On the Subject of Blank Slates

This. Here.

A Blank Slate module initially appears blank. Use Appendix BLANK in Blind Alley for blank modules identification. Hovering over the module will reveal the sound of eight touch-sensitive regions. To begin the module, touch any of the eight regions.

After a region is touched, something will happen. Find the section in the manual based on what happened, and follow the rules according to that section to find the next region to touch. Repeat this process until eight rules have been followed. The module will then solve.

If an incorrect region is touched, a strike is issued, but the process for finding the next region to touch will not change unless otherwise stated.

The eight regions are outlined and numbered as shown below. The regions wrap around, i.e. going forward from region 8 takes you to region 1 and vice versa.

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

Section 1: Region Starts Cycling Braille

Use this section if the previously touched region starts to cycle between three Braille characters. Touch this region again to replay the sequence. The first character will be shown in red, the second in green, and the third in blue.

Three of the dots across the Braille characters are incorrect — they are either raised when they should not be, or vice versa. To figure out which of the three dots are inverted, do the following:

  • Look at the left diagram below. Reference the previously touched region to determine three positions in the serial number to look at.
  • Take the characters in those positions, converting any letters to their alphabetic positions (A = 1, B = 2, .., Z = 26). If any of these numbers are greater than 18, subtract 18, then change any 0s to 1s.
  • Lay out the three Braille characters in order of transmission. Toggle the state of the Braille dots in the positions corresponding to the obtained numbers, in individual reading order (it is possible for a dot to be inverted more than once).

Once this is done, the newly obtained Braille characters will spell out a word. Find the word in the right diagram below to get the region to touch next.

1 2 3 4 5 6 1 3 5 2 4 6 1 3 4 2 5 6 1 4 6 2 3 5 endsdownteam ownsyesbox lineruncent shotechoeasy sirstaystars hathostfan beeweakwet shownpopthough

Section 2: Tap Code Plays

Use this section if tap code started playing after touching the previous region. Touch this region again to replay the transmission.

A three-letter word is being transmitted. Look up the word in the table below. Touch the region which is as many regions forward from the previously touched region as the number in the same row as the word.


Section 3: Module Cracks

Oh, no. Not again. Don’t worry, we can fix this.

Take the digital root of the serial number digits, and consider the region with this number. If the result is 0 or 9, instead move backwards a number of regions equal to the last digit of the serial number, starting from the previously touched region.

If the result is a previously touched region, move forwards from this region, three regions at a time, until you reach a region you have not yet touched. The region used to start the module does not count as having been touched, unless the module cracked around this region or you have since touched it again.

Touch the resulting region when the last digit in the bomb’s timer is the same as the first digit of the serial number.

Once this is done, the module will heal itself, and the region used to fix the module will cause its unique event.

Sorry about that.

Section 4: Polygon Appears

Use this section if a polygon appears on the previously touched region. Look up the polygon in the diagram on the left:

Each polygon is associated with a color, position, and region. Use the combination of all these characteristics to find the next region to touch.

The next region to touch is in the same group as the region in the diagram in which the polygon is found. The groups are [1, 2, 3, 4] & [5, 6, 7, 8].

If the polygon is found in the top half of its region, the next region to touch is in the numerically greater half of the regions in its group; otherwise, it is in the numerically lesser half of the regions in its group.

The next region to touch has the same parity as the number associated with the color of the cell that the polygon is in. If you cannot distinguish the colors in the left diagram, look at the cell in the same position in the right diagram, which contains the first letter of the color of that cell.

Blue# of batteriesRed# of battery holders
Greenfirst digit in the serial #Yellow# of lit indicators
Magentalast digit in the serial #Orange# of unlit indicators
Cyan# of port platesWhite# of ports

Section 5: Hinge Falls Off

Use this section if a hinge falls off of the module. At this point, the hinges should become highlightable.

The hinge that fell off is associated with the number of the previously touched region. The remaining hinges are assigned in ascending numerical order, going clockwise and wrapping back to one after eight.

When pressed, two of the remaining hinges will make a sound — one with a higher pitch and one with a lower pitch. Use the number of the hinge that made the higher-pitched sound as the row, and the number of the hinge that made the lower-pitched sound as the column in the table below to find the next region to touch.


Section 6: High-Pitched Sound Plays

Use this section if a high-pitched sound plays after touching the previous region. Touch the status light to toggle colorblind mode for this section.

Touching this region a second time will cause a single-digit number to flash on the region. Use this number as the row and the number of the previously touched region as the column in the following table to get a color.


When this region is touched again after the digit appears, a square will appear on each region. The colors of the squares will shuffle every second. Touch the region with the square whose color is the color obtained from the table within six seconds of the squares appearing.

If an incorrect region is touched, or six seconds passes without a region being selected, then touching the region again will display the same number, and touching it once more will cause the squares to appear again.

Section 7: Numbers Appear On All Other Regions

Use this section if all of the regions, other than the previously touched region, start cycling between 10 two-digit numbers. This will be accompanied by a single note played on a bongo.

Only one of the regions will ever display the number 42 on it. Touch this region at any time.

Section 8: Nothing Initially Happens

Use this section if no immediately-noticeable change happens upon pressing the region.

Feeling around the module will reveal three different numbers on three different regions. The previously touched region, the regions whose numbers appear, and the regions that the numbers appear on should all not be touched. The next region to touch is the only other region.