Introduction: Uncrackable Cipher

Hello! Today I am going to teach you how to make a truly tough puzzle to figure out.

We are going to take one of the oldest ways of obfuscating information, the cipher, and modernize it.

This cipher is initially based on whatever configuration of letters you and the encrypted text recipient agree upon, while still maintaining structural rules that define the plaintext transformations. For mine, I transformed the ordinal alphabet configuration to a cardinal configuration based on a graphical representation.

I am going to guide you through the various steps to help you understand how to create this and other similar ciphers.

Let's-a go!




Something to hide(haha)

Step 1: Alphabet Configuration

If we look at the picture attached to this step, you can see the alphabet configuration I designed to be the basis for the cipher. It only includes the letters up to G, but the structure remains the same all the way to Z.

Despite not being a traditional ordinal sequence, it very much has a clearly defined structure(it's cardinal instead). It also has the potential to be a three-dimensional image on which the cipher is based.

Whether it be a series of staggered sets of letters or some other characteristic of our alphabet, pre-existing or newly associated, you can greatly increase the non-regularity of the transformation logic by making it image-based.
_ _ _

For my configuration, I created what is essentially a flat pyramid to represent the English Alphabet.
This design has both strengths and weaknesses:

Strengths: Flexible design, adaptable to any language character set, avoids brute-force testing with non-regularity(BIGGEST STRENGTH bc not a 1-to-1 cipher),

Weaknesses: Once cracked, a new cipher need be created, as the cipher is neither self-morphing nor multi-layered.

Step 2: Setting Your Scale

For this cipher puzzle instructable, we are going to use my example for clarity, but keep in mind that ANY language character set can be used in ANY visual configuration.

My pyramid configuration presents us with an irregular count of the number of each letter at each level. So the first thing I did was record the number of each letter at each level. They proceed as follows:


While this is a regular progression(counting by 4s, except A), it sets us up for our next step, which throws all that out the window.

Let's check it out...

Step 3: Add/Multiply/Divide/Subtract Places

For this step we need to take the values that we found in the last step and perform an operation on the places of each value. For mine, I added the places of each value, each giving me a new sum. You don't have to add the places though, and can subtract, multiple, or divide them as well.

Let's see what I mean:

A:1 -> 1,
B:4 -> 4,
C:8 -> 8,
D:12 -> 3, because 1 + 2 = 3
E:16 -> 7, because 1 + 6 = 7
F:20 -> 2, because 2 + 0 = 2
G:24 -> 6, because 2 + 4 = 6
H:28 -> 10, because 2 + 8 = 10
I:32 -> 5, guessed it, 3 + 2 = 5

This leaves you with 3 vertical columns so far on your paper. Compare what your currently have with the example in the photograph.

The first column, your character set(the alphabet).
The second column, the scale you're using, based on your alphabet configuration.
The third column, the sum/difference/product/quotient of the values in the second column.

For the next step, we're going to take these new values we've arrived at to create our output transformations.

Step 4: Creating Our Output Transformation Alphabet

For the final step before encryption, we need to set each value we got from step 3 equal to its corresponding value from the original, regular character set(alphabet). For mine, this meant a few mini-steps using primarily the first(normal character set/alphabet) and third(sum) columns:

(the columns really make this easier, I highly recommend them)

We set the output transformation value to the original alphabet value indicated by our sum value.

A's sum value is 1.
The letter with an ordinal value of 1 in the original alphabet is A, so A is set to 'A'.

I's sum value is 5(remember, 3 + 2 = 5).
The letter with an ordinal value of 5 in the original alphabet is E, so I is set to 'E'.

R's sum value is 14(6 + 8 = 14).
The letter with an ordinal value of 14 in the original alphabet is N, so R is set to 'N'.

I chose some examples from different places to show you the steps without tying sequence to the process.
What you end up with is a 4-column cipher tool to encrypt your messages and bamboozle your friends and enemies alike.

The completed transformation list is visible in the picture.

Step 5: Encrypting Your Message

We are now all set to create a LEVEL 10 difficulty puzzle to crack.

With your cipher in hand, you can encrypt whatever message you'd like.

For mine, the original message was:
"Congratulations you cracked the uncrackable code"

The encrypted message is:

One of the first things to notice about this encryption is one of its greatest strengths.

Different plaintext letters can be represented by the same output transformation letter.

Why is this so powerful?
On a simple substitution cipher, once you figure out a letter, by any means, you can replace all occurrences of that letter with the original plaintext letter.

With this cipher, however the plaintext letters C, U, and L are ALL represented by the encrypted letter 'H'. This makes it that much harder to make progress in cracking the code.

A little trick you can do to make it even harder is remove the spaces between the words. That'll make it even harder on longer passages to use language structure strategies to guess certain words.

Step 6: Conclusion

I hope you have enjoyed my instructable on how to make


If you know someone who likes to crack codes, write them a secret message using this cipher and see if they can crack it. I'm sure it'll be a tough challenge for them.

Thanks for reading and have a great day.

Puzzles Speed Challenge

Participated in the
Puzzles Speed Challenge