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17867 No. 17867 edit
Well, you know what they say.

If at first you screw up, the second time do it decently, then the third time kinda fuck it up because of poorly defined restrictions... you may wanna git gud, son.

But I was never one for listening, so I guess this is what you'll get.

Might of the Cinder-Haired Demon

http://www.mediafire.com/download/9a52a1aqd24mxr1/Might+of+the+Cinder-Haired+Demon.docx

Hello. This is my new game -- anyone can play it. It follows the same rules as the previous two ones (lack of red vs blue and such); but you'll easily see that much for yourself, since the rules are explained in the doc. (Apologies for making it .docx, but .doc file was like 7MBs, and I didn't want to force people to download anything larger than, like, 3 - since it's a really short game.)

Have fun, hopefully!
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>> No. 17868 edit
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17868
Just wanted to check something first.

At the start of the game it says that it is 7:15PM. Battler goes and talks to a few people (probably for 3-5 mins) then eventually goes outside. There he stays for "about 15 minutes". The time stamp right after that however reads 7:23PM, but it should be closer to 7:33PM. I wanted to believe this was some hint, given the few other time related things in the story, but I figure it would be better to ask since its outside of the narrative.
>> No. 17869 edit
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17869
>>17868
All times stated in the narration should be reliable. So, shouldn't be an oversight on my part.
>> No. 17870 edit
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17870
>>17869
The why is for money. More specially this answers the reason they didn't put up a fight, it was a group suicide, or rather an assisted one. All for the reason that the family was broke, and thus needed their own insurance money in order to survive. This is why the servants and Nanjo were all sent to the guesthouse, and why Hideyoshi, Kyrie, and Natsuhi went upstairs. Either one of the victims committed the deed or one of the three sent upstairs did. This would also leave most of the kids with at least one parent, naturally ones that are not Ushiromiyas.

While upstairs that group could have planted the letter, and the part about the door is simply a red herring created by Kyrie intentionally to make it seem like an outside job.

As for the howdunit, well let's say I haven't thought to much on it. I did like the little jabs at the theories from your last game. With that in mind I'll try something similar.

At the start we hear the clock ticking at the start, but when Battler enters the hall to leave he hears nothing at all. Battler may not have found any indication of a trap of trigger, but this just may be what he was missing. The clock could have been set up and trigger the chandelier to fall after being set up, which is why it produces no sound at this point. The jumbled up time stamps was your way of hinting that the time was literally messed up.

Because of this delay trigger it allows someone to have been in the room, or even enter via the window before Battler is in position to view the window. One of the people from upstairs could have used some sheets to climb down the outside and into the window, did the deed with approval of the adults, and left. Alternatively one of the victims did the killing themselves and left the knife to be picked up by one of the cousins, since after all only Battler was searched.

Of course depending on your definition of accomplice this theory could be worthless. Actually, the victim culprit one would clearly be an accomplice, so that is crossed off more or less.

>> No. 17871 edit
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17871
>>17870
Well, I've got some bad news for ya.

An accomplice... is an accomplice.

That is, pretty much anyone who would be willing to help out the culprit in committing the acts. And this theory would... well, require quite a lot of them. This includes stuff like lying on the behalf of the culprit, getting stuff off the scene for him, etc., etc.

Basically, what I'm saying is - every action of the crime itself (the killing, the chendelier falling, the planting of the letter, etc.) was done by the culprit. Nobody assisted him (or her) in it in any way. This would, include the idea of victims allowing the culprit to just kill them.

Now -- a possible way around this, would be a situation where, say, person A killed themselves and person B just took a certain object off the scene to cover it up for completely different motivation and on no instruction from the culprit. However, I can assure you that no such thing happened. (Basically, nobody else but the culprit tampered with the scene or told a lie due to their own personal motivation or something of the sort. They could've been perhaps deceived or mistaken in their testimonies for whatever reason, but never intentionally lied or tried to divert the course of justice).

And, perhaps, someone would find another loophole to avoid this kind of definition of accomplice. I would like to suggest that you don't. As I've said -- it's not my intention to wordplay. The additional "red" statements are only there to close off some routes and focus the game in the proper direction. Take them at face-value and they'll help you greatly.

Finally, your theory with the chandelier and the clock I have no obligation to comment on at the moment - because, now that we've established this thing with the accomplices, several problems pop up with it automatically:

- If the culprit is one of the victims, then you can't explain how the knife disappeared. Not to mention, since we've established that the victims wouldn't have just sat back and done nothing, there's a question of why they hadn't struggled, once more.
- If the culprit is NOT one of the victims, then there's still the question of Jssica not hearing anyone approach and the aforementioned lack of a struggle.


Last edited at 15/07/30(Thu)12:19:01
>> No. 17873 edit
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17873
>>17871

I'll take a shot at it:

As you wish for the 'how' to be the focus, I'll start there. The weapon was the table, or, more likely, something somehow embedded in its corners. After all, all four were sitting on the sides. If one were to spin the square table, one would have a perfect circle.

This leads to the question of how was it spun. That is where the clock comes in. At a specific time dictated by the gears inside the clock, which I'm guessing to be 7:20, the table would be pulled up underneath the chandelier and spun, killing the four who sat around it. This was done by using a clear line from within the clock, into the room, up and wrapped around the chandelier, and down through the center of the table, which is when the indentations on the chair were made. Perhaps it was razorwire, which also could have served to be the actual thing which did the slicing of the necks, but it's not required.

Everything went off without a hitch until they were dead. Then the mechanism, which was supposed to retract the wire into the clock, got twisted or jammed somehow on the chandelier, leaving the table hanging in midair which fortunately no one saw. However, that is why Battler did not hear the clock. It was stuck. This is the point where the culprit was worried, but somewhere a butterfly flapped its wings and everything worked out.

The gust of wind Battler felt entered the parlor, causing the table or the chandelier to shift a bit. The mechanism got unstuck, the rope was cut by the retracting blood-covered wire or weapon, and both table and chandelier came crashing down as the clock started ticking again. Assuming that Battler's sense of time is indeed absolute, then the 7:23 was what was showing on the grandfather clock, which had been stuck for ten minutes. Hence, 13 minutes. I know the wind entered the parlor because the door of the study, which was on the exact opposite side of the mansion, had been pushed open slightly by it.

Hideyoshi is the culprit. To do this would require intricate knowledge of clockworks, which is why he 'had to have' the pocketwatch. That particular one likely had the same inner workings as the grandfather clock but on a smaller scale, so that he could test his trap. It could also be argued that it would make razorwire more likely, as army and tactics knowledge might lead him to that idea. If the culprit is Hideyoshi it makes the contents of the letter less mysterious as well, as when he wrote it all of that would be common knowledge, aside from the time taken to kill them. Knowing that it took thirteen minutes again points to a clock and timing mechanism that doesn't only rely on the grandfather clock, so the pocketwatch comes up again.

The why is somewhat unclear, but I would guess that he felt bullied and trapped by Eva, and that he had given up his family name for Ushiromiya, which would soon come to nothing.

I'm not entirely sure as to how Hideyoshi managed to get the letter into Kinzo's study, but the line used does say that the police had had their eyes on the family 'pretty much' the entire time after arriving, so there could be some wiggle room there.

Nevertheless, I stand by my description of how the murder was committed and who did it.

>> No. 17874 edit
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17874
>>17873
You sir, get the little John Dickson Carr trophy. What a fun theory!

Buuut...

