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# "I skip nearly every puzzle without a geochecker"

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Though the thread seems to be generally on the same wave as some other recents posts of mine the question is different.

As I see many cachers who go for puzzle caches like to confirm their calculated coordinates with the owner or with a geochecker. There are some folks that usually don't even attempt a puzzle cache which lacks geochecker (subj). We have "traditional puzzles" in mind: a) we solve something at home, we calculate coordinates, c) we confirm coordinates, d) we go outdoors and grab the container.

A puzzle cache can be different however. Coordinates can be calculated not for the final step but somewhere in the middle of the puzzle. There can be puzzles without any calculated coordinates (say, you solve the puzzle at home to know distance and direction from the given coordinates or you can get some textual information which helps you to move further). And there are field puzzles where everything is done once you're in the area, not at home.

I address my question to those who use geocheckers as a criteria when choosing caches: do you apply this approach to the puzzles mentioned above?

I skip many puzzles that have a geochecker.

Go by Difficulty rating, but when I see a geochecker, I feel that (now) there may be something different (more options) than I expected, maybe beyond my grasp.

No checker often means (to me) that there's one answer, and even this dyslexic old fart might be able to solve it.

I generally don't like puzzles that involve skills I don't have (advanced math, codes & ciphers, etc.). I will skip these regardless of whether or not the cache has a geochecker.

I enjoy puzzles that involve word games, logic, knowledge of trivia, or research tied to the site I'm visiting. When I solve these I will look for the cache regardless of whether or not it has a geochecker.

I sometimes appreciate a geochecker if I don't have 100% confidence in my solution, but in the absence of a checker I would just look at the location on a map to see if it makes sense (near a path in a park vs. in the middle of a lake).

I appreciate a geochecker, but I don't require one. The only time the lack of a geochecker would stop me from solving a puzzle is if I'm getting the feeling the puzzle is incompetent.

I'm not sure what you mean by "this approach": naturally I try to approach the puzzle as it's designed, so if there are field elements, I deal with them in the field. (Where, by the way, I appreciate a checksum since it's even more likely I'm going to make some minor mistake in the calculations when I'm trying to work out coordintes after a long walk in the hot sun.)

I don't really care either way. I'll attempt to solve them with or without and then go attempt to find them with or without. I've done my fair share of both.

I generally don't like puzzles that involve skills I don't have (advanced math, codes & ciphers, etc.). I will skip these regardless of whether or not the cache has a geochecker.

I enjoy puzzles that involve word games, logic, knowledge of trivia, or research tied to the site I'm visiting. When I solve these I will look for the cache regardless of whether or not it has a geochecker.

Often these are the types of puzzles for which a geochecker can be most useful. Whenever I encounter a puzzle which requires one to find some piece(s) of information which can be turned into a set of digits, I often find multiple sources of that information and it's not always consistent. The CO may intend that one goes to a specific web site, but two people using the same search terms to find a website containing the required information might (most likely) won't get the same result.

I have had several correct answers to my puzzle cache NEW slope distance GC3TDR5 but no one has gone for the FTF in the 3.5 years it has been out there on the south side of Mt. Ray.

My first puzzle cache A. Spring was found a few times but not since October 2011. I leave them out there since so few caches have a 4.5 difficulty for the guys that are trying to fill in the grid.

Edited by tomfuller & Quill

I look at puzzles when I have the free time and inclination to solve them. Whether or not there is a geochecker is not relevant. I take a dim view of the way these third-party cache page add-ons have come to be expected of cache owners.

I am bad at math. If you ask me to do math to solve a geocache there better be a checker to confirm my result.

Puzzles with multiple choice answers also have alot of possible error.

There are some puzzles where a checker isn't necessary because of the puzzle. Hidden text that involves a full set of coords. Online jigsaw puzzles with the coords on the completed image. Puzzles that don't need a geochecker are usually pretty obvious.

I have several active or archived puzzles, offset multis, and tour multis. All have geocheckers.

I usually look at the puzzle and give it a try. Some might be easy, some might be too hard for me, some might take a while and I lose interest. I basically try any of them as long as I'm having fun. A geochecker is just a bonus.

I have been known to check my final co-ords with the cache owner, all so far have been helpful and pleased that I'm attempting their cache.

I'd never ignore a puzzle because there was no checker: some of the best puzzles I've solved have none because they are skillfully constructed to be unambiguous. I always check the location I've worked out on the map and see if it accords with any container size, accounts of the way to the hide in found it logs and any hint information. A checker tick makes me 100% confident, but it's not vital: I'm just as happy to use simple checksum on the cache page, or to contact the C.O. if I'm worried.

Many puzzle setters round my area will use a checker as a matter of course when appropriate, so sometimes the absence of one can give a little clue to the puzzle type: maybe I'm looking at a cipher which will spell out the digits, or plain co-ordinates hidden in the HTML or something ...

