Solving Zavox’s Conundrum at Raptoreum discord for ~$500 in prizes

Introduction to Raptoreum

Raptoreum began as the fairly simple idea, introducing smart contracts which would allow on chain, trustless transfers (goodbye centralized marketplaces) on the Ravencoin codebase, however with the automation of assets and RTM (Raptoreum). The project has quickly evolved, adding innovative features that not only further expand the asset layer, but also introduce features that could help other Blockchain projects. Ravencoin unfortunately suffered several serious breaches of its asset layer so that code base has been abandoned by us. We are currently working with and building on Dash code expanding its capabilities significantly.

Raptoreum is now a code fork of Dash and inherits current and optionally future features such as chain locks, oracles etc. We are further expanding capabilities by adding the following features:

A) The deployment of a unique asset layer.

B) The option to lock X amount of coins or assets into a special transaction. Coins are unlocked at a block number of choice or timestamp.

C) Trustless on chain transfers of assets and native coins VIA Smart Contracts.

D) Integrating, developing and deploying a VM protocol that would allow for smart contracts in 4 major programming languages as opposed to the situation with Ethereum being limited to solidity.

These additional features open up the power and ease of use of Raptoreum’s features to a greater variety of industries under the Distributed Application umbrella. DAPP’s are a critical part of driving widespread adoption as recently seen with DEFI and Raptoreum hopes to help provide further alternatives and possibilities for DAPP developers particularly in the field of opening up new programming languages for DAPP and contract development.

It is one of our goals to not only innovate ideas for Raptoreum but to contribute back to the general crypto community with open-source features that anybody can use to help their Blockchain projects succeed.

The conundrum

Total prize reward of 22000 RTM (~$500 at time of writing)

Raptoreum has an active community which they enthusiastically support. As such they, among other things, regularly create and host trivia and puzzles for the community to solve, and some of them come from the community themselves. One such puzzle was recently hosted, and this is the write-up of the process of solving it and some interesting background behind Christmas and what you’re actually celebrating those days.

Stage 1 — Family tree of gods

1000 RTM reward for solving

There’s crossed out marks, a few T like shapes and a symbol ♄ that solves to Saturn (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Planet_symbols). Saturn VII then refers to the 7th moon of Saturn, which is Hyperion, a Greek Titan. However, that isn’t enough to solve it, as you need to know what is underneath ?. So, you’d have to figure out the T shapes mean connection between parents and subsequent children. On purpose this hasn’t been fully drawn to expected Family Tree shapes, so you don’t get tipped off too easily. Anyway, as soon as you figure this out, you merely have to look for the family tree of Hyperion and you’d see the place that’s question marked would solve to Helios, the Greek Sun god. More on that later.

Stage 2 — The stars

3000 RTM reward for solving.

The answer of various puzzles like puzzle 1 would hint towards the puzzles being focussed on the sun, or stars. Which in this case, the dots of various sizes and colours, are stars and can be classified by the most known classification, the Harvard spectral classification (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stellar_classification). When you solve the coloured dots that are close together (in orbit with each other), you get various letters. After that you need to translate the letters to the number position in the alphabet. Then combine the numbers of those stars orbiting each other, and then translate back into the letter on that position in the alphabet. Resulting in Sol Invictus, the (mostly western) roman Sun god. Again, more on that later.

There’s still a hidden puzzle within Stage 2. Can you find it (it’s really difficult)? Join us at https://discord.com/invite/raptoreum and contact Zavox for a nice RTM reward.

Stage 3 — The death of a legend

1000 RTM reward for solving

Here we have a symbol, text (Eros) and the number 275. The tricky part of this one is that it can mean a lot, and some searching and reading is required. First you should try to figure out what the symbol means. It’s a symbol sometimes used for Pluto, but that’s an alternative symbol, not the actual symbol. The symbol is more characteristically known for Charon, ferryman of the dead. When you google Dead + Eros + 275, you will get a lot of mentions about Aurelian (Restitutor Orbis — “Restorer of the World.”), one of the best Roman emperors (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aurelian). This man is known for restoring the empire after it had been fractured and for promoting Sol Invictus as one of the major gods and the festivals surrounding that. “Aurelian strengthened the position of the Sun god Sol Invictus as the main divinity of the Roman pantheon. His intention was to give to all the peoples of the Empire, civilian or soldiers, easterners or westerners, a single god they could believe in without betraying their own gods.” He has been murdered in 275 CE by the Praetorian Guard after the forging of a document by Eros, his secretary. This is one common thread, lies and deceit, all for power and to create fear.

Stage 4 — Roman numbers and a Christian tomb?

1000 RTM reward for solving

This is one of the more simpler ones, but tricky if you don’t know the cipher. To make it easier (unless you can read the Roman numbers fluently, then you can skip this) translate the Roman numbers into our Arabic numbers. Then, you may detect that all numbers are Fibonacci numbers. From there it’s simply translating the Fibonacci numbers into letters, starting from the first Fibonacci number (1) as A, 2 as B, 3 as C, 5 as D, 8 as E, etcetera. It then spells out Tomb of the Julii (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tomb_of_the_Julii). This is an interesting tomb for the reason (well, one of the reasons) that the mosaic depicts Sol Invictus (Helios) with various Christian imagery alongside other Christian mosaics. I personally wonder why that is; is Sol Invictus and the Christian God one and the same? Or did the original mosaic get changed to resemble Christianity more, but unsuccessfully so?