- What guarantee would've Hideyoshi had that all four of them would be sitting around the table at 7:20 (or the suggested time?) What if one of them had gotten up and went over to the window or something? Surely, the issue would've arisen somewhere down the line of planning such a complex mechanism?
- In addition, the issue of the letter. I might've, perhaps, picked the wrong choice of words for "pretty much", so I'll promise you right here that everyone was watched over by at least one other person after the discovery of the bodies. Which would suggest that it was impossible to place the letter after it happened. And yet, the letter itself is able to tell the exact location of each of the participants. Hideyoshi and co. were upstairs after leaving for dinner - there was no way for him to know where the cousins would be. The adults? Perhaps. But not the cousins. And espeically not Battler.

>> No. 17875 edit
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17875
>>17874

Yay, I get a trophy. Though it still leaves me feeling somewhat Hollow, Man.

...

At any rate, as the old saying goes: When one door closes...

...go get a battering ram. I have a couple ideas that would keep the victims (and audience) in their seats.

My best theory is that they were all seated because it was required for Eva's plan, the one Hideyoshi didn't think would work. So that begs the question: what plan would make four people sit around a table and be certain to keep them there? What plan would make four siblings sit in a parlor around a table and keep them there? What plan would make four siblings, desperate and broke, having just had a rich business genius of a grandfather who was obsessed with the occult, sit around a table a month after his passing in the house in which he died and keep them there?

They were trying to perform a seance.

Well, at least three of them were, and Eva was trying to fake one. Traditionally seances demand that all participants stay in their seat and remain focused (with eyes either open or closed), and it's also one of the few situations where things moving around in ways they normally wouldn't move would cause people to be happily surprised rather than run screaming.

So when the table started to float and twist, all would remain in their seats, and not show any kind of shock or fear on their faces. The exact kind of faces they had in death.

The other option is one big pressure plate or four small pressure plates under the chairs, and the weights of them triggers the trap, but I'm not as much a fan of that.

As for Hideyoshi not knowing where Battler and the cousins would be, I contend that it is very possible. It was mentioned that the upstairs group was moving around a lot. Just because they were by the study when the chandelier crashed does not mean that they could not be by the stairs when Battler was directly stating that he would be going outside to get "some fresh air." What is more, if we take it to the absolute extreme, Battler heard an unidentified voice almost call out to him from the dining room. This would suggest either some device for hearing and speaking into the dining room, or, based on my assumption of the map of the entrance hall, Battler in fact heard a voice calling to him from what I believe to be the staircase, which is in between the dining room and the entrance door.

At any rate, if we assume the 'moving around' took the upstairs group near the stairs while Battler was leaving, Hideyoshi could have pinpointed George and Jessica by their voices, Battler by where he was saying he was going, and Maria because she's a loud and obnoxious brat...who spoke a little beforehand.

Working with that, although I'm still hazy on the note, I get to three more theories.

First: As all but six words (the locations of the cousins and Battler) could have been written out immediately after dinner, Hideyoshi could have filled those in quickly at some point upstairs and then gotten the note to the desk before they came down to the bodies, since a three minute response time to a crash is rather slow, even in a mansion.

Second: The contents of the note do not seem to be confirmed by the police, only the location. Jessica misremembered in her desperation for it to be a demon.

Third: The contents of the note are still not told correctly, but that is because Jessica is the true culprit. Using the mechanism described, and having heard about the seance from either her father or George who had heard it discussed between his parents.

Do I get another trophy?


Last edited at 15/07/31(Fri)18:40:46
>> No. 17876 edit
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17876
>>17875
Quite a frightening theory, admittedly. Fortunately, I AM the kind of Man that Could not Shudder.

So, my problems with the seance lie more in motivation than anything else.

In this universe/timeline/whatever, it's obvious that Eva is more or less on her own when it comes to wanting to take down Krauss. What could she have proposed the point of the seance would've been? I mean, why would the other adults even agree to it? They would either get:

A) The ghost giving them what they expected would happen anyway.
or
B) The ghost screwing things up for them and saying something in Eva's favor.

They had absolutely no reason to go along with the charade. Especially not in a time as tense as this.

My other question regarding this lies in just how Eva intended to "fake" the seance to begin with. What tools would she have used? How would she have done so? The lights were on, the window was open, she had no possible accomplices, etc., etc. How would this have worked?

As for the pressure pads - remember that this mechanism had to be set up by the culprit. I imagine that this would've taken quite a lot of time. And that would've meant that, because the mechanism had to have been in place long before the culprit, there was a distinct chance that some other four people (besides the adults) could've sat down and gotten killed. And it's suggested that the culprit was determined to specifically kill the adults, meaning that such an "accident" wouldn't have gone in his favor at all.

In addition, a problem with the theory in general (something I didn't bring up the last time) is this:

The blades are on the tables' sides.

Which would mean that, when the mechanism shifted due to wind, the table's side would've had to been above the chandelier. When the chandelier fell, that would've meant that the table fell on top of it. But that wasn't the case. The table was completely crushed under it.

For the letter: I can assure you of two things --

The other two that were with Hideyoshi upstairs would've noticed him doing pretty much anything -- that includes trying to secretly writing in things or trying to secretly place the letter during the interval of time after the crash.

In addition, let me state clearly that when Battler said:

"But some time later I asked the detectives and -- it was true. The letter was there."

He's also, in turn, confirmed its content. Jessica did not lie about the letter's existence, what the letter said or its location.


Last edited at 15/08/01(Sat)02:59:41
>> No. 17877 edit
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17877
>>17876

Yeah, the pressure pads were a bit of a junk theory, but I threw it out there just in case.

In regards to the table blades thing, I really wish I could think of a way to doodle this well, but I'll try to explain my vision of the trap and how it worked:

A Line from clockworks inside grandfather clock, down, around the corner of the parlor, up the wall, across the ceiling, wrapped around the chandelier, straight down, into the center of table. From there the line connects to the weapon, lets say 4 blades at the corners, for sake of argument. The table is twisted, which locks the blades to the table. The trap goes off, which causes the line to start reeling in, and the table to twist. This unlocks the blades from the table, draws them to the center as the line retracts, but they get stuck on the part where they're supposed to pass through the table (through a small hole covered by a placemat or similar), which is where the mechanism gets jammed. The table is held up by the 4 blades on a line. The wind blows through, shifting either the table, the chandelier, or the door (which I realized is another possible sticking point). The blades dislodge, and the tension on the line causes them to move very fast. As the table drops, the blades slash at the chandelier rope as the line retracts around where it had been wrapped. The chandelier falls, impacting the table milliseconds after the table impacts the ground, causing it all to sound like one big crash. The line retracts as planned after that, drawing the blades and whatever was used to cover the hole up into the grandfather clock. Bloody cut to the chandelier rope, table stays underneath.

As for why the seance was done, I have a couple ideas, but I'll just stick to the main one: the gold. There's obviously a rumor about missing gold that was never found, and if you get people desperate enough they might turn to mysticism in an attempt to find something like that.

The tools: She didn't need to make Kinzo's ghost appear or anything so flashy. The table levitating would have been enough, and then all you need would be some form of divining implement. Say a necklace to use as a dowsing pendulum that would look normal with the corpses, or some trick hollow crystal ball that was shattered by the chandelier and lost amidst all the other broken glass, or she was just going to roll her eyes back and be 'possessed by Kinzo'. If you have a floating table, you can pretty much try to claim whatever you want. Kyrie's the main one she might be worried about figuring out the trick, and Kyrie wasn't invited.

