Are you a long time gamer?

Maybe you're a master of puzzles?

I've got a challenge for you.

Let's see how much you really know.

This is your chance to solve puzzles as a group.

Not all clues can be used right away. 08016248

Notes:

• Approximately 2/3rds of giveaways are contributor giveaways with limits ranging from \$1 to \$100
• All giveaways end in 16 days.
• Solve the "B" stage trivia for a hint on the puzzle portion of the next stage.
• Each stage's trivia is for a different platform (ex. stage 1 is NES games)
• Have a freebie.

## Solution

There were a total of 34 giveaways, 200 trivia questions, 210 sprites, 9 puzzles and 9 hidden giveaways. For the trivia stages the community did a good job of collecting the answers.

## Puzzles

### Stage 1 - No Puzzle

Players were provided with a direct link to stage 1 trivia: http://www.itstoohard.com/puzzle/OfCAvF2o

### Stage 2 - Terraria armor sets

The clue contains a link to an image containing 8 armor sets from the game Terraria. If you take the first initial of the name of each armor set in order, and format their capitalization as specified with the xxXx formatter you get the code: http://www.itstoohard.com/puzzle/gmSaCNhI

### Stage 3 - Six degrees of separation

The clue is a six-degrees of separation style listing of a game, followed by the steamgifts winner, followed by a game that winner gifted, followed by the winner of that giveaway, etc. When you connect Illbeans to Rand, you have eight answers. Take the first initial of each answer and you have your next itstoohard puzzle code: http://www.itstoohard.com/puzzle/tITyHgSR

### Stage 4 - Achievement double string

The clue contains a link to an image containing a list of steam achievement icons. The clue hint contains a count list of the number of achievements for each game used in the list. Using a site like SPAH you can fairly easily identify the icons. Alternatively you could also chop up the image and reverse image search them as most if not all of them will show up on google. Once you have identified the icon you can take the first initial of each game to create the sentence WHO LEADS THE TUNNEL SNAKES. You can also use the first initial of the NAMES of each achievement to spell out an alternate sentence SHE WORKS FOR ALBERT WESKER. The answers to these two questions are Butch and Ada creating the code: http://www.itstoohard.com/puzzle/ButchAda

### Stage 5 - Common themes

If you read the first initials of each item it spells out LOOK FOR THE COMMON THEME IN THESE LINKS. Each line contains a series of links to giveaways with a common theme that can be reduced to a single character or digit.

• Lost Order of Keiv - All games made by GSC Game World a company located in Keiv, Ukraine that was recently shut down.
• Figures Opposite Reality - All games have a starring character that starts with "S".
• Title Holder Elite - All games won by an SG user with a name starting with "S".
• Codes Of Mystery May Offer Notions - All of the steamgift codes have a 2 in it.
• The Hardcore Experts Max Everything - All of these games have 22 achievements in it.
• Identifying Name - All games with the first initial "D".
• These Helpful Evaluations Stall Expenditures - All games with a meta score of 88.
• Largess Is Not Killing Subsoap - All Faery Solitaire giveaways.

Format each answer to create the itstoohard puzzle code: http://www.itstoohard.com/puzzle/Gss22D8F

### Stage 6 - The sprite grid

The clue contains a link to an image which contains a grid made up of 210 different video game characters. Identify the 8 characters specified in the hint to create the next itstoohard puzzle code: http://www.itstoohard.com/puzzle/kTmpATbL

### Stage 7 - The keys

The clue contains a link to an [image]() which contains a barcode and the words FINALKEY. If you decode the barcode (lots of free phone apps can do this) and combine 32507096 with the word to create another sprite grid code: F3 I2 N5 A0 L7 K0 E9 Y6. This unlocks the last of eight different keys and gives you the format for finding the other 7. In previous stages there other 8 digit numbers that can be combined with 8 character words to form more sprite grid codes.

• The first is created from the initial forum post which contains 8 lines. The first initials of the sentences creates the word HAMILTON, combined with the number on the last line creates the first sprite grid code. H0 A8 M0 I1 L6 T2 O4 N8
• Hamilton is a clue to look at my Steam profile image which is of Hamilton from Hamilton's Great Adventure. On it is a chopped up QR code. If you put it back together it leads to an old BioShock giveaway with a description containing the numbers. B6 I2 O3 S8 H6 O9 C7 K1
• Stage 2 Terraria link is the numbers. T0 E4 R1 R9 A6 R2 I7 A3
• Stage 3 IllBeans clue has the numbers. I4 L0 L2 B5 E7 A4 N1 S1
• Stage 5 clue contains numbers with a link to a giveaway for Lucidity. L4 U9 C2 I0 D6 I5 T8 Y3
• Stage 5 clue contains numbers with a link to a giveaway for Darwinia. D3 A1 R0 W2 I9 N9 I3 A9
• Stage 5 clue contains numbers with a link to a giveaway for Droplitz. D2 R6 O2 P3 L8 I5 T4 Z1

Once all 8 keys are opened, you get a link to the next stage: http://www.itstoohard.com/puzzle/0ZpGiXr6

