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Eric Bridge
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Our copy arrived and we finally got a chance to play it last night. Players were myself, my wife, and our 12 year old son, playing cooperatively. Everyone had the "homework assignment" during the afternoon of reading the case/clues and that day's newspaper. I was the official notetaker, my wife the official reader, and our son handled the directory.

DO NOT READ FURTHER IF YOU DON'T WANT SPOILERS ABOUT THE FIRST CASE.

The first case, The Munitions Magnate, is about the head of an arms company in town being shot and allegedly robbed. The first place we went to was the crime scene, Grant Arms. It was in the directory and easy to find. Then we followed the clues from there, eliminating other primary suspects like the Count Von Schulenberg (who I was convinced did it for most of the game), and the engineer on the project whose name escapes me right now. We did almost everything right, except we visited many more places than Holmes did. We ended up with 60 points.

Now for the part that got all 3 of us angry. Holmes only visited 4 places, but one of the 4 places he went to was a place that we WANTED to go to but were never told where it was! If you recall, Grant Arms had two locations - the one where the murder took place were its adminisrative offices. The actual factory where the guns were made, and where the murderer AND the engineer both worked, was on Devrell St. Except we were never given it's corrdinates to look it up! Now perhaps it is in there and we just missed it, but if the game does not say where it is then this is very frustrating, since you need those coordinates to find it in the case book. When we finally did find it only by scouring the map forever, we found SEVERAL paragraphs of information at that location.

Here is what we found in the case about the Devrell St plant. 1) It obviously said it was on Devrell St, 2) In the introduction the victim's brother says the street address is "12 Devrell St". So were we supposed to do something with just the 12 being mentioned? Surely the game designers don't intend people to analyze every street on the map until they find what they are looking for? Were we supposed to look at every 12 in all 5 districts? And for that matter, I had no reason to believe that the "12 Devrell St" address had anything whatsoever to do with its number on the map. This is because if you look at locations 11 and 13, they are not on Devrell St at all. And as for Holmes' personal address, he lives at 221B Baker St, but this is number 42 in his grid. So in other words we had no clue that the numbers on the map are supposedly (or OCCASIONALLY) linked with actual street addresses. Can you see why we were so frustrated?

Regarding the directory, we found nothing under "Devrell", nor is it listed in the businesses section at the back. Grant Arms is listed in both places, but this is only the crime scene. We just wanted the game, in some way, to tell us that the Devrell St plant is at 12SE so we could go there. Why does it need to be a secret where the other plant is? Holmes obviously knew where it was, and this is why he solved the case so quickly.

I am open to the possibility that the 12SE part is listed somewhere and we just missed it. If so, please tell us our error. But if this instead a deliberate ommision on the part of the authors, and there are more frustrating omisiions like this ahead of us, we frankly might not want to play anymore. Otherwise I enjoyed the game a lot. Please advise.

Sorry to ramble. Thanks for reading.
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Steven Cameron
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I used Google Maps to find it. It might be slightly immersion breaking, but then again, if I were actually a Londoner and was given a street address to go to....I'd probably still have to use Google Maps.

They had Google Maps in 1888, right?
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Eric Bridge
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I just did a quick scan of earlier BGG entries, and I see that we were not the only ones to be frustrated about this. It also says that in the German version, under Grant Arms, the directory lists BOTH addresses. Grrrrr. Now I suspect that this was a deliberate ruse to laugh at us English speaking folks

Seriously though, according to that other thread the consensus is that sometimes the game DOES expect you to search the map for a location. If so, then this is one part of the game that we will NOT enjoy. Hey, let's play "Where's Waldo?" for a while in the middle of the case! I thought the whole point of a directory is to list the important locations. And like I said, the game gives no clues that the "12" address mentioned in the case would correspond to the 12 on the map, since there some glaring exceptions to this elsewhere. Yeah, still frustrated
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Mariano Rico
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It is nowhere mentioned as coordinates, nor is in the directory. But like you said, you got the address, and if you take a close look you will see that the number of the street is the same as the numbered building in that street. Its actually the only numbered location in the street.

