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First You GO to…

New You City

If you’re going on a big trip, why limit yourself to standard locations?

The telegram from the 2019 puzzle, but with some squares of the grid colored dark brown and numbers filled in.

Enter your locations in puzzle order, one letter to a cell. Ignore all non-alphabetic characters. Start with “FIRST YOU GO TO” and put “THEN” in between each pair of locations. Ignore the numbers around the telegram. An interactive Google Sheets version of this telegram is available.

4. Start at Kresge Auditorium. Travel approximately 2,960 feet directly to your next location. If you can’t fly, first of all, learn. I don’t want to hear about laws of physics - you’re going to have to break many more of them for this puzzle. If you HAVE to walk around buildings, don’t count that distance in. While you’re at a specific underground building, use the name of the neighborhood it’s named for. (7 6; 2020)

9. Step into the train, and get off in two stops. Switch to a different train, and take that 5 stops to a place that specializes in appliances. Walk 6 minutes to go approximately southwest. You should be somewhere with lots of people. (6 4, 6; 2006)

14. Get back onto the train you got off and go back to the first train you were on in the previous step. Travel on it until you get to the 201, and take that 9 stops. Walk towards the Dunkin’ Donuts (cause of course there is one here), and you’ll find a shopping center. Look at one of the stores here that should remind you of a Center on the West Coast. Teleport there. I told you that you were going to have to break a few laws of physics. I warned you. Travel approximately NNE for about 184 miles. You should find yourself in the middle of a park. Don’t be scared - it just sounds scary. And you came prepared for a hike, right? (5 6; 2014)

11. Listen to the radio! There’s a game of Mornington Crescent being played! Let’s do that, but backwards. Teleport to Mornington Crescent, travel 1 stop, change to a different branch of the train, travel 5 stops on that train, change trains, then travel 1 stop. (2. 4’1; 2019)

26. Come above ground - ooh that building looks fancy! That must be what the last place was named for! Walk down Cheapside until you get to Poultry, then continue on Poultry. Continue on Poultry until you get to Cornhill. Continue on Cornhill until you get to Leadenhall. Continue on Leadenhall until you get to Billiter. Continue on Billiter until you get to a big diagonal building. Go into that. (9 2. 7; 1948)

3. Hop on the A40 west and turn off when you need to in order to get to the London Zoo. Yes - bike there. You’re complaining about needing a bike when I’ve already asked you to teleport and travel in time. Anyway, stay on the west side of the park - if you can manage to pull yourself away from the cute animals - and turn off on Grove End Rd. You’ll hit this next place - it’s not obvious, but it’s clear from a certain angle. I’d tell you the street, but… well… (5 4; 2008)

15. Okay, so get back on your bike and take the A5 to the A4202. From there, you’re going to bike past Buckingham Palace until you get to Whitehall. Don’t worry, despite the name, there are no equestrian bouncers. (5 6 6; 2012)

10. Good news - you can ditch the bike. Bad news, you’ll need a car. I’m sure you’ll be able to find a car somewhere. Please don’t do an imitation of Grand Theft Auto though. Only do legal things for puzzles. Get in the car and take the M40 to the M42 to the M6 to the M62. You’re going to take a left on Queens Drive until you get to a park. Now, if you leave the car, you’ll notice a blue police box nearby. Hop in that box and take it back to June 16, 2018. Enjoy the music. (6 3; 2019)

6. Well, since you’re in the blue police box, you might as well take it somewhere it’s been before. Look back through the history of the police box, and discover where it went on Christmas 2007. Travel there, but don’t stay too long. Those meteors look really close. (7; 2015)

5. Okay, come back down to present-day Earth. You’ve got one more real place to visit. Of course, with all of space available for you to go to, it’s hard to focus on a specific place. Also these controls are weird - it’s not asking for a location, but for three words. Try putting in socialists, congealing, and dorsal. I don’t know - seems random enough. Oh hey look! You’re right where you need to be! (10; 2015)

19. Back to the United States. Which state? Eh. Pick one - there’s 34 of them that will work. Go to the town square, and next to the diner, you’ll find a store. The name sounds like it should have Dragons, but oh well. Grab whatever issues you’re missing, but if you’re looking for the She-Hulk vs. Leon Spinks crossover - they’re in the trash in the back. (3 7’1 7; 2019)

24. Well, if this is a comic book shop, you might as well read a comic book. This shop has issue 38 of your favorite comic book series! Run, don’t walk to grab it off the shelf. (This comic book universe already has enough walkers.) In this issue, a bunch of characters scrounge weapons from a location that hadn’t been touched. When they left, they blew it up, which stopped other people from getting more weapons, but gave away their location. (8 5 7; 2013)

28. Might as well play some cards while you’re here. Oooh - these look fun. The back is like a black and brown swirl or vortex. You’re not quite sure how to play this game, but these five cards form a person, so you might as well play them. One arm, the other arm, one leg, the other leg, and now the main one. Oh? You won the game? How convenient. (6 3 9 3; 2016)

