# Can you solve the three gods riddle? – Alex Gendler

Created by logician Raymond Smullyan and popularized by his colleague
George Boolos, this riddle has been called the hardest
logic puzzle ever. You and your team have crash-landed
on an ancient planet. The only way off is to appease
its three alien overlords, Tee, Eff, and Arr, by giving them the correct artifacts. Unfortunately, you don’t
know who is who. From an inscription, you learn that you
may ask three yes or no questions, each addressed to any one lord. Tee’s answers are always true, Eff’s are always false, and Arr’s answer is random each time. But there’s a problem. You’ve deciphered the language enough
to ask any question, but you don’t know which of the two
words ‘ozo’ and ‘ulu’ means yes and which means no. How can you still figure out
which alien is which? Pause here if you want
to figure it out for yourself! Answer in: 3 2 1 At first, this puzzle seems not just hard,
but downright impossible. What good is asking a question if you can neither understand the answer
nor know if it’s true? But it can be done. The key is to carefully formulate
our questions so that any answer
yields useful information. First of all, we can get around
to not knowing what ‘ozo’ and ‘ulu’ mean by including the words themselves
in the questions, and secondly, if we load each question
with a hypothetical condition, whether an alien is lying or not
won’t actually matter. To see how that could work, imagine our question
is whether two plus two is four. Instead of posing it directly, we say, “If I asked you whether
two plus two is four, would you answer ‘ozo’?” If ‘ozo’ means yes
and the overlord is Tee, it truthfully replies, “ozo.” But what if we ask Eff? Well, it would answer “ulu,”
or no to the embedded question, so it lies and replies ‘ozo’ instead. And if ‘ozo’ actually means no, then the answer to
our embedded question is ‘ulu,’ and both Tee and Eff still reply ‘ozo,’ each for their own reasons. If you’re confused about why this works, the reason involves logical structure. A double positive and a double negative
both result in a positive. Now, we can be sure that asking
either Tee or Eff a question put this way will yield ‘ozo’
if the hypothetical question is true and ‘ulu’ if it’s false regardless of what
each word actually means. Unfortunately,
this doesn’t help us with Arr. But don’t worry, we can use our first
question to identify one alien lord that definitely isn’t Arr. Then we can use the second to find out
whether its Tee or Eff. And once we know that, we can ask it to identify
one of the others. So let’s begin. Ask the alien in the middle, “If I asked you whether the overlord on
my left is Arr, would you answer ‘ozo’?” If the reply is ‘ozo,’
there are two possibilities. You could already be talking to Arr,
in which case the answer is meaningless. But otherwise, you’re talking to either
Tee or Eff, and as we know, getting ‘ozo’ from either one means
your hypothetical question was correct, and the left overlord is indeed Arr. Either way, you can be sure the alien
on the right is not Arr. Similarly, if the answer is ‘ulu,’ then you know the alien
on the left can’t be Arr. Now go to the overlord you’ve determined
the random possibility, either answer will
establish its identity. Now that you know whether its
answers are true or false, ask the same alien whether the center
overlord is Arr. The process of elimination will identify
repair your ship and you prepare for takeoff. Allowed one final question, you ask
Tee if it’s a long way to Earth, and he answers “ozo.” Too bad you still don’t know
what that means.

## 100 thoughts to “Can you solve the three gods riddle? – Alex Gendler”

1. MemeLORD 666 says:

Title: Can you solve the three gods riddle?
Me: no

2. Jiayi Li says:

1: the hypothetical queston
2-4: 3:11

3. yk29254 says:

I know a another solution to this riddel ,it will blow your mind

4. Suriya S says:

Tee -> T -> True
Eff -> F -> False
Arr -> R -> Random

5. Mihir Nagarkatti says:

Knows the entire language… except YES AND NO.

only happens in riddles

6. Nicola Ng says:

Ask the same question multiple times and the random one will change their answer?

7. Reema Bindayel says:

my social anxiety could never.