And after all that...yeah it's probably not right. I'm stuck on the letter, then, so it looks like I'm back to the drawing board for the moment. I'll return with a new theory in a day or two, but I wanted to make sure you at least understood this one fully.


Last edited at 15/08/01(Sat)08:20:34
>> No. 17878 edit
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17878
>>17877
Oh, okay! Okay! I getcha now.

My initial understanding was that it was a pulley system of some sort, because I was under the impression that the blades were a part of the table's secret compartment or something. I get it now.

As you've probably assumed, though, it's not really the one I'm looking for. The main question, off the top of my head, is how none of the adults did nothing about a line going through a hole in the table. You can claim that it was very thin or something, but the room wasn't exactly dark. Chances are that somebody would've noticed it sooner or later during the conversation.

And, besides, even if Eva got the table to lift, how exactly would she have gotten "Kinzo's message" to the adults (whatever it would've been)? Crystal balls are all well and good, but she still needed to get it across somehow.

...But yeah, the letter is sort of what ultimately stops this theory from fully functioning, sadly.

>> No. 17880 edit
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17880
While I wait for the next reply (assuming people don't just give up), I should take this time to note that this game was tested by four people the results were: two people gave up, two solved with (albeit, one with quite a bit of luck). Take that as you will. They agreed that the game was solvable, if nothing else.

Anoher thing while waiting is to express my concern over my system of making having the players need to spread out their entire theory before me. Admittedly, while I like it a lot more than red vs. blue (simply because it eliminates shotgunning and should ideally force me as a writer to eliminate all possibilities in the actual narrative rather than later on), I'm also somewhat afraid that because of the fact that the suggested solution is pretty much the ONLY one that works right from the get-go, it sort of limits the amount of possible ideas the players can throw around and thus, the amount of players and interactivity to begin with. Ideally, as a GM, I'd want to have as many players as possible. (Even if, admittedly, after my screw-ups in Downfall and Indoctrination, I can see some people probably not wanting to give it another go).

Hm... Maybe in my next game, if I end up making one, I should just return to the old system and see how it works from there (at least it would be better than the disaster that was Indoctrination).

Ah, well. I'll give it some thought. Depends if that's the case here or not. (For all I know, maybe the interest in gameboards has died a bit in general or something. Stuff like that eventually happens.)

(To clarify, this isn't "omg post!!11!" but rather me being uncertain if the system in place here sort of detracts players from wanting to participate and if I should change it for the future. Always more fun when you can mess with more people, after all. Because, don't get me wrong - I get that people are busy and all!)

Last edited at 15/08/02(Sun)07:50:45
>> No. 17883 edit
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17883
>>17880
Might be worth a shot. I know at least two other people who have read this had some theories but didn't want to post because one just can't explain a part, and the other just feels that you have to present a full theory in your games. Both seem to imply the the structure of the discussion portion is the cause of that.

Of course like you said crossing off theories like you did in the story does a great job of making it seem even more impossible. But also, well, crosses off theories and in turn less people will post. On one hand it makes a better mystery and on the other it takes a bit out of the game portion.

Incidentally that is why RP games, timed sessions, and limiting blues became more prevalent. Since with more 'solvable' games unlimited blues made some game too easy.
>> No. 17884 edit
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17884
>>17883
Hrm... Well, shotgunning is one of the things I wanted to avoid the most (because, well, one might come across an extremely important part of the trick completely by accident instead of reasoning their way through it).

On the other hand, I'm sort of not in favor of limited blues, either. I mean, there's always a chance that it might be unfair - the player suggesting a theory that works within everything established, but being denied just because it isn't the solution. Hence, it would be no actual fault of the player - but they would still be wrong and lose one of the blues.

Thus, the only way to avoid that is... well, when you write something like this. Leaving only the one possible solution open and thus, every time a blue is denied, it is simply because the player overlooked something.

...Which leads to the exact same problem I have now. How tedious.

I always imagined this more as a discussion rather than an actual battle. It's not in my interest to win here (I might've mentioned this before, perhaps not), but rather to see people theorize. I might not obligated to respond to things that aren't complete theories, but at the same time, I don't want people going completely off-track. Daedon didn't have a complete theory, but had an interesting approach to it, so I responded to it.

Basically, I'm interested to see in how people approach this and how they what parts of the crime surprise them the most. That's what makes it fun for me.
>> No. 17885 edit
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17885
>>17884
Makes sense. Perhaps people will be more inclined to post then in that case, under the impression that this is a discussion thread rather than debate. Guess we will see.
>> No. 17886 edit
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17886
>>17885
So I gave it a reread and thought I'd just throw down random points here.

We know the time is messed up in some way, probably has something to do with the grandfather clock and what not.
If a trap was used at all it was most likely just for something to aid the trick, rather than full out kill them.

The fact that were was no struggle means that they were likely drugged. The coroner said he couldn't confirm though, so it's not exactly denied.
Battler decides that if they were drugged it was most likely during dinner, but also suggests that it would be too fast acting and only Kanon and Shannon could have done it, if not for their alibis.
Although, looking at the alibis perhaps Gohda was mistaken after all. Kumasawa says everyone was there for only 6-7, and the murders happened after that, apparently.

Jessica said that she saw the adults talking moments before, and also said she never heard anything in the hall.
It's fairly natural to assume if someone entered the hall Jessica probably would have noticed, but it is also possible that she was distracted by the book and cousins.
It says in the letter that they were able to be really quiet and pull something off, so perhaps they just took off their shoes and walked in their socks right out of the room.

Maybe they took the portrait and painted one side as wallpaper and the other side as the adults sitting in the study, then they just put it up to trick Jessica. Case closed guys.

No but actually, with some of these points you can start to form, something, maybe? Mainly if the alibi's for the servants are just between 6-7 then any of them could be running around the mansion.
Battler says something about what if someone was in the room when the family members entered, they would have noticed, but that doesn't seem very convincing considering how some of them treat servants.
So although it's a stretch, one of them could have been inside the room, drugged them with tea, crawled around the chairs and tables to not be noticed by Jessica while cutting them, then left via the sheet window thing I mentioned before.
Or maybe they did the socks thing instead.

After they took their tea or whatever with them (tied up into another sheet to muffle the sound) the room was mentioned to have very little of interest, as if it was cleaned up.
Then the clock-chandelier trap everyone seems to be going with activated to get attention and would also give the culprit the time and information needed to complete the letter. So they just wrote it up and got it into the study before heading back to the guesthouse.

>> No. 17887 edit
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17887
>>17886
For the purposes of simplifying things, let's say that the four would've definitely reacted in some way.

I... don't really recall why I had Kumasawa say between 6 or 7. Weird. But, in any case, considering all of the other servants (assuming one of them is the culprit, I mean) are innocent, I imagine at least one of them would've brought up someone leaving, either way.

>> No. 17890 edit
Since this seems a little stuck, I figured I'd drop by and throw my stuff at it. Now, I have a pretty elaborate theory I might try later, but for now I'll just give some thoughts that might be useful and a theory that's most likely wrong.

First some thoughts on the culprit. Assuming they're the same person that planted the letter, the cousins look the most suspicious. The reason for this is simply that they were the only ones that were really in the position to know Battler's location. Of course their alibi is kind of perfect, but so is everybody else's. There isn't really anything suggesting anybody else would have come by Battler's location, though I guess he might be spottable from upstairs somehow. THere's another reason they're suspicious though. The culprit also writes in their letter that they were worried at one point. Battler unexpectedly getting up seems like the most likely thing to be worried about, and there even was a line saying that someone tried to call out for Battler to come back but gave up on it, and interestingly it's not revealed who it was. The culprit trying to stop him from leaving, but ultimately deciding it would make them look too suspicious later on?

