The Truth About That Haunted Version Of Majora's Mask

When a university student picked up Majora’s Mask for free at a garage sale, he thought it was his lucky day, until the cartridge turned out to be haunted. So the story goes, anyway. This is the legend of Ben, the spirit in the cartridge.

A 4chan regular named Alex Hall, AKA "jadusable", put up a rather anxious message on 4chan in September, 2007. It described a day out shopping for secondhand games - keen to keep his costs down - in which a “disagreeable” old man left him a less-than-pristine cartridge of Majora’s Mask for free. Pretty much a dream scenario. He popped right it into his N64 when he got home, and found a save file named “Ben”.

In a series of about six 4chan posts, all walls of text big enough to keep the White Walkers at bay, jadusable chronicles the game’s buggy behaviour, which evolved into the game outright messing with him, which evolves into a ghost within the game named “Ben” revealing himself as jadusable’s tormentor. It started with missing textures, and being warped to incorrect places, then moved onto troll-ish dialogue boxes and statues following him, and then Link just died to a fiery attack and wouldn’t get back up, even after reloading the game.

Then it got worse.

Reporting that his computer had somehow been affected, jadusable posted CleverBot chat logs that he said the ghost was using to communicate with him. To mess with him. In addition to the technical elements of being trolled by a ghost, such as his game and now his computer not working properly, jadusable described incredible feelings of dread. Being in a deserted version of Clocktown, for example, made him feel more depressed than he had ever been.

Most notably, every time he played the Song of Healing, it would somehow be backwards.

This first chapter culminated with a post from jadusable’s roommate, saying he’d been too stressed lately and had moved out of his dorm. Along with all the information in the posts, videos were put up as well — even things like the immolation attack that killed Link “for good” were captured on video. This lent the story some credence, as there was no such fire attack in the game. If the footage were faked, it would have to take some very clever modding or video editing.

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After jadusable left, he told people that nothing should be trusted from his Youtube account after September 12th, 2010. Presumably he’d be abandoning it. Shortly afterwards, the Youtube channel’s profile image changed to the statue that had been stalking jadusable in-game, and its location changed to “Now I am everywhere.” Eight days afterwards, jadusable announced that the story was a fake, though he would be continuing it later. To those buying into it, there was room to believe that any calls for people to not be worried could in fact be coming from the ghost.

There was this video, however, put up on the 12th of September, showing some of the techniques that could have been used to fake the videos. It actually doesn’t seem that hard:

There were plans for an AR game to be based on the “Ben drowned” story, but jadusable’s wiki has stated it’s on permanent hiatus. It’s been in that state for quite some time already, so I wouldn’t hold my breath on being able to walk around haunted by a holographic Ben.

More recently though, DC has partnered with Machinima to put together a show called "Creepy Pasta", with horror writer Clive Barker involved. Variety is reporting that it will include Slender Man and Ben Drowned.

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Comments

    I'm not sure if these were intentional to be part of the puzzle, or an editing error:

    [span id="more-771864"][/span]
    [noscript]Please enable JavaScript to watch this video.[/noscript]
    [noscript]Please enable JavaScript to watch this video.[/noscript]

    Last edited 04/08/16 1:22 pm

      I have Javascript enabled. It let me do some cool things so far with this post. No idea if that's putting me towards a solution though.

        That's odd, I thought I had javascript enabled. I'll double check that. Regardless, I've noticed some other clues to consider too. I'm definitely onto something.

        EDIT: Javascript is definitely enabled, but I'm still seeing the HTML above and the page isn't doing anything special. I'm on Firefox.

        EDIT 2: Just checked it it Chrome, same result. Weird.

        EDIT 3: Ooooh, I see now.

        Last edited 04/08/16 1:31 pm

          Same thing for me; I'm on Chrome, but Javascript is definitely enabled. Would updating Java help?

          EDIT: Updated Java, no change but it let me know that "The Chrome browser does not support NPAPI plug-ins and therefore will not run all Java content. Switch to a different browser (Firefox, Internet Explorer or Safari on Mac) to run the Java plug-in." so I guess I'm gonna do the worst thing possible: try it in IE.

          EDIT2: Tried it, didn't work. But I think I'm getting somewhere with the puzzle despite that

          EDIT3: I've solved the puzzle, you don't have to worry about that :)

          Also, amazing puzzle guys. I've loved all of them! Now to bang my head against the wall for the metapuzzle :P

          Last edited 04/08/16 1:34 pm

            Wow congrats on solving it.

            I have...something, but I'm not sure where to go from here. I really hope it doesn't involve needing to watch through the videos in order to interpret the clues.

