Shoephone Construction (Solution)

by Rob Speer, Adam Hesterberg, Bianca Homberg, Halimeda Glickman-Hoch, and Asheesh Laroia; event coordinated by Bianca Homberg and Halimeda Glickman-Hoch

Teams arrived at the "shoephone testing facility" after receiving the following notification:

CONTROL has a new model of shoe phone — and it needs you to come help test them. CONTROL has set up a testing facility in the Mezzanine Lounge (W20-307). Testing will commence at 9:30 AM Saturday. Please send 3 team members to assist with this operation.

The Game

Testing consisted of games of traitor telephone.

A group of 10 people are set up with three rows and an output node:

A message is given to all three nodes of Row A and then passed via whisper towards the Output Node. Each player in Row A has lines of communication to two of the three players in Row B (i.e., A1 can talk to B2 and B3). Similarly, each player in Row B has lines of communication to two of the three players in Row B (i.e., B1 can talk to C2 and C3 as well as A2 and A3).

A single shoephone testing station A single shoephone testing station

Communication can pass in both directions along these lines, and they can say anything they like, as long as they are whispering.

Shoephone games in progress Shoephone games in progress

THE TWIST is that one player in each row is "NOISE" while the other two (and the Output Node) are "SIGNAL". SIGNAL's goal is to get the message through to the output node, and NOISE's goal is to disrupt the message somehow.

Players (of all teams) are randomly distributed, and randomly chosen to be NOISE or SIGNAL. At the end, the Output Node tells the judge what they think the message was. If they are correct, all SIGNAL players get one point for their team. If they are incorrect, all NOISE players get one point for their team.

These points are recorded on a shoe-shaped scorecard. Once a team has obtained 15 points they move on to the final round.

Blank shoephone scorecards More blank shoephone scorecards Partially filled shoephone scorecards
Blank shoephone scorecards More blank shoephone scorecards Partially filled shoephone scorecards

Final Round

In this final round, two teams are playing with some sages. All team members are SIGNAL. One sage in each row is NOISE.

The message passed through the shoephone is "Each Noise Player changes one of the words in the message to one of the words in the puzzle".

The NOISE sage in Row A changes one word of this message to "Fungus".

The NOISE sage in Row B changes one word of this message to "Proof".

The NOISE sage in Row C changes one word of this message to "Sword".

Teams may then confer with each other to determine the answer. They call in answer attempts to the event coordinators, who tell them if they are correct or not.

The correct answer is FUNGUS-PROOF SWORD.