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A Puzzling Situation

Puzzle created by Stefan Engblom

Black Vienna 1.0

There are 27 cards in Black Vienna, each representing an individual and these are labeled A through Z plus Ö. Three of these are secretly put aside and they form the legendary criminal ring Black Vienna. The remaining 24 cards are dealt amongst all the players. Your task is to deduce which three people form Black Vienna.

To deduce the outcome, players question each other by playing investigation cards. Each such card contains three different letters. When it is a player's turn he puts one of the available investigation cards in front of any other player. That player must then place one chip on the card for each matching person card he holds in his hand; if he holds no listed suspects, he places no chips. (e.g. If a player receives the BLM card and has the letter B in his hand but not L or M, he must put exactly one chip on the card.)

The current situation:

It's a three-player game. The cards in your hand are: B C D E O T U V

The information you've received so far is as follows (the numbers are the number of chips that player placed on that particular investigation card):


  • OUW - 0
  • KPW - 0
  • APQ - 0
  • JQX - 1
  • AOS - 1
  • CSX - 2


  • BCY - 0
  • ITZ - 1
  • EÖR - 1
  • KPW - 1
  • APQ - 1
  • GPX - 1
  • EGW - 1

There are currently three available investigation cards:

  • GKO
  • ACL
  • BQT

It's your turn. Which investigation card should you give to which player so that, regardless of his answer, you are able to deduce the members of Black Vienna?


- Stefan Engblom

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