Christine and Jon



Partial Answers

CLOWN FISH – Keep going

MOVIE 2 – Keep going

FILM 2 -- Keep going

NEMO -- Yup, that's a clown fish but that's not the answer.

FINDING NEMO -- Yup, that's a clown fish but that's not the answer.

GC Notes:

GC to update day-of-game.


This is a drop puzzle. Staff does not currently have anything they need to say when teams are handed the following materials.

Teams are given 2 wooden boards (around 12" x 12").

Each board has a square of nails in it (24 nails per board, 7 to a side), and in the bottom left corner nail, a length of yarn is attached. The yarn is spooled around a clothespin to keep it manageable for teams. One board has a blue yarn, one board has a red yarn. Teams should be given one of each color.

A word is laser engraved next to each nail. In the center area of the square, there are laser engraved icons and letters.

Of note - This information should be freely given to teams if they ask.

  • Boards have the features of natural wood. Knots, wood grain, or other irregularities are NOT part of the puzzle, and should be ignored.

  • The yarn should be attached to the bottom left. On the board with blue yarn, this word is "SOURCE". On the board with red yarn, this word is "SOUR".


All diagrams appear in the "Data" section, including photographs of the final solve.

Each of the two boards is solved independently. This allows a team to split and work in parallel.

The basic solve path:

  • Teams string the yarn from nail to nail according to what words make a compound word/phrase chain.

"sour cream", "cream soda", "soda pop", "pop song", etc. (These word lists appear in "Data", as well as diagrams of where these words fall on the boards.)

NOTE: The icons and letters that appear in the center of the board are not used at all in this step.

  • Once all words are used (and there is one unique solution that uses all words), the string has crossed out all icons/letters except the ones used in the solution.

The icons remaining are read to get an additional compound word.

  • The final step is to recognize that the two compound words/phrases can be used to extract a third compound word/phrase, and that's the answer.

The red board is generally considered easier than the blue board by all test solvers, and has fewer ambiguities in what path to take.

The red board solves to icons of a clown and a fish, giving "CLOWN FISH".

The blue board solves to icons of a movie/film and number 2, giving "MOVIE 2".

Combined in the correct order (unclued, since there are 2 choices), you can see "CLOWN FISH MOVIE 2" which most people will recognize as Finding Dory. Note that searching Bing for CLOWN FISH MOVIE returns Finding Nemo as the top result.


In our experience playtesting, teams would only have trouble with ambiguities of "what word comes next". One way to handle this:

"Would you like me to confirm any connections you've made so far?" And then let them decide if they want to confirm a single compound word (or as many as is appropriate).

For example, "brain child" would be incorrect, but "brain dead" is correct (for the red board).

Other places teams could get stuck, theoretically:

  • "I don't know how to use the yarn" - Suggest making connections, or reading the words outloud? Clue bat would be "What makes sense with "sour"? "sour sign, sour child, sour saw..." (this is just reading the words in the order that they appear clockwise.) First combinations were intentionally made to be very obvious "SOUR CREAM" and "SOURCE CODE". There aren't other combinations that make sense, and this hints strongly how to proceed.

  • "I think the icons/pictures need to be used right now" - Could suggest looking at them later.

  • "I want to stretch the yarn across both boards" - I don't know how they'd decide how to orient the boards since they're two pieces and have no obvious connections. Suggest looking at only the red board first?

Changes Since Beta/RC:

The images on the board are slightly different and the final extraction method is more straightforward.



source - code - book - club - house - work - place - card - board - game - show - boat - race - track - ball - park - way - side - car - jack - hammer - head - rest - room

Blue board solves to "MOVIE 2" (2nd movie), "FILM 2" (2nd film), which gives a partial.

Additional icons that are not used include: Cat, Plane, Apple, Pie, Phone, Fish, Tree, Hand (could be represented by other words)

Additional numbers that are not used include: 9, 7, 3, 1


sour - cream - soda - pop - song - bird - brain - dead - lock - step - child - birth - day - break - fast - food - chain - saw - dust - storm - door - stop - sign - post

Red board solves to "CLOWN FISH", which gives a partial.

Additional icons that are not used include: Boot, Table, Car, Book, House, Bird, Dog, Spring, Fly, Wheel (could be represented by other words)

Additional letters that are not used include: D, S, N, V