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HacknSlashAnnounce

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hacknslashthegame.com

Click on the picture to download the file:

HacknSlashAnnounce.zip.jpg

Opening it in an image view gets you a snazzy picture.

Unzipping it reveals the following three files:

Outdoors.mp4

MainTheme.mp3

WorldTablet.txt

I suggest playing the theme song on loop for the next part.

The text file is straight forward to read, with each three word phrase repeated once. It is "A note from the Acting Regent Wizard"

The video, other than just showing a nice scene, displays a series of characters on the bottom left. I assume they can be further decoded into a message.

I also assume there is more to discover.

Edit:

Here is a summary of what has been discovered to date.

Looking at the file in a hex editor reveals a message.

The MP3 file has some interesting metadata.

The text file is more interesting than I first thought. It actually contains a hidden 3d image (yes seriously!).

Here are screencaps of the symbols in the video.

The message in the video has been deciphered.

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How are you unpacking the ZIP? I tried renaming the file to .zip and opening it, but was told it was an invalid compressed file.

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I did not have to do anything special.

I am using 7-zip on a windows xp box.

The file is "12,976,128 bytes" on disk.

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How are you unpacking the ZIP? I tried renaming the file to .zip and opening it, but was told it was an invalid compressed file.

I think that's because its not a zip, that's a red herring. I changed the file extension to .rar and was able to extract the files with 7zip.

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I can't say how eternally GLEEFUL I was when I saw this announcement. YAYAYAYAYAYAYYAY!

HTML code for the page contains:

<!-- What secrets await? -->

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The MP3 metadata contains the comment:

"passwords read like incantations when spoken in all capital letters"

The genre is "aes-256-cbc"

The text file, when the width is adjusted, contains a cross-view hidden message:

"The embedded application is enciphered with the incantation presented by the first observed glyphs"

This seems to strongly hint that one of the files is an AES-encrypted executable.

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On Mac, open a Terminal window and use cd to go to the folder where you want to extract the files to, then type "unzip " (note the space), drag the zip file into the terminal window, and hit return. It will show an error but extract the contents anyway.

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I think the problem is that I didn't get the full file. redownloading the file gives different file sizes. Will try with a new one.

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I'm working on extracting the text cleanly from the video for people to transcript.

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How are you unpacking the ZIP? I tried renaming the file to .zip and opening it, but was told it was an invalid compressed file.

First make sure you have the full file, 12,976,128 bytes (~12.3 MB) on disk. The first time I attempted to download the file I got one only about 1/10th the size. Once I had the full file it extracted fine using 7-zip after removing the ".jpg" to make the extension ".zip."

Also for those that missed it here is the message that was in the subject of the original image:

You may have figured out that this JPEG is more than just an image. It is not an ARG. It is not a transmedia narrative. It's just a puzzle we've built for you that will give you some more Hack 'n' Slash tidbits as you peel back its layers. If you're into that kind of thing, we hope you enjoy it!

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First make sure you have the full file, 12,976,128 bytes (~12.3 MB) on disk. The first time I attempted to download the file I got one only about 1/10th the size. Once I had the full file it extracted fine using 7-zip after removing the ".jpg" to make the extension ".zip."

Yup, getting the full file fixed the problem. It included a text document, mp4 movie with some interesting stuff happening with the glyphs, and an mp3.

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This seems to strongly hint that one of the files is an AES-encrypted executable.

I opened the file Outdoors.mp4 in a text editor and near the beginning of the file is the text "crackme.enc". I think these are the droids we are looking for.

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I recommend taking a look at the actual jpg shown on the page in a hex editor.

HacknSlashAnnounce.jpg.png

HacknSlashAnnounce.jpg.png.73d1e07ebd606

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Here's the text from the file WorldTablet.txt, with a readable indentation : http://pastebin.com/bbijaLFg

phort99 : how did you get the hidden message ?

If you resize the window text editor window so the two identical messages are side by side (make sure your text editor uses a fixed width font) you can cross your eyes so the two identical messages overlap. Some of the words are inset in the resulting 3D image. The inset words are the secret message.

Screen Shot 2013-12-10 at 1.30.40 PM.png

578d00503a2c3_ScreenShot2013-12-10at1.30

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Here is the text frames cropped from the video Outdoors.mp4 in the order they appear.

