I picked up Alibi on the way home from work at our FLGS on Friday afternoon. I had been thinking of getting this game for several months, but never did buy it. Next week my brother’s families and our family are getting together for a vacation and when we get together we play some type of party game. I figured that this was a perfectly good reason to buy a new game or at least that is how I was going to explain it to my wife.
After getting home and reading a little more about Alibi on the BGG, I noticed a typo on the Record Sheet was mentioned. Sure enough Rope and Piano Wire had the wrong labels. After eating dinner and creating new record sheets, with the correct labels and pictures for Rope and Piano Wire, I talked my wife into playing a 3 player game with our son and me. Everybody was a little leery of learning a new game, but I convinced them that they would have fun and that it would be quick.
I shuffled each group of cards and pulled out a suspect, place, weapon & emotion card and set them in the box. Then I shuffled all 4 groups together and dealt them out to the three of us. The first game was a learning/practice game so I did not keep very good notes on what was happening, for this session report. I think we played about 8 or 9 rounds and I thought I had it figured out, so I made the 1st accusation and I got spanked. After everybody wrote down their: Who, What, Where, When and Why, I stated my accusation and my wife and son started laughing. I knew I was in trouble. Lets just say after all points and penalties were totaled up I ended up with 9 points, my son had 44 and my wife had 50. She thought the game was great!!
Well, it was fairly easy to talk them into another game. They both did really well in the last game and were ready to lay the smack down on me again. This speaks a lot about the fun factor because it was past when my wife usually goes to bed and she was willing to play another game. The cards were sorted and shuffled and a new suspect, place, weapon and motive were picked. The rest of the cards were shuffled together, dealt out and we were off on our next mystery.
Right off the bat my son reveals that it did not happen on the boat or the shore and I revealed that the motive was not fame. Through questions asked in the 1st round everybody figures out that it did not happen in the house. Everybody then gives the person to the left 1 card and we get ready for round 2. This round of questions all involve a Gun and the gun is eliminated as a weapon. Now everybody gives the player to the left 2 cards and round 3 begins.
I was beginning to think that we were all going to ask the same questions every round but during the 3rd and 4th rounds different questions are asked by each player. The 5th round sees a resurgence of questions about one thing and poison is eliminated as a weapon. During the 6th round different questions are asked about different suspects. My son eliminates choking and a fake death as the causes of death and my wife eliminates Slim Slant as a suspect and a senseless death as the motive by revealing the sets.
I have 3 full sets in my hand; suspects Dr. Sam Salt and Mona Byrd and all of the auto location cards. Although I am feeling a little behind with only 7 points, my son has 20 and my wife has 9, I decide not to reveal them for the 9 points and keep them to myself. During the next couple of turns I end up passing some of these cards from the complete sets, to my son because I do not want to give him other cards I have had since the beginning.
Round 7 is another round about only 1 thing, Carla Mansion in this case and she is pretty much eliminated. The next round is another round of different questions. I have it figured out for sure that the location is the Alleyway In Town and the weapon was a Butchers Cleaver. After my queston in round 8, I finally have the suspect narrowed down to 1 person, Murray Agent. During my turn, in round 9, I will make my accusation, about who killed Brenda, where and with what.
Then disaster strikes, my wife gives me the 2 Murray Agent cards I did not have. He could not be the suspect. She saves me from making a false accusation but I had everybody else crossed off as suspects. I frantically go over my list and try to figure out where I screwed up. Then I see where I made a questionable mark by Cookie Carpenter, she has to be the one. It is my wife’s turn to start the questioning and then when it is my turn I make my accusation. Cookie Carpenter killed Brenda in the alleyway in town with a butcher’s cleaver. The motive I was not sure about but I had no boxes marked off for Love and only one left for Money (big contract). I said she did it for love.... and I was wrong. I would have been better off saying nothing for a motive (I will remember that next time).
The final score was: my son had 26 points and my wife and I each had 30. My guess about the motive cost me 10 points and if I had not guessed on the motive I would have had 40 points and would have won. In our, after game, discussion I found out that my not revealing that, Dr. Sam Salt and Mona Byrd did not do it, kept my son from figuring out the suspect. Also I hung onto the Studio – On Set card the whole game and my wife and son both thought that was the location (that cost each of them 8 points).
It took us about 2 hours to play thru 2 games but it did not seem like it. Everybody had a great time and there was much discussion about who figured out what and when after the game. I am looking forward to playing Alibi with more players in the near future.