Solution: ASMR Audio Tour

Written by Dawson Do, audio by anonymous

This puzzle provides eleven audio files. Listening to each clip, the narrator lists the chapter, then reads a passage while snacking on some food. A book with an alliterative title can be identified from each passage. Additionally, as the flavortext suggests, each audio clip can be matched to SWEET, MINTY, or DRINK using audio clues, such as sipping, wrapper noises, or rattling.

The flavortext suggests that these letters will need to be shifted. Using the numbers in the accompanying equations as indices in SWEET, MINTY, or DRINK, a shift can be produced for each letter. Shifting each letter willing produce the phrase: NOW ADD BRAND

In the same way that the book titles produce a letter, a specific alliterative food brand can be assigned to each of SWEET, MINTY, or DRINK. Some searching will yield that these are Kit Kat, Tic Tac, and Coca-Cola. Shifting the book title letters by K, T, or C yields the answer: LEVAR BURTON, who was the host of the alliterative Reading Rainbow.

Chapter Book Letter Food Shift 1 Midphrase Shift 2 Answer
1 Rendezvous with Rama R MINTY + M + I N + T L
2 Burn Baby Burn B DRINK + D + I O + C E
3 Song of Solomon S DRINK + D W + C V
4 Pride and Prejudice P SWEET - S + E + E + T A + K A
5 The Great Gatsby G SWEET + W D + K R
6 The Haunting of Hill House H MINTY + M + I D + T B
7 Jasper Jones J SWEET + W - E B + K U
8 Gone Girl G SWEET - S + E R + K R
9 Z for Zachariah Z MINTY - M + N A + T T
10 Labyrinth Lost L DRINK - I + K N + C O
11 The Two Towers T MINTY - M + I + N D + T N

Author’s Notes

Dawson: For some sick reason, I thought it’d be really funny (a common theme among many puzzle ideas in this event) to have a talking-with-your-mouth-full puzzle. I found the idea of identifying foods by their sounds to be so weird and disturbing, but potentially possible, so eventually came up with the concept here. There certainly aren’t many audio-identifiable alliterative foods (frosted flakes, maybe).

The original audio that I recorded for testers is as bad as you might expect (sample below). I also felt sick after doing several takes while eating Kit Kats, so I was relieved when another team member offered to improve the audio.

anonymous: Recording all the ASMR made my voice hurt. I hate making ASMR; I hate listening to ASMR; I hate ASMR so much.