Code Hunting Games makes use of the Telegram instant messaging platform in order to offer an accessible and easy-to-use game experience, both for players and game administrators. The game is based on the classical “treasure hunt” scheme, with player teams challenging each other looking for specific places and solving puzzles. Each game location is identified by a square barcode (a so-called “QR Code”).

What you’ll need to play

The following requirements must be satisfied by the game administrator and by at least one person for each team (the so-called “team leader”).

Read below for additional details.


Any recent smartphone with GPS and a photocamera can be used to play the game. Code Hunting Games has been successfully tested on the following operating systems: iOS, Android, Windows Phone.

Telegram account

Telegram is an instant messaging system (just like WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger), freely available on the iTunes App Store, Google Play Store, and the Microsoft Store. In order to use Telegram you must first register and activate a user account, which can also be done for free through the application, by providing a working mobile phone number.

Only administrators and team leaders need a Telegram account. However, Code Hunting Games allows anybody to follow an active game through Telegram “public channels”, to which any Telegram user can subscribe to.

Data connection

The game is built on a conversation with a Telegram “bot”, which collects information and provides instructions to players. This communication requires an active data connection.

In some indoor places there might be a spotty or poor cell phone coverage: in this case it might be useful to check for the presence of Wi-Fi connections. Remember that communication with a Telegram bot is opportunistic: if you scan a QR Code or provide a puzzle solution while no data connection is available, Telegram will re-establish the communication as soon as possible.

Battery charge

Scanning QR Codes, using the GPS, and communicating with the bot requires power: make sure that the team leader’s smartphone is fully charged before starting the game. It may be useful to bring a portable USB charger with you.

QR Code scanner

A QR Code scanner is a mobile phone application that scans the barcodes used by the game to identify locations.

First, make sure whether your operating system supports QR Code scanning out of the box. Open the Camera app and point it towards the following QR Code. On iOS 11 or recent Android versions, a clickable link overlay should be displayed:

Test link

Once you click on the link, the Telegram app will be launched. Click on “start” in order to send the link to the bot, which will provide confirmation that the QR Code scanner works.

If your camera app does not work, you will need to install a QR Code scanner app. We suggest the following:

What you’ll need to create a game

Creating a game session (as an administrator) also requires to conduct a conversation with the Telegram bot. The following requirements must be satisfied:

We suggest to coat your QR Codes in plastic if you’re planning an outdoors game.