8. SunnySideUp says:

Me best stuck on alien planet

Me: I guess I’ll die now..

9. Dan Dirk says:

This riddle is good and all but it doesn't answer which artifact GOES to Tee Eff and Arr. Thus it cannot be solved….

10. SANE SSS says:

Just make them nod or shake their head I mean u said u know every other word just tell them to do that

11. Fa Di says:

I feel there is more than one way to solve this riddle.

12. Blcssom Rose says:

this was so easy for me

13. Gametron13 says:

14. Nala The Cat says:

I would just ask Tee are you an alien
If it says one of them I know it will be yes and then the other one must be no

15. shaurya nagpal says:

This one was easy

16. Cristian Hooper says:

Why the frick was there 4 questions

17. Pro Tier Tabletop says:

If Arr answers randomly ("Arr's answers are random each time) and you ask Arr this question, what if he answers with "Schmerkle" or "Quanglock" or some other random possibility? This language has only one term for yes and no? Random only means random between positive and negative?

It's not a HARD logic puzzle. It's a FLAWED logic puzzle.

18. Aki - Lucky says:

The zoom in to the realization you don't know what it means to the smiling face was hilarious

19. Lennon Morrison says:

No. No I cannot

20. J Libra says:

Oreo

21. Glimmer Cupcake says:

im coming back in six years to try understanding this. see you then.

22. Gavin davis says:

I like to pretend each season each has one person

23. Celina Varchausky says:

I can't understand the whole double positives and double negatives thing with the ozo and ulu scenario in the beginning. Here's my thought process:

If ozo means yes, and ulu means no:
if i were to ask you if 2+2=4, would you say ozo? Tee: ozo
same question, would you say ulu? Tee: ulu
same question, would you say ozo? Eff: ozo
same question, would you say ulu? Eff: ulu

If ozo means no, and ulu means yes:
if i were to ask you if 2+2=4, would you say ozo? Tee: ozo
same question, would you say ulu? Tee: ulu
same question, would you say ozo? Eff: ozo
same question, would you say ulu? Eff: yes

They said that if the scenario were true, they'd both say ozo, and if it were false, they'd both say ulu. I only found that true when ozo meant yes.
I know i'm wrong, I just don't understand why. What am I missing?

24. Random Chicken says:

Ozone vs. UwU

25. DrMoop says:

What if h the middle one is arr

26. haha haha says:

For the very last question, we know the trip back to Earth will be long, right?

27. Aglaitso says:

My brain: it's 2am go to sleep
Me: *watches the three gods riddle for the 5th time so I can understand the answer* No

I got it right,

29. Platelet -chan says:

Ozo means yes and ulu means no. It is similar to our language.

"Opo"

"Ulul"

30. gabriel braun says:

Seriously….? This is the hardest logic puzzle ever?

31. Fling Gonza says:

Life Hack: Threaten them with a gun to make them all say the truth.

32. Sid M says:

Who wants tacos?
Were the keys at?
And oh yea who's paying?

33. Monsterjam says:

whats the point of her asking them and solving a riddle if theres no problem….. also it makes no sense to ask that question because it could be that guy whos random…. bruh

34. Monsterjam says:

just use the translator from the hat riddle. or just destroy the alien and take their phone

35. SovietNepal says:

Alternatively, just ask them "If Ozo means yes, say Ozo, if Ozo means no, say Ulu."

36. Chevalier Macabre says:

T, F and R!

@ted-ed

Love it, but after all the logic, it feels like you have made one mistake at the end of this video.
Following the same logic as in the solution, Tee’s answer at the end would tell you, that it is indeed a long way to Earth. Disregarding the fact if OZO is yes or no.

38. vratant GUPTA says:

The riddle can be solved using 2 questions only.

