What is Shinteki?

The name Shinteki comes from a Japanese word that can mean “mental,” “physical,” or “psychological,” depending on the context. In our case, Shinteki represents all three. While mental challenges often take center stage, physical demands shouldn’t be overlooked. In a typical event, players should be willing and able to hike, climb, run, jump, or just about anything else. As the event progresses, psychological factors come into play as well: there may be unexpected twists, and maintaining a good working team dynamic through hours of competition is easier said than done.


While many players will naturally gravitate toward the unique challenges in a Shinteki event, in many ways it’s the locations that truly make the difference. These sites may range from the historic landmark to the sweeping vista to the simply bizarre reminder of man’s place in the world. Sometimes, the locations are intricately tied to the challenges themselves. At other times, they serve more as launching points for the imagination. Either way, you’ll come to appreciate your environment more than ever as you learn to see your surroundings in an entirely new way. Get out and explore!


Challenges in Shinteki can take on nearly any form, from a hidden envelope to a whisper in the dark. Many challenges are relatively straightforward: a puzzle to solve, a code to break. Others are more goal-oriented or oblique: a score to reach, a mystery to unravel. Sometimes, the real test is actually finding the challenge at the location—or realizing that you’ve already found it! You’ll never know exactly what to expect, so the best advice is to keep your eyes and your mind wide open, and to be ready for just about anything. For more insight, download our Rookie Handbook.

The Shinteki Team

Brent Brent Holman, Game Master - Even as a child, Brent’s love of puzzles, games and immersive activities knew no bounds. With a background in creative writing, he has been developing puzzle-based adventures since 1994. A formidable puzzler and relentless game-player, Brent oversees the challenges and story lines for Shinteki events.
Dave David Andre, Chief Technology Officer - David Andre is a PhD in Artificial Intelligence with an extensive background in stage and set design. In addition to serving as the main IT guy at Shinteki and dreaming up elaborate challenges for our events, David is a serial entrepreneur and is presently CEO and CTO of Cerebellum Capital.
Ian Ian Tullis, Puzzle Developer - Ian is a software engineer with an ill-planned background in chemistry, ecology, and classical Japanese poetry, making him the very model of a modern puzzle snob. He’s also convinced that his love of finding patterns will eventually turn him into John Nash circa the middle of A Beautiful Mind.
Jesse Jesse Dorogusker, Specialist - Simply put, Jesse builds smart things. For those who like a little more detail, Jesse is an electromechanical engineer who ran his own firm in San Francisco, built iOS accessories at Apple, and is now at Square.
Linda Linda Holman, Director of Adventure - Linda has a background in Applied Earth Science and Zoo Keeping. Her love of nature and unusual scenery come to the fore in her location scouting for Shinteki events. In addition, Linda develops many activity-based challenges and oversees event organization.
Martin Martin Reinfried, Gadget Guru - Martin is a long-time software engineer and entrepreneur. He was a founder of the search engine Excite and recently helped build Donna, a personal assistant app for the iPhone. At Shinteki, Martin helps with all things technological, from custom software to secure user accounts.
Reading Reading Maley, Expert - Reading Maley is an electrical engineer who presently works at a hardware startup designing audio and video circuits. A veritable jack-of-all-trades, he helps conceive and create challenges for Shinteki, specializing in large-scale and technical construction projects.