Chernobyl Septology

Chernobyl – A Puzzle Septology (by WildChild)

Official site description:

⁍ Get to know the desolate town of Chernobyl and the ghost city of Pripyat as well as their history from the days before the nuclear accident.
⁍ This is also your chance to test your puzzle-solving skills and stand shoulder to shoulder with the leading minds of our generation.
⁍ Whether you’re a top academic, a high-flying CEO or just a regular Joe, this game is for everyone. Collaboration and teamwork is the name of the game, so grab your family, friends or colleagues and use the combined power of your brains.
⁍ This series of 7 puzzle chapters is for the creatively insane and the insanely creative, or for those who simply want to expand their horizons.
⁍ See the views. Walk around. Feel. Think. Commemorate.

When: Anytime with a purchased ticket priced at $60.

For how long: ~ 10 days (but it can be solved faster, we didn’t rush it, and we played when we had the time)

How: Online

History and rules: The septology was initially released with one new section weekly. Now, chapters unlock upon completing the previous one.

Total Puzzles: 47 + 6 bonuses, and we solved them all

A Chernobil Septology is not for casual puzzle solvers, we recommend it mostly for hardcore puzzlers with some experience under their belt. It demands significant mental effort, but it is worth it as it offers one of the most gratifying escape room-like experiences we had so far. As the name suggests, the game is played across seven chapters (plus a bonus chapter) on Google Earth. Each chapter features various standalone puzzles, and their solutions are always located within the famous-for-all-the-wrong-reasons city. To get, I would use the word “intimately” close with Pripyat, always brings some dark thoughts, especially if you live in Eastern Europe and you were ~ 10 years old when the whole thing happened. Remembering the details of those days and how information was presented to the masses and later understanding how the government and officials misled the population, leaving us eating food and drinking poisoned water is always difficult. And spending days walking through this now virtual hellhole is at least educational. Leaving some emotions aside, the puzzles were exceptional, you have to pay attention to every single detail (even with the “room” with the vitrages, this didn’t pay out the way I was hoping to), and you have to learn and navigate Google Earth as a native (I know this doesn’t make sense, but I’m sticking to the phrase)!

It is important to mention that Lily named the playing mode of this hunt YOYO (you’re on your own), meaning there is no outside help of any kind while solving the chapters. There are no hints available; there is no one you can write, call, or message. The part that you know is that there are people who solved it, so it is doable. Meanwhile, when you get stuck, get some rest … and try again tomorrow. But if the morale gets very low, call your other puzzle-solving friends to take a shot.

Chapter 5 posed the greatest challenge for our team of four, but the effort was worthwhile. Now, our team proudly occupies a spot in the Winners Circle as one of the seven teams that completed the game.