39. Darcy Lennings says:

I dont remember this episode of Dora the Explorer

40. ING CIVIL UNI says:

41. Mini Minnow says:

Lol I thought I was smart when I did ' Einstein's Riddle ' but apparently not 🤣

42. Shivam Gupta says:

My solution:
3 artifacts and 3 aliens. So total 6 possible combinations to distribute them randomly.
Try any one of them and you have a 16.67% chance of getting it right. I like to gamble.

43. King Pin says:

Nice one

44. TuesdayMartesVR says:

Pick one of the thingys and randomly give it to one of them.
Odds are good enough for me.

45. Bastille 26 says:

Are we talking about aliens or girls because they are also confused on yes and no.

46. Swastik Ash says:

What if we could only ask one question to each Lord?

47. Zekzek OI says:

OMG I UNDERSTOOD THE QUESTION WRONG AND I WAS TRYING TO FIND WHICH ARTIFACT BELONGED TO WHICH BY ASKING THE GODS INDIVIDUALLY i wasted 40 minutes

48. Sleeping Bag says:

Girl: *masters alien language*

also forgets which is no and yes

49. Hey There! It's Rajat. says:

That's some no game no life, sora shiro stuff…!

50. Kaan Cakir says:

You know, that last fourth question can only mean that its a long way, right?

51. ZoomZam12 says:

i suppose after knowing who is tee and who is eff u can easily know learn what ulu and ozo mean

52. Esther Shin says:

I dont get it

53. Stephanie Coleman says:

Ooooh k

54. coffeehen says:

ask them if they're lying. it's a paradox, they've got no choice but to quit.

55. Yaeso says:

Guys i found it out.
To make it easy for you
Tee Eff Arr
Ok so You dont hv to guess the meaning of ozo and ulu. We only have to find tee or eff.
First ask the aliens a generic question thats a fact. Like. "If we crashed here answer ozo" since tee answer fact and eff false we dont have to worry about arr. Heres why. If 2 numbers of monsters answer ozo and one is ulu. The one who answered the ulu is surely eff. But if theres 2 ulu and 1 ozo the ozo is surely tee. After this you know either tee or eff you need to determine arr.
First scene is u found tee. Ask tee if arr is in the middle say ozo. If he say ulu then arr is in the right side as demonstrated on top. And when ozo in the middle is indeed arr. And eff is in the right.
2nd scene is u found eff, ask eff if arr is in the middle say ozo. When eff say ozo arr is in the right side and when ulu its in the middle.
And that took like 3 min of me thinking before watching the solution and after it took like 2 hrs lol

56. satish chandra sinha says:

I figured it out in 15 min no joke

57. Maria Zijp says:

ozo=yes

58. Maria Zijp says:

ulu=no

Well, you always could ask him "if I asked you whether it is a long way to Earth would you say OZO?" If TEE replies OZO then it is, indeed, regardless of the meaning , whereas if he replied ULU then it wouldn't definitely. a) If OZO is YES, there you have your answer. b) If OZO was NO, no problem! "If I asked you whether it is a long way to Earth would you say OZO/NO? If he replied OZO/NO, then he would NOT be saying that the Earth is NOT far away, which is the same as saying that the Earth is actually far away. Now, if ULU is NO, and therefore OZO is YES, we are in situation a) again. However, If ULU meant YES, then OZO would mean NO and we'd be in situation b).

61. Carolyn Conquest says:

Please stop making these comments. Some of them are rude. Thank you 😀

62. sumakit cjs says:

T F and R means true-false riddle

63. Da Real Proline4366 says:

So you basically made me think ozo means yes and ulu means no through a riddle

64. Abia Manzanares says:

If I were to ask one of the alien overlords: Do I have something in my left hand?

The Honest one would not answer right? because he only answers Honestly.

The Liar and Random, would answer Ozo or Ulu.

65. Alternate Ego says:

I SUMMON MY THREE EGYPTIAN GOD CARDS

66. Eleanor Dae says:

this one guy in my class can probably figure this out he literally can solve anything

67. moon Kim says:

you mastered the whole alien language but do not know yes and no!?

