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down-in-flames

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down-in-flames
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A mysterious hooded figure, you think it might be the same man who you met in the Atrium, dangles a parchment in front of you. You grab the parchment just before the figure disappears. It looks like a list of… rules?

In order to escape the Department of Mysteries and avoid life imprisonment in Azkaban and a potentially worse fate if the evil that dwells deep in the Department gets to you first, you should probably heed whatever this piece of parchment has to say.

 

Alright, let’s break the fourth wall for a moment, shall we? I’m not the menacing-looking person who’s delivering this note to you - although he’s actually a fun dude when he’s not terrorising folks like yourselves, really. Rather, I’m the witch who built these traps for him in the first place.

He doesn’t want you to escape, but I do - I just also want to watch you squirm a little along the way. Teach you a little lesson about sticking your nose in places it doesn’t belong, you know? Anyhow, he lost a little bet of ours, so he’s delivering this note and giving you a chance to make it out alive. If you play along with our little game and follow my directions, you just might survive the night.
 

The Basics

Your goal is simple. Upon entering a room, your primary objective is to get out. You’ll accomplish this through a series of tasks, many of which build upon each other - the final solution that will take you back to the Entrance Chamber is often based on things you’ll find across multiple tasks. In addition to escaping the rooms, you’ll also collect Special Items for your trouble along the way, in the form of clearly labelled graphics - one will come at some point in the middle of the room, while the other will appear once you’ve successfully unlocked the room’s Entrance Chamber. Hang onto these, because they’ll be of use at the end of your journey. 

The timeline for your journey is as follows:

  • Mystery Room the First: 10 October to 14 October
  • Mystery Room the Second: 17 October to 21 October
  • Mystery Room the Third: 24 October to 28 October
  • The Final Escape: Due 31 October

All deadlines are at 11:59 PM EST. Should you fail to escape a room in the allotted time period, you’ll still move on to the next one and keep any Special Items you discovered in the room (be sure to save them in your CR!); however, you won’t be able to do any additional escape work in the room once it’s closed.

Any writing tasks found in the individual rooms should be 200-500 words (with a 50 word tolerance), and should be in the Archive queue by the room closure.
 

Passwords

Any and all room passwords will follow the following formatting rules:

  • There are no spaces.
  • There is no capitalisation.
  • In cases where the password involves a character name, only the first name will be used in the password. (One exception to this exists in the Office of Professor Bathilda Bagshot. In this situation, only the first letters of the first names are used.)
     

The Final Escape

After you’ve made it through the three rooms, you’ll have a chance to make your final escape before my dear friend unleashes the dark magic hidden within the Department of Mysteries upon you all. To escape, you’ll need to make use of the Special Items you’ve accumulated over the course of the event. They may seem less-than-useful at first glance, but surely your creative writers’ minds can figure out how to use them as a part of your breakout. 

Making your escape will come in two parts - the first is a writing piece, in which you will document how you and your companions are making your escape. You should incorporate every Special Item you’ve acquired into this writing piece - they should each be a tool that you use at some point in the process of escaping. There is no maximum word limit - it can be as long as you’d like - but must be longer than 200 words. In addition to the writing piece, you should also create a map/diagram of the Department/your escape (700x500 pixels) using the images of the special items you’ve collected. You may begin working on these as early as you'd like, but if you get an early start you'll want to keep in mind that you'll need to find a way to incorporate the Items you find in the last room. Completion of both of these by the deadline will grant you and your companions your freedom. Additional points for both of these will be awarded based on how creatively you weave these items into your story and map. The final escape writing piece and the map/drabble will be judged for quality points.
 

Scoring System

The entire event is worth up to 1000 points for your house. Points will be awarded for finishing each room, and placement points will be awarded based on speed-of-completion. Your final escape will also yield points for completion and creativity. In addition, each individual task is worth a set number of points. 
 