It was just a matter of taking the map and looking for the street, then go to paragraph 12 SE and voilà. The map, dont forget, is also another tool of your investigation. Sometimes you need to take away the boardgamer cap and think as Sherlock would in this game.

Elementary, my dear.
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Simon Blome
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The information can be found in the Directory under 'Grant Arms Co'.
The entry has two addresses and looks like this:

Grant Arms Co 5EC
- Deverell Street 12SE

I have the older German version (with 'Spiel des Jahres 1985' marker).
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Charlie Theel
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You have to be able to take punches to enjoy this game. Holmes will beat the living hell out of you. Smile with your broken teeth and split lip and lap up the blood. The experience is what this fight is about, not having your hand raised when the bell sounds.
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Eric Bridge
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Acererak wrote:
It is nowhere mentioned as coordinates, nor is in the directory. But like you said, you got the address, and if you take a close look you will see that the number of the street is the same as the numbered building in that street. Its actually the only numbered location in the street.

It was just a matter of taking the map and looking for the street, then go to paragraph 12 SE and voilà. The map, dont forget, is also another tool of your investigation. Sometimes you need to take away the boardgamer cap and think as Sherlock would in this game.

Elementary, my dear.


Yes, but this is not consistent. As I mentioned, 221B Baker St is actually location 42 on the map. Now perhaps Holmes' address is the one exception, but looking at the map you will see that 8-9-10-11, etc are not on the same streets, but just 1 "address number" apart. I just wish the rules had mentioned that the street addresses given in cases correspond to the numbered locations on the map. If it had done that then we WOULD have looked at all the 12s on the map. It furthermore still does not make any sense to have a Directory that does not have every important address listed in it. What is the point of a directory if it's not going to have something like a big, loud, grungy weapons plant inside it (a location that contains several paragraphs of valuable information).

I was so excited about this game, but if this is a preview of coming frustrations then I may need to get rid of it now. My wife and son were equally frustrated when Holmes announced that he had gone to the Devrell St plant and we were all shouting "We WANTED to go there!"

But I'm repeating myself now, so I'll stop. But I do kind of wish the reviews would have mentioned that sometimes you need to analyze the map for several minutes to find the place your looking for. I don't think many people will find this part very enjoyable.
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ebridge wrote:
Acererak wrote:
It is nowhere mentioned as coordinates, nor is in the directory. But like you said, you got the address, and if you take a close look you will see that the number of the street is the same as the numbered building in that street. Its actually the only numbered location in the street.

It was just a matter of taking the map and looking for the street, then go to paragraph 12 SE and voilà. The map, dont forget, is also another tool of your investigation. Sometimes you need to take away the boardgamer cap and think as Sherlock would in this game.

Elementary, my dear.


Yes, but this is not consistent. As I mentioned, 221B Baker St is actually location 42 on the map. Now perhaps Holmes' address is the one exception, but looking at the map you will see that 8-9-10-11, etc are not on the same streets, but just 1 "address number" apart. I just wish the rules had mentioned that the street addresses given in cases correspond to the numbered locations on the map. If it had done that then we WOULD have looked at all the 12s on the map. It furthermore still does not make any sense to have a Directory that does not have every important address listed in it. What is the point of a directory if it's not going to have something like a big, loud, grungy weapons plant inside it (a location that contains several paragraphs of valuable information).

I was so excited about this game, but if this is a preview of coming frustrations then I may need to get rid of it now. My wife and son were equally frustrated when Holmes announced that he had gone to the Devrell St plant and we were all shouting "We WANTED to go there!"

But I'm repeating myself now, so I'll stop. But I do kind of wish the reviews would have mentioned that sometimes you need to analyze the map for several minutes to find the place your looking for. I don't think many people will find this part very enjoyable.


Dont be so hasty with your frustration. This doesnt happen in all cases. In fact, I think this case is the only one to place a fundamental clue like this, if I recall correctly.

You can rely on the directory. Although I dont think a weapons factory falls under any activity mentioned there, on the other hand. Nor is a company or a persons address. So its absence from the directory makes sense to me.

This game is tricky, but is not unfair. Except to give Sherlock the winning hand everytime, of course. And except probably in case 3, which I believe has some mistakes.