And now... I was halfway done writing up a theory when I came up with a funny different idea.
Hideyoshi is mentioned to have bought a pocket watch. The victims showed no reaction to getting killed. Well, aside from checking the time, there's one popular use for pocket watches: hypnosis. This would also be how he planted the letter, he just hypnotized the others so they thought he never left. If we add the whole clock mechanism, we'd have some sort of theory again, because the main problems of that was to keep people in their seats (possible with hypnosis) and how the letter was planted. I guess there's Battler's location, but... maybe it was possible to see him from the second floor. There's also.... Eva not really seeming all that hypnotized in the first scene, but the effects can be pretty subtle, or so I've heard. I feel like this theory is bound to be wrong because it relies on loopholes in what counts as an accomplice (which you said we shouldn't attempt), but I still found it interesting enough to mention, at least.

>> No. 17891 edit
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17891
>>17890
Hm, yes, everyone jumped to hypnosis sooner or later. Surprised it wasn't suggested earlier.

But yeah, that's the wrong path. I really don't know MUCH about hypnosis, but from what little I know of it... it doesn't really work as simply as "you can just mind control people". And given how limited amount of time the culprit would've had to do something like that (implanting ideas, planning movements, doing the proper suggestions) -- I find it highly unlikely. Pretty much impossible, actually. And yeah, it would sort of tread lightly on the accomplice defintion, so...

>> No. 17894 edit
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17894
>>17891

I told you I'd come back with another theory.

Honestly it's probably more of a request for clarification rather than a true theory, since it can be shot down in a heartbeat if a key assumption I make is incorrect and it disregards a lot of potential hints. Still, it lets me say something fun, which I'll put at the end to sum it up.

First, though, the full theory: The culprit is Doctor Nanjo. Referencing the map in the story, he was standing in the southwest corner of the parlor when the four entered, hence why they didn't immediately acknowledge him. However, they were expecting him, so when he walked out to greet them they weren't surprised or felt the need to draw attention to his presence.

They were expecting him because of something he claimed: that Kinzo's ill health was tirggered by a hereditary blood disorder that was caught too late. However, if detected early, this disorder could be treated. So, since all the immediate family of Kinzo was present, he wanted to draw blood to run tests while they had their discussions. The four, not being medical professionals, did not see any reason to doubt a trusted family friend, nor did they notice when, under the pretense of drawing blood, he actually put some air into their bloodstream. Only 0.5 mil is needed for an air embolism to cause a heart attack if put in the right spot, and only 2 mil is needed for a stroke. So he performed the deed and waited, and soon all were either unconscious or dead from this deliberate embolism. He cut their throats to disguise the cause of death, but suddenly found himself with a problem. Battler was outside the window, cutting off his planned escape route.

The only thing he could think of was to create a distraction. So he carefully climbed up onto Rudolf's chair, terrified that Jessica would look over and see him, and sliced away at the chandelier until it was frayed and barely hanging. Rather than slice all the way though, though, he got down and went to his previous hiding spot right near the window, waiting for his chance to escape.

That's when the gust of wind (which is now my best friend) blew in. The rope finally snapped, causing the chandelier to fall. Battler, hearing this, ran back into the entranceway and Jessica looked over, not seeing anyone there. In the couple moments before Battler came in, Nanjo climbed out the window. However, instead of jumpin down, he started climbing up to a second floor window he had opened previously. After all, it was such nice weather outside. Battler never looked up. Nanjo climbed into the second story window after everyone else had gathered downstairs, drawn by the crash. That was when he went into Kinzo's study and penned the note.

After that, he ran out of the mansion using a different entrance and headed to the guesthouse. Battler and company spent a great deal of time investigating, and then had a ten-minute walk to the guesthouse. That would be plenty of time to scribble a note and run over there. Then, Nanjo entered, hid, and waited for the others to arrive. He walked into the servant's room just before everyone else did, so the servants thought he had been with them, and everyone else thought that he had been with the servants.

When Battler was questioning Gohda and Kumasawa, they said 'everyone' believing Battler was asking about all the servants, which seemed natural to them. After all, Nanjo isn't a servant, just a family friend, and it had looked like the family had had Nanjo with them, so they wouldn't have thought about him.

The motive was, like the letter said, revenge, plus trying to cover up the circumstances of Kinzo's death. If there was even a rumor that Kinzo's death had been covered up, Doctor Nanjo would have lost all credibility in the medical community. His practice would fail, and he'd be left as an elderly man with no job and no honor.

So that's the theory of how Nanjo killed four people without them realizing it, climbed up a wall to escape notice, blended into a crowd to create an alibi, and got away with it. That is is the story of Nanjo the Ninja.

Or as I like to call him, Ninjo!


Last edited at 15/08/03(Mon)18:28:11
>> No. 17896 edit
File 141132133768.png - (108.35KB , 415x480 , bu3_futekia5.png )
17896
>>17894
Well, to be fair, I always saw Nanjo more as a servant, so to clarify -- yes, he was indeed included in that statement of not leaving the guesthouse.
>> No. 17898 edit
File 143867812987.png - (35.28KB , 373x406 , ouch.png )
17898
Y-You say you tested this with four people and didn't invite your ol' trusty beta? TT_TT

But ahem, time to theorize. I suppose I can't just call out Shkanontrice and say the cop is the killer? Actually, I have a better idea. They mention Kinzo multiple times but no one actually states his corpse is on the island. I mean, sure, they say the door to his study was open so people could pay their respects him, but that could also mean they just have a shrine there. So the 18th body on the island is the cop and as everything he says could be a lie, he could've just knocked everyone out with sleeping gas, killed them and then exited through a secret passage. As for the chandelier, there is no need for complicated trickery. He just cut the wire it hung on halfway and the weight of the thing eventually brought it down. Since he is in the police he could walk around freely and place the letter too. He is also definitely not a stranger as he both has lines and one of the images even has his sprites.

Pretty simple and elegant, don't you think?
>> No. 17899 edit
File 143867969184.png - (106.78KB , 415x480 , bu3_waraia1s.png )
17899
>>17898
As always, Singi, your definition of "elegant" is just as stretched out as your stubborness.

Kinzo's body really is on the island, as stated in the narration.

Secondly, pretty sure at least one person would've had some semblance of memory of being knocked out with knockout gas. (Unless you mean just the victims by "everyone". In that case, you'd think he would've had some explaining to do if one of the members of the family that had talked to him discovered that the police really HAD found a secret passage. 'Cause, I mean, he can't really stop the other officers from searching). Then there's the problem of the letter, claiming to be "free". Weird, considering the guy never had anything to do with the family to begin with...


Last edited at 15/08/04(Tue)02:15:47
>> No. 17901 edit
File 143868616193.png - (46.59KB , 366x456 , hmph.png )
17901
>>17899

Stubborness? I call it dedication.

All the narration stated was that they went to see his body but not where. It could be out of the island. But anyway, by 'everyone' I meant just 'all the victims', not everyone on the island. Dead people tell no tales, you see. It's still peculiar though. After all, the demon does state there are only 18 bodies on Rokkenjima, even though the conversation takes place after the police has already arrived. Is it just a mistake? Well, until you say so, I'll keep assuming the cop is the culprit, as he was definitely witnessed in the narrative~

But now I still need to explain how the he got out of the room without secret passages. Battler mentioning the mud under the window, even though the weather had been good, got me a bit suspicious. It is my theory that when the killer exited through the window the ground was actually dry. Only after he had safely gotten out, he wet the ground with a watering pot, creating the mud to make it seem like an impossible crime. If you combine that with the chandelier trick and sleeping gas from my previous post you have pretty much the entire crime.

