# Check my logic puzzle.

### Homebrew and House Rules

He's a twist on the classic Labyrinth talking door puzzle. I want to make sure my logic is solid.

You come to a room with three doors along one wall. Each depicts a Knight in plate mail holding an item: A wide gargoyle like face is carved above them. A voice booms from the gargoyle:

Harken now! and take note as, each door doth speak its quote. One path to safety and one to doom and one to either wealth or tomb. Now two doth speak in naught but lies, but from one, ye may, the truth surmise.

From each door them comes a different voice:
Knight with Shield thus doth spake, Beyond me lies a path to forsake

Knight with Sword in stance most gracious, my path is safe the Lance fallacious

Knight with Lance in tone most vicious your path I guard, the shield’s fictitious

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The logic puzzle seems simple enough, but the old English dialect makes it confusing. The fact that one of the doors is ambiguous ("wealth or tomb") adds to the confusion. What does that mean? That the third door is a mystery? That the third door leads to a trapped treasure?

My Logic:
Puzzle premise: Three doors guarded by a knight. One leads to safety, one leads to death, and the third could either (or maybe a trapped treasure? I dunno). Two of the knights are lying while one tells the truth.

Shield cannot be telling the truth. Otherwise, this would mean Sword is lying when he says Lance is lying. That's impossible. The same logic applies when considering Sword's testimony--this would mean Lance would be lying when he says Shield is lying. Thus, Lance is telling the truth.

We can conclude that Shield's path leads to safety and the others lead to danger.

The lance says he guards the swords path, so he's a liar, thus the shield's fictitious nature must be false, so Shield is speaking the truth and his path is to be avoided. Since shield is speaking the truth that means sword is a liar since he claims the correct path. Lance makes no claims about his door. His is the correct path.

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Lance says that his path leads to danger. "most vicious your path I guard"

I agree with cyrad. And i like it.
Edit: i like the riddle not the agreenin;)

looking at Cyrad's and my very difference conclusion, and seeing our processes stand up to my scrutiny, methinks we have a problem Houston

The Indescribable wrote:
looking at Cyrad's and my very difference conclusion, and seeing our processes stand up to my scrutiny, methinks we have a problem Houston

It's an issue with the dialect and general pronoun confusion. The "your" in Lance's statement is the party; they aren't speaking to each other. Cyrad is correct.

The Indescribable wrote:
looking at Cyrad's and my very difference conclusion, and seeing our processes stand up to my scrutiny, methinks we have a problem Houston

I am no expert in oldish english but i Think the Lance says that the shield knigth is saying a fiction. Edit: he is not talking to the other knigth.

I see problems in the wording.

First, you say "One path to safety and one to doom and one to either wealth or tomb" - does this mean that one path has two options? How do I know if I want this path?

I read this set up as that I might want path One, I definitely don't want path Two, and I might want path Three. There is no clear, unambiguous path that I definitely want. Because of this ambiguity, I will have no way to solve the puzzle.

Second, it seems like each door is speaking ("From each door comes a different voice"). But their individual quotes include a description of their tone of voice which makes it sound like there's a separate narrator. It's hard to say what I mean, so I'll just ask if door number 3 ACTUALLY SAYS that it's tone is vicious - does it say those words?

I know you're scrambling for rhymes, but each door's quote should be exactly what the door says; these quotes should not include descriptions of how the door says it.

Third, I don't know what door #3 really means. All the doors guard a path, so saying "your path I guard" is ambiguous. Does it mean "The safe path I guard?" I would make this one more clear about exactly what it's guarding. What if I want "Safety", is that what this door guards? What if I want "wealth or tomb", is that what this door guards? How can I tell from what it says? I can't.

Finally, since the setup is ambiguous (there is no clear path to choose), I cannot evaluate any door's statement. For example, if I want "wealth" (even if means that I must risk "tomb" which sounds like a classic adventure to me!) then I would forsake both the safe path and the doom path, so door Number 1 is equally likely to guard either of those paths if it speaks the truth, or if it lies then it must guard "wealth or tomb" which is the one I want (this works if the doors are L/T/L but fails if the doors are L/L/T because then my path must be behind door #1 and door #3).

I hope some of this helps.

The logic works (agrees with cyrad), but the phrasing is hard to follow. Though I read the Lance as speaking "in tone most vicious", which leaves his path unclear.

Spoiler:
Since he's telling the truth, the shield is lying and you shouldn't forsake his path, suggesting it's the safe one. The Sword must also be lying, so his path is unsafe. Perhaps the Lance is intended to be the "wealth or tomb" path?

