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Subject: A Detective Board Game: "deduction" is important! rss

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Darian Tucker
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I'm looking for a board game that really uses your powers of deduction. Any recommendations? What about Letters from Whitechapel? Opinions!
 
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Darian Tucker
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Re: detective boardgame
My father wrote wrote:
I'm looking for a board game that really uses your powers of deduction. Any recommendations? What about Letters from Whitechapel? Opinions!


Sorry, my father decided to use my account. This is the best he had in regards to what he is looking for. Any responses will be appreciated.
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Was George Orwell an Optimist?
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It's not for everyone, but I think Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective: The Thames Murders & Other Cases is the cadillac of deduction games.
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Darian Tucker
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Sphere wrote:
It's not for everyone, but I think Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective: The Thames Murders & Other Cases is the cadillac of deduction games.


Indeed, Sphere. That's one my father already owns and loves to play. He has misplaced it, though, and I am assuming is looking for a more modern, in-print game to replace it with.
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Bryan Lane
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I rather enjoyed Sleuth, but I guess that's even older.
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Darian Tucker
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I suppose old doesn't matter as long as it can be acquired for a decent price. Basically, he's in love with the idea of Letters from Whitechapel but can't bring himself to spend $100 on it simply because its OoP.
 
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James
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Hi, Darian. I've been on a similar hunt myself as many of the well known titles seem to have a flaw which concerns me. I can't offer much first hand experience, but I'll pass on what I've noticed in my hunting for what it's worth. Maybe others can comment on them.

Of pure deduction games out there, I've heard that Mystery Express works well. I haven't pulled the trigger on it as the theme doesn't grab me and I hear it can run long. It seems that Mystery of the Abbey is unlikely to be reprinted any time soon by the same company, but also ran long (and was too chaotic) for some.

I've heard that Letters from Whitechapel is imbalanced, but, again, I have no first hand experience. The other Scotland Yard-like game, is, of course, Fury of Dracula (second edition), which seems to polarize people. It's yet another title that has been said to run long (!) and potentially involve some frustrating gameplay situations.

The only deduction game I have actually played and can recommend to you is Mr. Jack. It seems on one level to be a puzzle game with some bluffing, but deduction is also an important element. What's more, it's fun, easy to learn and plays quickly. The game can deepen also between experienced players.

I'll be hoping along with you that Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective: The Thames Murders & Other Cases gets that English reprint someday!
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Kelly Bass
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Maybe check into these:
Confusion: Espionage and Deception in the Cold War
Code 777
The Resistance

 
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Lori
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Darian, how important is it that it be a board game, as opposed to something that's more of a card game?
 
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Mathue Faulkner
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SparkingConduit wrote:
I suppose old doesn't matter as long as it can be acquired for a decent price. Basically, he's in love with the idea of Letters from Whitechapel but can't bring himself to spend $100 on it simply because its OoP.

http://boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/104623/making-room-for-my-...

Item #9
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Scott Roberts
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Take a look at 221B Baker Street: The Master Detective Game and 221B Baker St.: Sherlock Holmes & the Time Machine

if you want something fast (20 mins or so), take a look at Queen's Ransom

And for head to head, take a look at Mr. Jack
 
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Darren M
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I'd agree that both Mr Jack and Fury of Dracula would be great choices. Both are very good games in the deduction genre and you should get a good experience from both. Of course Mr Jack is 2 player so that is out if you are looking for a 3+ player game.

Another I'd look at is The Resistance. Hard to find a better deduction/social game than that and it's a very inexpensive game as well... great bang for the buck value if it ends up being something that you really like.
 
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Was George Orwell an Optimist?
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scottandkimr wrote:

I suspect that someone who is a fan of Consulting Detective might find 221B Baker Street too simplistic to be satisfying. They are superficially similar, but Consulting Detective is deeper and the clues more meaningful by at least an order of magnitude.
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Darian Tucker
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ellephai wrote:
Darian, how important is it that it be a board game, as opposed to something that's more of a card game?


Not terribly. My dad is more worried about using his brain than the actual components of the game. It's funny; he likes 18XX, but thinks Brass is too complex. He says he's not a fan of card games because they're too simple, but what I think he really means by that is, "I have to be burning my brain each turn or I get bored." I am much the same way.
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Greg Aleknevicus
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SparkingConduit wrote:
"I have to be burning my brain each turn or I get bored."

You really want to be looking at:

Black Vienna
Sleuth
Deduce or Die

The theme of each is quite arbitrary, but the deduction and brain-burning aspect of each is very high.
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Kevin B. Smith
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NCIS: The Board Game is surprisingly good. Not perfect, but my wife and I played through our first case, and it did feel like a TV detective show. We couldn't interview everyone, so we had to decide where to spend our efforts based on the information we had already collected. It would be fine solitaire, or can be played co-op. It *might* be too easy to solve the cases. Like I said, we have only played it once so far. We were 75% sure we were arresting the right suspect (and we did), but now that we know how the clues are written, next time might be more obvious. We got the game for $6 and at that price it was well worth it.

Orient Express is another one we enjoy. It's intended to be played competitively, but we have house-ruled it into a co-op. The clues are less thematic than NCIS, but from what I have read are more thematic than 221 Baker St. Note that there are several editions of at least 2 similarly-named games, so make sure you're getting the one that you want.

And if he isn't finished with Consulting Detective yet, by all means get another copy.

Mr. Jack is a chaotic/thinky/bluffing cat-and-mouse game. To me, it's a game about moving your pieces around, and the "deduction" is really just to score how well you did at that. I was going to recommend against it based on the original post, but if he really likes brain burn and other sorts of games, it could definitely work.
 
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I highly recommend Letters from Whitechapel. If your dad doesn't want to spend the money on the previous edition and can wait a while, it's currently being worked on for re-release this year.

http://boardgamegeek.com/thread/715726/letters-from-whitecha...
 
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Lori
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greg wrote:
SparkingConduit wrote:
"I have to be burning my brain each turn or I get bored."

You really want to be looking at:

Black Vienna
Sleuth
Deduce or Die

The theme of each is quite arbitrary, but the deduction and brain-burning aspect of each is very high.


I could not agree more with this. These are the very games I had in mind when I asked about board vs. card. Sleuth is pure essence of deduction. It has the least downtime of any game I know; you're processing a continuous stream of information. Deduce or Die is very similar but adds another layer of complexity. Also, it's a print-and-play, so available very economically. I got an Artscow deck and am very happy with it. Black Vienna is good stuff in the same genre, and it has an excellent (turn-based) online implementation that you might like to try.
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meepleonboard
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I urge you to check out Orient Express if you can find a copy. This is a genuine game of deduction where a murder has been committed and you travel around the train piecing together clues from the various suspects and train staff. Each case is entirely different, but the downside it that it only comes with 10 cases, although more are available from the publishers.
 
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