Monday, June 24, 2013

KK Challenge 8

I started organising the KK Challenge treasure hunt series some years ago, and I meant to make it an annual event. But somehow I couldn't find a suitable time to organise one last year. I've been spending increasingly more of my time either running, cycling or swimming these days. Then a few weeks ago, I decided to revive my KK Challenge hunt again. Over the years, my KK Challenge hunts—now in its 8th edition—have come to be something sought-after by the local hunters, and winning it has become something close to an obsession to some teams, not because it offers big cash prizes, but rather the fight is more for bragging rights.

Yesterday, 14 teams started from the Borneo Resthouse, located along Jalan Penampang for a 5-hour fun-filled trip around the KK neighbourhood; 4 of those were new teams. Well, at least they were new to my KK Challenge hunt. From the beginning, I had wanted to make this hunt something enjoyable for the new teams, but still remain faithful to its billing as a challenging hunt. I gave a generous amount of easy questions which were very solvable even for the new hunters. These included spotting of taglines, or straightforward general knowledge questions. And even if they were cryptic, I tried to make the questions as interesting as possible. 

I was a bit puzzled, however, by what I thought was a fairly easy question at the first hunt sector, which was not solved by some regular teams.

Q2) Goatee's locations in here

Later on, at the Lintas Square sector, again I was fairly surprised when a question which I did not mean to be a tough one apparently gave the regular teams quite a challenge!

Q15) Business name in trade techniques

I'm glad to say, however, that most of the questions I set along major highways were well answered, thus indicating that they did not cause too much trouble to the teams. This was according to my plan, of course, as I did not plan to cause them to spend too much time lingering along major roads and risk accidents there.

Q13) Helpers from the east are prepared to go forward

It was quite a distance from the highway, but fairly isolated and can be clearly seen from the car.

However, I did not want this hunt to be solely about the new hunters by neglecting the regular teams. So I had to throw in some more interesting questions too. Otherwise, they would finish the hunt within 3 hours! Here is a taste of something which I'd say quite decent for the local "regular" teams.

Q16) Daim becomes pale due to this

But although I had wanted to give a tougher question, I did not expect that only 2 teams found BLOCK A. I suspect it must have been a case of extremely thick rust from too long rest from hunting?

And later on at the Jalan Kilang sector, again I was pleasantly surprised when only 3 teams solved this question:

Q28) She needs them to cook dishes

However the biggest surprise of the day was the following question which was solved only by the winning team (another team solved it too, but I rejected it on technical grounds):

Q27) Haiwan tak bersayap, sangat lama kemudian, menjadi haiwan bersayap?

A seemingly straightforward charade clue that escaped the radars of the regular teams. I can only guess that it's a classic case of temporary blind spot.

An amusing attempt to conjure a "double-layer" clue which I did not mean to be difficult, ended up as something very challenging, and it totally destroyed the winning team's attempt to achieve a perfect score for this hunt!

Q25) Kari asam lemak - enaknya lebih terdahulu?

Of course I realise that these questions are of elementary level for our friends from the west, but sometimes psychological elements may have a big impact in transforming a seemingly "easy" question into a very difficult one! Those who've hunted in my hunts before would testify that I frequently employ the element of psychology when setting my questions. For example for the above question, there was a prominent eatery known for its curry fish head. The signboard practically shouted to be noticed by the teams! But how does one drag one's focus away from such an inviting signboard; that's the question!

As for the treasures, only one worth mentioning here, and it's not really tough when you come to think of it. But I had expected that it could be a challenge for most of our local teams, including the so-called "regular" ones.

Treasure 4

She ran with John McCain, taking 500 to Rome
Such is the hint on how the name of T4 is formed
Chewy candies, the flavour and size you decide
In an unopened pack, otherwise it is not right

Again, in my mind, perhaps a strong hunter from the west would find such a treasure clue somewhat decent, but not very challenging. But only the top 3 winning teams solved it. I had expected this treasure clue to be decisive, and it was indeed decisive!

I'm pleased to note that the hunters had a good time; and after the hunt, everyone congratulated and thanked me for a good time. But then came the expected question: When is the next hunt?

The top 5 winning teams are:

Champion: Main Tembak (96/100)
Alvin Wong, Bernard Liew, Christine Netto & Audrey Chin

2nd Place: Charlie's Angels (84/100)
Teo Chen Lung, Claire Andrew, Vivian Cham & Christy Kong

3rd Place: PAAMAD (76/100)
Malcolm Abidin, Talissa Kiandee & Robinson Ken Malangkig

4th Place: Mung Cha Cha (74/100)
Ellen Yee, Liaw Yun Haw, Shirley Lim & Mary Lokupi

5th Place: Dolom Hunters (73/100)
Felix Joikon, Insan Muslimin, Daisy Mark & Stella M.

