Beyond the


2023-2024 Problem Synopses


Odyssey of the Mind 2023-2024 Problem Synopsis

Every year, Odyssey of the Mind releases five competitive Long-Term Problems and one non-competitive Primary problem for teams to choose from. Problem synopses are available for everyone to whet their appetites for each creative challenge. Full problems become available in late August for those teams who have purchased memberships. Here are this season’s synopses.

Problem 1: Drive-in Movie

OM teams get the best seat in the house as they visit a drive-in and even become part of the movie being played! In this problem, teams will design, build, and run a vehicle with a team-created rider that travels to a drive-in theater. In the performance, the movie takes place all around the vehicle when suddenly a team-created special effect occurs on the vehicle that makes it seem to become part of the action! It will include a lead actor character along with all the fun that comes with this nostalgic outdoor movie experience.

Problem 2: AI Tech-No-Art

They say beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but what if the beholder is — a robot? In this problem, OM teams will design, build, and operate an Artificial Intelligence Tech-NO-Art device that determines if a work of art is beautiful or not. It will dismantle a work of art that it decides is not beautiful to create a new work of art it believes is beautiful. The humorous performance will also include an artist character that stands up for their work of art, sound effects, and team-created artwork.

Problem 3: Classics… Opening Night Antics

There is a saying in the theatre that no matter what happens during a performance, the show must go on. The same is true in OM! For this problem, teams will portray the Opening Night of a play based on a classic story. The Opening Night performance will not go as planned and will include a set malfunction, unexpected sound effects, and a theater critic. Despite the Opening Night Antics, the show is a success!

Problem 4: Deep Space Structure

The universe is full of mysteries we hope to discover and some we may not want to discover! In this problem, teams unravel an original mystery by portraying a balsa wood structure discovered in deep space. The structure will be examined, tested, interviewed, and observed. The performance will include an actual balsa wood and glue structure that is tested to balance and support weight, a character portraying the discovered deep space structure, and the scientists studying it.

Problem 5: Rocking World Detour

Are you ready to rock? Here is your opportunity! In this problem, OM teams will create a performance about a rock band on tour. Things get derailed in a very Odyssey way — while playing a song, the band is transported to an unexpected location. The band members must figure out how to use music to get them back on their tour. The performance will also include band merchandise and original hairstyles. Sponsored by ARM & HAMMER.