Everyone loves a good murder mystery; whether it be tracking down the killer or getting away with the sordid deed yourself. Whatever your poison, there’s nothing quite like gathering around with friends and family to play one, be it be on-screen or around the table.
Whatever your preference, there are some fantastic tabletop games out there for people wanting to solve the latest mystery. So whether you’re looking for a quick party game of rooting out the traitorous werewolf amongst your group, or working cooperatively to go toe-to-toe with Sherlock in the latest Victorian London whodunit, here are some games to get you all around the table pointing fingers.
Updated by Luke Ackroyd on October 27, 2022: A game night cannot go wrong with a murder mystery board game. Murder mystery games are full of deduction and suspense as you attempt to uncover the truth and are always a lot of fun. The murder mystery genre has come a long way since the days of Clue, and there are a lot of new and exciting game mechanics to experience. The best murder mystery games out there have you feeling like a true genius detective. To capture this feeling, more murder mystery game suggestions have been added to this list of the best murder mystery board games ever. Be sure to try them all out when you get the chance. We’ve updated this article to include Amazon links so you can snap up your favourite murder mysteries!
16/16 Awkward Guests
In Awkward Guests, you take on the role of a detective tasked with figuring out who murdered Mr. Walton. To figure this out, you must investigate each room of the Walton Mansion, interrogate the suspects, and trade your clues with your fellow detectives. Awkward Guests feels like a more in-depth version of the classic Clue game. You feel like a true detective as you piece together a potential route to the crime scene, figure out motives, and even determine if there was an accomplice.
Awkward Guests is best played with the mobile app, which allows you to make your guesses without being spoilt with the answer if you are wrong. This allows everyone to keep playing without being left out. There are plenty of cases to solve, allowing you to put your investigation skills to the test time and time again.
15/16 Last Message
Last Message is all about discovering the identity of a killer before they manage to cover their tracks. There are many potential suspects, but fortunately, a witness is trying to point you in the right direction. One of you will take on the role of this witness and will only have four rounds of 30 seconds to draw and write as many clues as you can onto a whiteboard grid. You can be as obvious as you like about your hints, but before the detective players can see this board, the criminal gets to erase squares off the grid. This means that your friends only have half-visible clues to work with. Will they still be able to determine who the killer was?
Last Message is a unique, fast-paced take on the murder mystery genre. It is hectic and puzzling, with varying difficulty levels to ensure it is an even match for both the detectives and the murderer to win.
14/16 10′ To Kill
10′ To Kill is a wonderful hidden role game you can play in ten minutes. You all play as animals that also happen to be deadly assassins. You have blended into a crowd of 16 other people and need to track down your three targets. Can you kill all three targets without being caught by the police?
10′ To Kill can get intense as you move around the board, attempting to keep your true identity safe the entire time. You must be subtle with your kills, ensuring other potential suspects are nearby. You get to play a murderer and a detective simultaneously. You’ll question your friends’ every move as you narrow down who they might be. It is a game full of bluffs and double bluffs, and with such a short playtime, you’ll be setting up fresh rounds repeatedly.
13/16 Micro Macro: Crime City
Micro Macro: Crime City is the murder mystery version of Where’s Waldo. It is a cooperative investigation game in which you search a giant city map for clues. Working with your friends or family, you’ll retrace the steps of a murder victim, seeing what leads to their final moments. You might spot a potential suspect and follow them all over the city, determining their motivation and how they got away with the evil deed. It is so satisfying when you manage to crack the case.
Despite often being about murder, this is a family-friendly experience. The art style is cute, and the crime scenes are never gruesome. There aren’t just mysterious murders to solve, either. There are multiple cases to investigate, all with various difficulty levels. When you have made it through the base game, there is a standalone expansion called Full House that you can move on to next.
12/16 Betrayal At House On The Hill
Betrayal at House on the Hill is a spooky horror mystery game taking place in a haunted mansion, one that you are sure to explore with dread. This is essentially a tile-based tabletop game where you must piece together the mystery of the haunted mansion while avoiding ghosts and ominous presences.
In an interesting twist, one character will betray all the rest, which could spell doom and gloom for one or more of the party members. Clocking in at just around one hour, Betrayal at House on the Hill is on the shorter spectrum but is filled with plenty of mysterious moments. Will you make it through the dark and spooky night, or will the betrayal get the better of you?
11/16 Mystery Of The Abbey
Mystery of the Abbey is a classic murder mystery tabletop game that pays loving homage to Clue in that it’s a traditional whodunit game experience. The premise is that a monk at a medieval French abbey has been murdered, and it’s up to you and the other players to investigate, ask questions, gather evidence, and ultimately figure out who the culprit is.
The monks are separated into certain orders, with one specific card being hidden while the rest are distributed. It’s up to you to decide whether you want to divulge the truth you discover or if you want to take a “vow of silence” to hide the facts and clues. Mystery of the Abbey is sure to rack your brain and test your friendships as you decipher who the monk murderer is.
10/16 One Night Ultimate Werewolf
One Night Ultimate Werewolf is a fast-paced party game for 3-10 players that gives everyone a starring role in the latest village murder mystery, whether it be a concerned villager, a drunk, or a ravenous, murderous werewolf.