Though I must admit you're right about the letter not making much sense. Maybe it's just a trick to make people think the killer had a personal motivation?


Last edited at 15/08/04(Tue)04:57:19
>> No. 17903 edit
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17903
>>17901
Nah, it's more "wasting time". At best, you'll get me to flat-out deny a theory.

The cop is not one of your possible suspects. There. Simple as that.

The narration said that there were no intruders on the island and I meant no deception there.

Without a person X, the problems with your other suggested theores become clear enough.

>> No. 17905 edit
File 132116397839.png - (21.49KB , 217x157 , ozaki_heh.png )
17905
One of the victims had a crystal/glass tea set in the parlor ready. The four of them drank tea and three got put to sleep. The culprit made sure the cups were empty and then took a piece of glass and slit all their throats including their own. The clock was set up to make the chandelier(which I assume was mostly glass) fall, crushing the cups and spreading all the glass around the room in order to hide the evidence.
>> No. 17906 edit
File 143871147750.png - (42.37KB , 384x508 , mad.png )
17906
>>17903
Well, thank you for giving me that best case scenario then~

Okay. A new theory. But honestly I don't want this one to be true... Please say you aren't pulling the same trick the second time.

Fact 1: There is only 13 minutes from the beginning to the corpses being found.
Fact 2: Battler who is also the detective perceives the same time to be more than 15 minutes.
The both of these facts being true should be impossible... Ergo, magic.

According to Maria the Cinder-Haired Demon has possessing abilities. So what if she possessed Battler... Or hey, maybe he is the demon himself? Earlier Maria said that the Cinder-Haired Demon can traverse through dimensions, which nicely explains the problem with time. Most likely, when Maria gave Battler the charm, the demon was forced to switch dimensions and we follow her/his point of view. Thus we can discount everything that happened before that moment, as it didn't necessarily happen in this universe. And voilĂ ~ The cousins lose their alibis. Since Maria probably wouldn't be able to reach the chandelier and Jessica is a witness, the killer is likely George. After the kills he used the chandelier and window tricks I described in my previous posts. The only different thing is that when each of the victims were killed, they were actually possessed and had peaceful expression because the demon had nothing to fear even if her/his hosts died. But why would the demon/Battler do this? Well, s/he was nice enough to tell his motives in a letter. No one said it was from the actual killer, after all. Because there is a demon, s/he can just possess anyone to write it, so that's not a problem either. And please note George and demon!Battler aren't even accomplices because they acted separately.

>> No. 17907 edit
File 141115837514.png - (106.88KB , 415x480 , bu3_majimea6.png )
17907
>>17905
Doesn't quite work because the cord of the chandelier was clearly cut by something - something with blood on it. (Although, that's just going to lead to someone using the almighty gust of wind and claim the chandelier's cord was cut just enough so that it was knocked down by the window.)

So I'll just use a bit more straightforward problem - the letter. If the culprit was one of the victims, how did it get there and how did it have everyone's locations so correctly, since it had to have been written and put on the table long before anyone entered the parlor?


>>17906
okay, I just got up and I'm having a bit of trouble understanding this (more my fault than yours).

So, I'll just go for the simple answer:

The "cinder-haired demon" had absolutely nothing to do with the execution of the crimes, just as the narration implied. In any way, shape or form. No travelling between dimensions or anything like that.

Last edited at 15/08/04(Tue)11:38:57
>> No. 17908 edit
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17908
>>17907
Forgot about the letter. Might be able to force something, but I'll leave it for now.

Just for the sake of completing the theory I'll put this though, instead of the clock they stood up on the chair and slit their throat. Then as they cut the chandelier they fell down onto their chair at the same time so that when the crash was heard and Jessica turned her head they were already in place. They then bled out in the following events before anyone properly investigated to see if they were alive. Either passed out via the drug that they took before slitting their throat, or just closing their eyes and pretending.

>> No. 17909 edit
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17909
>>17908
Well, I'll hold off on commenting on it until the letter portion is explained.
>> No. 17910 edit
File 143872009066.png - (31.63KB , 313x400 , casual.png )
17910
>>17907
Just to make sure, can I take that as there are no different dimensions involved with this game at all? Because if not, I'll just claim the demon is only responsible for the narration (not crimes itself) and because of her changing dimensions in the middle the cousins don't actually have alibis.
>> No. 17911 edit
File 141132133768.png - (108.35KB , 415x480 , bu3_futekia5.png )
17911
>>17910
No different dimensions.
>> No. 17912 edit
File 139439754494.png - (668.38KB , 1056x592 , ozaki_45.png )
17912
>>17911
Going back to some of the earlier posts, we know that Battler has a reliable POV, but we also can plainly see that the time stamps are horribly wrong. Whatever it indicates also means that we don't really know when this went down.

In fact Battler stands out there for 15 minutes, just enough time for someone to commit the deed assuming the letter was correct. So basically someone could have walked in after Battler had left, killed them, and then escape with the information needed to place the letter. Using the idea that Jessica was distracted once again. The problem here is that:

1. The victims don't react in any way apparently.
2. Everyone seemingly has an alibi.
3. If they cut the chandelier it doesn't seem like they could have escaped.

The cousins seem like the last group of people who could be involved, for the room is small and has no ways to really deceive the others(but who knows). The servants say that did not notice one leave from when they arrived to when all the others came to the guesthouse. Finally Hideyoshi's group is stated to have been seen together.

With the servants it seems unlikely that if they were all playing cards anyone could escape, perhaps it's still possible, maybe through someone going to the bathroom and jumping out of the window thus pretending to have just taken a long time the others assumed they never left. The same could be said for Hideyoshi's group, seeing how Battler only assumes what they did upstairs rather than being told. We are told, again by Battler not anyone else, that they had each other in their sights. So something similar could have been pulled.

Ultimately we know someone must have a loophole in their alibi to commit the crime. That of course comes the howdunit. We've messed around with a number of ideas so far, but ultimately the letter or an alibi kinda messes with it. If the victims didn't react, then again I will say they were drugged, but this time the tea was planted into the room. At the very least once Battler had left the dinning room we know the hallway was completely silent, which could indicate they were asleep (or maybe even dead) at this time.

The culprit can enter the room and kill them at this point, since the crash is what alerts everyone. Another possibility is that the crash that was heard wasn't in fact the chandelier, and instead it was cut down then lowered onto of the table. Of course then you need to explain what made the crash after that, which someone else can do if they wish.

What is also possible is to use the clock mechanism once again, since it has been said the chandelier had to have been cut. The culprit could have cut it first, and then used the electrical wires to rehang it from the cut portion. The clock was hooked up to the internal wiring for the lights, and when it was set off it caused the connection to break and it fall to the ground.

I think the main thing to take away from this is that if we assume there is a loophole in someone's alibi then some of the older theories work as well. Even if my loophole isn't the right one.

>> No. 17913 edit
File 143872745993.png - (1.24MB , 1344x756 , latest.png )
17913
>>17912
It would be somewhat cheap to have "oh, yeah, that guy went to the bathroom and was there for a certain amount of time. Why do you ask?" trick behind the alibis. Especially when nothing of the sort was mentioned or, at the very least, properly clued in.

Still... you may not be on an entirely wrong track here.