### Stage 8 - Sudoku

The clue is a sudoku puzzle. The 8 digits represented as # are the 8 digits you need to create another sprite grid code. Combine it with the giveaway game "Stacking" to create the sprite grid code: S3 T6 A2 C5 K9 I8 N4 G7. This leads to the itstoohard puzzle code: http://www.itstoohard.com/puzzle/rs2Dw8Rf

### Stage 9 - The stone grid

The clue contains a link to an image. All previous 16 trivia questions presented the user with a 3x3 stone block image with colored corners. As hinted, if you bucket fill (using Paint, PSP, etc.) the arrows within each block you will reveal the hidden digit. To solve the puzzle you fit these blocks into the frame such that the colors of each corner line up and read from left to right, top to bottom the 16 values which form another sprite grid code: A7 L1 J4 T5 R3 H4 F9 C0. This leads to another itstoohard puzzle code: http://www.itstoohard.com/puzzle/GFIsRYHR

### Stage 10 - The invisible clues

This stage is another key stage. The last of the 5 keys is hidden at the bottom of the giveaway, hidden as two separate space characters (ascii 0x20 and 0xA0) There are 16 sets of 8 characters. If you treate 0x20 as 0 and 0xA0 as 1 and convert the binary values to ascii you get the sprite grid code: H0 S7 C2 K0 L5 Z1 U4 W9.

• The first key is hidden in the stage 2 Terraria clue. Bucket fill to reveal sign language symbols forming the code: U5 F6 P6 G0 Q2 Y0 U6 E1
• The second key is hidden in the stage 4 achievement icons clue. Bucket fill to reveal braile forming the code: W3 K8 P4 F2 E8 C4 J0 U1
• The third key is hidden in the stage 6 sprite grid clue. Bucket fill to reveal the hidden 11th row containing My Little Pony characters. Use their names and the listed numbers to create the sprite grid code: T3 Z2 N6 S7 S5 D1 F4 P9
• The forth key is hidden in the stage 9 stone grid clue. Bucket fill to reveal morse code forming the code: D0 O6 Q5 G2 V9 K4 A5 P8

Once all 5 keys are opened, you get the link to the final stage: http://www.itstoohard.com/puzzle/uMEc0AX6

### The Hidden Giveaways

1. One of the links in Stage 5 leads to a giveaway for Dark Messiah. The description contains a link to a Mini Ninjas giveaway.
2. In the stage 6 trivia the clickable image for the Half-Life question actually opened to a strange picture. It's a stereogram. You have to look at it cross-eyed to see the hidden code. http://www.itstoohard.com/puzzle/dMc3Kv8h
3. The thread title for the forum post (P1 U2 Z3 Z4 L5 I6 N7 G8) is a sprite grid code that leads directly to http://www.itstoohard.com/puzzle/S2CaD6ri
5. (two giveaways) The video clues for stage 7A (The Super Castlevania IV song) and stage 10B (The Bolz! song) both had an image flash on screen for a moment. The images were for mazes created by TheGreatGooglyMoogly for his maze puzzles. The maze images were of the first stages, but with a purple/yellow dot identifying a location within each maze. If you go to the giveaway that was available on each of these locations, you would see everyone had posted hex codes that TheGreatGooglyMoogly used to validate player entries. If you look at my (Jexel) posts you would see my 8 digit posted codes are not valid hex values. They are actually 8-digit itstoohard puzzle codes. That lead to two keys: http://www.itstoohard.com/puzzle/VYodSxMh
6. Each stage B trivia giveaway had a single line of ascii blocks followed by a roman number 1-5. If you stacked these in order, separating into two separate stacks, you get the sprite grid code: J3 S0 B7 Z7 M4 Q8 W1 V7. This leads to the itstoohard code: http://www.itstoohard.com/puzzle/tHbhVJLm (You had to guess the casing since I didn't provide the format)
7. The stage 6 format specifier www.itstoohard.com/puzzle/xXxxXXxX was an actual itstoohard puzzle code.

## The Complete List of Giveaways

Thanks for playing!

5 years ago*

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Okay then,
Stage 1A, Q2: Micro Machines

5 years ago

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Q1 Jackal

Q2 Micro Machines

Q3 96

Q4 Naoki Kodaka

Q5 Imp

Q6 Battle In The Chopper

Q7 Albatoss/Vulture

Q10 Tengen

Q1 Athena

Q2 Berkeley Mansion

Q3 Go into one of the cabins by the lake

Q4

Q5 Bebop

Q6 top gun

Q7

Q8 Champion

Q10 Imes

Q1 Project Gotham Racing

Q2 Electrotool

Q3 Ghost

Q4 117

Q5 Bruce Morgenholt

Q7 Barbara Schett

Q8 Golden Scarab

Q9 140

Q10 Eowyn

5 years ago

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Hmm. I feel like I'm on a resort

5 years ago

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Q4 and Q7 are eluding me, too. :/

5 years ago

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5 years ago

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Edit: Nevermind.

5 years ago

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yup. google and tineye both return nothing for them. Which is why some are severely cropped. Google is scary smart.

5 years ago

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Must be brute forced then!