            EDIT: Oh man, I feel sooooo close to solving this, I think I'm just stumbling a bit on the last hurdle.

            EDIT 2: And I've got it. Whoo!

            Last edited 04/08/16 2:45 pm

              You'll know once you've finished the first step. Taking what you get there and working out what do with it, well, I'm not great at hints sorry! I'll try and work out a way of hinting without spoiling...

                I got it :)

                This one was probably the most fun. Now to tackle the metapuzzle. Eeep...

            That was fast!

            I've cleared the first stage colour change happened but unsure where to go from here.

            I've blindly stumbled up to a point where I can't continue using the same method. Considering I didn't know what I was really doing, I get the feeling that a little more order would've helped me a lot. Oh well, time to keep working at it.

              That point is where I had a major stumbling block, but I eventually got further. Rearrange what you've been given to get the next clue. (I hope that's not too obvious)

                I'm trying to rearrange but there are too many possibilities.

                  I'll try to be very careful about saying too much here, but if you're having trouble, try going back through them in order. I was stuck at that point for a while until I did that.

              Oh man, I was doing the right thing but because I thought I'd skipped a step I didn't think of what to do with what I had. That was much simpler than I thought.

          Same position, JS is on but nothing special is happening, using Chrome.

            You have to do something specific, that is mentioned in the article.

    *Cracks knuckles, fires up Word and Excel, notepad & pencil ready, coffee in the pot.*

    Here we go!

    #StrangerThings

    If you hear before you see me
    I got King Kong in the trunk

    I think I'm onto something but it's going to take some research.

    I'm at work so anything involving java and sound will have to wait til I get home from work tonight. :(

      Same. A cursory glance gave me a couple of ideas, but it'll have to wait until tonight. :(

    Hmmmmm.... I can get stuff to happen but don't know where to go from there.

      I think we're both on the same path. Blindly trying multiple things seems to be making some progression but I feel like a monkey at a typewriter.

        "It was the best of times.. it was the BLURST OF TIMES?!"

      How? I just have the
      [span id="more-771864"][/span]
      [noscript]Please enable JavaScript to watch this video.[/noscript]
      [noscript]Please enable JavaScript to watch this video.[/noscript]
      still showing, I have JS running.

        I think those are there mostly to prompt people in the right direction. This puzzle involves Javascript.

          I get the feeling the span id tag is just an error. That's a wordpress thing and not really anything to do with javascript.

          Also don't think this is relevant, and probably just an error, but the "dc comics" tag at the bottom of the post is misspelled "dc comcis".

            Yeah, it has nothing to do with the solution.

    Think I know what I need to do now, have to go to work though :( Will try tonight

    I've met with a terrible fate

      My notes echo far, but nothing happens.

        That won't do you any good. Hee, hee.
        I'm hopefully progressing. I've gotten til they change colour, now what?

          Now it's time to process what you've got. You're almost there.

            Thanks, got it now. Saw it when I looked here, rather than at my results jumbled together as whole in notepad.

              I'm still unable to solve the second stage

            Got it to change colours... but cant get the next step... should i have been recording the titles?

        How are you seeing these messages?

        I see the text content of the page changing and the image eventually flips but I don't see these lines from Zelda come up.

        EDIT: Never mind. I see them. Sorry.

        Last edited 04/08/16 4:01 pm

    As someone who has absolutely no previous experience with Javascript, is there a process I should educate myself on in order to get past the first step of the puzzle?

    Can someone please point me in the right direction?

    I'll try asking for help without giving too much away. Done the first stage, I think. Am I meant to have eleven in colour? Hopefully that should make sense for those who have solved it!

      You're on the right track, you seem to have done everything correct so far, yes. That's the first stage solved. Now you need to take what you have and manipulate it into something that makes sense, which will provide you the clue to the next stage.

      Last edited 04/08/16 8:40 pm

        Thank you for your help, WhitePointer. Still not clicking in my head, but will keep trying.

        I can't believe it. I got that answer HOURS ago and didn't do what I should have done with it.

      You're going in exactly the right direction. Don't overthink this one, focus on where the clue leads.

    Hey.

    I'll hide this text in case any of it is a spoiler...

    I've started on this puzzle. I get that clicking on certain things in a particular order changes titles and some of the text within the page seems to start to jumble (with some letters turning bold and CAPS). Is any of this relevant?Also, with the exception of the first title change, which I get is based on a particular clue on the page, I only seem to be able to get other title changes by randomly trying different patterns. I suspect this isn't random, but where are the clues for these different patterns??? Any help appreciated.

    Thanks!

    Last edited 04/08/16 10:12 pm

    It helps to have a monitor large enough that the change I'm looking for is instantly recognisable, but I'm still left with a series of letters which I've gotten something from and now don't know what to do with.

