Help! We're Stuck Solving a Mystery
We want to be careful here, because we try as much as possible not to have spoilers on our website that might come up if kids are searching for hints. If you are looking for a hint here are some of the clues that we are asked about the most frequently.
We have also developed a Parent Guide which is designed for anyone who needs help at any point in our mysteries. There are ongoing summaries if you want to follow along with the story and explanations of how the clues and stories fit together. Every puzzle and activity is listed, with hints and a separate section for answers.
First though, contact us if you think you may be missing a mailing, or an item in one of the mailings. We mark the back of the envelopes with small, handwritten numbers to help you figure out which installment is which. You can see more about what comes in each installment here:
If you think you've got everything but you are stuck on a clue, here are some hints:
Spies, Lies and Serious Bad Guys
Mailing #2: What is the 3 digit code for the three words that start with f, s and d? (We don’t want to write out the words to avoid spoilers, but you know what we mean.)
The 3 digit code can be found on pages 35 of the spy handbook that came in the second installment. This handbook contains useful information for young agents in training, and it will also help them solve several of the clues in the mystery.
Mailing #2: Trouble with Cipher Disk
If you are having trouble with the cipher disk there is a good chance you are trying to work in the wrong direction. Cipher disks can be used in two ways: to create messages and to decipher messages. For one way you work from the inside to the outside of the disk. For the other you work from the outside to the inside. When you are deciphering a message you must work from the inside out. So first locate the key letter A on the outside of the circle and match it up with the key letter on the inside circle. Now locate the letters of the message on the inside of the disk and write down the corresponding letters on the outside of the disk. If you work the other way around it won't work.
Mailing #2: We have entered the code correctly but the website won’t work.
Each mission has its own web address. Please make sure you are entering the correct URL. The URL for the first installment is "Shoeacademy.org/footlocker" and the URL for the second installment is "Shoeacademy.org/footloose". They are similar and it is easy to get them mixed up.
Mailing #3: We have the postcard and tiles but can’t find a code to enter. What are we supposed to do?
This installment is different than the other two. The first two are official missions, which is why they have codes to enter for more information. But now our missing agent is on the run and she is trying to send a message however she can.
Mailing #6: What is the code for the safe?
The code is made up of the answers to these three questions:
How many phases in the evil plan: 5
How many points is the letter P worth on a scrabble tile: 3
The invisible number in the spy handbook: 6
Mailing #1: How can I solve the message from the knight?
The key for the cipher in the 1st installment of Enchanted Slumber comes in the 2nd installment. Generally, when there is a cipher in a mystery, the key comes in the following installment. We like to give kids a chance to think about a clue before we give them an answer. We know that some kids become impatient with waiting, but we have also learned that over the six week course of a mystery, not giving kids answers right away helps builds anticipation and engagement.
I received two necklaces with the same message? Is that correct?
No. If you have received two necklaces with the same message that is an error on our part, and we are really, truly sorry. Contact us and we will send you the correct necklace right away.
The Case of the Missing Bigfoot
Mailing #3: How do I solve the cipher with the circles?
The key to the circle cipher comes in mailing #4. If you are following the instructions but the cipher is not making sense, try turning the page with the circles the other way so you are reading along the long edge of the page. When you get to a symbol that tells you which way to turn the page, you must “reset” the page. For example, if you turn the page right and then you receive an instruction to turn the page upside down, you turn the page upside down according to what is considered “up” when you started, not where you are now after turning the page right.
Escape the Master Loop
We've got hints for every installment over at the International Headquarters of Information.
Or if you're helping a child with the mystery we've got an installment by installment breakdown of the mystery along with hints and answers in our Parent Guide.