Congratulations to all winners, especially to the top 3 teams. As for the rest, please don't be discouraged. Try harder to win those forsaken elusive medals in the next KK Challenge!


Anonymous said...

very interesting hunt questions!Can you share the justification of your answers....I really love to understand...Thank you

Cornelius said...

Hi Anonymous friend,

Thanks for your interest. I'm not sure which question(s) you're referring to; and neither am I sure of your cryptic knowledge. I meant to include explanations, but when I posted this review, it was getting late. I thought I'd do it later.

Like I said, I'm not sure of your cryptic knowledge, so what I will do is to explain from the very basic. Therefore, if you have sound cryptic knowledge, then you will just have to bear with my boring explanations! I will explain one question in a comment frame. Well at least the above questions. I will start in the next frame...

Cornelius said...

Q2) Goatee's locations in here

This is quite a straightforward clue. But I think the only confusion, if any, is on the "space deception".


because that's where beard grows. Notice that LOCATIONS is plural, so CHINS must also be in plural form.

CHINS is then joined to that word IN which is already given in the clue by what is known as the "charade operation". And the result is therefore CHINSIN.

The order of those letters agrees with that on the signboard, but without any regard to the space(s) between the letters. When the answer is written down in the allocated space for the answer, it must be written as seen on the signboard:


Cornelius said...

Q15) Business name in trade techniques

In a typical cryptic clue, there will be a word (or words) that will signal to the solver what to do with the letters therein in order to arrive at the answer. In this case, the word is "in". It's what's known as the "container indicator". Basically, it hints to the solver that the business name that we are looking for in found inside those two following words, i.e. inside:


Again, notice that we are mainly concerned with the order of the letters, but not the space that's found between DE and TEC.

Again, when the answer is written down in the allocated space in the question paper, it must be written in full (so as to prove that the solver has actually spotted the board):


Cornelius said...

Oops!.. silly me...made a mistake there... I meant to say


Cornelius said...

Q13) Helpers from the east are prepared to go forward

This is getting a little bit more complicated, but it's just a matter of skill in spotting the indicators. This is the type of clue which is sometimes referred to as the double definition type; which means there are TWO clues in that single sentence, and both are referring to the same answer. This single clue can be separated into 2 independent clues:

(i) Helpers from the east

where the phrase "from the east" suggests that the reader should read that word (which is found on the signboard) from the right to the left. It is commonly known as a "reversal indicator". What this clue tells the solver is that he is supposed to look for a word found on a signboard that can give the meaning of HELPERS when read backwards (reversed).

(ii) ...are prepared to go forward

ordinarily, there is no need to tell the solver to read a word from left to right, but since in this case we started the clue by telling the solver to read backwards, it follows that we must instruct the solver to read if forward, meaning the usual way of reading. Therefore, the employment of the phrase "to go forward". It means that when the solver reads that required word (which is found on the signboard) the usual way of reading, it can give the meaning of PREPARED.

By combining those two requirements above, only SEDIA can fit perfectly.

That is to say, when read "forward", SEDIA means PREPARED. But when read reversed, SEDIA becomes AIDES, which means HELPERS.

The answer, once again, should be written in full. Meaning the solver must state where that word is found:


Cornelius said...

Q16) Daim becomes pale due to this

This is even deeper, and I would say not intended for a new hunter. But with methodical approach, it is solvable! Just that the new hunter won't usually think in the right frame of mind!

The deception here is that "Daim" is a well-known man in Malaysia. So I sought out to "trap" the hunters to think along that line. But actually, "Daim" in this case is just intended to be a meaningless word!

Now DAIM does not mean PALE, of course, but the clue says DAIM becomes PALE due to this. It means when something is done to that word DAIM, then its meaning would become the meaning of PALE.

So the real task is where should we start? Well, we start by searching for the synonyms of PALE from the Thesaurus. And among its many synonyms, one is very promising, i.e. the word DIM.

So now we arrive at the final homestretch - on the one hand, we have DAIM, and on the other hand, we have that word DIM. What is it that we do to DAIM in order for it to become DIM? Well, I'm sure you are getting the idea now... all we need to do is to remove that letter "A" in "DAIM". So what should we be looking for on the signboard within that sector?

We should look for something in the order of, perhaps, "REMOVE A"... or "DELETE A".... or "CANCEL A"... something like that.

In this case, the only suitable answer found within that sector is "BLOCK A", because when you block that letter A, what remains of DAIM is just DIM.

Cornelius said...

Q28) She needs them to cook dishes

This question is perhaps meant for experienced hunters. Here, the solver must have the cryptic knowledge, that those words "to cook" are the "anagram indicator". It signals to the solver that some sort of rearrangement of letters from a word or words in order to form a new word.

SHE need "them", meaning letters found on a signboard, in order to be anagrammed (to cook), and then form the word "DISHES"

SHE + ??? => anagram => DISHES

I'm sure you can see that we need the letters D, I and S, to be combined with that SHE so that we can rearrange them to form DISHES.