    *sigh* Kudos again to the designer... that was one hell of a ride.

    Okay, below is what to do once you've gotten to the letters. I personally spent a lot of time trying to figure this out because I didn't read the Stranger Things article a while back that explains it all

    Okay, to people who have letters and no idea what to do with them, maybe you didn't read the article that this is about. This is just one piece of a larger puzzle. The article explaining it all is here:

    http://www.kotaku.com.au/2016/08/win-6000-of-home-entertainment-gear-thanks-to-netflix-and-stranger-things

    So once you've got your letters, figure out what they're anagramming to and put them in your url like this: http://kotaku.com.au/LettersInOrderHere

      I get a strange result from the anagram but it's not working. Am I doing it wrong?

      Last edited 05/08/16 10:07 am

        I'm at the exact same stage, I got a result, but if I put it as the puzzle answer, it doesn't work, and I'm not really sure what else to do with it. I've got half of the anagram correct, but don't know what to do with the remaining letters.

        Last edited 05/08/16 3:13 pm

          Once I was fairly sure about the one part of the anagram (The letters made sense, and it was in line with the theme of the story), I chucked the other letters in to an online anagram solver to get the other part.

      Not that I've managed to even come close to solving this but the links to 'lettersinorderhere' and 'www.kotaku.com.au/puzzleanswer' just come up saying they can't find the page. Any ideas?

        The method you use to check your answer is no different on this one than it has been with any of the other puzzles. The only thing that has changed is the puzzle and answer.

        Last edited 05/08/16 12:31 pm

    Hahahah, thanks @garethp for working it out.

    And kudos to Kotaku for thinking out of the box. I don't think this sort of move has really been seen since Atari ran it's Sword Quest competition.

    damn, was this up already???

      EDIT: i see someone already took a shortcut too!

      EDIT 2: colours?? what colours, still got the answer tho...

      Last edited 05/08/16 1:13 pm

    Using Chrome. Javascript enabled. Clicking links in paragraph 2.
    Tried increasing tone order; decreasing tone order; random order; konami code (minus B + start). No impact observed. Supplies running low. Send help.

      Oh. I guess some history with this game may have helped.

      So now I know I'm supposed to be looking for some kind of a supernatural entity, but the suggested location means nothing to me and Google isn't really cluing me in.

        really? that's the easiest part to do... you should try google again!

          Yeah, I tried again using all of the info that came from step one and got there about 20 sec after posting my last comment...

    so i have 4 bold letters, am i even close??

      I'd say you're about four elevenths of the way through step one.

        Eleven? I'm only seeing 10... I must be missing something...

          You might have gotten a letter when doing something backwards. You should try doing that same thing forwards also (I think that's what worked for me). You'll notice a significant change and the pieces for the next step of the puzzle will change colour when you get it right.

        right, better keep clicking then. i only have 4 clicking patterns that seem to work.

          The patterns are based on some other patterns found in the game mentioned, and one or two of theme are shown in the video too. Once you can figure out what the patterns that work are, you can google to find the other patterns

            good old google! second part was almost too easy.
            i can sleep easy tonight and tackle the meta puzzle tomorrow!

            I understand what the patterns are and as far as my google search shows there are 12, though 2 don't appear to do anything.

            Regardless I understand now what the first part is without the 11th letter. My problem was that with only the 10 letters I was getting an anagram for something completely different but still relevant to this site (try taking the H out of the first part and running it through an anagram solver and you'll see what I mean) and that was where I had been stuck.

            Anyway, now I'm stuck on the next bit. Really don't know what to do.

              The 11th pattern is a simple variation of one of the others. Both the original pattern and the variation is mentioned in the article. I only found that one out because I had no knowledge of the other patterns, not being a zelda player, and tried it since it was mentioned in the article

              I don't really know how to give a hint for the second part. But what I found was there was one obvious word for the anagram already in there, and I got the second by running the remainder letters through the anagram solver, which produced much fewer results than running all 11 letters through

              Last edited 06/08/16 12:46 am

              you'll notice that the colours appear in two paragraphs, so two different anagrams.
              once you enter them together you will be given another clue, then you can just google it for the next answer

                that's interesting, the colours never showed up for me :/

    Got it ... a great puzzle, one of the best yet and brought back some fond memories of the Zelda

    Ugh, so close yet so far, I've been stuck with the letters and what I think is a half solved anagram, but I can't come up with any solutions for it, or even what to do with it.

      The anagram forms two words. Although the answer was (to me at least) unusual, it was not "strange" at all. More... spectral?

        Thanks, that helped alot, that strange comment up higher really threw me off the answer,

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