# You Are Games:

Letters In Boxes #15

We're jumping the gun a bit with our celebrations, but next week is the autumnal equinox. It's one of two days out of the year where the sun is directly above the equator, and (in theory, but not exactly) gives an equal amount of daylight and darkness. In this week's Letters In Boxes challenge, we take that half-and-half attitude to heart. In all of this week's puzzles, you've got to make look at both sides of the picture to find the winning answers.

Just as in weeks past, the first puzzle is pictured below. Click on it to bring it up in a new window and start solving. When you've got an answer, change the filename of the image (in this case, "15weeksto2012" (give or take a few days)) to your answer, making sure you stay in the same directory and keep the same extension. If you're right, you'll flash forward to the next puzzle. If you're wrong, you might get lost on the dark side of the moon, but you can always back up and try again.

This batch of puzzles contains four puzzles to solve. On the fourth puzzle, you'll find the email address for sending your final answer. We'll hand out a prize to the first correct entry we receive, *plus one* additional randomly-selected correct entry. **Please include your Casual Gameplay account display name with your entry.** You must be at least 13 years of age to enter. Only one submission per participant, please. Offer void where prohibited. Your deadline for submitting your answers is Monday, September 19th at 11:59 PM (GMT-5:00). Can you keep both sides balanced to win the prize? Good luck!

Update:Congratulations to the following winners! :D

Both winners were given a choice of prizes. Congratulations and thanks for playing with us! Look for another Letters in Boxes again soon!

- Mattbert
...First!- spaceloaf

I got through #3 purely by guessing, and now that I have the answer I still don't know why it's the answer... so if anyone can explain it, I'd appreciate it.

Holy cow! I did the same as baileydonk. I have no idea.

Some help would be much appreciated with #2:

I figure that the two words in each row are related to each other, but I don't see how. All I see is that some of the words can be linked together by the last letter in one word being the first in another word.

ThemePark: That's a red herring.

Step back and look at ALL the words on each side. You may notice something.

I'm stuck at #3, too. No matter what I try, all I get is gibberish.

@ThemePark

think of it as the two sides of a scale

Now totally clueless on #4

Same as baileydonk and jiffypop. Not a clue how it's the answer. I noticed one thing both words have in common, but don't think that's how I was supposed to find the answer. I won't start 4 before I know why I got 3 right though ^_^

I might have it but I'm not sure

Is puzzle no. 4 the one with the swindle, fuel, november birthstone as clues?

I found something in #3, but I don't see how we're supposed to figure that out, so I'm not sure it's of importance. And this is only to the ones who guessed it.

Think of the black square as a mirror. Now look at how many letters there are between each pair. There's one pair that doesn't fit, but the rest have a pattern to them.

Errata to my previous comment:

Actually the pattern is only on 3 of the pairs, I counted the Q and R as 1 letter. If you do that, the pattern should be apparent, but I can't see its relation.

I am a bit stuck on number two. While it seems that you are supposed to find a word using the letters that are missing in the right side, the answer is not working.

For #3:

The sum of the numerical values of the letters on each side are equal. They add up to 72.

However, I don't see how we're supposed to figure that out. I got the answer by guessing, like everybody else, and then I took a guess as to the solution based on what I saw.

Maybe we're suppposed to start with Q and of course U and subtract? That can't be right; I'm sure I'm missing something.

Or, I could just be wrong.:-D

Anybody get anywhere on #4?

Phoenix has a bunch of zip codes, but the one that seems to matter most is 85015.

But I don't see what that has to do with anything. Or what any of the clues mean.

Another interesting fact. With the exception of R|Q:

All the letters have a line of symmetry.

Not extremely useful, but its how i knew what letters to play with on the right.

I also did trial and error for #3 but I think the pattern is supposed to be (it's a hefty hint):

consonants and vowels

really stuck on #2

do i need to find a 5 letter word for the bottom right?

if yes, am i supposed to find a link for each row, so that there is a general rule for finding out that word by linking it to easle?

#2:

Building on someone else's hint, think of a scale. What's missing on the right side that would create a balance? Don't think about words, just letters.

Some more questions about #2:

Does it have anything to do with the number of vowels in each word?

Does it have to do with finding vertical words?

thanks DAM!

@donhuando:

No, and no.

A little more blatant clue:

Both sides have the same letters. The letters on the left side should all be used on the right. It doesn't matter what line they're on. The words are meaningless. Eliminate what you already have on the right side from the left. The leftover letters will anagram to a word.

If you still need help after that, just give up. :-D

np!

Yes, I too am stuck on #3

I even pulled up a list of 5-letter Q-words to just randomly enter selections for the next page, and still no luck. Any of the guessers figure out the pattern yet, or has anyone successfully reached the answer without blind guessing?

about #3:

There are multiple solutions that must be considered.

@Jacob:

Try your list again. You missed one.

