Techno-Logic: ir/rational Redux

From the writer of Penumbra

A man is trapped in a room with a machine playing a browser game about a man trapped in a room with a machine. The first man, the one who actually exists, then notices that another man wrote about the same game, ir/rational, nearly three years ago. He continues to write about it anyway because it contains nifty logic puzzles, darkly amusing writing from Penumbra scribe Tom Jubert and has been reduxed so hard it looks and sounds brand new. Go try it.

I’m working on a couple of hours sleep here and struggle with correctly ‘visualising’ phrases turned symbol at the best of times so if anyone could explain the final puzzle to me, either by emailing me or in the comments if it can be done without spoiling things for anyone glancing down under, I’d really appreciate it. I don’t just want the solution, I want to understand why my brain refuses to see it.

I kind of want to see how it all ends as well.


  1. Hoaxfish says:

    A Machine for Counting Sheep?

  2. Fakuow says:

    Possibly the only time my philosophy degree will have come in useful.

  3. iGark says:

    A Machine For Pigs?

  4. pakoito says:

    Love propositional logic, finished the game quickly :)

  5. bglamb says:

    Hah, it’s good!

    The last one is a bit tricky. It’s hard to know how to help without knowing where you’re stuck. It also cleared the problem when I completed it, and smug little me completed it first time, so I can’t remember the specifics. Here’s some tips though.

    When it just gives you a letter, like X, it is saying, X IS TRUE.
    X -> Y means, that if X is true then so is Y.
    The chain of logic contains all the previous statements, so X and Y will remain true throughout once they have been defined.
    When you have equivalence, , it means that if one side is true, then the other side has to be true (and vice versa), so for the last statement you will need to make sure everything balances.

    Hope this helps! It’s certainly not the easiest thing to work with if you haven’t come across it before. Symbolic Logic is the boss though!

    • bglamb says:

      It cut out my equivilance symbol, but it’s the double sided arrow.

      • pakoito says:

        The last one was the easiest for me, I have done logic in philosophy/AI courses a lot of times. Now, the 9th was tricky.

      • Coccyx says:

        Erm, I thought I understood it until reading your comment XD Still, I managed to solve the last puzzle in under 10 minutes – I think I may have misunderstood it on a more complicated level and solved it on a basic one. Oh well, it’s easily one of the best browser games I’ve played in a long, long time.

    • sockpuppetclock says:

      I assumed the was just double-sided arrow was two if-then’s with “if [1] then [2]” and “if [2] then [1]”, it still worked out

  6. Coccyx says:

    The key to the symbols is the box on the right. Literally. They are the rules for the calculations on the left, outside the box, only with different examples. Think of them as explaining + or – signs, or even better, AND or THEREFORE commands. As the game later points out, it’s basically a calculus version of the previous questions.

    Also, we briefly interacted when you and I think the designer of Gateway looked over my shoulder at me playing it at Rezzed. Hi!

    • Premium User Badge

      Adam Smith says:

      Thanks. And hello! I did spend a lot of time watching people play Gateway. It’d make a great spectator sport.

  7. Coccyx says:

    I was the guy just watching the character endlessly fall through portals, as you do.

    Edit: Sorry, GATEWAYS.

  8. Scandalon says: appears to have fallen over. Presumably by being R.P.Shotgunned.

    • Skabooga says:

      Yeah, down for me as well. RPS wields a +2 cursed sword of distributed denial of service.

    • TJ says:

      Hmm… site looks fine for me. But yes, sorry, perfectly likely the site would fall over. the blog should be fine though:

      (Also includes a walkthrough!)

      Glad you guys are enjoying the game. It’s proving a lot less devisive than that old incarnation!

  9. phlebas says:

    Fun stuff! And the new version appears to have fixed the logic bugs that annoyed a few people in the original.

  10. Nevvermore says:

    Maybe I solved the last one “wrong”, because I didn’t find it any more difficult than the other ones, but this is how I think it goes:

    link to