2. Okay, so now we’re going back to the Old West. The year is 1885. Hide your time machine, because if the two main characters knew you had a time machine, they would never create the thing you need to go to. Find a vehicle going 88 miles per hour off a bridge. Don’t worry. It’ll come back 100 years later. (4 5; 2015)

16. From there, you’ll need to go visit some people who were inspired by the previous people you met. From there, you’ll find that your car battery is not working anymore. I’m sure you have lots of questions as to why your time machine is powered by a car battery, but it’s best not to think about it. Fortunately they have experience with this, and they can travel inside your battery to try to fix it. You’ll be surprised at how many people are in your battery! (10; 2017)

23. Hmmm. While you’re animated, you might as well visit a few other animated locations. In order to do that, we need to find a way to travel between many different locations quickly. Fortunately, there is a convenient place in Siberia. It currently doesn’t work, but if some aliens come through it, they’re generally harmless. Besides, you’re quite a gem yourself. (6 4; 2016)

18. When you travel to this next location, it’s time for your magical girl transformation. You should also probably pick a celestial object to name yourself after. You’ll need to transform in order to defeat the person you’ll be meeting next. People? Weird. Sometimes they’re one person, sometimes they’re two people - mostly when they’re fighting other people. Either way, hurry up and beat them and get out of Mugen Academy. (7/6; 2018)

13. Another teleportation to another universe. If you don’t have superpowers, you should not mention that to people here, since 80% of folks have a superpower. If you do have a superpower, then why are you solving this puzzle? Go be an awesome superhero and save people! Anyway, find someone here who can shoot tape out of their elbows. This is not a joke. (5 4; 2020)

25. Going into the next world, you’ll find that your time machine breaks down and you’ll need someone to help you. Walking up to a police car, you see if this is an universe where the police are actually helpful. There’s no one in the car, but when you get close, the police car turns into a giant robot! It’s almost like it’s a turn-into-another-thing-er! Fortunately, this robot has infinite patience and can help fix your time machine. (5; 2017)

1. Time to flip to a different universe again! It’s not going to be easy to get that universe, but as one of its residents will tell you, suckin’ at something is the first step to being sorta good at something. Stepping out of your machine makes you want to say ooo. It’s a wonderful sight. You’re looking for an area that was once a giant bush shaped like a tree, but is now laid out much more like a normal city, and where all of the residents are fruit. (9 7; 2013)

27. Once again, time to change universes. In this case, your time machine should land in a giant canary-colored underwater vehicle. Following this band around, all sorts of songs are going to play, but you care about only a northern song. Outside the vehicle is a giant psychedelic experience, but that is what you’re looking for. Good thing that you’re switching universes at every step from now on, cause this would be a very trippy place to stay. (3 2 7; 2013)

21. While you’re underwater, you should navigate to somewhere else underwater - in particular a downed ship. This downed ship isn’t a real ship - it’s actually an amusement park. Don’t try riding any of the rides - they’re broken and the last creature who tried went to jail. You will see a sponge and a starfish nearby. (5 3; 2014)

20. Once you have transported back to the surface, you’ll be in the middle of a superhero vs. supervillain fight. Everyone’s favorite arachno-humanoid is fighting a big dumb brute. The brute is speaking in Russian, and the super strong polymer on his skin means that he’s very hard to hurt. Also, that horn on his head looks like it hurts! Watch out for that charge! (5; 2012)

17. Teleport yourself to an arctic cliff. Watch in horror as one person charges into a yeti and knocks them both to a bottomless area. Don’t worry! They’re both going to be fine at the end of the movie! It’s Christmas after all! Just remember the song! (8 6’1 5; 2005)

8. Your next trip takes you to a log hall in the middle of the woods. You feel like you’re supposed to play musical chairs here, but there’s only one actual chair, and besides, Sesame Street already made that joke. This hall is north of a giant wall, and is currently being visited by a series of night watch folks who are on an expedition north of the wall. Given who’s responsible for this universe, you should probably not stay for too long - random deaths happen all the time. (7’1 4; 2015)

12. While traveling from the previous location to this one, you should put on the Epic Rap Battle of History between these two authors. It’s a wonderful battle. Anyway, speaking about battles - this next area that you’re going to is the place of a large battle. Be careful about your assumptions here - not all of the warriors are men! One will probably proclaim that very loudly at an opportune moment. (8 6; 2021)

7. Boo with all these fantasy places - let’s go to space! Let’s go to a “beautiful world.” It’s weird that the name is derived from French, since the two dominant languages around are English and Chinese. This world is filled with factories and other industrial buildings, but I wouldn’t recommend going into any of them. No one who has gone in has come out to tell the tale. (9; 2015)

22. For your last location, teleport into a desert. I mean, what would you expect of a planet with two suns? You’re teleporting to where it all begins - a location that is built around getting water in this desert area. And you best get out before the protagonist gets his space wizard powers. Who knows what would happen if the other space wizards get a hold of your time machine? (8 4; 1996)