Bruce Hardie
Australia
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Mysterium was certainly the new hotness at PAX Australia. It was contantly out of the library and many, many copies were sold on the show floor. I had a role as one the Tabletop Teaching staff, this role is apparently unique among PAX organisations, we had the brief to teach people new and old games and for all 3 days the job was a total blast.

I ended up teaching a LOT of groups Mysterium, for a few hours I was setup and ready to go and inviting people to sit down and play, and the rest was roving the floor and finding someone poring over a manual and offering to help them get started. Which brings me to my first point;

1 - The manual is poor. It's not horrible, but even as someone who had played non English versions in the past, the clairvoyance caper was not intuitive to me or other teachers. Once we got it, it was easy to understand and teach but the manual does not make it easy. Neither does the manual give a good guide on how to set up. Labelling the components is a start, but show what completed setup looks like. 3 pages of color and background at the start is nice but, please, cut to the chase.

2 - The screen is a superb addition, as are the ghosts cards and the numbering of cards to make matching them up a work of moments rather than a chore. Well done there. Those additions alone make the English version the one to have.

3 - Clairvoyance is a non-essential addition. It does not make the game better. I understand there was a perception the end game prior to this release was not what it could be, but clairvoyance does not make it better in my opinion and this opinion was shared by many of the players I spoke with during the convention. The tokens to track it were tiny, fiddly and easily lost. No box in the library was able to keep a full set beyond day 2. It breaks away from the way people seem to naturally want to play it. Almost every group I encountered treated this as a collaborative puzzle solving experience and so betting that someone is wrong for your own personal gain is counter to this. It also encourages alpha player behaviour and gaming the system to progress yourself up the track. It punishes a player who is struggling to to 'connect' with the ghost by giving them less information in the final round hampering their ability to join in with the groups success or failure even more. A player who has only just got their 3 clues solved before the end of the game is effectively removed from participating in the end game. This did not seem to match up with the way people naturally played.

If you play this game in the spirit (pun intended) it seems to be intended (not a pun), then you are probably doing it wrong according to the rules. I started asking players if they wanted a fun experience to try or a proper rules run. If they wanted the former then I dropped clairvoyance completely and gave everyone 3 cards to view at the end, otherwise I gave them the full run down. Some players ended up experiencing both in different games and their feedback was that they preferred the game without clairvoyance.

Seems a shame to be house ruling something so early in it's release, but that is my recommendation to you all.
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Brian Brokaw
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Hillsboro
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How about revealing the final 3 cards one at a time to the entire group but after each card see if they pick the correct set? It might give the ghost and the group more satisfaction if they were able to pick successfully after only 2 or 1 card revealed.
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Dave Turcan
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Yup, after doing one round with clairvoyance, I decided to play the old way. I found it so damn odd. Everything you said is what I felt about the rule.

One gripe I have about the Ghost screen, are the card slot sizes, and I suppose some of the cards themselves. I would have liked it much more if all the cards were the same size. It can be important while giving clues. Not only that, but you can't use past edition cards in this screen as they don't "fit nicely". (you could still use just of center)

I also preferred the older art for the locations. I felt that they were more diverse compared to the new art.

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P. oeppel
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Unsure, what you mean....

The ghost cards are all the same size (character, location, item) and fit nicely into the screen. Why should this edition support card sizes of other editions (except that you prefer the art which obviously is a matter of taste). If you have this screen, you usually have matching cards as well (since you lost likely own the "correct" edition )
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Laura "lelo" D. Arrowsmith Deddens Gerard
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Pearland (near Houston)
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Great review.

I agree. It's a fantastic game. I'd recommend it to everyone.

However the rule-book is poor. And the clairvoyance thing is unnecessary.

The ghost screen is wonderful as are the numbering of the cards for easy setup.

* For the rule-book, the background info is great. In fact I wish there was more of it with info on the suspects. Who are they? Why are they in the house? Also a name for every card would be good too.

*However, I don't think there is a problem with needing to "cut to the chase." The front page gives the page number (5) for the rules and makes it clear that the first few pages (2-4) are background. Maybe it would be just a good if it was rules first and background 2nd but I like it the way it is.

* The setup is easy once you know what you are doing but the rule-book doesn't make it easy. The 2 page spread with a picture of the setup should help but it's too cluttered and I knew it was giving me a rundown of components but it took me a while to realize that it was the setup also.

* I wish the difficulty chart was on the last page so that I don't have to open the rule book every time I play to check it. Also Tajemnicze Domostwo had 4 difficulty levels; why change that? I also don't understand why the difficulty levels aren't consistent. Why isn't it just
Easy: 1 more card than number of psychics - 8 crows
Medium: 2 more cards than number of psychics - 3 crows
Hard: 3 more cards than number of psychics. - 1 crow
Extra Challenging: 4 more cards than number of psychics - 0 crows
Or play your choice of number of cards and your choice of number of crows to make your own difficulty level.
And why didn't they just give us 8 crows? Cost saving (I know), but it would have been nice.

