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What is a puzzlehunt? How do I solve these puzzles?

If you’ve never heard of puzzlehunts before, here’s a very brief summary: in a typical puzzle, you receive some information and have to extract an answer out of it, which is almost always an English word or phrase. Puzzles can come in many different forms; the only real commonality is that you usually receive no direct instructions, so it’s up to you to figure out how to make sense of the information you’re given.

If you are new to puzzles and are interested in seeing some examples, or if you’re looking for some practice, we recommend looking at previous puzzlehunts, like Galactic Puzzle Hunt, REDDOThunt, or Puzzle Potluck. You may also be interested in this detailed write-up of puzzlehunts and how to solve puzzles.

When does this start, and how long will this run for?

The hunt starts on Fri, Oct 1, 2021, 4:00 PM PDT and will end on Sun, Oct 10, 2021, 9:00 PM PDT.

What do you mean by “team size of 8?”

We designed the hunt for a team size of 8, and our registration is capped at 8 names. However, you can unofficially invite others onto your team, as long as they are not also participating on another team. We highly recommend having at least 3 people on your team.

How long and difficult will the puzzlehunt be?

We’re aiming for a hunt similar in length and difficulty to last year’s Teammate Hunt, which we judged as slightly easier than Galactic Puzzle Hunt. We expect the puzzlehunt to take most of a weekend for leading teams, but we encourage teams to keep solving beyond the weekend!

How many puzzles will there be?

Around 45.

What exactly happens when the hunt ends?

When the hunt ends, the scoreboard will be frozen and solutions for all the puzzles will be released. However, if you have not finished and still want to experience the whole hunt, you will still be able to register new teams, submit answers on the website, and progress through the hunt for a short while. The only difference is that you won’t be able to use peanuts (hints). Some time in the future, team registration will close, but the puzzles will still be accessible.

Who’s running this hunt? Who are Matt and Emma?

We are teammate, a group of enthusiastic puzzle solvers and crafters who participate in many puzzlehunts, including the MIT Mystery Hunt. teammate was first inaugurated by a group of MIT students seven years ago.

MATT AMEE and EMMA TATE are personas who have materialized and grown over the years. Come enjoy the carnival with them!

Is there a tip jar?

It is completely free to participate in the hunt, but if you enjoy the hunt and would like to support teammate, you can donate here.

I think something is wrong with a puzzle, or with the website. What should I do?

Please describe the error in an email to help@teammatehunt.com and we’ll try to correct it. We recommend using the latest version of Chrome or Firefox. While we will look at all reports, we cannot guarantee fixes for all browsers.

Can I write code that interacts with the website?

This will not be necessary to complete any aspect of the puzzlehunt. However, if you want to do this, please limit any automated requests to at most 1/second for our server’s sake. We may disqualify teams that egregiously violate this request.

What is your guessing policy?

See our rules on number of guesses and rate-limiting.

I’m stuck on a puzzle. What should I do?

Here are some general puzzle tips that might be useful:

  • Thoroughly check the work that you’ve already done. Fixing a small mistake or incorrect assumption can greatly help with getting unstuck.
  • Get fresh eyes on the puzzle, or conversely, take a break and look at something else.
  • Consider what information you haven’t used yet.
  • It can be useful to put everything you have into your favorite search engine.
  • Have you tried…

Remember that after peanuts (hints) are released, you can also use them to get a nudge in the right direction.

Are there any prizes?

There are no prizes, besides team pride.

Is there a physical component to the hunt? Will I ever need to be in a particular location to solve a puzzle?

No. It will take place entirely online.

Is there a registration deadline?


I have a question that’s not on this list!

Contact us at help@teammatehunt.com and we’ll do our best to answer it. We might even add it to this list if enough people have your question!