There's no guarantee I'll find the cache, even if it's there and I'm looking in the right place mind you ... but I will have enjoyed the puzzle and the hunt anyway, and that is the point of the game for me.

The best series of puzzle caches I ever did had no geocheckers at all and even the CO was unknown so no means to confirm coordinates except go out and look for the caches...

If I am going to travel outside my usual radius I might ask the CO for a yes/no on my calculated coordinates if there's no checker.

I have known people kick up a stink at the lack of a geochecker because that gets in the way of them battle-shipping the coordinates but the same people set broken / illogical / deliberately obscure / nonsense puzzles AND leave off the geochecker because, well, I guess they can make up whatever rules suit their whim of the hour and then belly-ache that their do as I say, not as I do attitude gets the complete lack of attention it deserves.

Whenever I encounter a puzzle which requires one to find some piece(s) of information which can be turned into a set of digits, I often find multiple sources of that information and it's not always consistent. The CO may intend that one goes to a specific web site, but two people using the same search terms to find a website containing the required information might (most likely) won't get the same result.
Yeah, I found a puzzle cache recently that was pretty bad about that. The values of some digits of the solution depended on answers found on a specific site, on a specific date, and (in one case) by correctly interpreting a question in a non-obvious way (a "when" question that does not use the date, but uses the specific language on a specific page when the cache was created).

AFAICS, all recent finders have done the same thing I did: identified the theme, solved the digits that are still solvable, and then brute-forced the remaining digits based on the theme and the past logs.

I never use geocheckers as I am sick of them telling me I'm incorrect. Even worse are the clever (removed) who put the hint and spoiler image in their geochecker and it only displays its when you get a "correct"

Edited by BlueRajah
edited to removed potty language

Nowt wrong with brute forcing puzzles. Caching shouldn't be about let's see who is the cleverest and has the most time on their hands

Many of my puzzles are the type that when solved, the solution tells you the coordinates. A coordinate checker would be worthless.

Many of my puzzles are the type that when solved, the solution tells you the coordinates. A coordinate checker would be worthless.

I concede checkers sometimes aren't needed, but I find them convenient to confirm I've copied the coordinates from wherever they were displayed into text. Instead of just typing the answer into my database, I can copy what the checker echoed, thus ensuring there were no mistakes. A checker can also alert me that I've followed a red herring, imagined or designed, that led me to a plausible answer that, nevertheless, wasn't actually the puzzle's solution. I've also noticed some COs will provide the checker just to avoid telegraphing that the answer will come in a form that doesn't need confirmation.

It depends. I once solved a puzzle easily and wrongly. My solving took me to a Costco parking lot. The name of the puzzle was "Hit the Target", so I wondered why Costco, but I went there after triple checking my solve. Yes, I was wrong. I read the hint, and once I hit the bullseye, the right solution (a-ha!) took me to a Target parking lot. The best part of my experience was when I saw a piece of paper in a film canister with some funny messages. It's still one of my favorites, and I'm really glad I didn't solve the puzzle correctly in the first place. This puzzle shouldn't have a checker in my opinion. The correct solution could be legitimately found. I was just dumb. But yes, there are lots of puzzles out there that really require a checker. An easy (too extreme?) example is a puzzle with only 6 digits to solve, and there are tens of ways to derive a digit from each item. How do I know if it's the last digit of the year or the first letter of the last name? I would probably skip such puzzles.

I concede checkers sometimes aren't needed, but I find them convenient to confirm I've copied the coordinates from wherever they were displayed into text. Instead of just typing the answer into my database, I can copy what the checker echoed, thus ensuring there were no mistakes. A checker can also alert me that I've followed a red herring, imagined or designed, that led me to a plausible answer that, nevertheless, wasn't actually the puzzle's solution. I've also noticed some COs will provide the checker just to avoid telegraphing that the answer will come in a form that doesn't need confirmation.

heh, I'm mostly the other way around - I paste my puzzle result into the checker from where I worked on it, so I've rarely ever copied the result out of the checker confirmation.

And I vastly prefer GeoCheck.org that takes one single input field of various coord formats, over geochecker.com that requires the lat/lon values split. ugh.

Edited by thebruce0

Many of my puzzles are the type that when solved, the solution tells you the coordinates. A coordinate checker would be worthless.

I concede checkers sometimes aren't needed, but I find them convenient to confirm I've copied the coordinates from wherever they were displayed into text. Instead of just typing the answer into my database, I can copy what the checker echoed, thus ensuring there were no mistakes. A checker can also alert me that I've followed a red herring, imagined or designed, that led me to a plausible answer that, nevertheless, wasn't actually the puzzle's solution. I've also noticed some COs will provide the checker just to avoid telegraphing that the answer will come in a form that doesn't need confirmation.

Here's an easy one to solve:

http://coord.info/GC5BXMY

How would a coordinate checker possibly help, when the coords are clear when you find it?