* I didn't find the clairvoyance rules hard to understand just unnecessary. Some people like it so it's not a totally bad thing. But they could just make it an optional variant. That way for your first play you wouldn't even have to read that part of the rule book making learning the game that much easier. And the markers are definitely too small. I'm thinking of replacing mine with 8mm wooden cubes. But we don't play with them so maybe not. I put mine in a plastic zip-lock bag and stored them under the insert to help keep from losing them after I lost one and thankfully found it again.

Quote:
How about revealing the final 3 cards one at a time to the entire group but after each card see if they pick the correct set? It might give the ghost and the group more satisfaction if they were able to pick successfully after only 2 or 1 card revealed.


I like this idea. Does the ghost tell them yes/no after each guess/card and stop them when they get it right? Or do you reveal 1, guess, reveal 2, guess, reveal 3, final guess and then the ghost tells them if the final guess is correct for the win/loss? The first option helps you eliminate up to 2 options before the final guess making the game easier. The 2nd option just gives you kudos for getting it right sooner or a gosh-darn-it moment if an earlier guess was correct but you changed it by the end.

Quote:
you can't use past edition cards in this screen as they don't "fit nicely"


I agree, I have both versions. I per-ordered Mysterium (2015) and after playing it a few times ordered Tajemnicze Domostwo (2013) as a kind of expansion for more replayability as it has some different character, location, and item cards.

I knew the cards wouldn't be the same size. We have managed to use the larger Tajemnicze Domostwo cards in the screen at an angle but it would still be better if they were the same size: all large with a larger screen or all medium with the screen as is.

The card numbering is a great edition and I plan to sleeve my Tajemnicze Domostwo cards so that I can number them as well. I may also use sleeves to change the size of the cards so that both sets are the same size.

I saw someplace that the coming expansion Tajemnicze Domostwo: Ukryte Tropy will include a screen to fit the Tajemnicze Domostwo cards. I hope its true.

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Josh
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The rulebook is indeed very bad. If I hadn't played the old version before it would have been a major struggle to get even the basics right. Every rulebook needs a distinct section discussing setup. End of story.

I'm willing to try the clairvoyance thing again, but after two plays I don't think it's a positive change.
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Neil Evans
United States
Beaver
PA
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What do you think of the rule of no discussing the last set of clues? I've never played by the "old rules" but for me it's this that breaks the spirit more than anything else.
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Laura "lelo" D. Arrowsmith Deddens Gerard
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Pearland (near Houston)
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sammykhalifa wrote:
What do you think of the rule of no discussing the last set of clues? I've never played by the "old rules" but for me it's this that breaks the spirit more than anything else.


I don't care for it. Even if you use the clarivoyancy stuff, I prefer to discuss before each vote at the end. Much more fun.
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RIK FONTANA
United States
St. George
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WOW, I disagree so strongly that I wonder if the copy I received in the USA is different than what you are playing Down Under!

OK, the Clairvoyance counters are small and fiddly. We've played multiple games, but always in a home on a game table. I imagine at a library where things could get bounced around those components could get lost or such.
But to say that they add Alpha tendencys??? How??? I have never seen that in any of our games. In fact, a point I wish to STRESS for people reading this who have never played the game: one of the few negatives of gameplay could be that at the start of the round, the ghost is struggling to select a card or two to give to a psychic. Once he does this, the group will immediately start to focus on those visions. Until then, they could chat about personal things off-game. BECAUSE of the clairvoyance tokens, they have MORE reason to watch what others are doing and see if they agree or not! Plus, the level attained has a Direct influence on how many cards are used in the Epilogue.

The Manual is beautifully laid out, has loads of color graphics, and was very easy to understand. And it is full of examples of play! How anyone could be confused is beyond me. I am an older guy who can remember game rules in the 80's with almost NO graphics that left one totally confused. I cast no aspersions to the reviewer, but wonder if he is old enough to remember when there were no gorgeous, over-sided pages, large print, full color, game manuals.

This game is a total Gem! And I advise new players to use the rules as written.
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Robert Stewart
United Kingdom
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Rikolus wrote:
This game is a total Gem! And I advise new players to use the rules as written.


You mean keep giving vision cards to psychics who have collected all three of their cards? I guess new players might need the advantage of being able to cycle extra cards?
 
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Laura "lelo" D. Arrowsmith Deddens Gerard
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rmsgrey wrote:
Rikolus wrote:
This game is a total Gem! And I advise new players to use the rules as written.


You mean keep giving vision cards to psychics who have collected all three of their cards? I guess new players might need the advantage of being able to cycle extra cards?


I think s/he means to use clairvoyancy rules as some people suggest that you leave them out.
 
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Vexille Voxhalyn
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Rikolus wrote:


The Manual is beautifully laid out, has loads of color graphics, and was very easy to understand. And it is full of examples of play! How anyone could be confused is beyond me. I am an older guy who can remember game rules in the 80's with almost NO graphics that left one totally confused. I cast no aspersions to the reviewer, but wonder if he is old enough to remember when there were no gorgeous, over-sided pages, large print, full color, game manuals.