But domt expect it to be a boardgame following concese rules or taking you on rails in every case, because all of them throw in something to force you away from those rails. In this case, it was hiding that clue in the map.


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Steven Cameron
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ebridge wrote:

But I'm repeating myself now, so I'll stop. But I do kind of wish the reviews would have mentioned that sometimes you need to analyze the map for several minutes to find the place your looking for. I don't think many people will find this part very enjoyable.


I wasn't joking about the Google Maps bit. Those street names are real street names. If you don't want to search for them on the map, you can grab your phone out and look them up.

Just pretend you've hailed a cab and you get to see where they take you.
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Eric Bridge
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Ubik Lives wrote:
ebridge wrote:

But I'm repeating myself now, so I'll stop. But I do kind of wish the reviews would have mentioned that sometimes you need to analyze the map for several minutes to find the place your looking for. I don't think many people will find this part very enjoyable.


I wasn't joking about the Google Maps bit. Those street names are real street names. If you don't want to search for them on the map, you can grab your phone out and look them up.

That is good to know that the streets have not changed in the last 125 years. We will consider using that shortcut next time. Thanks!
 
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Nick Stables
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Ubik Lives wrote:
I used Google Maps to find it. It might be slightly immersion breaking, but then again, if I were actually a Londoner and was given a street address to go to....I'd probably still have to use Google Maps.

They had Google Maps in 1888, right?


Likewise inspired by 21st Century Sherlock I googled for the street. However this has been discussed before with someone providing the clue:

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/article/15482457#15482457

See the 2nd entry with spoiler

Cheers
Nick
 
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Matt Jolly
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Acererak wrote:
It is nowhere mentioned as coordinates, nor is in the directory. But like you said, you got the address, and if you take a close look you will see that the number of the street is the same as the numbered building in that street. Its actually the only numbered location in the street.

It was just a matter of taking the map and looking for the street, then go to paragraph 12 SE and voilà. The map, dont forget, is also another tool of your investigation. Sometimes you need to take away the boardgamer cap and think as Sherlock would in this game.

Elementary, my dear.


+1 for this.

I am biased because I am a Londoner, but as soon as I realised that not every street in central London is on the map, when a street that is mentioned in the case is on the map, our group immediately look there to see how many numbered locations are on the street. Often there's only one, which is a big clue.... This is a deduction game after all.

If you don't know London so well, then some external help; Google Maps or an A-Z map would save time, but remember Sherlock himself didn't know every location in town, and using the equivalent of a gazetteer seems perfectly in theme.

Actually though, I warn you that if you found this frustrating, you may find one or two of the later cases worse; we found that even being told the answer and where Holmes visited, Holmes sometimes had to make huge leaps of imagination to get to his conclusions, with little or no evidence.

And my edition has several typos in locations, even of well known places, so an independent gazetteer can help. Worse, there are some simple mistranslations from French. There is one case (can't remember which I am afraid) where the word "death" is, if I remember correctly, consistently mistranslated in several entries. It took us a while to realise what had happened.

Hasn't stopped us playing and enjoying the game though. (We finished case 7 recently) We just also, when we are "wrong", search for evidence in Holmes' visited locations that our hypothesis is incorrect. If we can't find it, then we content ourselves with moral victory.

If you are a mystery fan and want to see a professional example of this, see http://www.amazon.co.uk/Who-Killed-Roger-Ackroyd-Murderer/dp... for a similar attempt on an Agatha Christie favourite!

Cheers,

Matt
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D Isaak
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Yes the game gets more difficult after the first case in our experience.

Don't expect to get quick solutions, to solve things with as few moves as Holmes, or to avoid the red herrings. But hopefully you won't be too tripped up by the typos (not many but a few).
 
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Dave Neale
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Yes, as others have said you will sometimes be frustrated by this game so you have to expect that to some extent. And as you point out, you are not explicitly told anywhere that the street numbers of locations correspond to their numbers on the map, but, with the exception of 221B Baker St, this is indeed the case. Therefore, finding 12 Deverell St is actually very easy - you just find the 12s and see which is on Deverell, and it takes about 20 seconds. If instead you look for the street name it will take quite a bit longer, but as someone else has pointed out there is no harm in using google maps.