5 years ago

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5 years ago

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Question 5 is from Final Fantasy (I think), just not sure what you would be fighting

5 years ago

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It's definitely FF, but hell if I could remember what fight :(

5 years ago

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This is really, really tough. I've gotten 4 from Stage1A so far off the top of my head.. now to do some searching :)

5 years ago

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Got all of them except the audio ones now... they are HARD.

5 years ago

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Care to share the other answers?

5 years ago

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1. Jackal
2. Micro Machines
3. 96
4. ?
5. Imp
6. ?
7. Albatoss
10. Tengen
5 years ago

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Thanks, now I can focus on the sound ones

5 years ago

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Oh wow, thanks a lot! 7 is interchangable with "vulture"

5 years ago

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Thanks you kind sir! :3

5 years ago

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Question 5:
Battle Theme from Final Fantasy XI

5 years ago

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You do realise that it is from one of the NES games?

5 years ago

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I have absolutely no idea, thats just what this song finder gave me ;)

5 years ago

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I think it was in the first game, just need to find out hat the fight was against

5 years ago

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I believe it was used in the fight against Warmech, but that doesn't seem to be the answer. Must have been an earlier fight with that song.

5 years ago

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Imp!

5 years ago

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Probably one of the last bosses of FF4, that's what my memory seems to tell me xD

5 years ago

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I'm guessing the Galaga one is this: http://strategywiki.org/wiki/Galaga/Getting_Started#Stage_Indicators

And an acronym of HAMILTON is in the description. HMMM.

5 years ago

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Yep, it's 96

5 years ago

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Oh thanks, I thought it asked what they represented. Hah. Should have read it over again.

5 years ago

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But I know nothing about consoles :(

5 years ago

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Group puzzle, now that's something new :) I've heard quite a few people thinking about puzzle like this, noone attempted it yet, so nice one there!

5 years ago

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Hey I don't see anything for Q4, Q5 and Q6. Guess you don't like IE =)

5 years ago

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5 years ago

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Thank you! Not that I am help on this stage, anyway, it seems. I played Bop'n'Rumble on C64 and that's it >.> Maybe some other rounds will be more than me just sitting and waiting for others to answer :)

EDIT: But yeah, I wonder why these iframes don't work for me. Maybe too paranoid settings or something.

5 years ago

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I was pretty lazy about backwards compatability. It works in IE9 though.

5 years ago

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Well, for me it doesn't. Too lazy to check my settings, someone posted the links tho, and I also looked in source code.

5 years ago

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That works too. :)

5 years ago

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Puzzle1, Question 7: Vulture. source

5 years ago

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Albatoss also works

5 years ago

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Vulture didn't work for me

5 years ago

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If I knew something, I'd post it here :(

5 years ago

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I have a feeling that Q4 might be from Mega Man but I have no idea

5 years ago

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I tried Manami Matsumae/Takashi Tateishi already :(

5 years ago

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Hmmmm

5 years ago

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The question is worded in a way that there must be just 2 composers. I've gone through wiki for the Mega Man series but the ones with 2 composers haven't worked.

5 years ago

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Q4: Naoki Kodaka / Nobuyuki Hara

5 years ago

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Thanks, just question 6 left

5 years ago

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I JUST solved this myself. The game was Batman.

5 years ago

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It sounds like mega man dashing inside a helicopter while some one is playing sonic pinball :(

5 years ago

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Interesting concept, a collective puzzle! :) Though don't think I could help with any of the remaining ones right now... :/

5 years ago

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Anyone worked out 6 yet?

5 years ago

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2 solvers

5 years ago

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I hope one of those 2 is about to post here with what 6 is

5 years ago

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Probably took our answers and are laughing at us now for posting them :p

5 years ago

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I have that feeling too

5 years ago

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Only Q6 left..., I have no idea about it :(

5 years ago

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q6: Battle In The Chopper

from double dragon 2.

5 years ago

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Thank you

5 years ago

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i knew it was from double dragon but i didn't knew the name of the mission :D ty

5 years ago

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Thanks very much and to everyone that gave the answers.

EDIT: There's more lol xD

5 years ago

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I identified it was Double Dragon as well and then checked mission names from gamefaqs :)

5 years ago

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Im done with answering the puzzle and i answered it all so whats next?

5 years ago

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1.Jackal
2.Micro Machines
3.96
4.Naoki Kodaka
5.Imp
6.Battle in the Chopper
7.Albatoss
10.Tengen

Now, going to Stage 1B

5 years ago

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Stage 1B - Q1 : Athena

5 years ago

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Thanks.

5 years ago

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1B-Q3 is from NES version of Friday the 13th I think, but no idea on the note.

5 years ago

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The 6 one remember me Sonic game: the sounds at the end remember me the Eggman's sign that Sonic turn around by passing near at the end of level (I hope to have explained myself in an understandable way xD)

5 years ago

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Q6:Top Gun

5 years ago

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1B-Q6 Top Gun

5 years ago

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1B-Q2: Berkeley :)

5 years ago

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1B-Q3: Go into one of the cabins by the lake

5 years ago

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Closed 5 years ago by Jexel.