This game is a total Gem! And I advise new players to use the rules as written.


I'm guessing you're European?
 
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Jason
United States
Brooklyn Center
Minnesota
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Vexille wrote:
Rikolus wrote:


The Manual is beautifully laid out, has loads of color graphics, and was very easy to understand. And it is full of examples of play! How anyone could be confused is beyond me. I am an older guy who can remember game rules in the 80's with almost NO graphics that left one totally confused. I cast no aspersions to the reviewer, but wonder if he is old enough to remember when there were no gorgeous, over-sided pages, large print, full color, game manuals.

This game is a total Gem! And I advise new players to use the rules as written.


I'm guessing you're European?


I think you got the wrong vision cards.
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Bob T
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Only played it twice so far but I agree about the Clairvoyancy stuff. Everything in the game is beautiful except for those little arrow tokens.

I think it'd be better as a group track. Everyone progresses along the track equally so everyone gets to see however many of the 3 Vision cards are available. It would mean sharing the +/- tokens so you'd have to use them carefully, maybe only have 4 to split among all the players.

The way Clairvoyancy works in the rules seems more geared towards competitive play... Which would actually be a good variant- imagine all the Psychics bickering to see who's the best! It seems in character with some of the artwork.

Oh and the only thing that really confused me in the Manual was how to determine the real Culprit at the end. The Culprit tokens are kinda glossed over in the rules. The booklet could really use an Index.
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John Briscoe
United States
Washington
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Just got this game and am really excited about playing it for the first time this weekend.

I think I have a good handle on all the rules and procedures, but there is one thing that confuses me. I'm hoping someone can enlighten me and I hope I am not just missing the obvious answer to this question.

Why does the clairvoyancy track and the epilogue progress board separate?

I don't see a reason for it. All illustrations of these pieces in the rule book show them together. I have watched how to play videos, and play sessions on you tube, and these pieces are still always shown together.

The fact that the game designer chose to cut the pieces and make them seperatable plays on my paranoia that I am missing something I should know about.

As best I can tell, the analogue progress board is identical on both sides, so I can't see the answer being that it needs to be able to be flipped independently of the clairvoyancy track for any reason.

Anyone able to enlighten me here?
 
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Magic Pink
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We had no problem with the rules or Clairvoyance. We thought it was a pretty neat system and definitely improved the game and the rules were very easy to understand.

The counters are neither small nor fiddly and if your players are losing them then they're careless clods. Besides, losing parts to a game is a 100% certainty at a convention especially if it's played dozens of times.

The only thing we didn't like was the terms for components, they were far too similar.
 
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Marina SC
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I have not played without the clairvoyancy track yet, but in my mind it improves the game because it cuts down on alpha-gamer syndrome (don't like someone's guess? Just put an X token down and stop arguing) and helps keep people engaged even when they finish guessing their own cards. However, I can see why in a convention atmosphere where you need to teach a lot, or with casual gamers, it could be omitted for the sake of simplicity
(I am also a bit of a competitive gamer, so perhaps I also like a little element of that, even in co-ops! I guess it really depends on the group playing)


Weez65 wrote:


As best I can tell, the analogue progress board is identical on both sides, so I can't see the answer being that it needs to be able to be flipped independently of the clairvoyancy track for any reason.

Anyone able to enlighten me here?

The tracks are different: one side is for 3 or 4 psychics, the other side is for 5 or 6... you'll notice that on the 5/6 side, a psychic must have more clairvoyancy points in order to see all 3 clues. I agree it's not that readily visible, but you can find this in the rules on page 7 in the setup diagram
 
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John Briscoe
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Thnx for trying to help Marina but you misunderstood which piece I was saying is identical.

When the game is brand new and you punch out the piece from their cardboard sheet, the clairvoyancy track and the "Analog progress board" ( as named by the instruction manual.)are nestled inside each other. Like they are spooning.

But they have been cut separately and easily remove from one another. You are speaking of the clairvoyancy track and yes, I did notice that the two sides are different. This is not the case with the analog progress board. It is identical on both sides. I'm speaking of the little board under the clairvoyancy track arch. The board you place the final answer chit on.

Check your game, if it's like mine these two pieces are cut seperatley and I'm just wondering if I'm missing something as to why they are. I have not seen a single illustration that does not show them nestled inside each other, so I don't understand why they cut them seperatley.

Just asking the community if they have any idea why it was designed like this so I know Im not missing something.

Thank you for taking the time to try and help though. :-)
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P. oeppel
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For two and three players,you don't use the clairvoyance track. So being separate,you can leave it in the box.
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John Briscoe
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Ahhh. I had not thought of this. This is exactly why I asked. It just didn't seem like they would bother to design the cut between the two pieces for no reason.

Thank you very much Oeppei! You have snatched the itch this was causing in my mind. Appreciated. :-)
 
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