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1. Compare everything in your mystery to the contents list for the mystery you are working. The contents list for each mystery can be found here. If you think you are missing something, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
2. Read everything. Our mysteries are equal parts storytelling, puzzle-solving, and good ole fashioned detective work. You never know if a detail, no matter how small, might be important. After you have read all the instructions here, read the Beginning Brief of the mystery you are working. From this document, you should have a starting point for your investigation. But remember, you are the investigator. If you were dropped into an episode of your favorite crime television show, you would need to gather as much information as you can and then piece the clues together. Also, remember to check both sides of all your documents and make sure you have removed all the contents from an envelope once you are allowed to open it.
3. Look for things in the box that could feasibly connect to each other. Do you see a strange symbol on more than one document in your mystery? Maybe this is used to suggest that those items fit together in some way. Our puzzles and the crucial pieces of information needed to solve them often fall into this category. So keep an eye peeled!
4. Follow your instincts. The majority of each mystery is contained within the contents of the mystery. However, there are external components that appear at times that might warrant investigation. (Ex. websites) As a Deadbolt Detective, you must follow all leads.
5. Evidence Timeline. Information will be used at different points of your investigation. Just because you have access to information at the moment does not mean that it can be used at the moment. You may need to progress through your investigation and find other pieces of information to use together. Also, some items may be used more than once.
6. Solve all the puzzles. This may seem like an obvious tip, but far too often, we see that players try to finish our mysteries without completing all the puzzles. The puzzles give crucial information for the case. In almost every instance, you will need the information that the solution reveals. Remember, if this was a real case, you wouldn’t be able to convict a suspect best on a hunch. You would need to have all evidence in order to convict them.
7. Our mysteries employ the use of QR codes. The easiest way to read one of these is with a mobile phone. Many of the latest models of smartphones – like iPhones – simply require you to open your camera application and point at the code. If your phone doesn’t support this feature, free QR code readers are easily obtained through Google Play Store or through the App store. (This code is just an example of what to look for and doesn’t open)
8. QR codes and files might be password protected. In order to gain access to these files, players need to solve puzzles or complete other components within the box to reveal the password. When putting in passwords, make sure not to use caps or spaces.
9. Don’t be afraid to use the Hint Files. Sometimes one puzzle might not click as easily as others. If you are stumped on a particular puzzle, take a peek to get pointed in the correct direction. All hint files can be found here. Within the hint files, you will also see puzzle solution files. This is also a great place to double-check your answers.
10. Utilize other members of The Deadbolt Mystery Society. We maintain a Hint Group community on Facebook where others working on the same mysteries as you can help each other and share theories about how to solve parts of our mysteries. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Make sure that you read the community rules before posting.
11. Once you have solved the mystery, check your plan. If you have received the mystery as part of a subscription plan, please make sure that you review the details of your subscription. We leave all management of the subscription up to the subscriber.