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Subject: Mystery/Detective games rss

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Ryan Strand
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Hey. I like detective/murder mystery type books a lot and would like to find some games in the same genre. The problem is, it seems almost every game in the genre falls into the Clue style deduction gameplay. They may polish it up a bit to be better than Clue, but it still seems to come down to that "pick a secret card, figure it out by process of elimination" gameplay. I am looking for something that either does not contain that element, or if those don't exist, games that manage to use it the best to make the game strategic.

Now, I have not played most of the games in this genre mainly because I am relatively new to the hobby, but also because I assume the deduction gameplay will be just like all the others. So, am I wrong about this? Do some of the Clue-style deduction games have enough quality strategy to overcome a game mechanic I consider weak? Or are they mostly the same game spun in a slightly different way?

Do you know any good games that have more unique mechanics?

I know about Mr. Jack and plan to pick it up because while it has typical deduction gameplay, it seems the most unique of the bunch.

I am also looking at Mystery of the Abbey because I've heard good things about it, but I am not sure if it unique or strategical enough.

Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective: The Thames Murders & Other Cases sounds like a cool solo game, but not really something I would play with my typical groups of 2-4.

I appreciate any opinions on games I haven't thought of or comments on the games I mentioned. Thanks!
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One game that comes immediately to mind is Fury of Dracula (second edition). While it is not exactly a detective game, it is a very good deduction game that certainly has some strategic depth. Theme-wise it is quite engaging.

Mystery of the Abbey is not particularly deep, but despite some people claiming it is pure chaos / luck, it does have strategic elements. It's a Bruno Faidutti game, so there is an amount of chaos involved. Bottom line - it is an incredibly fun game - recommended!

Mr. Jack is an ok game as well, but after some plays it becomes apparent that it's "only" an abstract game. The detective theme is quite thin. Still, not a bad buy I guess.
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Jorge Arroyo
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I'll still recommend Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective. While maybe not ideal for a group of 4, it's perfect for a couple of players, and the cases are HARD... It's a very clever game.

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Pete Belli
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Electronic Talking Mystery Mansion might be interesting.



You can usually find copies of the game listed on eBay.
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Ryan Strand
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-Fury of Dracula. This is near the top of my wishlist but for some reason I hadn't even thought of it in this context! I guess I spent too much time thinking about it from the perspective of Dracula. Now I just want it even more!

-Sleuth. Cheap and rated well, so worth checking out. But it seems very similar(except for the ratings) to Alibi which I picked up before I knew about BGG, but haven't played yet.

-Sherlock. I think I will get this at some point, but it definitely feels like something I'll do alone.
 
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Gordon Watson
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Mystery of the Abbey I would say falls into your category of being like Clue but polished up a bit. It's a hidden card which you work out by a process of elimination - albeit a significantly more chaotic 'process' than that of Clue.

I would concur with Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective: The Thames Murders & Other Cases and Sleuth being as close as it gets for a proper crime deduction game. I would also agree with the above that Fury of Dracula (second edition) and Mr. Jack are good deductive games although not crime solving.

I think the definitive detective/murder-mystery boardgame remains to be invented.
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Randy Cox
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Scotland Yard is the granddaddy hide-n-seek/deduction game. It's quite good with 2 players and even with 5.

I also like Timbuktu quite a bit. It's got some memory elements, but that's part of its charm. Of course, you could dumb it down and allow note taking, but that makes it more like homework than like a game. And after all, the game's the thing.

Then, there are all the How to Host a Murder style games to consider. Some consider those to be party and role playing games. But at their heart, they are certainly deduction games (with lots of chrome).
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Charles A. Davis
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Code 777, Deduce or Die, and Black Vienna are all good deduction games though they are basically card games with no mystery chrome.
Jack the Ripper is a very old game that is excellent as a 2 player.
Garibaldi and Ghost Chase are different takes on the Scotland Yard theme.
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Robert Washington

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Hunting Party does start with CLUE-style deduction, but then

- adds in the hiring of mercenaries to form parties in order to go on clue-deducing 'expeditions'
- requires some of the cruelest auction mechanics I've ever sene to get them
- adds in the interacting of the merc's special abilities
- and then ynaks the rug out by making who earns the most cash the victory condition, thus making the solving of the mystery ('defeating The Darkness') just the way the game ends.

AIA, I think it's pretty cool.
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Alan Monroe
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strandiam wrote:
Do you know any good games that have more unique mechanics?


Inkognito turns Clue into a partnership game - and you don't know who your partner is! A must-play for Clue lovers.
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Ryan Strand
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It seems that the verdict is bad on games without standard process of elimination gameplay. :(

Thank you for all the suggestions. I am looking into each game and hopefully i will find one that shines for me.

Thanks!
 
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Benny Sperling
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I highly recommend Mystery at the Abbey, just picked that one up. Its like a more in-depth clue.

Not sure if you are into Batman, but there is a batman board game call Batman Gotham City Mysteries. I'm going to pick that up on Monday. I found a source who is selling off board games at $5 each. If you want, I can snag a second copy from him, just pay me for it and the shipping.
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Stephen Tavener
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Haven't seen Old Town or The Mysteries of Peking mentioned yet. I'll also be cheeky and mention Mutton.

Also, you may want to check out this list - all games in the BGG database with a category of deduction, sorted by rank:
http://www.boardgamegeek.com/browser.php?itemtype=game&sortb...
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