User Profile for johnyutah7
Nick ChemE
United States
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Indeed you did not - because it's the dimensions of a Panamax ship. You are a clever one. Honestly, had this not been about the only game on my wish list that would be a in a square ticket to ride box, I never would have gotten it. I was basically operating under the assumption that it had to be that. When I read the game description that said this was a ship size designation, I knew that had to be it. Had this been something off wish list - never would have arrived there.

As a side note - I'm glad it's not Dominion. It's missing from my previously owned list.

It's sad to see the puzzles solved, but now maybe they will not preoccupy me either...

Thanks for the tons of fun Santa. Your method may inspire me to go to greater lengths in coming years. Do you find many people are willing to play along? I tend to get people who won't even respond to an initial email. What can you do?

Happiest of holidays to you and your family! Maybe I will run into you at BGG con in the future.



Santa - Arg, I can't seem to even find a path to go down at this point. I am sure if I got any sort of information I would be right there. Maybe it's staring me in the face...

I also have to say it's a little weird to log into the Santa account and see your own username up in the Quicklinks!


Alright - lets go with article number. The article 4040455 gives me a Dominion strategy article. Is the game Dominion?

Oh and my Thansgiving was great. I hope yours was as well. Although that means time to get that sleigh packed and ready to go. It's crunch time!



I'm not saying I'm stumped yet but, just to confirm...

I am assuming it is only coincidental that the solution to the formula when read upside down on a calculator reads:





All right, I took a fresh start and went back through everything. I concluded that the "nonsense" you sent me might not be nonsense after all. I actually just stopped decoding or before as it was gibberish. Now I see you recoded the coded words with the same code.

Now I have the following:

First game: 4040455
Second game: 146508

The second game is time stories as that is the BGG ID number for the game. I am still working on the first one.

Very tricky Santa - a code within a code, within a code.


Okay Santa - lets start with the small one first then. Since my daughter is about to explode with curiosity. Since you say it is for a game I own, I am going to go with Alvin and Dexter TtR expansion. I was thinking some sort of figure, but your hint pushed me this direction. One down three to go?


Dear Santa,

My name is Emery and you are my dads secret Santa. I want to guess that the little box is Legos. I am excited to know what it is and can't wait to open it. Thanks for being our special Santa this year.



Santa - you are a tricky one. After pouring back over the emails you sent, I am convinced that the Seafood Gumbo is the hint. That being the case, I went back over my wish list to see what that could indicate. I came up with two possibilities. First, I thought of Nemos War. There were two issues with this though. First, the second edition isn't available as its being kickstarted later. Second, the first edition is in a rectangle box, which doesn't match any of the boxes I have.

The second game I thought was the Orleans: Invasion expansion. This also has limited availability, especially stateside. I checked cool stuff and they don't even have it as a preorder so it couldn't come directly from them. The other issue it is also in a rectangle box, which all I have are squares. So it can't be anything in my possession.

Between the two, if I were to guess, I would say Orleans based on the origin of the gumbo and it's at least possible to get a copy.

Am I on the right track or should I go back to the drawing board?


Not unless I just completely missed something, or perhaps was so subtle that it went right over my head...



Package arrived from Coolstuff last night. There was two boxes, which I thought was odd. I had an order from Coolstuff that was due to be delivered with my gifts for my secret Santa, but didn't think it would need a second box. I assumed it must be from you. Once I opened mine, I knew it must be. Four nicely wrapped gifts were inside.

The note indicates not to open unless I figure out what they are. Is that to mean I'm supposed to try to figure it out or should I be expecting some hints about the contents?

Hope BGG con is awesome!


Santa - package arrived safe and sound. Thanks so much! It was awfully nice of you and my wife is big into seafood. We think we will add this to our Thanksgiving celebration this year.

Hope you enjoy BGG con. With a couple small kids I've never made it to any con other than my local one. Some day...

Thanks again! Happy gaming!


Santa - good to hear from you again.

So here is how things played out. My gaming friend wanted to try cracking the letter too, so I sent it to him to play with. In the meantime, I finally took some time Frifay night to crack the code. I figured out the repeating code of shifted letters after some intense scrutiny. I was stumped for a bit.

My friend had sent the code to his son, who is in Air Force intelligence. He put it in his military super computer and cracked it in seconds. He sent me a note to tell me that the key actually is "obvious." I had cracked it seperatey so went back to see what he meant. It was then that I saw the A's did in fact spell out "obvious." You are a man of your word, Santa.

In regards to following the rules you send, I am game. This is by far the best secret Santa experience I've had thus far, so why spoil that? I also am interested in staying off the naughty list.



Phew, too bad I didn't have excel on me...
To answer your question, no food allergies or dislikes


Finally got some time to sit down and work on it.

1234156 - very nice code. Now I have to decode the rest.


Very subtle Santa! I figured the first line was ho ho ho! Merry Christmas, but the lack of capitalization in my name left me thinking the next word was something else. Now to figure out the conversion...



Thanks for the letter. I'm putting some effort into decoding it. Hopefully it's as obvious as you say, but I'm thinking not

I will be in touch once I crack the code...


Hey Santa,

My third go around with this event and I almost didn’t join this year. I didn’t really need any new games but decided to join last minute to focus on giving.

Everything should be pretty up to date and ranked by interest level. As you can tell, I am into heavy Euro’s. I like medium Euros (some more than others) but find that most tend to be played out pretty quickly and find their way out of the collection. I try to keep my collection below 100, for sanity, space, and sensibility. I am a sucker for a good expansion for a game that I love, but not a total completionist. I will get a promo or two if available, but I don’t go out of my way (usually).

On a personal level, I have two kids, 6 and 9 months (who I am subtly trying to get into gaming). I have been married ten years, to a wife who will play an occasional game. I even got her to play Agricola – once. I try to have a few games around that I can play with her, when she will. She likes Patchwork and Pandemic. Sadly, many of my games sit unplayed due to my lack of a consistent, heavy group.

I hope the holidays find you well and you get some good gaming time in. Feel free to taunt or ask any questions you have.

Thanks in advance.

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User Details for johnyutah7
Registration Date: 2011-08-15
Last Profile Update: 2015-11-29
Last Login: 2016-05-03
Country: flag United States
State: Washington
Town/City: Vancouver
GeekMail: mail Send Private Message to johnyutah7
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