UPDATE 3: I made a black and white version of this, which you can see in a later post on the next page.

UPDATE: I did a less naive color distance algorithm for detecting frames with text and it turns out I was missing some frames.

Dropbox image will update as I double check my work.

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/43016277/hacknslash_script.jpg

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Woah you guys are so fast!! I don't know the solution(s) either so it's fun to watch you all figure it out. Good luck! :D

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So the first glyphs are in x,y coordinates:

3,2

5,5

5,3

1,6

Or more likely in an array:

4,2; 1,4; 3,4; 0,0

Capture d'écran de 2013-12-10 16:44:45.png

578d00503d881_Capturedcrande2013-12-1016

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Here's the text from the file WorldTablet.txt, with a readable indentation : http://pastebin.com/bbijaLFg

phort99 : how did you get the hidden message ?

If you resize the window text editor window so the two identical messages are side by side (make sure your text editor uses a fixed width font) you can cross your eyes so the two identical messages overlap. Some of the words are inset in the resulting 3D image. The inset words are the secret message.

OMG that is banana town.

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You don't have to look at cross-eyed; they are just the words that are not in the same place in the nearly identical columns.

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For those (like me) that can't cross our eyes to make things 3D:

Screenshot_2013_12_10_13_51_33.jpg

(I live a shallow life never having known the joys of magic eye pictures...)

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Here's the text from the file WorldTablet.txt, with a readable indentation : http://pastebin.com/bbijaLFg

phort99 : how did you get the hidden message ?

If you resize the window text editor window so the two identical messages are side by side (make sure your text editor uses a fixed width font) you can cross your eyes so the two identical messages overlap. Some of the words are inset in the resulting 3D image. The inset words are the secret message.

For those that can't cross their eyes, like me, here's what you find when you compare both columns:

embedded application is enciphered with the incantation presented by first observed glyphs

A note from the Acting

A note from the Acting

Regent Wizard: I have

Regent Wizard: I have

imposed stringent new

imposed stringent new

laws for the kingdomis

laws for the kingdomis

safety. My security

safety. My security

forces have discovered

forces have discovered

individuals embedded among

individuals embedded among

us that seek to bring

us that seek to bring

chaos to our kingdom.

chaos to our kingdom.

The application of these

The application of these

laws will be focused on

laws will be focused on

preventing their success.

preventing their success.

It is imperative that we

It is imperative that we

capture these dangerous

capture these dangerous

dissidents. First,

dissidents. First,

all enciphered messages

all enciphered messages

are forbidden. We cannot

are forbidden. We cannot

secure our radiant

secure our radiant

kingdom with secrets

kingdom with secrets

kept from each other.

kept from each other.

Second, no one is to

Second, no one is to

enter the forest. I have

enter the forest. I have

many powerful spells,

many powerful spells,

but no incantation will

but no incantation will

rid the forest of the

rid the forest of the

evils that have awoken

evils that have awoken

there. You have all heard

there. You have all heard

the tales presented by

the tales presented by

our brave military men

our brave military men

who have managed to

who have managed to

escape the forest alive.

escape the forest alive.

Finally, I have set a

Finally, I have set a

reward for reports of

reward for reports of

dissident activity; it

dissident activity; it

is my hope that by our

is my hope that by our

collective watchful eye,

collective watchful eye,

we can find the source

we can find the source

of these new evils

of these new evils

facing us. I will be

facing us. I will be

the first and loudest

the first and loudest

to celebrate their

to celebrate their

passing. Restoring peace

passing. Restoring peace

will allow me to pass on

will allow me to pass on

the regency to our fair

the regency to our fair

princess, having

princess, having

successfully observed my

successfully observed my

oath to prepare the

oath to prepare the

kingdom for her reign.

kingdom for her reign.

I long for the day when

I long for the day when

the glyphs of her name

the glyphs of her name

appear upon the crown

appear upon the crown

that is rightfully hers.

that is rightfully hers.

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If you resize the window text editor window so the two identical messages are side by side (make sure your text editor uses a fixed width font) you can cross your eyes so the two identical messages overlap. Some of the words are inset in the resulting 3D image. The inset words are the secret message.

I thought for sure you were just making this up but no this totally works.

Magic Eye hidden messages in a game announcement. Double Fine once again shows how they are the coolest kids at school =)

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