Now here’s something new and different. The Black Letter Game is an upcoming puzzle game involving real-world artifacts and expected to span five months. If you sign up for the $60 subscription, an actual physical box will be shipped to your house, one per month for five months. So what’s in the box? ”Real-world physical objects within which are hidden lots of puzzles.” The game will have a competitive aspect involving online team registration and solution submission but the details are still pretty unclear.
A friend of mine and I have already signed up, splitting the cost between the two of us. While the creators of the game encourage a 1:1 ratio of players to artifacts, they understand that different teams will have different budgets and don’t restrict you from sharing one subscription across several people to save money (although $60 is really a steal for a game of this scope). You can even change your shipping address for each artifact so each member of your team gets to experience fun of finding a mysterious box of puzzles on their doorstep.
There shouldn’t be any doubts as to the quality of this game and its puzzles—it’s co-created by some of the people who have run the infamous The Game treasure hunts in San Francisco/Seattle (a very interesting subject worth a post of its own!). The FAQ even states “we’re all experienced puzzle-designers here,” which is certainly encouraging (hopefully a term I might be able to call myself one day!).
I am really, really, really in love with the idea of puzzles and games that cross over into the “real” world. So many mysterious/puzzle experiences are limited to the boundaries of a TV or computer screen. When I find something that makes me actually physically go somewhere to find a clue (like the Diamond Dash) or deal with physical objects, I get really excited! There’s just something that feeling.
The game starts on March 2nd and is filling up fast, so subscribe soon if you’re interested. I’m not sure how much I’ll be documenting our experience with the game here on this blog (I don’t want to spoil anything or take away value that the creators are offering), so don’t count on me to help you share in this unique experience, get in on it for yourself! =)