I also suspect some groups would be looking for the wealth or tomb path. Which could confuse the issue.

The "your" in the lance's line is idea the party not the sword.
ah okay some others posted while I was typing,
The pcs would be here looking for a treasure. So the wealth/doom would be the path to the guarded treasure they want.
The safe path would presumably lead out of the dungeon, to a dead end, etc..

Here is my take.

Assume the Shield is speaking the truth. Then the Lance is lying by saying the shield is lying. If the lance is lying then the sword is telling the truth in saying the lance is lying. We cannot have 2 people telling the truth.

Assume the Sword is speaking the truth. Then the lance is lying in saying the shield's path is something to forsake. From ho is lying vs telling the truth this checks out. Lets look at the results...
Sword is speaking truth = Path is safe.
Lance is speaking lies = he is not guarding a path. Note that this is a bit difficult because he seems to be guarding a path however by saying he is but only lies he is not guarding the path. Furthermore this path is neither safe nor unsafe.
Shield is speaking lies = His path is not a path to forsake.

From the above looking at who is lying and who is telling the truth it checks out. Now the swords path is safe, the shields path is one that should not be forsaken. and the lance doesn't specify which his path is and thus is the doom path...

I am out of time but will come back to check option three that the lance is speaking truth....

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If the Sword is telling the truth, then the Lance is lying about the Shield lying, thus giving us two truthful statues. So that's out.

If the Shield is telling the truth, then the Sword is lying about the Lance lying, and we're in the same situation.

If the Lance is telling the truth, then not only is his own path "your path" (I assume that means it's somewhere you want to go), but the Shield is lying about his path being dangerous.

So the Lance is telling the truth, and we also know there are two safe paths. It's up to interpretation if both contain "wealth," or one is only safe, and if the latter, which is which. Just avoid the Sword's path.

Kjeldor wrote:

Here is my take.

Assume the Shield is speaking the truth. Then the Lance is lying by saying the shield is lying. If the lance is lying then the sword is telling the truth in saying the lance is lying. We cannot have 2 people telling the truth.

Assume the Sword is speaking the truth. Then the lance is lying in saying the shield's path is something to forsake. From ho is lying vs telling the truth this checks out. Lets look at the results...
Sword is speaking truth = Path is safe.
Lance is speaking lies = he is not guarding a path. Note that this is a bit difficult because he seems to be guarding a path however by saying he is but only lies he is not guarding the path. Furthermore this path is neither safe nor unsafe.
Shield is speaking lies = His path is not a path to forsake.

From the above looking at who is lying and who is telling the truth it checks out. Now the swords path is safe, the shields path is one that should not be forsaken. and the lance doesn't specify which his path is and thus is the doom path...

I am out of time but will come back to check option three that the lance is speaking truth....

OK, there's another potential pitfall. I read the Lance as saying the Shield was lying. You read him as saying the shield's path as bad. "The Shield is fictitious" as opposed to "The Shield's (path) is fictitious".

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If you're not going to be consistent AND accurate in Ye Olde Englishe, Don't use it.

The only thing I hate more than puzzles, are puzzles whose bad articulation and grammar, make solving the puzzle more a lucky guess than by logic.

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The Lance's testimony may have a typo. It may actually mean, "Knight with Lance says in tone most vicious, 'I guard your path. The Shield is fictitious.'" This would change my conclusion about the doors, but the puzzle still works. I really like this puzzle. It's not easy, but the players should eventually come to the solution by systematically considering the truth of each knight. If they get stumped, you can hint that there can be only one truth-teller. If the truth of any knight's testimony implies there exists more than one truth-teller, then that knight speaks lies.

I'd say clean up the language and make it more obvious what the doors lead to. If you're doing this over a tabletop, provide a handout. Then you should have a solid encounter.

I may consider borrowing this, if you don't mind.

Ok, with full context (the pcs want the wealthy tomb path), the only possible truth teller is the lance because if the shield is true, the sword can't be lying about the lance lying, and if the sword is true, the lance can't be lying about the shield lying.

That means the lance guards the path the pcs want, the shield guards the safe path, and the sword guards doom.

But the three different paths and your assumption that the pcs want the tomb rather than safety is problematic.

The Lance's testimony may have a typo. It may actually mean, "Knight with Lance says in tone most vicious, 'I guard your path. The Shield is fictitious.'" This would change my conclusion about the doors, but the puzzle still works. I really like this puzzle. It's not easy, but the players should eventually come to the solution by systematically considering the truth of each knight. If they get stumped, you can hint that there can be only one truth-teller. If the truth of any knight's testimony implies there exists more than one truth-teller, then that knight speaks lies.