DAM, about #4, i have no clue what to do but regarding what you noticed:

I also saw that there are many, all starting with 850, and those can be written as BSO, and with 85015 it is BSOIS, but I don't know if it helps

@Steve:

Postal codes are numbers. Is that what you meant? Did you mean the state abbreviation? Is it obvious that I'm grasping at straws?

Is it bigger than a breadbox?

Am I at the wrong #4? My clues are about

swindling and fuels and birthstones

...nothing about

Phoenix or zipcodes

@DAM: You're right, I meant the state abbreviation. I might repost the image later with that clarification, but I've got to run for now.

Thanks steve!

Whereas before I was miles away from a solution, I am now at least 3 steps closer.

So yeah, I got nothing.

Next week is also a vernal equinox, let's not forget.

So I've submitted my answer, but I'm not 100% certain about my casual gameplay account (I'm signed into Typekey now). Any chance that userid recovery could be added, in addition to the password recovery?

As for Jacob's question, I solved #3 due to the hint from MsMovieMaker. I can't suggest any other hints besides what hers and what Jacob's already doing.

Aw man, I just blindly guessed on #3 and got the right answer.

Using the letter Q might have been a mistake, since there are only a few words it could have been, and it was a common word at that.

So uh... does anyone have an actual solution for #3? I've been staring at it for a while, and even with the correct answer I can't figure it out. A hint would be very welcome; I kind of don't want to go on until I figure out how #3 works.

Does anyone know where to begin on #4? It's hurting my brain just looking at it. Steve's clarification didn't do much to relieve the tension.

Do I need to find some line dances that start with the letter "z"? And what the heck does "don't forget to match up both sides mean"? There are sides?

Any advice would be greatly appreciated :)

I'm not seing anything about

Phoenix, or Line Dancing

Am I missing something? Also Maybe I didn't get MsMoneyMaker's hint for #3, from that I thought we were looking for

a word that goes CVCVC but the answer (or any qu word always goes CVV..)

OK now I'm really perplexed. I solved 1-3, then left for a while. When I returned, I used a slight variation of the answer I originally used for #3 and now there are different hints for number 4?

LOL Zoz, I think you just put everything into perspective for me... but

um... now what! Two number 4s? How many more are out there?

MisterThou:

I think you're missing a vowel. A, E, I, O, U and sometimes...

As far as i can tell, the first clue ends in a ? meaning the clue is KIND of right. Ive seen the same clue in crosswords and it usually means

Conga - a dance you do in a single file line

but thats just my take it.

As for the second, ive tried replacing it with a variety of words

end, quit, stop, conclude, close, culminate, desist, die, drop, fail, finish, halt, refrain, stay, terminate (thank god for the thesaurus lol)

As for the third clue, everyone's guess is as good as mine. On top of that, fitting them into the puzzle doesnt even make sense to me, especially if the 3rd clue is a number.

As for #3

if the answer is based just on the sum of the numerical values of each letter being 72, then there is at least one answer that qualifies, but doesn't work.

If it's the order of CVCVC, if you take one answer and simply change that to CVCCV the answer is accepted.

It's very frustrating to get an answer without knowing why!

Ahhh!

multiple answers? No wonder there are problems with #4

Okay, big spoiler.

Puzzle 3 has 2 answers, each giving a different clue to puzzle 4.

if you've solved number 3, anagram your answer to get another q word using the same letters as your first one.

@aquareflections, the third clue on #4 refers to

a two letter state abbreviation,

according to an earlier post from Steve.

I just got #4!

There are two solutions to #3

These lead to two different sets of clues

Those are "both sides"

The 2 sets of clues lead to the same sequence of letters

Ignore symmetry

Solved the 4th one! once you combine the 2 sets of clues, the answer should make itself pretty clear. Thanks for the postal code clue, gave me a much needed unusual letter!

oh, got the answer now. Ok. The second #4 helps, but is not needed. You can solve it with only one of the two.

Don't get distracted by the numbers in the 11 boxes on top--they only matter once you fill in the boxes.

Yup 4 all falls into place once you look at both sides... still don't know how we we're supposed to solve 3 though lol

what do you do when you think you have the solution for the 4th? Does it take you to a new image?? How do you determine the email?

@Jeremy, the e-mail is on the page with the 4th puzzle, just read the paragraph below the puzzle.

wow, missed that completely

Can this be the solution to #3 (only read if you solved and are looking for an explanation)

This is a bit far fetched, but could it relate to a certain song by a certain someone whose last name is almost what is written on the left, but just not "exactly", and have you noticed how "exactly" is very similar to the name of that song.

oh, #4 is a tricky one! Thank heavens I stumbled on the second set of clues!

The biggest help to me was combining the third clue from each set.

Phoenix postal code and November birthstone

Then you just put all three answers in order -

the two sets of clues will give the same answer when all three are combined from clue 1-3. The numbers in boxes and the clue numbers are NOT related.

This answer didn't make sense until I

looked at the numbers to rearrange the letters.

Great puzzles this week! I'll look forward to seeing the explanation for number 3.

Count me in the group of people that solved 3 by blind luck. Has anyone actually figured out the logic behind it?

