Perplex City: Season 1, Cards #001 - #004

Due to a freebie insert in Scrye #100, I've fallen in love with Perplex City, a game I had heard about before (due to regular reading of ARG news sites), but never had time to self-examine until it was shoved in my face ("Ooh, puzzle cards. Wait, Perplex City is about puzzles? SwoOOoon!"). Always loving a good puzzle, I ran off to order a booster box of Perplex City cards (entirely optional of course, but PuzZlzllES!) and set about reading the backstory and solving the free demo cards available on their website. Below I present my solutions but, more importantly, the journey taken on the way. Why? Because I'm a collector and these cards, along with their solutions, are going in a specially marked binder along with all my other paper valuables. Yes, it's worse than you imagine. I'll be starting with card #001 and progressing ever upward -- cards get more difficult the greater the number. You can track my solving progress at

Some introductory notes:

  • Puzzle solving can, and sometimes must, be a team activity. I'd be lying if I said I solved these all by my lonesome, but I tend to be overtly honest and will quite proudly proclaim myself retarded (like, say, on card #003, the third easiest card in Season 1, quote unquote). There's nothing wrong with solving a puzzle with the help of others and, naturally, the folks behind Perplex City encourage this behavior. More players is never a bad thing and, generically, withholding information in ARGs is frowned upon, not rewarded.
  • Spoilers abound. I'll be linking to the Perplex City Card Catalog as a reference point for card images (which are deliberately low DPI per the game's TOS), but you should expect everything in this and future Perplex City entries to contain more than enough to ruin the ending of your most favorite, yet unseen, movie. One of these days I'll make one of those swanky spoiler mouseover hover thingies, but I'm a lazy git. LAZY GIT!

Onward. Per my link dumps and fascination with bullets, four at a time:

  • #001 - Dem Old Bones: Being the first card in the set, this is a simple dinosaur silhouette to dinosaur name process of elimination. 1 is a Tyrannosaurus Rex, 2 is a Triceratops, 3 is a Raptor, 4 is a Pteranodon (think "pterodactyl"), 5 is a Spinosaurus, and 6 is the Stegosaurus.
  • #002 - Designer Flakes: A variation of Dem Old Bones - instead of matching silhouettes to names, you're matching paper snowflakes to the folded and mutiliated paper that generated them. 1 is A, 2 is E, 3 is F, 4 is B, 5 is C, and 6 is D. Took me two tries on this card - I had flake 1 and 4 reversed, erroneously believing that pattern B was slightly bigger than pattern A, and therefore must be related to flake 1. The real truth lies in the patterns surrounding the claw in the center edge.
  • #003 - Earth, Sea and Moon: I asked a couple of people about this one, feeling it must be so blatantly obvious that I was just being retarded, it being the third card and all (to what travesties must be forthcoming if I can't solve #003!) I bounced around the idea of RED PLANET or JOURNEY TO THE CENTER OF THE EARTH, but gave both up without trying due to their ill relation to the "Sea and Moon" of the card title. I second-guessed myself - the answer is, in fact, (spelling counts) JOURNEY TO THE CENTRE OF THE EARTH by Jules Verne. Apparently, the raised grooves of the circles spell out "Jules Verne" - after about five minutes of anguished believing, I saw the letters too. Now that I look a second time, the letters seem painfully obvious. Bugger all.
  • #004 - Zoo Zanyism: oOOh, pixel city animal hunt! WheeE! I see a lion (#1), a polar bear (#2), a giraffe (#3), a zebra (#4), an elephant (#5), a snake wrapped around a pole (#6), and zomg, a monkey! (#7) A monkey in a tree! (#7!)