I wouldn't look on this as a negative really - you wanted to go to a location, 12 Deverell St, because you knew useful clues might be there. You had the means of visiting that location at your disposal - i.e. finding it on the map. You could have done that fairly easily, especially as, if you did locate Deverell st, you'd have noticed there is only one building on it on the map, that it's a big building, and that it's number 12. That's a lot of hints that it has to be the factory at 12 Deverell Street. Therefore I'd imagine you agree that you could have worked out how to visit it? In which case I'd just see this as part of the game, and at least now you will know in future how to find places if they're not in the directory!

In later cases I think there are some other things like this where you have to think outside the box and not just along the standard routes the game has outlined in the rules, but, as in this instance, the solution is within your reach...


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I played this tonight and came to the same impasse. We just looked at all the 12s on the map and lo and behold, one was on Deverell Street. Seems like we weren't the only ones to do this, and it sure worked out.
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TheHaip wrote:
I played this tonight and came to the same impasse. We just looked at all the 12s on the map and lo and behold, one was on Deverell Street. Seems like we weren't the only ones to do this, and it sure worked out.

I recall getting there the exact same way.
 
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DaveyJJ wrote:
TheHaip wrote:
I played this tonight and came to the same impasse. We just looked at all the 12s on the map and lo and behold, one was on Deverell Street. Seems like we weren't the only ones to do this, and it sure worked out.

I recall getting there the exact same way.


Same here when my group played. I had used a similar method to figure out the location where one of the newspaper classified pointed us (which was a bit clearer, but the same basic method), and one of the other irregulars I was working with realized we could use that same method to find the factory.
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ebridge wrote:
I just wish the rules had mentioned that the street addresses given in cases correspond to the numbered locations on the map.


It actually does; which is how I thought to look it up on the map.

Under the section labeled "Contents" and then "Map of London" it talks about addresses and gives an example. "the address for Hyde Park is 95 NW (short form, used in the booklets or in the directory), or 95 Park Lane NW (long form including the street name, used in the journal).

They also mention that "the map will allow players.. to locate a specific place or verify an alibi".
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Eric Devir
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This tripped my group up as well.

We managed to solve it even without the visit to the factory. But not going there cost us by having to visit like 9 other leads to put the information together that simply going to 12SE would have given in one trip.

What really screwed us up though was Holmes visiting the Benson and Hedges company. That saved Holmes like 5 leads. We never even thought to go there...

All told, we answered all but one question correctly and scored:

2 POINTS!whistle

victory!
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Zaprobot wrote:

What really screwed us up though was Holmes visiting the Benson and Hedges company. That saved Holmes like 5 leads. We never even thought to go there...


Yah, it never occurred to us that B&H would have a list of their customers. I guess it might make sense in the context of the time period the game is set in but I'm used to the modern era where you buy things from stores and the manufacturers don't tend to know their end customers.
 
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One of my favorite parts of the game we played was when we were all talking about leads and where to go next and I was just enamoured with the directory. "This is so cool guys, there are jewelers and tailors you can visit and ... tobacconists! GUYS! BENSON & HEDGES BENSON & HEDGES!"

I felt accomplished.
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If you visit Holmes for advice, he asks you to go to B&H for some tobacco. Clue!
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I finally had a chance to try out the first case, and I thought this particular address was just a clever game mechanism. I immediately wanted to investigate the plant, and all I had to go on was 12 Deverell. I checked the directory and there was nothing. I looked at the case again, and there was no more info. Then I looked at the map, saw Deverell Street, saw there was a location 12 there, and looked it up. When I finally figured it out it was like the game saying, "hey, we gave you a bunch of tools, use ALL of them."
 
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gertbert wrote:
I finally had a chance to try out the first case, and I thought this particular address was just a clever game mechanism.


The problem wit that theory is that the it's only in certain versions. Other versions have the plant properly listed in the right spots.

Sometimes an error is just an error.
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Javier J
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not only I found adequate to be forced to use the map to find out about where the plant is,...in the old version it didn´t even say it was number 12!! It just mentioned the street...THAT is hard-core.
 
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