This is an archival copy of the hunt; links and emails may not function.

Hidden Verbiage


Author: Linus Hamilton

This is a text adventure with a twist: objects are hidden in rooms in "Printer's Devilry" style. For example, the first room states:

A troll stands here menacingly, ready to give you ab lace.

This description hides a KEY. Upon typing "find key", the player picks up the key, and the true description is revealed:

A troll stands here menacingly, ready to give you a blacK EYe.

The key was "hidden" by removing its consecutive letters from the description, and then possibly changing the surrounding spaces and punctuation.

The first part of this solution lists the objects hidden in rooms. The second part gives hints and a walkthrough for the text adventure. The third part tells you how to extract the final answer.

The Hidden Objects

(Highlight to reveal.)

Danger Den - key
Ersatz Corridor - lance
Balcony - heater
Stage - torch
Backstage - air pump
Pit - straw
Bird's Perch - mac
Dead End - attire
Crow's Nest - lens

Hints and Walkthrough, Invisiclues Style

To get started, type "find key", and unlock the door to the south with the key. Make sure you understand how KEY was hidden in the first room.

Here are some Q&A-style hints. For each question, I start with a gentle nudge and build up to a direct answer. For maximal enjoyment, don't let the presence of questions here, or the lengths of their answers, influence your play.

1. How do I get past the troll in Danger Den?
A. You'll need some kind of weapon.
B. The weapon is hidden in Ersatz Corridor, within the words "counter; bait".
C. The correct spacing is "counterba[your word]; it".
D. FIND LANCE, then stab the troll.

2. How do I get past the bird in Bird's Perch?
A. The relevant object is hidden within the text "I row mignon."
B. The word "mignon" is unchanged.
C. The bird is punning on the similarity between the phrase "Cro-Magnon" and another phrase.
D. What sounds like "Cro"? How should this part of the sentence be structured?
E. FIND MAC, then give it to the crow.

3. How do I disable the crashed UFO?
A. Look carefully at what happens when you pull the lever.
B. You'll have to awaken the alien first.
C. What UFO? What alien?
D. Why did you start reading this hint?

4. How do I stop the bird from stealing my weapon?
A. You can't.

5. How do I reach the Pit?
A. You'll need the hidden object in the Stage.
B. Use it in the Ersatz Corridor.
C. Burn the rope in Ersatz Corridor with the torch.

6. How do I appease the woman in the Pit?
A. She wants you to give her something to warm up the room.
B. Find the hidden object in the Balcony.
C. LIGHT HEATER (with your torch), then GIVE HEATER TO WOMAN.

7. How do I drive the car?
A. Why can't you drive the car? Examine it carefully to determine the nature of the problem.
B. First FIND ATTIRE to dispel the illusion around the car.
C. Then find the air pump elsewhere, and INFLATE TIRES.

8. How do I get across the canyon?
A. You'll need to be going fast.
B. You need to be driving the car.
C. What makes the car speed up or slow down?
D. Drive the car down to the Balcony, and then go north until you cross the ramp.
E. Press the button so you can go back.

9. At the bottom of the canyon, how do I solve the chess puzzle?
A. The first move is a knight move.
B. What chess puzzle?
C. You can't go to the bottom of the canyon.

10. How do I get past the crow in Crow's Nest?
A. Have you found all the available hidden objects first?
B. You'll need to frighten the crow.
C. What scares crows?
D. How can you make one?

11. The vault passcode isn't working!
A. Read the note by the door.
B. You'll need the hidden object in Crow's Nest.

12. How do I re-fight the troll?
A. Get your weapon back from the crow.


In the Cave of Truth, Isaac Newt hints that you need to do the opposite of finding. That would be "hiding": dropping an object and removing its consecutive letters from the room description. The final room has the string:

Kiss, pear, care, crown, glen. Skey's questor chair. Pump TV I.

Hiding your spear, scarecrow, lens, key, torch, and air pump (you need to hide the spear before you can hide the scarecrow) gives the final answer KINGS QUEST VI. This references a classic adventure game, and the fact that King Azaz sent you on this quest.