Pied Piper (MIT Mystery Hunt 2020)

Pied Piper
MIT Mystery Hunt 2020
Storybook Forest
Author(s)Mark Gottlieb
AnswerClick to revealNEW YEARS DAY
No. solves91
No. total guesses199

Pied Piper is an audio puzzle from the Storybook Forest round of the 2020 MIT Mystery Hunt.

Puzzle Elements[edit | edit source]

Audio - Besides the grid of letters with no apparent meaning, the main body of the puzzle is a set of 33 audio clips.


Identification (Pop Music) - The song used in each audio clip can be identified.

Cryptogram (Word to Letter) - The song titles can be shown to share exactly twenty-six unique words between them, meaning each can be assigned a (completely arbitrary) letter.

Word Search (Gimmicked) - This gives the letter grid meaning—treating the letters as equivalent to those words, we can find the titles of all thirty-three songs in the grid. Of course, figuring out which letter is which is itself a part of the puzzle, but the easiest in-road to decryption is "Please, Please, Please, Let Me Get What I Want".

Chekhov's Letters - The classic word search extraction of taking the unused letters is in play here—except here you take the words from the cryptogram. This forms...

Final Clue Phrase - HURTS ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS IS WHAT, where the WHAT can be filled in with the answer to this puzzle.