Murder Mystery Party Kit Details

Set Sail for Disaster - Mystery Party Kit


Preview Game Kit

Set Sail for Disaster

Add intrigue to your next party with this murder mystery game, set on a cruise ship.
Format: Mystery Party Kit
Setting: On a cruise ship
Players: 10-22 (Standard Game)
23-100+ (Expanded Game)
Time: 90+ minutes
Ages: Adult
A balmy, nighttime tropical cruise turns violent...

The Backstory

Your players have been invited on a pleasure cruise by Captain Michael Von Ammon. The guest list includes a number of the Captain's friends, family members, and business associates, as well as the crew of the Captain's sixty-foot yacht, the Elizabeth May. Everyone is expecting an evening cruise replete with dinner, drinks, and dancing - they aren't expecting foul weather, the murder of the Captain, or a sudden shipwreck on a deserted island in the uncharted Caribbean.


This mystery is divided into two primary segments. During the first portion of the evening, Act One, the events take place on the Elizabeth May, Captain Von Ammon's ship, a sixty-foot pleasure cruiser manned by the Captain, the Ship's Engineer (played by the Host/Hostess), and a handful of wait staff. As the evening progresses, a tropical storm rolls in, casting a somewhat ominous pall over the festivities. As the hour grows late, lightning strikes the ship, the lights go out in the cabin, and the partygoers hear a thud and a scream. When the players light candles they will find that someone has taken advantage of the momentary darkness to kill the Captain, bludgeoning him in the head with a candlestick. The mystery is afoot!

The Perfect Crime?

Unfortunately, the partygoers will have no immediate opportunity to determine the identity of the killer; the ship has been struck by lightning, blowing most of the mechanical systems. Worse yet, she is taking on water, and the storm is intensifying. Amidst the crash of the waves and the roar of thunder there can be heard a rending shriek as the hull splinters. The partygoers are tossed about and lose consciousness.

Solving the Mystery

Act Two opens with the characters regaining consciousness on the shore of a small island, amid the wreckage of the ship. Miraculously, everyone has survived (except, of course, the Captain, whose body has been lost at sea). It looks like there is enough left of the ship to put together a makeshift raft, and there are enough resources on the island to feed the group for quite a while 'but everyone is nervous at the knowledge that there is undoubtedly a murderer in their midst. Now the players must work together to collect sufficient food and water, build an escape boat from the wreckage of the Elizabeth May and try to identify the murderer of Captain Von Ammon!


There are 22 primary suspects in this mystery, however only 10 are required to play the game. The host or hostess will play the role of Drew Henson, the Ship's Engineer. Read the "How To Play" section for more information on how to play an expanded game with more than 22 guests.

  • Michael Von Ammon (The Captain): The well-to-do owner of the Elizabeth May, Captain Von Ammon is wealthy, successful, and well respected by all.
  • Elizabeth Von Ammon (The Captain's Wife): A society lady of excellent breeding, Mrs. Elizabeth Von Ammon is highly cultured, beautiful, and well mannered. She is happily married to Captain Von Ammon and lives a lifestyle that is envied by many.
  • Dr. Jessie Parker (The Doctor): Dr. Jessie Parker is a highly regarded plastic surgeon who caters to the wealthy and famous. Why Dr. Parker was invited on this cruise is something of a mystery to the other guests.
  • Mortimer Stout (The Banker): Mortimer Stout is a financial genius who has a better understanding of accounting than he does of people. He is a longtime business associate of Captain Von Ammon.
  • Shelly Summers (The Actress): Ms. Shelly Summers is a popular B-movie actress whose keen mind belies her somewhat ditzy demeanor.
  • Kris Laramie (The Author): Kris Laramie is a best-selling author and critic, known both for a sharp tongue and a love of the bottle.
  • Jonathon Whipple (The Philanthropist): Jonathon Whipple was once a feared and respected businessman, known for his cutthroat approach. In recent years, he has devoted himself wholeheartedly to charity, leading many to believe that he is seeking to atone for some dark secret.
  • Miss Alexandra Crane (The Debutante): Miss Alexandra Crane has only recently become part of the local social scene. Hailing from an old and powerful East Coast family, she is an impulsive young lady who enjoys horseback riding, dancing, and theater.
  • Ashley Jones (Boat Staff): Ashley Jones is one of Captain Von Ammon's hired hands, there to make certain that the ship (and the party) run smoothly.
  • Jake Morrison (The Gambler): A close friend of the Captain, Mr. Jake Morrison is something of a loveable scoundrel; his greatest pleasures in life are fine wine, fine women, fine cigars, and the lure of the poker table (in no particular order).
  • Bridget Belle (The Model): Equal parts sugar and spice, Bridget Belle is elegant, trendy, and sharp-tongued. A very successful swimsuit model, Ms. Belle is quite used to men doing whatever she requests.
  • Kelly McCorvin (Boat Staff): Kelly McCorvin is one of Captain Von Ammon's hired hands, there to make certain that the ship (and the party) run smoothly.
  • Lane Garrison (Boat Staff): Lane Garrison is one of Captain Von Ammon's hired hands, there to make certain that the ship (and the party) run smoothly.
  • Taylor Sattenworth (Boat Staff): Taylor Sattenworth is one of Captain Von Ammon's hired hands, there to make certain that the ship (and the party) run smoothly.
  • Drew Henson (The Ship's Engineer): (Played by the Host/Hostess) Drew Henson is the engineer of the Elizabeth May, in charge of keeping the yacht sailing smoothly and the crew at their posts. The Engineer doesn't normally mingle much with the Captain's friends, preferring to stay below decks with the machinery and the security system.
  • Claude LeQue (The Cook): Educated at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris, Claude LeQue is Captain Von Ammon’s personal chef. He rules the ship’s kitchen with an iron hand.
  • Milton Sanford (The Gourmet): A gourmet and food critic, Milton Sanford makes a living writing an occasional regular column for Epicure Monthly, a little-known culinary journal.
  • Jimmy Grimes (The Janitor): Jimmy Grimes is the caretaker and Janitor aboard The Elizabeth May. It is his responsibility to keep the ship free of dust and dirt and to assist The Engineer in maintaining the yacht’s engine.
  • Franklin Smith (The Architect): A well-to-do architect and old friend of the Von Ammon family, Franklin Smith has gained several very lucrative contracts through The Captain’s generous use of his contacts.
  • Regina Guissepe (The Bartender): Polite, professional, and very discrete, Regina Guissepe is the bartender aboard The Elizabeth May. She makes a killer Bloody Mary and knows how to keep a secret.
  • Phyllis Howe (The Lawyer): Phyllis Howe specializes in corporate law and copyright issues. She became friends with Elizabeth Von Ammon after meeting her at an art show.
  • Ophelia Saint (The Artist): Ophelia Saint is an up and coming artist who has earned a degree of fame for her otherworldly sculptures.