Each night a player is killed by a werewolf, and the town needs to decide who amongst them is responsible for the crime, working together to lynch the culprit and save the village. It’s a game anyone can play, being easily wrapped up in 5-10 minutes, and remains one of the tabletop communities’ most well-known and well-loved for a good reason.
9/16 Agatha Christie: Death On The Cards
For fans of Agatha Christie’s well-loved and well-read detective stories, look no further than Death On The Cards; a cooperative card game where you must work together to unmask the murderer that sits among you.
This is a social deduction game of strategy and deception, needing you to work together to uncover the traitors and make sure to keep your friends close, but enemies even closer. It features some classic Christie characters and conundrums, including Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple, and has seen rave reviews from players and critics alike.
8/16 Paranormal Detectives
Paranormal Detectives is a unique murder mystery party game. One person is murdered, and then they have to use their paranormal ghost abilities to make contact with the remaining living players and lead them to the culprit.
At the start of the game, the ghost receives a story card detailing their murder. The other players must then ask them open questions about the crime. The ghost can reply by arranging a hangman’s knot, playing specific tarot cards, or creating a word puzzle on the talking board. It’s a great party game to play with friends, sure to get you all around the table laughing, and is fantastic for those not too fond of ghosts and ghouls.
7/16 Mythos Tales
Finding yourselves in Lovecraft’s 1920s Arkham, you must uncover the mysteries and horrors hidden within newspapers, witness statements, and by visiting locations on the map you’ve been given.
This campaign-based storytelling game is perfect for fans of Lovecraft and those looking for a cooperative experience. Mythos Tales needs you to face your deepest fears whilst trying to keep your character’s sanity in check, all before the cultists awaken the Elder Gods and destroy the world. Just be careful not to take the wrong path, lest you end up lost in time and space.
6/16 Letters From Whitechapel
A game for 2-6 players; Letters From Whitechapel sees you enter a weary 1880s London plagued by the frightful deeds of Jack the Ripper, who is successfully evading police and murdering innocent women.
One person plays Jack and must take five victims without being caught in the act, while the others must work together as police detectives to locate him before it’s too late. With 199 circles on the board to frequent, Jack must follow ‘The Wretched’ as they move across London and take action whilst avoiding the police, lest they land on the same circle and catch him before his task is complete.
5/16 Deception: Murder In Hong Kong
A speedy game of deduction and deceit, as the title describes, Deception: Murder In Hong Kong tasks 4-12 investigators with solving a murder case. The only problem is that one of the investigators is the murderer at large!
Each investigator is given a key role depending on the number of players, be it Forensic Scientist, Investigator, Murderer, or Accomplice. It’s a battle between those looking to deduce the truth and those looking to deceive and mislead in an ultimate battle of wits. It’s seen as one of the best social deduction and bluffing games and is sure to have you and your friends racing back to the table to play again and again.
4/16 Mansions Of Madness: Second Edition
Mansions of Madness: Second Edition is a cooperative horror mystery game for 1-5 players that sees you exploring the haunted corridors of Arkham’s cursed mansions in a quest for answers.
You and the other players must choose one of eight investigators to play and select one of four scenarios to complete. Be careful to keep your sanity whilst collecting weapons, tools, and clues through puzzles and combat to survive the evil forces present and complete the necessary objectives to win. Just remember, it’ll take more than your mere survival to conquer the evils terrorizing THESE mansions.
Mysterium is a fantastic cooperative horror deduction game for small groups. Set in 1920s Scotland, the game sees you take on the role of mediums gathered by Mr. MacDowell to perform a seance for the ghost residing in his new home.
One of you takes the role of the ghost, communicating through ‘visions’ shown by illustrated cards given to the mediums, which they must then decipher to solve the mystery and ultimately lay the spirit to rest. You have seven hours (turns) to solve the ghost’s murder, with correct guesses leading the mediums on to guessing new parts in the case, such as the murder weapon used or the location where the crime occurred.
2/16 Chronicles Of Crime
A cooperative game of crime investigation played across a board, mobile app, and virtual reality headset. Chronicles of Crime sees you in the role of a detective as you analyze different crime scenes and stories to deduce what’s happened and catch the killer at large as quickly as possible.
By scanning QR codes, you can activate different clues and stories and use the VR glasses to immerse yourself in the crime scene and search for clues as if you were in the room yourself. It’s a fantastic game whether you’re playing with family or friends, with each scenario playing over an hour in length and plenty more to be downloaded off the online store without the need for additional purchases.
1/16 Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective
Get ready to put your detective and deduction skills against Sherlock as you walk Victorian London streets and investigate opium dens, Grizzly murder scenes, and phantom thefts.
You must work together to visit London locations, cross-examine witnesses, look for clues in the daily Times newspapers, and use your map to distinguish what’s gone on in the case. The goal is to put together the facts to reach a solution. It’s a challenge to your group’s mental ability and investigative skills. Each case takes around two hours to complete as you aim to take as few moves as possible to rival even Sherlock’s best deductions.
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