunday
* And some afterwards stuff, including taking it to Ampthill in the snow, where Masquerade ended

Linky: http://flickr.com/photos/rand0m/sets/72157594520967005/

To answer one question quickly: no metal detector, just an archaeologist's trowel.
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How the Cube was found - my Season One endgame microsite. Arrow

PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 10:28 am
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bit1313
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Joined: 10 Oct 2006
Posts: 164
Location: Western PA USA

You sir, are an inspiration to us all! Thanks for sharing more of your adventure with us! Keep it coming!

Sorry I can't be at your celebration (passport, tickets to UK, $$$, you know - the stuff you need to party). Watch out for those 3P! They are still lurking and I know they are watching you. Bring a stun gun and protect The Cube at all costs! It is your destiny, oh glorius Cube Finder.

bit1313
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Trout, Trout - Pretty Little Trout.
One more splash then come right out


PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 10:54 am
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ixalon
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Joined: 12 May 2005
Posts: 238
Location: Edinburgh, Scotland

Re: Confirmed solve: location of Receda Cube
How the Cube was found, and other stories

Nice trench rand0m! Puts our "heavy earthworks" to shame Razz I think I should get some archeology classes in before S2 really kicks off!

Very glad it was found by someone who so obviously deserves it (and who wasn't using a metal detector! Smile)
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 11:25 am
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GasparLewis
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Joined: 19 Nov 2005
Posts: 474
Location: vicinty of NYC

And there we go.
Nice last touch, if a bit mocking. Razz

Again, many congratulations, Rand0m.

PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 12:43 pm
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M. Johansson
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Joined: 07 Oct 2003
Posts: 79

Congrats! I'm so looking forward to hearing your path to the cube!
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 1:02 pm
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DarkHuman
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Joined: 19 Apr 2006
Posts: 638
Location: Florida

Nice stuff Rand0m! only part you missed is the piture of you craping yourself in the woods....oh wait, that would have been me.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 1:35 pm
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ramsfan
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Joined: 07 Sep 2005
Posts: 232
Location: holmfirth, yorks


thanks

Thanks so much. At least now I know that even if I had had the time to go back, and had found the quadruped, I would never have found the cube. You deserve it for your extensive excavations.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 1:38 pm
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isca
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Joined: 15 Apr 2006
Posts: 131
Location: Newport, Wales

How fitting to visit the once buried home of the golden hare. It was while researching Masquerade that I stumbled upon Perplex City. You must have been overjoyed by the significance of the situation!

Great pics too!

PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 3:19 pm
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Mico
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Joined: 09 Jun 2006
Posts: 66
Location: Leighton Buzzard, Beds

Hey, well done again Rand0m. I was close, as were a lot of us, but you know what they say; close only counts in horseshoes and hand-grenades!

Did you get any further on deciphering the letter strings, or was it simply following the instructions on #30 End of the Line, once we had worked out which wood it was in?

I can't be there on the 24th, unfortunately, (as I was forced by 'er indoors to book a holiday before I knew we were this close to the end) but I'll certainly be toasting you from the beach.

Have fun
Mico
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 3:55 pm
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Rand0m
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Joined: 14 Mar 2006
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Location: London

Part one
Thursday at Fineshade, with a digression about archaeology

Well, here goes:

I'd like to say the reason I found the Cube was because I solved all the meta puzzles, cracked the number strings, and have all the answers. Alas, no. None of us did. As far as I'm aware, the reason all of us who were involved in the endgame found ourselves in Rockingham Forest is because cjr22 and Chippy nailed the amorphous blobs as being the Jurassic strata, which led by a series of inevitable steps to the Jurassic Way and the red kite centre on Forestry Commission land at Fineshade Wood.

There *were* more elegant ways of getting there that didn't involve the Library of Babel, according to Kurt later, but we were at lunch when he told me and six people were talking at once (including Violet, loudly) so the details haven't stuck. But I'll do my best to talk about what we missed later. [TIAG - I mean, of course, the writers who scripted them. /]

I've been thinking about why it was me that found the Cube and not one of the teams that came so close, and I've come up with a combination of four reasons. One is obviously luck: it didn't take luck to find it, but it took luck not to be beaten to it and luck not to be chased away by the Forestry Commission, other players or inquisitive children. Two more reasons are archaeological training and some literal mindedness, of which more later. The fourth reason is lifestyle: I am self employed and could afford both the time and the petrol to visit the woods from London on both Thursday and Friday, when others were stuck behind desks, or scraping together the money for a weekend visit with friends.

On the Thursday I had a hospital appointment first thing. I expected it to drag through into the afternoon but promised myself that, if it didn't, I'd take a trip up to Fineshade Wood for a look around. I had no expectation of winning, but thought it would be foolish not to take advantage of having the time available and it would be fun to be involved in the endgame. The appointment finished very early, so I went. If it had overrun as I had expected then I doubt if I would have made it up there at all and the Cube would have been found with metal detectors on the Monday morning, instead of by me on Sunday lunchtime. On such small things...