Stage 5 — The Egyptian Sun

3000 RTM reward for solving

This puzzle has two parts, there’s Egyptian hieroglyphs and also the Egyptian number system (bottom part). Here you need to simply translate them into our language, which to be fair isn’t an easy task. For the numbering system (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Egyptian_numerals) the result is 359, 3 coil of ropes = 300, 5 cattle hobbles = 50, 9 single strokes = 9. 359, which if we check the calendar for the 359th day, it’s the 25th of December. The Egyptians also had a 365 day calendar, but it was divided in 3 seasons of each 120 days. A good tool for that is https://planetcalc.com/8448/ — Interesting note here is that the days after the 25th of December are days outside their seasons (hence the reference 359). The Egyptian hieroglyphs translate into Akhenaten (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akhenaten), the Pharaoh that tried to make a monotheistic society of Egypt be replacing the gods with one god, Aten (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aten) and Akhenaten be the son and prophet of God/Aten. An interesting bit about the Epagomenal Days (5 added days outside the seasons) is the following: “The sun god Helios (the Greek equivalent of Re) had put a curse on the goddess Rhea (the Egyptian sky goddess Nut), which meant that she was unable to bear children on any of the 360 days of the year. Hermes (the Egyptian god Thoth, the god of learning) solved the problem by adding five days to the year. Five children were born on these days, Osiris, Isis, Nephthys and Seth, but also Apollo (=Horus)

Stage 6 — A festival of life, prosperity and the sun

1000 RTM reward for solving

Here we have a puzzle with some Greek text, roman number 7, and a crossed out Imperial Reg with some dots behind it. On closer inspection it seems either a math or logic puzzle, due to to minus and plus symbols. Let’s start with the Greek, this spells out Hyperion. Then, what is Hyperion — 7? In puzzle one we noticed that Saturn’s 7th moon is Hyperion, so Hyperion — 7, would therefore be Saturn. Then there’s a plus symbol, so we need to add something to Saturn. Here the 4 dots seem to resemble letters not yet filled in, and imperial reg is crossed out, so only the 4 dots need to be added to Saturn. When you try to google for imperial reg, you will see imperial regALIA suggested. An other option would be looking for 10 letter words, starting with Saturn. This will result in Saturnalia, a Roman festival that has influenced a lot of festivals known today, from Christmas to Carnival. One interpretation of Saturnalia is that: “Saturnalia is a festival of light leading to the winter solstice, with the abundant presence of candles symbolizing the quest for knowledge and truth. The renewal of light and the coming of the new year was celebrated in the later Roman Empire at the Dies Natalis Solis Invicti, the “Birthday of the Unconquerable Sun”, on 25 December.” This is the festival Aurelian heavily promoted, not as a single worship of one god, but of creation and life, of which the sun is a major part, but also Saturn and others.

Stage 7 — The hint

1000 RTM reward for solving

dmBhogdq fhUdq. Nothing more than that. Now, if we look at it, it’s interesting to note that the words aren’t capitalized, but rather another letter in the word is, that means it’s scrambled, likely an anagram. But, can we do something else first? Scrambled words that make no sense usually are ciphered in one of a few ways. Within puzzles you cannot make them too hard, so it’s likely Caesar Cipher, Rot, or something similar. At this point it’s a shoot and miss until you hit or think about what the answers of previous puzzles have given you (Heavy Roman influence and 25th of December). Caesar Cipher of 25 gives you enCipher giVer. Isn’t that an interesting hint, it tells you it gives you the cipher used. But the capitalized letters should tell you that it’s still scrambled and likely an anagram of something, possibly the cipher needed for puzzle 8, as the text is in the same colour! When you check for anagrams of well known ciphers, enCipher giVer is an anagram of Vigener(e) Cipher. The tricky part was that there was a missing E in enCipher giVer, so automatic anagram solvers are more likely to fail at finding Vigenere Cipher.

Stage 8 — The big lie

9000 RTM reward for solving

Using the cipher given in the big hint, one would notice that you need a secret key for it to work on the text given in the puzzle. The arrows and the word secret, will tell you which puzzle contains the key. Puzzle 6, when solved results in Saturnalia. Taking that as the key, one will solve the cipher to the following text: “Jesus is either Sol Invictus, or Christmas has purposely usurped Winter Solstice festivals. By whom?” This will require combining some information of other puzzles and reading and searching, but the answer is out there, albeit not conclusively. I considered both Constantine and Pope Julius I as answers, and would’ve given a bonus if anyone mentioned both.

Reasoning

Pope Julius I was the one that officially declared the birth of Jesus Christ to be celebrated on that date (even though the birth almost certainly been on a later date), and Constantine allowed it all to happen and condoned it. Why was that date chosen? Saturnalia and other so called ‘Pagan’ winter solstice festivals were universally held on that date. Therefore one can surmise, among other info, that Christmas and Christianity is the usurper, and intentionally so. Not by virtue, but by lies and deceit. For what? Probably power and worship (adoration), like Akhenaten tried with his precursor of something resembling the later Christianity. In my opinion there’s two options, mainly due to the Tomb of the Julii. God = Sol Invictus and the latter name and connection has throughout the years been written out and forgotten, the religion thus became more monotheistic and different than it was at onset and thus Christianity is a flawed continuation of Hellenistic religion (Egyptian -> Greek -> Roman -> Early Polytheistic Christianity -> Flawed Christianity), or as the other option, we have to accept that Christianity and Christmas is 100% based on deceit as a power grab and that part of history is actively being suppressed.

Interested?

If you’re interested in Raptoreum or these puzzles (once per month), you’re welcome to join us on discord at:

https://discord.com/invite/raptoreum

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