An easy one this week!

Albert’s been having a tough week at the clock factory.  First he designed an odd Roman Numeral clock face, and then can’t work out how long it would take his favourite clock to chime 10 o’clock.   However, things are looking up.  He has been asked to go down to the basement and retrieve a rare clock from the company safe.  When he gets there he sees the following numbers on the safe door….

77 – 49 –  36 – xx
the next number in the sequence will open the safe.  What number should Albert use to get at the rare clock?

The answer to this puzzle, and 100 others,  can be found in a new kindle ebook called PUZZLED, and is available in the UK here and USA here.


  1. Yeah, got an answer right away. After hearing Lee said he has two answers, I came up with another solution as well. We are probably thinking the same thing.

  2. Took me a couple of minutes to get an answer. It involved a bit of lateral thinking (it’s not only the numbers that matters) but I don’t know if that is what was intended.

  3. First answer within about 3 seconds. Second answer in about a minute, once I saw that someone had another solution.

  4. 1st look at 10sec-NOTHING. after reading the comments I said your missing something obvious-dumbass!!! Went back looked for 5sec and got the 1st most obvious answer. Now to get the 2nd one????

  5. /facepalm

    I got it after about two minutes.

    @Dawn: The answer will be posted later — probably tomorrow, if I’ve got the schedule down.

  6. Couple of minutes for the obvious answer. Commenters got me thinking on the second solution. Still working on that one!

  7. A couple more minutes I seem to come up with two possible alternatives, but I am not at all as confident about those as with the first one.

  8. Hmmm, one of the alternatives gives me the same answer as the obvious answer. Boy we really are pattern seeking animals aren’t we. I’m sure there is only one answer that we all got, and the rest is our brains doing what they do best, seeking patterns even where none exist.

    1. I think ‘993 polygons’ is just the source of the picture – examples include news sites which use the same pics with a small credit in the bottom right corner (eg AP for Associated Press etc)

      It has nothing to do with the obvious answer.

  9. took about a minute for the first thought but when i read the comments i went back for a second try and see that there can be another solution.

  10. First one I’ve gotten in a while. Only took a few seconds, but have no idea what second possible answer is. Will have to work harder on that one.

  11. I’m thinking the fact this one starts with the words “An easy one this week!” means the obvious answer is the right one, even though it seems too easy…

    1. You can do it! Just chill, and think about it for a while. Never mind how long other people are taking.

  12. About 20 seconds for an answer I’m fairly confident with as it fits your style. Confident enough that I’m not going to look for other answers, although there are probably many logical possibilities, this will be your answer.

  13. …oh, and someone should talk to this company about security-what’s the point of a safe if it only needs a simple number to open and you leave the clue to that next to the safe? And Albert-with his track record with the company ought to be looking at this as a test if he should be fired-will he mention how bad the security is? If not they must think him an idiot and let him go I recon!

  14. a bit slow this morning, took about 5 mins or so, the sequence has only 2 further numbers in the sequence. certain its right

  15. Took a while, 5 minutes, was trying to over think it! Simple answer in the end.

    Not sure where the 2nd answer comes from that people are mentioning, I can only see one answer there is another answer that almost fits but it only fits with 2 of the numbers already in the sequence and doesn’t work with one of them so I am curious what the 2nd answer is that people got.

  16. Was baffled for about 20 mins. Read through the comments – still baffled! And then suddenly it just came to me, and boy do I feel stupid for not seeing it sooner!

    Those who say there’s more than one possible answer – I can’t imagine another solution which feels as satisfyingly ‘right’ as this one!

  17. Nice puzzle. But if you or anyone is interested in solving a REALLY difficult puzzle (it’s been going on since since 2005), check out the ARG

    And no I have nothing to do with the site or whaetever. Just need some help from people who are good with numbers。

  18. Nice one, got it in about 10 minutes. But if you’re really interested in solving a puzzle that’s been going on since 2005. Check out thhe ARG

    And no, I’m not promoting or related to it. Just looking for some help to finally solve a true mystery.

  19. For some reason I didn’t get the “right” solution when I looked at the problem this morning (I think that was before coffee – that’s how addicted I’m to these puzzles), but now it’s perfectly simple and logical. I managed to come up with a couple of alternative answers too, but I admit they are a little more far-fetched.. 🙂

  20. AHA! I see it now! Took some time! (5 min or so…)
    I’ve come up with a really far-fetched alternate solution in the process. 😀

  21. took me couple of minutes to see the relations… it’s too easy, I was trying to solve it the complicated way 😛

  22. For me was rare because I get a first answer in 3 minutes and another one more easy in the second time I get here.

    The first answer is based on the mathematical sequence presented, the second one in the problem text presentation.

  23. Right away, too easy! (Though I do feel pleased when I get them quickly, so perhaps easy is good)

  24. I got one answer in about 1 second without having to think, and another after reading the puzzle very carefully (maybe 5 minutes). But neither of those involve the mathematical sequence.

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