I took with me my trusty trowel - the veteran of several years' worth of archaeology volunteering - as well as a print-out of the photos from the Library of Babel, a map of the woods from the Forestry Commission website, a laptop with a mobile internet card, and copies of puzzlecards 30 and 156, End of the Line and Going Dotty, as I knew there'd been speculation since last summer that the former represented directions, and no-one knew what the hell to make of the latter. I felt a bit of a fool for abandoning real life and going, as I knew there was no chance of me finding anything, but I also knew I'd regret it forever if I didn't at least try.

I hit Fineshade at about lunchtime. There were more cars than I expected, but I barely saw any people. Just a couple of joggers with fast, yappy dogs, and some people at the picnic tables in the car park. I remembered that CT had said you'd know which path to take if you knew who they were so, since like most people I believed CT to be Scarlett, I looked for a red path on the woods map board. There is one, a circular route, and better still you can take it by ignoring the mixed blue / purple path and turning left (ie, throwing away the mingled amethysts and sapphires and taking the one choice that remains, which isn't to the right). From then, as I walked the path, I looked for anything that might fairly be described as a quadruped to meet the next bit of the clue. I tried to stay aware of everything from chalk horses on the skyline (I imagined I might turn a corner and be confronted with one between the trees) to bridleway signposts. There were quite a few of the latter, and two in particular led to very promising looking clearings 10m back (20 ammot = about 10 meters was fairly easy to research and I think many people had done so). I scraped around a bit with the trowel, looking to see if there was any evidence of old digging, but there was nothing.

And here's where I take a moment to lecture on the usefulness of archaeology in treasure hunting. Not until the very end, Sunday lunchtime, was I digging for the Cube. Up until then I was digging for evidence of disturbed ground. Archaeology in Britain is based largely on the ability to detect holes that were dug and refilled anything up to 3000 years ago. Compared with that, finding a three-year-old hole is not the hardest of tasks. Instead of taking a spade and driving repeatedly downwards in search of metal, I was using a far more precise trowel to scrape back an inch or two of leaf cover and topsoil across fairly wide areas, looking for signs of a round pit where the fill had a different consistency or colour from the surrounding ground, or had settled a little. It's a quicker method, and far more efficient.

But it didn't get me anywhere on Thursday. By the time I was three quarters of the way around the circular path I was feeling considerably less pleased with myself. The light was starting to fade, I was on a long, straight section of path that didn't seem very promising (it later had houses on it, which seemed to rule it out completely) and I'd finally realised that by turning left out of the carpark I'd doomed myself to walking clockwise - which meant every turn I took was a right turn. I saw a wildlife hide on stilts down a side path but ignored it, because it was well off my route, but did stop to investigate another hide which turned out to be of a different design - no legs, and therefore not a quadruped. I amused myself by writing in the wildlife spotters' book that I'd seen peacocks but no quadrupeds, and signed it with a Cube symbol. But by then I'd pretty much given up. I wanted to go back round the path in the opposite direction, but there was no time. I decided to use the last of the light to visit Wakerley Great Wood. I knew it had footpaths too - I'd been able to get a map off the Forestry Commission website by jiggering with the URI for the Fineshade map - so I figured I might as well spend a couple of minutes there.

The moment I saw the Wakerley walks board, I knew it was the right place. It fitted the clues perfectly - unlike Fineshade, where you had to force them. There was a purple path - which meant CT was Violet, not Scarlett - and that path eventually joined with a blue one. At the point they met there was a single path available which was neither blue nor purple, and by following it there were plenty of opportunities to turn left. I phoned home to report, and Beloved Other Half said "Let's get up early tomorrow and look".

So we did.

And what happened then will be the subject of the next post, tomorrow. Or later tonight, if I can't sleep.
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How the Cube was found - my Season One endgame microsite. Arrow

PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 8:15 pm
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DarkHuman
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Joined: 19 Apr 2006
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papa, tell me the story about how you found the cube again, papa! Very Happy
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 8:34 pm
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Rand0m
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Joined: 14 Mar 2006
Posts: 271
Location: London

DarkHuman wrote:
papa, tell me the story about how you found the cube again, papa! Very Happy


Oh God, don't. I already feel old enough to be everyone's grandfather...
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How the Cube was found - my Season One endgame microsite. Arrow

PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 8:50 pm
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Cabbage
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Joined: 22 May 2006
Posts: 320
Location: North-East England, UK

If I'd have had to pick someone at random to find the cube...

Well, congrats and all that. Hurry up and tell us what happens next (please)...
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 10:24 pm
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gulrad
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Joined: 08 Jan 2007
Posts: 16

So it was a British game...

Only a total delineation will help, sad the forest wasn't in North America, the trees and soil looked familiar....

PostPosted: Sun Feb 11, 2007 2:27 am
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gulrad
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Joined: 08 Jan 2007
Posts: 16

also..

I would like to know the hotel...

PostPosted: Sun Feb 11, 2007 2:30 am
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