Wow. I’d been waiting for play this game for a looooong time….okay ever since I found it after watching Sherlock, but still! I was so restrained, this game arrived weeks ago and I’ve been chomping at the bit to get going with this.
Let me be clear. This is not a Sherlock game. It is a Sherlock Holmes game. Do you follow? It is Arthur Conan Doyle style. The artwork and game itself is fitting with the old telling of the detective. Not Cumberbatch’s Sherlock. There are no laptops or mind palaces. So far there hasn’t been mention of complex military operations experimenting on people. It’s good old fashioned murder.
Each game you play you take one card for your group of wannabe detectives. This card sets the scene. Someone has been murdered. Something has been stolen. Find out who, with what, and why by collecting clues around the different locations on the board. You can go anywhere you like, either following your fellow detectives or taking a wander in a different direction with hopes of discovering an obscure clue to put you ahead of the rest.
First Time Playing:
I’m not going to lie. It is essentially when you break it down, a more complicated version of Cluedo!
But. But. It is different in the sense that you aren’t just methodically deducting what cards your other players are using or interpreting their questions, like in Cluedo. The motive does add that extra detective element to it. You need to be able to explain why, to the rule book’s satisfaction, and you can only make a guess back at Baker Street, and if you’re wrong, you’re done.
I think I want to love this game more than I do. I love the artwork, the concept, all of that, but it’s a roll to move. And honestly, that kind of killed the game. A lot of your time is spent, walking between locations. You have one 6 sided dice. You don’t get anywhere fast. Yes, for timing I guess if you took that element out the game would be a lot quicker, so they would just need to be a bit cleverer than they’ve been with this. Number the locations and have the dice number allow you to move between them, or something to that affect, but roll to move is so done.
We decided to start from card one as the game suggests. Perhaps the game gets harder as you go, and I’ll be testing that theory tonight, but card number one was pretty easy to work out just by getting a few clues, obviously some details would be foggy without all the clues but then it just became a collection game rather than a strategic thinking game. Hopefully the cards get better and this was just a basic getting to know the game card. We shall see.
Second Time Playing:
So much better. I was insistent that this game was better than I initially thought, and I was right.
So yes, Card 1 was a beginner card and it’s complexity reflected this. So to test this we took a card from the MIDDLE OF THE DECK! Such rebels!
Now this was more like what I was expecting. We had a drawn out scene with Lestrade the police officer with Scotland Yard about a dying convict and missing jewels. All this concluded in a cypher that we had to crack by collecting clues from the different locations. Crack the code and you found out where the jewels were hidden and show who was behind it. This required some thinking.
The roll to move was still annoying, especially at the beginning, but towards the end we were all taking the extra time to try and work out the clues and decipher the code that it wasn’t as much of an issue.
This is fast becoming a favourite game of mine, possibly because I won, but I’m sure we will have many enjoyable nights chasing Moriarty!