Having found 1700+ Unknown caches and solved many, many more I find that coord checkers are useful when dealing with advanced level math. ciphers, if a particular puzzle has multiple solutions, or if the solution found in a range. They aren't very helpful when the coords are plainly encrypted (exif data in a photo, hidden in html, jigsaw puzzle, etc) or are onsite puzzles (obviously).

I have seen many COs use a certain coord checker to validate that the user did indeed solve it.

Even this dyslexic old fart got that one.

Here's an easy one to solve:

http://coord.info/GC5BXMY

How would a coordinate checker possibly help, when the coords are clear when you find it?

OK, now that one is a good example of a cache where I'd wish there was a Geochecker.

It's listed as a low difficulty, yet I have no clue how to "solve" it. My first step is to try the coords I have available to be sure they are not in fact GZ. Nope, there's no Geochecker. Now I'm stuck. If I'm super-excited about having the answer, I'll contact some sources (CO, whatever). If I guess the bridge in the photo is not off-limits*, I may poke around there when I'm in the area. Otherwise, to the bottom of the pile it goes.

*I'm very bad at guessing whether a place is off-limits.

Edited by kunarion

Here's an easy one to solve:

http://coord.info/GC5BXMY

How would a coordinate checker possibly help, when the coords are clear when you find it?

OK, now that one is a good example of a cache where I'd wish there was a Geochecker.

It's listed as a low difficulty, yet I have no clue how to "solve" it. My first step is to try the coords I have available to be sure they are not in fact GZ. Nope, there's no Geochecker. Now I'm stuck. If I'm super-excited about having the answer, I'll contact some sources (CO, whatever). If I guess the bridge in the photo is not off-limits*, I may poke around there when I'm in the area. Otherwise, to the bottom of the pile it goes.

*I'm very bad at guessing whether a place is off-limits.

Most around here probably understand how my puzzles reveal themselves, usually more on the tech side. Click the image and "explore"

Most around here probably understand how my puzzles reveal themselves, usually more on the tech side. Click the image and "explore"

Yeah. That's what the bottom of the pile is for. One day in the future, I may see a similar Puzzle, and try again. But on that page, as with many others, it nowhere states that a Geochecker is not needed, due there being only one possible solution. The cache page merely looks like any cache that I wish there was a Geochecker for . You don't have to state that it needs no Geochecker, but I don't know how to tell when I'm way off in left field. In that particular case, I see that people are solving it easily, so I know there's maybe not a complex formula. I also see at least one log where a digit was hard to come up with, so yeah... I sure wish... well, you know...

I am currently puzzling over one that does state in the cache description that there's no Geockecker due to there being one obvious solution. Yet I keep trying out various codes, wondering how I'll ever know when it's "obvious".

I don't "skip" such puzzles. I "skim" them . If by some miracle I solve one and the result is not crystal clear, I'll verify it in some way. I just make a note of what I got, and go find other caches until I get a wild hair to "check" it. Man, I wish... um... nevermind.

Edited by kunarion

I concede checkers sometimes aren't needed, but I find them convenient to confirm I've copied the coordinates from wherever they were displayed into text. Instead of just typing the answer into my database, I can copy what the checker echoed, thus ensuring there were no mistakes. A checker can also alert me that I've followed a red herring, imagined or designed, that led me to a plausible answer that, nevertheless, wasn't actually the puzzle's solution. I've also noticed some COs will provide the checker just to avoid telegraphing that the answer will come in a form that doesn't need confirmation.

heh, I'm mostly the other way around - I paste my puzzle result into the checker from where I worked on it, so I've rarely ever copied the result out of the checker confirmation.

The case I was thinking of is where the coordinates are presenting in a way not suitable for copying, such as in a picture.

And I vastly prefer GeoCheck.org that takes one single input field of various coord formats, over geochecker.com that requires the lat/lon values split. ugh.

In my area, Certitude is used almost exclusively, and I prefer it. It, too, allows copying the entire value at once. I agree that geochecker's split field annoying. Probably the most annoying thing about the split field is that I always forget and copy the entire value into the kill buffer, then realize my mistake -- yet again... -- when the geochecker screen comes up.

Here's an easy one to solve:

http://coord.info/GC5BXMY

How would a coordinate checker possibly help, when the coords are clear when you find it?

A perfect example, since I cannot copy the solution into my private notes, I have to transcribe it which could lead to a mistake. Not that I'm criticizing you for not having a checker or saying you need one, I'm just saying this is a good example of how a checker could be useful even in a case where there's little question what the puzzle solution is. (Fun one, by the way, so thanks for sharing.)

Most around here probably understand how my puzzles reveal themselves, usually more on the tech side. Click the image and "explore"

Again, not complaining about your thinking, but if I were visiting your area, I'd be solving your puzzle with absolutely no prior knowledge about your approach. (It reminds me of the case where I'm having trouble finding my first cache in an area thousands of miles from home, and the hint is "Hidden in my usual style". Not useful...)

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