Which means the solver just has to search for a combination of those 3 letters on a signboard within that sector. In this case, there is a "SID" within that sector. But the hunter must state where he saw that answer:


Cornelius said...

Q27) Haiwan tak bersayap, sangat lama kemudian, menjadi haiwan bersayap

This is basically what is known as the "charade" clue, where the solver has to join words from the given clue to form a new word.



In this clue, that EON should come after (kemudian) the word PIG. And when these two words are joined together, it becomes PIGEON, which is a winged animal. Again, the solver must state where he saw that answer.

Cornelius said...

Q25) Kari asam lemak - enaknya lebih terdahulu?

This time it's the acronym riddle, where that word "terdahulu" is what's known as the "initial indicator". It means that the solver should take the first letter(s) of the word(s) coming before or after it. In this case, when taking only the first letters of the words coming before "terdahulu", we will get: KAL-EL

And the funny thing is that many teams arrived at KAL-EL fairly easily and quickly. But they did not know how to proceed from there! Actually, this is a combination of two challenges. First is the cryptic challenge, which is not so difficult. Second is the general knowledge challenge which is also not so difficult.

Well, KAL-EL is the birth name of Superman. But of course he is more popularly known by his adoptive name as Clark Kent.

Cornelius said...

Hope that helps to explain the riddles.

I'm not sure when I'm going to organise my next KK Challenge hunt. But I will usually announce it here when I do. If you are from KK, why not try my hunt. It's a lot of fun. I'm sure many who've hunted the KK Challenge series before will say so too!

Anonymous said...

thank you for your time to explain..actually I'm a new comer from the west who want to learn. Before the explaination I only can figure out Q15 & Q27....
Thank you so much..not many from the west are willing to do what you did...all the best

btw I cannot crack you treasure...

Cornelius said...

Actually, some of the KL hunters are willing to explain. Just that I'm not sure if they'd explain to that extent... or have the patience to explain to that extent!

It was again getting late last night. I was still hoping for the KL Marathon to proceed, and I promised myself to get AT LEAST 7 hours sleep each night in the build up to Sunday. But well, the race has now been postponed to the end of September!

Anyway, that treasure clue is not very difficult, but the problem is that many people are not detailed enough when then try to solve such clues.

The most important line is the first one:

She ran with John McCain, taking 500 to Rome

I think I can safely assume that most people would immediately know that we are talking about Sarah Palin.

Then 500 is D as a Roman numeral.

So, PALIN + D, and then join that to ROME. Thus we get the word PALINDROME.

Of course the other possibility is: SARAHDROME, but this leads to nowhere.

I knew that most of the teams would get both PALINDROME and SARAHDROME. But I also knew that not all of them would know the meaning of "PALINDROME". What's more, I had expected them to not even bother to check if there's a meaning to that word! And that's almost always the same reason why they'd fail in solving my riddles. The teams that had bothered to check the meaning were the teams that solved this clue.

Anyway, PALINDROME means a word that spells the same forward and reversed. For example ROTOR.

The second line of the clue tells the solver that that's the hint of how the name of T4 (Treasure 4) is formed. Note that I did not say that the name of the treasure. Rather, it's a hint of how the name is formed.

It means that the solver has to look for a chewy candy of which its name is a PALINDROME, i.e. spells the same word both ways.

Therefore, the only chewy candies that can satisfy this requirement is: SUGUS, simply because that name spells the same forward and reversed.

Hope that helps. Now I really have to go... am late for my swim!

Anonymous said...

hahaha...very I learn new word...PALINDROME

Even I'm not in the hunt, I can feel the excitement! Do you have any plan to organize a treasure hunt in KL? I believe you have a lot of hunters friend over here...


Cornelius said...

Thanks for your faith in me, Anonymous friend. But the level of clueing sophistication in KL has gone too far up for my ability! There was once, a long time ago, when I thought of trying to organise a hunt in KL, but it didn't materialise. I'd like to believe that my riddles are perhaps still good for new hunters. But maybe no longer fun and challenging for regular hunter, because their level of hunting skills have improved very much since a year or two ago.

Unfortunately, I'm spending increasingly more time in running, cycling, and recently swimming these days. So treasure hunting is kinda put on the back burner.

It's not that I'm no longer keen in treasure hunting, but in KK, treasure hunting usually means I have to set the hunt, and I get very little opportunity to hunt. After a while, the interest just becomes stale. But I will try to at least keep going with my own KK Challenge series for as long as I can.

renroc said...

I am sure you can still set a challenging hunt regardless of the
hunting strength of the participants.

renroc said...

I am sure you can still set a challenging hunt regardless of the hunting strength of the participants.

Cornelius said...

Thanks for your faith in me, renroc. Well, who knows, maybe one of these days I may just end up organising a hunt in KL!