CR Set-Up

Yes, you’re trapped in the Ministry, but you can still use your Common Rooms to plot. For ease of organizing, create one thread for general scheming/collaboration/asking questions, and a second to post all completed tasks. Even though the passwords rely on the completion of tasks, we ask that you still post the completed task itself in the thread - just so that we can be sure you’ve actually solved the whole puzzle instead of making a lucky guess. Once you’ve unlocked the Entrance Chamber and retrieved the second item, post it in your completion thread ASAP so that we can determine finish times.
 

So… You’re Stuck

Each House can receive up to 5 hints over the course of the event. However, these hints will reduce the point value of the task you request a hint for by 25% - so use them wisely. To request a hint, make a post in your CR discussion thread and tag both @down-in-flames and @grumpy cat, as well as stating the task you’d like a hint for.

Any and all additional questions can be raised by posting in this thread (or, in cases where the question pertains to a part of the event that’s hidden behind a password, in your common room discussion thread) and tagging your local arbiters of chaos, @down-in-flames and @grumpy cat.

Edited by grumpy cat
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grumpy cat

a small update regarding the password to the office of professor bathilda bagshot - due to the original password being too long for the forum software and causing issues, instead of using full first names, you should use just the first letter of their first names. let me know if there are other issues ;) 

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MadiMalfoy
3 minutes ago, grumpy cat said:

a small update regarding the password to the office of professor bathilda bagshot - due to the original password being too long for the forum software and causing issues, instead of using full first names, you should use just the first letter of their first names. let me know if there are other issues ;) 

LIFESAVER 

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just.a.willow.tree

@down-in-flames @grumpy cat for the final escape map, does it have to be a graphic-graphic, or can we draw it by hand and scan it into an image of the correct size?

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Aphoride

For the writing task, when it says 'a specific moment in the history of magic', does this mean we can pick any moment in wizarding history (being Harry's era and before) or is it more limited? 

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Noelle Zingarella

@down-in-flames @grumpy cat  May we please have the 50 word leeway for the archive counter on the writing tasks?

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grumpy cat
2 hours ago, just.a.willow.tree said:

@down-in-flames @grumpy cat for the final escape map, does it have to be a graphic-graphic, or can we draw it by hand and scan it into an image of the correct size?

this is absolutely okay ;)

1 hour ago, Aphoride said:

For the writing task, when it says 'a specific moment in the history of magic', does this mean we can pick any moment in wizarding history (being Harry's era and before) or is it more limited? 

it's meant to be pretty open-ended and allow you to be creative with your choices. as long as it's a historical moment and not something random happening during the past, it's fine (anything ever mentioned as an important (?) part of wizarding history (goblin wars for example, first woman to become a minister of magic etc...), something important that a historical person does, or even a creation of a spell (expelliarmus, avada kedavra....), basically anything that would count as a historically important moment.

4 minutes ago, Noelle Zingarella said:

@down-in-flames @grumpy cat  May we please have the 50 word leeway for the archive counter on the writing tasks?

yes!

 

i would also like to mention that the final escape story and map/diagram will be judged for quality points, so everyone should keep that in mind. i'll edit it into the first post as well ^_^

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just.a.willow.tree

@grumpy cat @down-in-flames another question about the finale escape :P for the story element, should we incorporate the storylines written by the staffers? or do we make something up entirely (while including the special items)? or a combination?

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grumpy cat
Just now, just.a.willow.tree said:

@grumpy cat @down-in-flames another question about the finale escape :P for the story element, should we incorporate the storylines written by the staffers? or do we make something up entirely (while including the special items)? or a combination?

you have complete creative freedom on this. you may use parts of the storyline created for the rooms (for example, reference the hooded figure, or mention how a special item might've helped you with a room, stuff like that....) but you don't have to and can invent something totally off script. ideally, someone with no prior knowledge of all the room narratives posted on the forums should be able to read and understand your final escape story.

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down-in-flames

A quick announcement before your second room opens - we're adding the opportunity to finish the remaining rooms after the stated deadline if needed. Mystery Room the Second will remain open until the third room opens, and Mystery Room the Third will remain open until midnight on the 30th. But take note, if you don't finish the room until after the original deadlines (21 October and 28 October, respectively), you won't receive the overall completion points for the room, only order of finish and task completion points. ^_^

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