Sunday, July 8, 2012

2 Minute Mysteries

I mentioned Two Minute Mysteries yesterday, because I recently played a series of iPhone games called 2 Minute Mysteries.  I think they changed the title from "Two" to "2", so they wouldn't have to pay any royalties to the people who own the books.
I thought the games were interesting.  There'd be a one-minute movie of the detectives examining a crime scene.  Then, the game asks you "Whodunnit?" and "Why?", using multiple choice questions.  Answer them correctly, and you see a one-minute movie of the detectives explaining how they solved the crime.

There are points where the games' amateur colors come through, and the actors flub their lines.  And at 99 cents each, the games are completely overpriced, considering the fact that they're only two minutes long.  But I enjoyed them nonetheless.

Anyway, I thought it'd be amusing for me to give you the puzzle solutions, completely out of context.  Enjoy!
  • Concealed Weapon: The culprit is the only suspect whose shoes have shoelaces. Duh!
  • Garage: The Chevy Volt is an electric car, not a normal car! Clearly, the wife is guilty.
  • Guilty or Not?: The husband is guilty, because the desk is suspiciously tidy.
  • Staircase: The body is lying in the wrong direction.
  • The Bank Robber: The body is lying in the wrong direction.
  • Witness or Murderer: She is guilty, because she had to turn the lights on.
If you want a creative writing challenge, write out a short mystery, using one of the above solutions.  Make up the mystery, working backwards from the solution!  I think that's how the videogames and the book were written.

5 comments:

Miriam said...

I'll give this a shot..


Detective Michael Gray arrived at a dark, gloomy house on a thundery day. It appeared that either nobody was home or the power had gone out. He was met by a frantic man who introduced himself as Mr. Ken Vickted. Ken thanked Michael for getting to the house, which belonged to his friend, Ed Guy, so quickly. According to Ken, Ed hadn't come to their weekly Bingo game or answered his phone, and Ken feared something was wrong.
Michael cautiously opened the door to Ed's house, and felt along the walls for a light switch. Upon finding one and testing it, Michael realized that the power was out. Ken offered to feel his way to a closet where he knew Ed kept flashlights. As Ken neared the closet at the other end of a hallway, the power suddenly came back on.
Sprawled across the hallway in a gruesome pose lay Ed Guy, who was obviously a dead guy.
"Well, Ken, I think we've figured out what happened to Ed," stated Michael importantly.
"What do you mean?" asked Ken.
"I know who killed Ed, and I think you do, too!" Michael triumphantly declared.


I'll post the solution on yesterday's blog post, so you only see it when you intend to. :P

Diana said...

Sure, I'll try it out...

Detective Michael Gray entered the dusty old mansion in River Heights. Chief McGinnis had called him over because Nancy Drew was currently solving a mystery in Egypt. He was greeted by a horrible sight.
The body of Sam Stone lay face down on the wooden floor of the entrance hall. Many cops were doing important cop-like things, such as taking pictures, dusting for fingerprints, and talking in their walkie-talkies about last night's episode of CSI-er, I mean, things related to the crime.
"Detective Gray, over here," the chief called from the other end of the room. He was looking over some documents. As Michael came closer, he noticed color photos from the episode of CSI, as well as a summary of the episode. "The guys would have my head if they knew I missed it!" he muttered, hanging his head when faced with Michael's amused glance.
"So what happened here, Chief McGinnis?" Michael asked.
"A neighbor called, said they heard noise. We made our way over here as fast as possible, but when we got here..." He trailed off, gesturing to the cops drawing a chalk outline around the body.
"Wh-what's happening?!" A woman entered the front door, dropping her purse on the ground and running over to Sam's body. She was blonde and wore jeans and a t-shirt.
"Who's this?" Michael asked curiously.
"File says she's Cindy Stone, Sam's wife," the chief replied, flipping some pages and trying to look important.
"I'll go talk to her," said Michael reluctantly. He walked over to Ms. Stone, who was currently crying and resisting two cops who were trying to pull her away from the crime scene. "Ms. Stone?" he said, flashing his badge. "May I ask where you've been for the past hour or so?"
She sniffled, looking at him through tear-filled eyes. "I was running some errands. I'd gone out to get gas for my car." She pointed out the window. A brand new Chevy Volt was sitting in the driveway. It was bright white and looked right off the assembly line. "And while I was gone, someone must've come in and... and..." She dissolved into sobs again. "When I find who did this to my Sammie..." Her eyes grew desperate and wild. "I'll do anything, I'll take out a newspaper ad, reward to anyone with information..." Michael left the two cops to handle the hysterical woman and walked back over to the chief. He repeated what Cindy had just told him.
"Need me to check her alibi?" the chief asked.
"That won't be necessary," Michael said smugly, turning to Ms. Stone. "And keep your reward money." Everyone stared at him with their mouths open. "What?" he said defensively. "Isn't it obvious that she's lying?"



It's also obvious what the answer is, it's in the blog entry. Hope you like it, Michael. :) Now back to work on TurnaboutCola.

Anonymous said...

Private Detective Michael Gray arrived at the crime scene, an apartment five stories up from the streets of Chicago. Recognizing the detective, A young officer guarding the front door of the building escorted him up to apartment #509. Detective Gray checked his trench coat pocket to make sure his sunglasses were handy, just in case during the investigation there was an opportunity for a dramatic one-liner.

Detective Gray's first impression of the apartment was that it was freakishly neat. I mean, it kind of frightened him how organized the place was. Gray checked out the kitchen pantry and was amazed to see that food was in carboard boxes, all labeled and color-coordinated according to their place in the food pyramid. He shuddered and closed the pantry.