You've managed to catch onto the most important problems of the story. From this point on, admittedly, it DOES take some imagination. You also have to be willing to take some things as they are and work from there.

Ask yourself 'why?'.

But not in terms of motive...

>> No. 17916 edit
This is my first attempt to solve any sort of gameboard, so why not pick one everyone's saying is super hard? (So maybe I'm going to miss all the things that I'm meant to know to draw a conclusion here. This theory isn't very long.)

I'm assuming I'm not meant to look at other spoilers, which seems kind of against the point of a "discussion" but oh well.

The killer was whoever Rud is. Battler's dad. I'm not familiar with all these names.

Rudy, perhaps, knew that Hideyoshi had a pocket watch. So, earlier, before Hideyoshi had woken up, Rudy stole it from him, as people don't wear pocket watches when they sleep.

Before the four victims entered the parlor, Rudy promised to show them all his amazing hypnosis act. He does, using the pocket watch, and puts them all to sleep. He can just pocket the pocket watch now.

Next, he takes a lightbulb off the chandelier (Honestly, I have no idea if Umineko takes place in an age where they have lightbulbs, but it better), cracks it as softly as he can, and takes out a single sharp shard. The rest of the lightbulb is laid on the table.

Rudy then proceeds to slice the other three people's throats with the glass, as well as cut the cord to the chandelier - but not all the way. He leaves the cord thin enough that a tight pull would sever it completely.

Now, of course, all he has to do is make sure he grasps the chandelier tightly while standing on his chair to the point where it's almost stuck, and then slit his own throat with the glass. When the chandelier is brought down, so is he into his chair, and the knife blends into the wreckage.

>> No. 17917 edit
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17917
>>17916
Feel free to read the other spoilers tags and use the information in them to make theories.
>> No. 17918 edit
File 143875785747.png - (35.30KB , 370x405 , ooh.png )
17918
Whoa, we have DWaM, Rune, me and now Reecer in just this game alone and Enigma hosting another one too. Is AAO trying to take over Seacats...?

Anyway, I have still plenty of theories~

Considering Battler is the detective his sense of time should be objective... Which means it's the timestamps that are wrong. So what if the clocks are just broken? On the same vein of thought "tick, tick, tick" in the narration implies time passing... But by how much? We have no idea, since the clocks are broken. There is one instance of this phrase being used after Battler has already left Eva, but is yet to arrive to the dining room. So what if it wasn't just a short while? We know Battler is the only cousin who left the dining room after they arrived but... We have no idea what each of them did before they came there. So my theory is that "tick, tick, tick" was enough time for one of the cousins to commit the murders. Later on the time continues advancing because they're just using a different clock (for example Hideyoshi's) to check the time.
>> No. 17919 edit
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17919
>>17917

Oh, alright then.

>>17918

Hey, when something is talked about a whole lot, I can't help but get curious about it.

Last edited at 15/08/05(Wed)00:02:35
>> No. 17920 edit
File 143872009066.png - (31.63KB , 313x400 , casual.png )
17920
>>17919
By that you mean people talked about it on xat, I assume? Ah, I thought it was weird when Kwando commented to me about my theories on Skype. So that's why...

Last edited at 15/08/05(Wed)00:18:56
>> No. 17921 edit
File 143876223978.png - (21.63KB , 256x256 , kyouko1.png )
17921
Nah, I talked to you about your theories because I've been lurking on seacats and seeing all your theories.

They're... Quite amusing, I must say~

But yes, AAO is taking over seacats mwahaha

Last edited at 15/08/05(Wed)01:11:36
>> No. 17922 edit
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17922
>>17920

Well, that, AND the thread that was made. Something can't have a thread if it's not good.

Now I'm disappointed that part of my answer was done already and also I forgot about a completely different thing.

It was actually probably Jessica. At no point do George and Maria actually say anything about what they witnessed, which implies they're kind of embarrassed about paying more attention to the book than anything happening outside. So, at any point, it was entirely possible that Jessica could've gone into the parlor.

Jessica had some snacks saved up somewhere, and just got four and gave them to each of the victims. Of course, they were drugged, so they all pass out, and then Jessica just slits their throat from some glass from the chandelier and weakens the cord. And then, with all her time, she sets up a clock-chandelier device and comes back into the dining room.

And then she writes that darn letter.

>> No. 17924 edit
File 141114357317.png - (106.55KB , 415x480 , bu3_komarua3.png )
17924
>>17918
But... the "tick, tick, tick" sounds... occurred way before the chandlier fell. The only time it could've actually happend was the one right after Battler saw the guys entering. And again -- it doesn't explain the chandelier falling. Or the letter and its details. Or how none of the victims did anything to fight back. Or how Battler never mentioned that, even though he said he was right at the edge of the doorway, he actually entered like 15 minutes afterwards. Or that he failed to mention what he was doing during that time. Or the fact that, had he been standing like a doll and failed to notice one of the cousins going to the other room.

(And no, you can't claim he entered the dining room and 15 minutes passed because of the dialogue after "tick, tick, tick".


>>17922
Again, that would be a pretty cheap solution. The two other cousins had to have remembered someone leaving, if one of them had just gotten up and left in front of them for any reason.

And guys, I'm gonna need you to tone down the references to AAO.

Last edited at 15/08/05(Wed)02:49:04
>> No. 17926 edit
File 14387720025.png - (72.13KB , 343x500 , BatOrobos.png )
17926
As one of the betat-readers of this forgery (the one who solved it), I have arrived to deliver a message of utmost importance. The answer to this is totally possible to get if you think hard enough! Or, you know, if you BS around with anything that looks like it could be a clue/foreshadowing. Or do what I do and just straight up make nonsense up and find evidence later. Either or...

Now, then, Enigma Away!!!

Last edited at 15/08/05(Wed)03:56:56
>> No. 17927 edit
File 143877391956.png - (32.31KB , 304x404 , blush.png )
17927
>>17924
Oh right, that reminds me... It's weird but in the paragraph before "tick, tick, tick" Battler says "Across the hall was the dining room. That's where Maria, George, Jessica and me were", yet he only steps into the room after the ticking. Assuming that's not just a mistake, that would mean he first went into the room, then came out during the ticking and went back. As for a very imaginative explanation of why Battler didn't mention this...

He had to use bathroom!

But hey, normally you wouldn't mention that in a story, right? At least mentioning it is very rare... As for the chandelier, as I mentioned before it was just cut halfway before leaving. We weren't told any specifics on the wire it was hanging on, so it's very possible that it could've held out for 20 mins or so before crashing down. There are really plenty of ways to explain why the victims didn't resists too. It could be the sleeping gas I suggested previously or maybe even hypnosis that has also been mentioned. Really, any of the cousins could have just asked them to close their eyes and hold hands to their ears, considering the victims still trusted them. As for the letter, it was simply written before the murders and left there, as most of the people were already in the positions mentioned in it, sans the killer and surely they already knew where they were going to go after the murder. With that the only uncertain part would be Battler and sure enough, the writer doesn't sound completely certain on his whereabouts.


Yup, that's a legit theory.
>> No. 17928 edit
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17928
>>17927
Okay, let's just... cut this in its roots. The ticking doesn't represent anything aside from the sound of the grandfather clock.

After talking with Eva, Battler went directly to the dining room. I apologize if the narration left it open that he might not have done that.