Also, since you actually need to realize there are two solutions to 3 in order to understand 4, it really tanks your ability to solve 4 without guessing. Linking 3 to 4 was a great concept, but no one seems to understand 3.

My only disappointment is on #4

It looks like you only need one set of clues to solve it, since the other set of clues gets you the same result.

#1 and #2 were fine, #3 was really tough (brute force ftw), but #4 was a good challenge. I approve.

Wow, this was a heck of a brainteaser, but I pulled it off. Woohoo! ^_^

spaceloaf:

I understand 3. I guess it's just that different brains work differently. 3 was immediately obvious to me, but I struggled with the others. Here's the explanation:

Up top, it sez: "Can you keep both sides balanced to win the prize?" You've got to keep both sides balanced. Give each letter a weight based on where it is in the alphabet. A=1, B=2, C=3, and so on. Now, both sides have to balance!

That leaves an awful lot of combinations, but you know that the first letter is Q, the second has to be U, and the third has to be a vowel, so that really cuts down on the number of options.

SirNiko:

You really need both to understand the "Both Sides" comment, and to fit into the duality theme. I spent a lot of time trying to make a palindrome in those 11 spaces, before I found the second set of clues.

@JIGuest, on #3, I agree with your logic regarding

each side adding up to 72

but that still doesn't explain why

the king's wife

isn't an acceptable answer.

Zoz:

first half is 72, King's wife is only 62

@zoz:

Because "QUEEN" only adds up to 63.

Anyways, hints for all!

#1:

Fold on the dotted line.

#2:

Both sides will have the exact same letters when you're done.

#3:

Very silent.

#4:

One puzzle, two sets of clues. Use them both.

Got number 3 by trial and error. Blerg.

Got 1 and 2 by myself, had to read through this page for 3, but I thought 4 was quite fun (I liked how the hints overlapped)

About #4, the clues are making no sense to me... But:

Should clue one from left side give the same word that the clue one from the right, and so on? Or the three together sould give the same word?

Puzzle 4 was very clever. It took me some time to figure out, but it's very satisfying when you find the answer. Thanks Steve!

Rgandum:

No, yes

But to elaborate the 'No': it's also a partial yes

I hope I'm not confusing you even more by this hint.

Regarding my previous post (8:58 pm Sept 15): it's amazing that I can solve these puzzles yet basic addition is beyond me! I'm sorry if anyone was led astray... please disregard that post!

Rgandum:

You're going to get the same set of letters, in the same order, from both sides. But the three words are different for either side.

Got it!

Needed help for 3 and 4. The above clues are more than adequate.

Use the internet too, it can help with some answers.

I think I must have spent 8 hours working on all the sides of this puzzle. =)

Hint for #3

The rules say that you have to balance each side. For this one, make sure you balance not only the "values" for each side, but also the number of C's and V's.

Hint for #4

As mentioned before, there are two different versions of clues for the last puzzle. You do not need both, but it helps if you have both. To get both, try anagram solving #3

Hopefully this clears up certain issues.

Did everything balance out for you? Here are the answers:

Puzzle 1Puzzle 1 Answer

For the first puzzle, the way to achieve balance was to project the mirror image of the right side onto the left side to spell FIND NEXT PUZZLE WITH BANJOES. (If you want to get really picky, you could project the mirror image of the left side onto the right side, and you'd get the same thing, but backwards.)

Puzzle 2Puzzle 2 Answer

The twenty letters on the left side of the grid, when rearranged, spell out the three words on the right side of the grid, with five leftover letters. Those leftover letters can be rearranged to spell SAUNA.

Puzzle 3Puzzle 3 Answer

Since the letters of MAYOR on the left don't have much to do with the Q on the right, you needed to find a different way of balancing both sides. If you add up the alphanumeric values of the letters in MAYOR (13+1+25+15+18), you get 72. The goal of the puzzle was to find another word (or words) starting with Q that also has a sum of 72.

Q has a value of 17, which takes the total of the rest of the letters down to 55. The next letter must be a U (since we're not going to pull anything too tricky like QANAT or QOPHS), which has a value of 21, which brings the total down to 34. From here, you need to use a bit of trial-and-error, but you could narrow down your choices easily by considering that the third letter has to be a vowel. By plugging in A, E, I, and O (1, 5, 9, and 15, respectively), then trying pairs of letters that total the remaining value, you would find that only QUITE and QUIET are valid words. They are both answers to this puzzle. Surprise!

Puzzle 4Puzzle 4 Answer

If you went to quite.gif, you found a completely different set of clues than if you went to quiet.gif. However, both clues lead to the same answer, and can be used to check each other. The string of letters to fill in the boxes was CONGASTOPAZ, (CON, GAS, TOPAZ for QUITE, CONGA, STOP, AZ for QUIET). If you take the letters in the numbered boxes in order, you will spell out your final answer, OCTAGONS.

Winners will be announced soon!

Hey, Steve--where do you announce the winners? Obviously I wasn't one, but it would be nice to have a place to go to see who DID win.

Update