"Uh, Detective Gray?" said the young officer, still beside him. "The body's in here..."

"Good-good-good," said Gray, and then regretted his choice of an adjective.

The officer led him to the back bedroom. In contrast to the rest of the house, this place was an absolute mess. The bed was unmade, books were strewn all over the floor, and several half-full cups of coffee decorated the room. Not to mention the dead body slumped over the desk. WAIT--the dead body slumped over the desk?!

Gray pushed past a few members of the forensic team and examined the body carefully. She was female, Asian, and he'd say about five-foot-three. Her head rested limply on the day planner, her arms dangling at her sides. There were no signs of a struggle at the desk--the pens and pencils were all in the cup, the computer was still on (at a site with a strangle title, "Arglefumpheroo" or something like that). Old receipts and bills--things that would surely be knocked about had a struggle occured--were neatly tucked away beneath a paperweight.

Just then did Gray become aware of a person sitting in the corner, someone who didn't belong to the police force. He was also Asian. He was staring blankly at the body, saying nothing as the medical attendant treated him for schock. "Are you her husband?" said Gray.

He nodded, still staring at his dead wife.

"So sorry for your loss. Anyway, what's your side of the story?"

The man sighed deeply and said, "I had my headphones on while I was cleaning in the other room--I was listening to Brahm's Requiem--and when I finished, I went to find my wife. I never went into her study. That was her place to be as messy as she wanted without me fussing. I guess I should have been a bit more compassionate about her lifestyle."

Gray really hoped that the man would not start crying.

"Anyway, after I looked in every other room, calling her name, I looked in here, and--and..." He stared at the floor and refused to continue.

Gray felt for his sunglasses and slowly slid them over his eyes. "...Your story fails to wipe clean your slate." And then to the officer, he said, "Arrest him, m'lad!" He grimaced. Eh, he'll think of a better one next time.

_________________

How did Detective Gray know the husband was the murderer?

Balin said...

Sassy Detective Michael Gray sauntered into the library as if he belonged there. Which he did, because it was his house. What didn't belong there was the dead man slumped against a bookshelf.

Michael sighed. "I should've known; detectives in these stories encounter mysteries everywhere." He knelt down to look at the body, but before he could look, he heard a noise from the doorway. Spinning around, he saw two men standing there, and he recognized one.

"Hi Gabriel," said Michael. "Thanks for agreeing to a second interview."

Gabriel Wolf murmured "Thanks," before noticing the body. "What happened?"

"No idea," answered Michael. "Apparently this mystery is establishing the suspects before examining the body."

Gabriel plopped down in a leather desk chair and kicked his loafers up on the armrest. "Well I certainly didn't do it. I just got here for the interview."

The second man shuffled into the room. "I'm Jay Barton, and I didn't do it either. I was just passing by when I heard a man shout and a thud, so I came in."

"Stop shuffling!" shouted Michael. "You're scuffing up the floor."

Jay glanced down at his old hiking boots. "Sorry," he said, sitting in another chair.

Michael glanced at the two men before kneeling down to examine the body. A wallet found in the corpse's pocket identified him as Tom Johannsen, and there was a big dent in his head. A two-foot statue of Dwayne Powers lay next to the body.

"That was a collector's edition statue," Michael muttered. "The gall!" But as he said this, he felt something small in Johannsen's hand. Prying it open, he pulled out the end of a shoelace with the aglet attached.

"What's that?" asked Gabriel.

"It's a clue," said Michael. "And it's the clue that proves that you aren't the killer..." He spun around to face Jay. "And YOU are!"

How did Michael know that Jay was the killer?

Nana Cupcake said...

I’m gonna do the Witness or Murderer one. And, Michael, this took me forever to do. XD I hope you enjoy~!!

Detective Michael Gray hummed a (super catchy) song as he walked up the porch. Another case? He supposed. When his assistant Kiki told him that he had yet ANOTHER case to solve, he just slumped in his chair and said, “Another case, eh? Well, this should be easy.”. Kiki just looked at him with puzzled, hot pink eyes. Kiki is not a human creature, but rather a cute little ghost that likes to follow Michael around. She had taken a liking to the detective and asked if she could become his assistant. Despite her child-like appearance, she’s around the age of 15. Michael knocked on the door, and waited. A emo-ish boy opened the door only a little bit; just enough to poke his head through. “Who are you?” he asked, his light blue eyes fairly showing from behind his choppy hair which covered most of his forehead. Michael dug out his license. “Detective Michael Gray. I’ve come to solve a case here.” Michael replied. “Oh,” The boy opened the door even more. “Come in,” he said. Michael nodded his head, quickly put away his license, and stepped inside the cozy home. It was mostly tidy. There were a few bits of misplaces items, but otherwise it was very tidy.. The emo boy walked next to the detective. “C’mon, I’ll take you to Marie.” he offered. “Thanks.” Michael replied. He followed the boy down a hallway. “Say, what’s your name?” Michael questioned. The boy glanced at him, then back at the path. “Seth,” he replied.

“Oh,”

Seth knocked on the door. The door opened, revealing a thin girl (Marie), about the age of 21, with light brown hair and pale blue eyes. “Oh, hello, are you the detective?” she asked. Michael nodded his head. “Yes,” he replied. “Well, then, come on in.” She moved out of the way so that the two could come into the study. There, the victim laid on the floor; his blood splattered everywhere of the bamboo floor. “I discovered him this morning like this.” the girl said. Michael kneeled down next to the victim’s dead body. “Marie, did anyone else come into the room with you?” the detective questioned. “N-No, sir.” she answered. Michael got up. “Well, Marie,” he turned and faced her, “you are the culprit!”

How did Michael know Marie was the culprit?