Last edited at 15/08/05(Wed)04:31:46
>> No. 17929 edit
File 135900015540.jpg - (652.12KB , 1004x1277 , 281060.jpg )
17929
>>17913
Well, this one is assuming something isn't as it is once again, but at least it has hints to back it up. I'm going to go at this one thinking that we have already gotten a decent enough grasp on the howdunit and mainly need to focus on finding out who could have done it. At least for now.

So back to Hideyoshi's group, looking over it again we are never actually able to confirm they were even upstairs. Battler assumes they are. The only thing he directly senses is some shuffling from upstairs which could be anything.

Following the investigation of the bodies they then take a few extra minutes to get downstairs, enough time for Battler and his group to sit down in the dinning room once more. Later in the guesthouse Battler once again tells us the readers that Hideyoshi's group was upstairs, but the only part that Battler tells us as if it happened is when Kyrie mentions the door.

So what if they were doing something that required them to take their time coming down, and even go as far as to lie in order to hide whatever they were doing? Something that they couldn't even tell the police. Let's say, since its the first thing to come to mind, that they found the gold.

Now this being said, it would be hard pressed to say they would outright lie if they thought one of them could have done it, so the trick here could with the time like we have suspected. Hideyoshi's watch was made to be purposely slow, while exploring or doing whatever he left the watch for Kyrie and Natsuhi to use. They were most likely focusing on something while that would cause them not to worry about the time and simply glance at the watch once he returned. Due to this it seemed like Hideyoshi took no time at all, when in fact he took just long enough to commit the murders. That or it was one of the other two, but still using this slow idea.

>> No. 17930 edit
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17930
>>17929
Hmm...

I would be VERY weary in assuming you've reached the solution to the howdunnit.

Never forget the letter...

...In any case, considering that Kyrie managed to notice that a door was moved just a bit after a few seconds, I'm inclined to believe she would've noticed a trick like that.

At the very least, I can tell you the three (Kyrie, Hideoyshi, Natsuhi) left for upstairs right after dinner. The explanation for them doing so is, in fact, irrelevant..


Last edited at 15/08/05(Wed)10:33:52
>> No. 17931 edit
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17931
>>17930
Well if it was Kyrie then it might work, and the letter was already fine too.

But I get it, this isn't the right solution. There is something else I'm missing.
>> No. 17932 edit
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17932
>>17931
No, I don't think you're MISSING anything anymore. You've touched upon all the important facts. Now it's a matter of putting them together in a way that makes sense. (As I said - it WILL take some imagination... but I would suggest not waste it on a terribly complex trap or something of the sort. Just a friendly suggestion.)

---
(Besides, with having Kyrie as the culprit, you sort of lose your evidence of the golden pocketwatch and whatnot.)


Last edited at 15/08/05(Wed)11:47:22
>> No. 17934 edit
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17934
>>17932
Ah yes poor choice of words on my part.

Alright lets think why then.

Why cut the chandelier? A distraction. Or to hide something in the mess?
A distraction for what? Either to escape the room, or place the letter.
If for the mess then to hide a weapon or a clue.
In both situations it would have to have been a delayed trigger. But it was cut.
You can set it up to trigger and still seem to have been cut. Or make something seem to have crashed after cutting it and setting it down.

Why did the victims not struggle? Most likely drugs, so they could kill all four at the same time.
How was it introduced? Fake blood testing? Just some tea left out?
None of them seem very reliable. The four(Eva was already down) of them just came down stairs before this, they were probably drugged then instead since we never saw upstairs. Would a culprit have that much foresight? Maybe, only since they were planning to head to the parlor.

So lets say the culprit used a distraction to place the letter.
In order to have the information they must have seen Battler, so they most likely killed during that 15 minute period. Battler heard nothing upon leaving, in fact he didn't even look. They likely were only drugged since at that point Jessica would have noticed them as she watched Battler walk away.

Why is time messed up? Something to due with the grandfather clock and or the pocket watch? Just to indicate the trigger? Time was used to mislead character to create an alibi? Was everyone's perception of time changed with drug X? What significance do the time stamps have in regards to this mystery?

If it's for the alibi then how would have that fooled the characters in the story? We are told that a person would have noticed if they stood up and just left to the bathroom, or changing the time on a clock. It seems unreliable to say that the people upstairs were drugged since they would notice that given there would be two of them, even if the time was changed on a clock.



...I am probably making too many assumptions. I'll have to come back to this.
>> No. 17936 edit
File 143868616193.png - (46.59KB , 366x456 , hmph.png )
17936
Sadly, now that Whodunnit has started I have less time to think about this gameboard... Oh well, time for more (cheap) theories.

The culprit is Hideyoshi. The reason he could buy that watch is because he's blackmailing the rest of the family for money. He also uses the same means to make Kyrie and Natsuhi provide an alibi for him (they're victims too, not accomplices). The falsified time stamps are the story they're feeding to the police to make him less suspicious. Because the testimonies are false, leaving the letter should be easy as well. I'm also going to claim my usual sleeping gas and chandelier tricks to explain the rest. Getting in and out of the room can be easily explained by using the window and a watering pot.
>> No. 17937 edit
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>>17936
Helping the culprit, regardless whether or not you were happy to do so (and regardless of the motivation in general), would still make you an accomplice. This would include blackmail of any kind.
>> No. 17939 edit
Alright, nobody is doing things, so let's take the timestamps down the crazy route. As in, these are actually absolutely correct timestamps.
Time literally stopped. (for everyone except Battler - who had Maria's charm to prevent it - and the culprit)

Jessica's comments seem to support this.
"I could see them talking just a few minutes before the crash" - when Battler walked away there was already silence, not sure if she'd still be able to call that 'a few minutes' when there had been silence for 'about 15 minutes'.
She also says she should have heard someone just when she heard Battler walking away, which could be taken to mean from her perspective the crime happened just when Battler walked away. She also later says "There's no way Battler could have done it. I mean--" She could have meant to say she just heard him walking away a few seconds ago, therefore he couldn't be the culprit.

If you want proof for something supernatural being involved: Maria predicts something is going to happen. Granted, she might just always say it, but instead of just sticking with that she ACTUALLY goes back on it later on, saying it was a human instead. Which is - as we know - apparently correct.
The victims not reacting at all despite the hints speaking against them being drugged or incapacitated in any way can also kind of count. (I could, of course, underestimate human ingenuity here. If so, props to you.)
The letter works perfectly with this as it'd have been easy to ascertain everyone's position during the 13 minutes time was stopped for. Except the servants because they were too far away (therefore "to the best of my knowledge")
...I guess it also kind of suggests Kinzo's ghost being involved (They ruined him/his fortune. He's now hiding among the living.). Well, if he possessed someone I guess it wouldn't count as him because the red says "the culprit is one of the 18 human bodies" and the person would count as THEIR body, not Kinzo's. But that's just my guess for the motive, really. As for why they were worried: Because Battler managed to avoid getting affected. (they banked on it being Maria, which would have been easier to handle. But they somehow got lucky and Battler never noticed what was actually going on)
...Also, 13 is kind of a number associated with some superstitions.

As for who most likely pulled this - either Hideyoshi or George. (George was in a better position, but Hideyoshi bought the watch to know when 13 minutes were up.)

...I had to try it eventually since it isn't fully ruled out.
I guess it ultimately comes down to whether "The culprit is human" incorporates "The culprit used strictly human means"

>> No. 17940 edit
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>>17939

...Party-pooper. No cake for you.

Preface:
This gameboard was created as somewhat of a joke -- well, a troll, if you will. The idea was to create something entirely fair and clued in, but something so silly and so far out of reality that the chances of the player thinking it up were really small.