68. 강동석 says:

confused…

69. damn 1 says:

Is this really the hardest riddle of all time? Just ask them what your name is these is a then you can guarentee who is lying but the random and right alien would say your name correctly also the random alien has a chance of ratting himself out then you have 2 more chances of cathing the random alien out

70. Mihir Vivek says:

"Well Ozo but actually Ulu"

71. ButterMyCroissant 125 says:

What

72. Big K says:

My question woud be, "Hey Tee, are you an overlord?", the allien that answers would be Tee and whatever he answers would means yes, my second and last question would be, "Hey Eeef, are you an overlord?" the allien that answers would be Eef and whatever he answers woul mean no, and the other allien woud be Aarf, with no question for him. I addressed my questions to a specific allien, first one to Tee and second one to Eef and the answers have only yes or no answers

73. Z-Statistic says:

OwO and UwU?

I'll see myself out now

74. Shy Guy The Great says:

Bruh why is this in the myths

75. Annamalai Arunachalam says:

Ted-ed: if i asked you “did u solve the puzzle” would you say ozo
Me: ozo
😂

76. Jonny Apple Friend says:

I’ve watched this 10 times and I still don’t understand anything

77. GalaxZ -chan says:

don't crash land on the planet

78. Geraldine Gunawan says:

The hardest riddle from all riddle

79. Enixma 820 says:

How about I steal the artifacts and then leave

80. AwsumSauce says:

I guessed this.
Arr- R- Random.
Tee-T- True.
Eff- F- False.
Therefore…

81. napolien 1 says:

"You and your team have crashed in an ancient planet"

Shows a little girl and a dog

82. Jyostna Mishra says:

If you find this riddle seriously hard
then like here😉👇

83. ThatOneJalapenoKid says:

I FINALLY GET IT. All this time i have been irritated at the supposed answer to the riddle because it neglects to address the issue of asking ARR a question and unknowingly getting a useless answer. BUT I GET IT NOW. ive always wrongfully assumed ARR gives a random answer, but he DOESN'T. HE RANDOMLY PICKS BETWEEN THE TRUTH OR A LIE. Either of which will grant the same answer. Thats the important distinction.

84. rohan oniell says:

2 ways to win
Give it to them based on appreance I mean they look at em
2 verify you have green eyes

85. Sarita Dhruw says:

I will answer my teacher like this..

86. Sashamk Arun says:

If I can ask a question more than once .. can't I ask aar the same question multiple times and get different answers ..making the riddle easier….

87. Marcus Puglisi says:

Just lay them in a pile and see who picks what

88. Tu Phan says:

There’s a typo in the end! The bubble shows that’s it’s a hypothetical question but narrator asks a direct question.

89. -1 subs with no videos??? says:

4:38 Chuckles I’m in danger

90. Mihika Bajoria says:

Am i the only one who couldn't understand anything of this?

91. preach the poet says:

Depends if he knew what 2 plus two is

92. Whirling Dervich says:

Stopped midway, felt my brain about to explode….

93. Omar Enriquez says:

step 1:comfirm you have green eyes
step 2:leave

94. Lily Goedeke says:

Ask any of them, "If I asked Arr a question, would they answer Ozo/Ulu?" (either one will work) if they are Tee or Eff, they wont be able to answer truthfully or falsely, as Arr's answers are always random, so if they answer, they are Arr. if not, they are Tee or Eff. Thats my first step, i dont really know were to go from there.

95. Blue Earl says:

how can you know their language if you're just new to their planet??

96. william nebe says:

This is justbthe gatekeepers riddle with extra steps

97. PANAGIOTIS MILARAS says:

An ancient planet. Yes.

98. Shaunda Garcia says:

This answer is wrong. In the directions it said you can only ask your 3 questions to just one alien not 2.

99. Phyoomz says:

This is big brain thinking here. lol

100. Beata L says:

Ulu sounds like wooloo so ulu is yes