Murder Mystery Party Kit Details
Your guests will be playing the roles of wizards and faculty of the prestigious College of Wizards.
The body of High Magus Wilburton was discovered this morning. It appears he died late last night, the night of a full moon. His body was discovered by the College’s head of security, who has gathered the faculty here today to solve the murder.
Solving the Mystery:
High Magus Wilburton’s death is only the latest in a series of deaths and disappearances that have occurred around the college in recent weeks. Could it have something to do with the enigmatic artifact brought to the college by Herr Himmelmorder, or is there something even more sinister at play?
Murder of the High Wizard is suitable for 8 guests (or 8 couples), including the host or hostess. The available guests include:
- Minerva Blackthorn: Ambitious and scheming, Minerva, Vice Proconsul of the College, has run roughshod over those who get in her way. Her ruthless tactics have made her unpopular, but no one can argue with their effectiveness.
- Engel Anglebright: Engel has been the Magus’ apprentice for years. Bright and idealistic, he is eager to become a full-fledged wizard.
- Julian Tagglebaum: The College’s absentminded librarian has only one concern in his life: books.
- Rebecca Redbush: The College’s antiquities expert has little patience with other people, especially those who don’t know what they are doing.
- Eria Greenbough: The College’s head of research is a micromanaging pest who never gives the researchers a break. Some claim her particular style of management has been hampering the College’s research endeavors.
- Olena Oxnard: Olena, a scholar of theoretical magic, hasn’t published in years. Her research program is in danger of losing funding, and she is under a lot of pressure to produce results. (
- Rory Olembark: Only a truly skilled wizard could serve as the College’s head of security. Rory is a serious man with very little patience for small talk.
- Heinrich Himmelmorder: Heinrich is a visiting professor from the Kollectiv Magick. He’s been very inquisitive about every aspect of the College since he arrived.
Our line of 30 Minute Mysteries is specially designed for fast setup and easy play. All you need to do to get started is:
- Print out the party guide
- Gather together a group of players
- Hand out character sheets and name tags
- Follow along with the instructions
Best of all, the party facilitator can choose whether they join in the game and solve the mystery along with the other guests!
Playing the Game
30 Minute Mysteries are intended to be played around a table by eight people (or up to eight couples). Each of the players will be assigned a character and given a character sheet that explains who or what their character is, what information their character knows, and how their character should respond to events that occur during the game.
The game will progress in rounds. Round One will start with the party's host or hostess reading a script that explains the nature of the mystery that is afoot. After the introduction is read, each player at the table will share a piece of information from their character sheet, and all the other players will have an opportunity to respond to that piece of information.
Next Round Two begins with the facilitator sharing a clue that should shed further light on the mystery. After the clue is revealed, the players will once again go around the table, providing another piece of information and then responding.
After the second time around the table, the game will proceed to the Final Round. The Final Round begins with the facilitator sharing the last clue. The players then go around the table a final time, sharing their last piece of information and responding to each other.
By this point, the players should have learned enough information to be able to piece together a theory about who was responsible for the murder. Each player (or couple) will say the name of the person who they think is responsible. The facilitator will then read the final page of the mystery aloud, revealing the culprit. Any player or couple who correctly guessed the identity of the killer is declared a winner.
From start to finish, the entire game should generally only require half an hour to complete.
Note: As the host or hostess, there are certain times when you will be called upon to read aloud passages from this booklet. Passages that are meant to be read aloud will be clearly labeled and contained in a gray box.
What Do I Need in Order to Play?
Our 30-Minute Mysteries are specifically designed to not require very much in the way of supplies. All you really need is:
- a table to sit around (or a large playing area where the guests can sit in a circle)
- a group of players (the minimum is eight; if you have more than eight, multiple guests can work together to play the same character)
- a printed copy of this booklet
- a pair of scissors (to cut out nametag placards for each character)
- pencils or pens for each player
- Scratch paper (for players to take notes on)
- Folders (to help players conceal their character sheets)
Murder of the High Wizard is a 26-page downloadable PDF file that you print at home. It includes the following features:
- An introduction that explains the basic principles of running a 30-Minute Mystery
- A detailed party guidebook that will walk you through the event in a simple, easy-to-understand format
- Nametags and character sheets for each player - the character sheets include special goals and information unique to each character
- Step-by-step printing instructions
- And much more!
- We planned our date a week ahead of time and didn't plan anything beyond printing one of these mysteries out and bringing some snacks. It was easy to print out at the last minute and read the instructions. One sad thing was that my printer printed the last page first, so when I checked to see if it was printing correctly, I caught a glimpse of who the murderer was. So sad!
We had a good time teasing the librarian about his books, and weeks later we still ask him if he ever found them. The characters were fun, but the names gave some people some trouble remembering them.
The group was divided at the end over how "easy" it was to deduce the murderer. Some thought it was too obvious, and the others agreed that you SHOULD be able to deduce who the murderer was based on all the clues; that it SHOULD be obvious.
- We just popped just frozen appetizers in the oven along with the usual chips, juice,and m&ms.
- We didn't use props or costumes. The whole point was to get some busy parents on a date for a few hours without the commitment of lots of time or energy. That's why we chose the 30 minute one. I've also used the full party kits and decorated and done a themed menu and had costumes. It's so fun, but sometimes you need a spontaneous fun night and this kit fit the bill.
- Used in a class to teach deductive reasoning, the students really got into the characters and the theories they came up with for each round were both amusing and insightful.
Everyone enjoyed it. Great job!
- Used this for a social therapy group of adolescents with Asperger's and high functioning autism. They thoroughly enjoyed playing and had to use lots of language processing and problem solving skills which we've been working on. Hope to play another one real soon!