I'd say clean up the language and make it more obvious what the doors lead to. If you're doing this over a tabletop, provide a handout. Then you should have a solid encounter.

I may consider borrowing this, if you don't mind.

I agree with the typo and was reading the puzzle that way. It's still clear that the Lance is telling the truth. That does leave him telling the truth about "Your path I guard", the sword lying about "my path is safe" and the shield lying about his being "a path to forsake".

That really doesn't clear things up, does it. You shouldn't forsake the shield's path, the sword isn't the safe path and the lance is your path.

I may consider borrowing this, if you don't mind.

By all means, feel free. :)

I think the adventure context would clear up any confusion about which door a pc would want. Their goals would let them decide.. okay do we want to get out of here and to safety, or are we here hunting for treasure/ a mcguffin, etc.

Cinderfist wrote:

I may consider borrowing this, if you don't mind.

By all means, feel free. :)

I think the adventure context would clear up any confusion about which door a pc would want. Their goals would let them decide.. okay do we want to get out of here and to safety, or are we here hunting for treasure/ a mcguffin, etc.

I don't think it's clear enough. Whichever way they want to go, it's still torn between the path you shouldn't forsake and your path.

Dot.

thejeff wrote:
Cinderfist wrote:

I may consider borrowing this, if you don't mind.

By all means, feel free. :)

I think the adventure context would clear up any confusion about which door a pc would want. Their goals would let them decide.. okay do we want to get out of here and to safety, or are we here hunting for treasure/ a mcguffin, etc.
I don't think it's clear enough. Whichever way they want to go, it's still torn between the path you shouldn't forsake and your path.

Hmm, I think you are taking the forsake line rather strongly.

I'm not saying your wrong. But I was viewing it as a path they didn't "have" to forsake (avoid), Knight with Shield thus doth spake, Beyond me lies a path to forsake

So since he is lying they don't have to avoid that path.. it might not be the one they want, but it won't bring them harm.

now a more strongly written line if it said Knight with Shield thus doth spake, Beyond me lies a path you must forsake

Then I could see the lack of clarity you've mentioned.

I think the logic works and the puzzle itself is fun if we make certain assumptions about what the puzzle is trying to say. I agree with the others who believe the actual wording to be problematic.

"but from one, ye may, the truth surmise" does not mean that one speaks the truth. Rather, it means that one can guess the truth from one. But you need the statements of all three knights to derive the truth.

"From each door them comes a different voice:" - The way this is written, it sounds like the doors are telling us what the knights are saying.

"Knight with Shield thus doth spake, Beyond me lies a path to forsake" - It is unclear if I want to forsake the doom path, the wealth and tomb path, the safe path or some combination of these. If treasure path is what I am looking for, I want to forsake both the safety and doom paths.

"Knight with Lance in tone most vicious your path I guard, the shield’s fictitious " - Again, the "your path" is confusing. How about "treasure I guard"?

Your path I guard may mean the knight will fight you to protect the correct path for the quest.

"Knight with Shield thus doth spake; Beyond me lies a path to forsake

Knight with Sword in stance most gracious; my path is safe, the Lance fallacious

Knight with Lance in tone most vicious; your path I guard, the shield’s fictitious"

That's how it should be punctuated for clarity. The semicolon separates "how" the knight speaks from "what" he says and the comma separates his claim of his path from his comment on the other knights' truthfulness.

"Your path I guard" is referring to the "treasure or tomb" path. Basically, one door leads to "certain death", one to "certain survival", and one has treasure, but you will have to fight for it (or overcome some other potentially lethal challenge).

So, if the Shield is truthful, then his path leads to certain death. That means the Sword lies when he says his path is safe (it could either be certain death or possible death (treasure), and certain death is already taken). That also means the Sword lies when he says the Lance lies, meaning the Lance tells the truth. Impossible since the Shield was already presumed to tell the truth.

So, if the Sword is truthful, his path is certain escape and the Lance is the liar. That means the Lance is lying when he says the Shield is lying, thus we get two truth-tellers; again, impossible.

Thus, if the Lance is truthful, his path leads to "treasure or tomb" and the Sword and Shield are liars. The Sword lies when he says the Lance lies, meaning the Lance tells the truth (no contradiction). So the Sword lies when he says his path is safe and, since the only option left is certain death, the Sword leads to certain death. The Shield lies when he claims his path leads to certain death so his path actually leads to certain escape. So, if you want to try for the treasure, you take the Lance door first, beat the challenge, claim the treasure, then escape the dungeon through the Shield door.