Kool-Aid Solution

How It Works

The first step is to solve the logic puzzle on the given sheet. Interns are attempting to figure out the correct order for different foods ("courses") with the logic puzzle. The logic is based on the "types" that the foods are (desserts, fruit, entrees) and the "components" that will make up each Kool-Aid drink. The components are a direct mapping to the letters in the names of the foods. (e.g. CANDY contains the 'C', 'A', 'N', 'D', and 'Y' components.) The colors of each component can be determined by looking at the Kool-Aid pitchers – each letter is colored red, yellow, blue, or clear.

The correct ordering is:

  1. CANDY
  2. BERRY
  3. PIE
  5. KIWI
  6. STEAK
  9. HAM

Next, the instruction sheet implies that the Kool-Aids should be mixed using some Kool-Aid from each of the component pitchers in the food's name. This means to get a cup for every food and pour some portion from each lettered pitcher corresponding with the letters in each food. E.G. The KIWI cup gets 2 parts 'I', 1 part 'K' and 1 part 'W'

After the Kool-Aids are poured and ordered, interns notice that each Kool-Aid is now one of six colors – red, orange, yellow, green, blue, or purple. Colors are:

  • CANDY = Green
  • BERRY = Green
  • PIE = Orange
  • BANANA = Blue
  • KIWI = Red
  • STEAK = Orange
  • HOTDOG = Red
  • COOKIE = Purple
  • HAM = Yellow

Note: There are probably different shades of each of the colors depending on how much of each component they used when pouring. This doesn't matter, all that matters is that they can tell which of the six it is. The interns have been told that it doesn't matter how much of each component is used – but not that they should focus on which of the six colors it ends up being.

The top of their instruction sheet hints that they should now index into the name of the food by the color: Red = 1, Orange = 2, Yellow = 3, etc. E.g. If the Kool-Aid for CANDY is green, they should take the 4th letter of CANDY.

Doing this in order will spell out "DRINKTHEM" which is a clue for the interns to taste each Kool-Aid. Four of the Kool-Aids will taste sweet / like chemical death because they have artificial sweetener added via one of the components.

The letters of the four components with sweetener spell DINE for the final answer.



Design Notes

Of course we had to do a Kool-Aid puzzle with a "cult" theme. Of course.

Construction Notes

GC Notes

During one of our test events, a team raced quickly through the first steps of the puzzle to the "DRINKTHEM" step. Having filled their (16 oz) cups completely full (though not with the right components), they were hesitant to do this, but GC prodded them in the right direction. Unfortunately, instead of just tasting the cups, or at least realizing that they tasted different when they started drinking them, the team basically elected one person to chug all 9 full cups. (We didn't stop them because the data they would have pulled out was wrong anyway. Or because we're mean.) The team called GC and said, "Now what? We drank them." GC (who was watching, as this was a test event) told the team member who had drank that what was next for him was probably a trip to the bathroom, and that the rest of them might want to start over. P.S. This is part of the reason why the cups used for the real event were smaller.