Can You Crack The Code? #1 (Solved)

+15

Preface

As many of you will know, most JetPunk Daily Word Searches utilise their leftover letters to spell out a word or phrase, often related to the theme that day.

In particular, only 1 of the last 100 Word Searches did not do this (number #131 - see DogDeeDer's blog here: The 131st Word Search Mystery.

Many have enjoyed finding them, and up to now they have always been spelled in order, with no scrambling or decryption necessary to read it. Today that changes.

Word Search #141 - Africa

Today's Word Search is themed around the geography of Africa. It is an 11x11 grid with 23 words featured within it.

Once the puzzle is complete, the leftover letters appear... garbage. I can confirm, they are not!

I have used a secret logical code (which I came up with myself) to encode the message hidden within.

You can find the hidden letters in the grid after completing the Word Search. You may discuss on this blog your findings and progress if you wish.

The first person to get it will be rewarded somehow (yet to be determined how) should they want to be.

At 12pm EST I will reveal a hint if nobody has solved it. Further hints will appear at 2pm EST and 5pm EST, if needed.

If nobody solves by tomorrow (I doubt that), since the grid will be gone, I will update this blog with the results!

Congratulations to overtired for solving the puzzle! See the comments for how he did it (explanations reverse-engineered by Simon and Baptiste!)

Now, for a prize... We have decided to give overtired a whole word search to create! This will come mid July hopefully! (The first ever word search not created by myself)

Well Done overtired!

+2
Level 56
Jun 21, 2022
I started decoding this garbage this morning, I didn't find anything ! Also it's DogDeeDer :)
+2
Level 68
Jun 21, 2022
I'm on it too. Let's see what we can find :)
+6
Level 51
Jun 21, 2022
Imagine if all the French server was on it.

All my ideas are completely useless for now, but I won't give up that easily.

+2
Level 68
Jun 21, 2022
So many possibilities, so many questions...

Should the remaining letters be read horizontally or vertically?

Is the Code a single word or more?

Is the Code written in French?

Hope the 1st hint helps us!

+2
Level 68
Jun 21, 2022
All good questions!
+9
Level 82
Jun 21, 2022
It’s Tanganyika :)
+4
Level 68
Jun 21, 2022
Really!? How did you get here?
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Level 68
Jun 21, 2022
Correct! Well done overtired, you got it without any hints. I am very impressed :)

Feel free to explain your method ;)

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Level 51
Jun 21, 2022
Wow! Congratulations! That was pretty quick. Now we all want to know your explanations.
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Level 63
Jun 21, 2022
I noticed that shifting all letters back 1 (Ceasar's encryption) gives:

itsvdrkgtgqsi

I saw the It's there, but didn't know what to do with it. After reading overtired's comment, you can produce "it's tanganyika" by shifting each letter individually using the following pattern:

[j, u, t, w, e, s, l, h, u, h, r, t, j]

[-1, -1, -1, -3, -4, -5, -5, -7, -7, -9, -9, -9, -9]

[i, t, s, t, a, n, g, a, n, y, i, k, a]

But why that pattern specifically I don't know. Maybe overtired did something else altogether :)

+9
Level 51
Jun 21, 2022
This pattern seems to correspond to the lines on the DWS grid of the concerned letters, no?
+6
Level 82
Jun 21, 2022
Oui :)
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Level 63
Jun 21, 2022
Well spotted indeed baptiste! I didn't think of going back to the word search itself :)
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Level 68
Jun 21, 2022
Great effort!

Indeed, the trick here was that you needed to use the grid itself, you could not do this by purely extracting the letters and playing around with them :)

+4
Level 68
Jun 21, 2022
Congratulations overtired! I'm so impressed!
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Level 82
Jun 21, 2022
Thanks Elboy :)
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Level 82
Jun 21, 2022
Thanks for the fun challenge Stewart!
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Level 63
Jun 21, 2022
Thanks indeed! Hope to see more in the future :)
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Level 51
Jun 21, 2022
I completely agree. Thank you very much, Stewart! That was a very interesting experience, and collaborating with many other JetPunkers in the same goal was very pleasant. I really hope we will have the chance to participate in this kind of event again in the future.
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Level 68
Jun 21, 2022
Thanks! I really enjoyed sneaking this puzzle in, as I had this idea for a cryptic clue and thought it would be tricky to get it!

(And I'm glad I didn't have to come up with any hints)

+4
Level 68
Jun 21, 2022
I join the others in thanking you Stewart for this amazing challenge!
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Level 68
Jun 21, 2022
I'm already thinking up idea for the next one :D

(maybe I'll do them monthly, no promises though)

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Level 56
Jun 21, 2022
Agree, super idea !!!
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Level 68
Jun 22, 2022
A grid by overtired? Excellent prize idea that promises us a fun challenge ahead :)
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Level 51
Jun 26, 2022
I completely agree, that's an excellent idea, completely appropriate and probably very funny. I can't wait to see this grid, I'm sure it will be awesome!