After Hours

After Hours

Year:  2018

Genre:  Puzzle

Links:  Steam

After Hours is a puzzle game where you are sitting in front of an old computer from the 1980s and you must explore its encrypted secrets to hopefully discovering some groundbreaking research. There are 10 Steam Achievements, all documented in the walkthrough below.

Getting Started

Start by reading the text file called "To the curious grad student", which is located on the desktop. This provides you with an email address to contact if you get stuck during the game: sarah.borokova@gmail.com.

Next open the Trash Can and click on the file called "Password". This displays a binary message that can be decoded to read "Bacon's cipher".

Go to My Computer, then try to open the file called "Diary". This is password-protected, but you are given a hint for the password: "Quite a Distance to Zip to Brownsville, New York". A quick search online will tell you the zip codes for Brownsville are 11212 and 11233. Neither of these will work directly as the password for this file.

Playing Games

Go to My Computer, then open the Games folder. There are 5 games to play, and 4 of them are available straight away.

Death Ship

This is a clone of a space shooter such as Galaga, with multiple levels and power-ups. Your goal is to beat the existing high score of 7965 The space invader.

Swinesweeper

This is a clone of the popular Minesweeper game, with the following solution:

1
1
1
3
3
2
2
3
3
4
4
2
4
5
4
2
3
2
3
2
2
1
1
2
2

Beat the game Swine beater. Now click on the smiley face and enter the decoded pattern of mines using Bacon's cipher: "FREEWILL". This will display a hexadecimal message that can be decoded to read: " 26.357891,127.78378". Searching for these coordinates on Google Maps shows you a Batman symbol.

1BitBoy

This is a simple arcade game where you must avoid contact with falling rocks, running bulls and flying rockets. There are 3 achievements that you earn while playing the game, on reaching 3000 points Avoider of everything, 5000 points Bullfighter, and 7000 points 1Bit GOD.

Block

This is a 9-piece sliding puzzle, where you need to create a QR code. Once complete, scan it with your phone or take a screenshot and upload to a QR code decryption service to find the following URL: https://image.ibb.co/c4srJ8/remember_me.jpg. This links to an album cover for the band Desaparecidos, album title "Read Music Speak Spanish".

Distance

This game is password-protected, but you are given a hint for the password: "Homework '97, track 7". This refers to the Daft Punk album called "Homework" released in 1997. Track 7 on this album is "Around the World". Going back to the Google Maps search from earlier, you can enter the password here as "BATMAN" Globetrotter.

Once the game begins, it is a text-based game where you just choose from numerical options to progress the story. Using the hint from the diary password, select options 1, 1, 2, 1, 2. Now select option 4 to be given the diary password. You can now quit the game.

Making Progress

Diary

Return to My Computer, then open the file called "Diary" with password "PARANORMAL" Follow the zip. This mentions an ISBN, a phone number and an international dialling code for South Central Pennsylvania. Searching online will tell you this will be 1717.

Photo Album

Next go to My Computer, Painting and then click on the Photo Album. There are 6 captions and 6 photographs in here, but they do not match. If you were to place the correct photos above the captions in order, you would discover the following message:

  • I loved that dog: Spreadsheet
  • Precious little trolley: 1
  • A mountain silhouette: 8
  • I'll never forget that car: -
  • Crossroads: 5
  • A quick way to the top: 8

Spreadsheet

Now go to My Computer and open the Spreadsheet. Using the message from the Photo Album, highlight the numbers in the range 18-58 to see the following pattern:

23
17
73
01
28
48
40
21
34
34
10
89
17
59
19
08
99
60
78
59
51
74
61
64
28
32
59
49
92
30
22
42
55
48
51
68
80
78
61
70
58
36
29
36
32
39
09
45
96
29
23
12
57
29
48
70
84
04
10
13

Chatlogs

You can now go to My Computer and open the Chatlogs folder using the pin 136 Code cracker. Read the "Chatlog help" file, then click on the Chatlogs app. You can now search the chat logs by entering a keyword, then viewing up to 4 results where that word has been mentioned. The first keyword is already entered for you: "genius". Reading the second result for this will give you a second keyword: "report". Reading the third result for this will get you another password: "THEM54".

Mailzone

From the Menu option at the bottom left, select Email, then enter the password "THEM54". Read all of the messages in the Inbox, paying particular attention to the one about cats. Now also check the only message in the Sent folder, noting the phone number at the end: 124291. Now using the hint from the diary, search online for a book with an ISBN of 1717124291 and you will find "The Concept of Time Travel" by Herman Brandt. Look at a picture of the back cover to see the word "SINGULARITY".

Decoding Audio

Floppy Disc

Click on the Floppy Disc icon on the desktop, and enter the password "SINGULARITY" Disk cracker. Inside you will find 4 audio files, containing short segments of morse code. Decoding these gives the following information:

  • 19840513: RED IS N
  • 19840513 (2): BLUE IS E, GREEN IS R
  • 19840515: TURQOISE IS V, PINK IS D
  • 20220218: ORANGE IS O

World's Greatest Cats

Visit the website indicated in the email message about cats: http://www.worldsgreatestcats.com. Using the hint from the Block game earlier, translate the captain for one of the photos from Spanish to English to read "Do not hesitate to take a look at more cats by clicking on this link". Click the link and download the mp3 file. Using the other half of the hint from the Block game, open this mp3 file in a text program such as Notepad to find a new website to visit: http://www.sewingpatterns.blo.gg.

Zoom in on the pattern to see a series of colors. From left to right, and with the color-to-letter assignments outlined above, you can discover the following:

  • Red: N
  • Blue: E
  • Turqoise: V
  • Blue: E
  • Green: R
  • Orange: O
  • Pink: D
  • Pink: D
  • Orange: O
  • Green: R
  • Blue: E
  • Turqoise: V
  • Blue: E
  • Red: N

Unlocking the Research

Open the Research folder on the desktop, entering the password "NEVERODDOREVEN". Click on any of the documents, and answer the first question with "Herman Brandt", and the second question with "Me" I am you.