Instead of something that had wordplay, and instead of something that relied so heavily on a flawed perspective and magical scenes, I decided to go for something that would do the exact opposite. Everything was 100% true. Every assumption made in the narration was true. The perspective was true. The timstamps were absolutely true.

But... before I clarify the solution itself. Let's go over all the hints. The "why"s, I expected you to wonder, if you will.

Clues:
- Why do the timestamps and the actual time Battler states passed not match? [This was the biggest one. And the one you immediately saw, but failed to quite put together. I explained that the timestamps were reliable, but you took it as me trying to hint at something rather than just taking it at face-value. Which was the only truly wrong path you went down on, I'd say - and the one that sabotaged your efforts in the long run.]
- Why was Hideyoshi's golden watch mentioned? [This is, admittedly, a Chekov's gun type of deal. But still, some people used it as a way of thinking of the solution, so I'll leave it here. Most people, at one point or another, assumed it'd been used for hypnosis or something of the sort. Which, again, was not true.]
- Why was the Cinder-Haired Demon even brought up in the narration if she had no actual purpose to play? No illusion or anything? [This is another Chekov's gun one. But also a question that would've led you to making a very important assumption.]
- Why did the victims not react? How was the chendelier cut? [Poison and such was something that was mentioned in the narration for the specific purpose of it being dismissed. I also tried doing the same with traps, but I suppose there will always be a way to cover it up.]
- Why did Battler, when moving outside, hear nothing? Not even the ticking of the grandfather clock? [Again, you'd assumed it'd been used as some sort of a trap. But if the time in the narration had really been associated with the grandfather clock, then the chances of it being able to still keep on giving correct time (after supposedly stopping due to the trap) was somewhat of a stretch from the beginning for me.]
- Why did the voice that spoke behind Battler get cut off? [They sure didn't change their mind, I'll tell you that much.]
- Why did the legendary gust of wind happen to pass by the very second the chendelier fell? [Mighty convenient, if you ask me. You'd assumed it was just convenient timing for the loosened chandelier to finally be knocked down.]
- Why did Kyrie notice the door to Kinzo's study being slightly open? [Yes, this was important. And, in retrospect, nobody really thought about this one. By rules of Chekov, at the very least, you could've assumed it was a hint for something -- but, unless you found the solution, admittedly, you'd find very little use for it in actual theorizing. Still, it brought attention to Kinzo's office, at the very least.]
- Why was the detective so convinced (through the cousin's testimony) that Battler hadn't done it? [This was a rather small one and one I didn't really point out to people after revealing the solution. Remember that Battler was the only one who'd seen the supposedly undisturbed mud. Natsuhi's theory was entirely possible in the long run -- especially since he could've just gotten rid of the knife at some point in time without anoyne noticing. He was the only one without an alibi. He was gone for fifteen minutes, supposedly. Aside from suspect X, he was their best bet. So why be dismissed so easily...?]
- The culprit's letter. [Pretty much all of it. The 13 minutes, the knowledge of all the locations, the mention of a "weapon" (that one would assume was the knife - but it's a bit strange for him to be so proud of something like that) and the mystery of how the letter itself managed to even be planted.]
- Character's emotions. [Almost everyone among the possible suspects showed some signs of sadness and personal grief. This is admittedly, a bit of a weird one, since you could've just claimed the culprit faked it all or something. But still something I thought I'd point out - considering in the end, everyone but the culprit did show something.]

The Answer:
Well, no beating around the bush now, I guess.

The culprit is Hideyoshi. He stopped time using his gold pocket watch.

His plan was simple -- upon stopping time, he left his group and went downstairs, killing all four of the adults and cutting the chandelier. Since they couldn't even know what was going on - there could be no reaction. Due to the stopped time, the chandelier was left, suspended in the air and would have only fallen once time had resumed. Hideyoshi then wrote his letter, which he would ultimately place back in Kinzo's study, but not close the door as carefully as he could've, thus leading to Kyrie noticing it slightly more open.

...But not before realizing that Battler, for some reason, had not been stopped with the rest.

And that reason is the anti-magic charm Maria had given him. (Hence, why the demon story was included to begin with). When time was stopped (just as he was walking away), he was not affected. When time resumed (when the chandelier fell), a gust of wind continued on its way, the chandelier fell and Battler made his way to the scene.

This event is the reason Hideyoshi expressed his worry and fear in his letter (because Battler could've just peeked into the room and see what was up). But it's also the explanation behind the detective dismissing Battler as a suspect so fast. Because, in the eyes of the cousins, all Battler had done was walk outside and then run back upon the chandelier suddenly falling. In their eyes, all it'd taken was a few seconds. It would've been impossible for Battler to have done it.

Hideyoshi's motive?

Anger and frustration of being tied to a family that had managed to ruin itself, and was, in turn, runing him, as well. Everyone was stubborn, unwilling to work together, and with Kinzo dead, everything was leading into another disaster. One which Hideyoshi refused to be a part of.

By killing the four adults, he effectively destroyed the Ushiromiya named and freed himself.

That's the entire solution, pretty much.

Now, I didn't expect you to get all of this. The idea that Hideyoshi's watch was the tool was impossible to determine from the narration and merely an explanation as to how it functioned. I just wanted you to realize that time was stopped. I would've also accepted anyone that isn't a servant as a possible culprit (minus Kyrie, since her being the culprit makes no sense due to the fact she pointed out the door was slightly ajar). The reason the servants are completely out of the picture is because they couldn't have made it back to the guesthouse and pulled off the plan before time resumed (it's implied that the entire thing lasts around 13 minutes or so at most - like, that would be how the "magic" operates).

Now, I can understand the possible complaints here. "The culprit is human." being perhaps misleading in more way than one. But it was one perfectly true. I didn't even intend wordplay there.

If it hadn't been a culprit, it'd been a witch. And if it'd been a witch, then there are a million other ways this murder could've happened, all unhinted at and impossible to prove.

I know what you're thinking, though -- if stopping time was allowed, hell, why not everything else? Well, because it doesn't matter, really. Even with all the powers in the world - if the culprit was one of the people on this island, even through magic, there would've been no way to kill these people aside from stopping time (and, if there is, it's unsupported, as I said).


---- END ----

Last edited at 15/08/08(Sat)03:38:10
>> No. 17941 edit
...Well didn't that work out. I picked up on pretty much all the 'why' clues you intended quite a while ago (sans the detective one) but still held off on trying this simply because I thought it couldn't possibly be it... and then wasted A LOT of time trying to think of something else. So yeah, guess it succeeded at trolling.
>> No. 17942 edit
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>>1794
Well... yeah. Certainly was was a troll gameboard alright. I'm just going to pretend my theory was the solution, since it was basically that Hideyoshi 'stopped' time but in a plausible way. Gotta work harder than that to make a game with a single possible solution.

At the very least it was interesting. And well written like usual.
>> No. 17943 edit
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>>17942
You never would've been able to explain the letter, though. Never without making a stretch or two using the narration, which could arguably done with any gameboard, if you push it far enough.
>> No. 17944 edit
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>>17943
Of course the false alibi was part of the theory, so with that as the base then it explains the letter too. Like I would fall for your witch's truth of actually stopping time etc.
>> No. 17950 edit
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17950
So yeah, I also ended up solving this in Skype with DWaM. Well, at least now I know why Kwando found my theories amusing. No alt dimensions indeed... lol.
>> No. 17955 edit
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17955
>>17950

;)

What, it was pretty amusing~

Last edited at 15/08/10(Mon)23:14:13
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