Extra Players

  • Investigator (male or female): Additional players have the option of playing the role of "Investigators". In this role the players are not suspects and do not have character backgrounds but can question the suspects and try to solve the mystery along with the other players.
How to Play

Follow these steps to host this mystery:

  1. Each guest will each assume the role of a particular character
    Mystery Parties involve a combination of improvisational acting, storytelling, and creative problem solving. Each guest will play the part of that character throughout the course of the game. Each character has specific personality traits, goals, secrets, and information, all of which are included in the character sheet; a big part of the fun is getting into character and taking on a new, exciting role.

  2. A mysterious Event will occur
    At some point during the party, an Event will occur that will force the players to come together in order to solve a problem or unravel a mystery. Traditionally, the Event in question will be the murder of one of the characters (as played by a guest), but the parties crafted by Playing With Murder often use this basic framework to accommodate different types of Events, thereby ensuring that your guests will be surprised and entertained (even if they are veteran murder mystery party players).

  3. Solve the mystery!
    Your guests will need to use the information that their characters know (as well as additional clues that are provided during the game) to solve the mystery or overcome the problem posed by the Event. Typically this culminates in the guests voting on the identity of the murderer, but again, different parties will have different specific goals. All of our parties also come complete with additional subgames (treasure hunts, unique character goals and special puzzles) that are guaranteed to keep the action intense and your guests motivated and focused.

Expanded Game For Large Groups

If you have extra players, there are two ways that you can accommodate everyone:

  • Investigator Role - Additional players have the option of playing the role of "Investigators". In this role the players are not suspects and do not have character backgrounds but can question the suspects and try to solve the mystery along with the other players. Expanded Games include a PDF guide that explains how to use the Investigator role, as well as printable character sheets and name tags for anyone that is playing an Investigator.
  • Multiple Groups - It is also possible to break your guests up into groups and play multiple instances of the game at the same time. The game will more or less happen the same way; the host makes announcements and each group moves their game forward simultaneously based on the host's instructions. It's good to have one assistant in each group to answer questions and facilitate gameplay within the group. This method provides a more intimate experience for your guests, who get better acquainted with a smaller group and participate in a more digestible story.

    Please contact us if you'd like more information about how to run your party using the Multiple Groups method.

You can choose whether you'd like the Standard or Expanded version of a game when you add it to your cart.

Read more about Expanded Games here

First time hosting a murder mystery party?

Visit our How to Host a Mystery Party page to get step-by-step instructions on how to prepare for your murder mystery party.

What's Included

Set Sail for Disaster is a 113-page downloadable PDF file that you print at home. It includes the following features:

  • An introduction that explains the basic principles of running a mystery-party and provides specific tips on props, menu items, sound effects and special tips to help make your party exciting, memorable and easy to run
  • Step-by-step instructions on how to prepare for your party
  • A detailed party guidebook that will walk you through the event in a simple, easy-to-understand format
  • Instructions on how to run the party for a large group
  • Nametags and character sheets for each player - the character sheets include tips on costuming and role-playing, as well special goals and information unique to each character
  • Fully customizable invitations, complete with RSVP cards and guest lists
  • 6 pages of full color props and clues, including tokens representing the wreckage of the Elizabeth May, salvaged electronics that will help the players solve the mystery and numerous food and water tokens for use during a scavenger hunt
  • Voting sheets
  • Customizable awards for your guests
  • And much more!

With your purchase of Set Sail for Disaster you will also receive the following:

  • Step-by-step printing instructions
  • Four mp3 audio effects for use with your party
  • Instructions on how to use these audio clips to best effect

Playing With Murder offers several audio files for use with each of our Mystery Party Kits. The audio clip below provides a sample montage of the sound effects included with Set Sail for Disaster.

Play audio sample:


Alternative content

The specific audio files for Set Sail for Disaster include:

  • The sounds of a thunderstorm at sea, gradually increasing in intensity
  • The struggle and murder of the hapless victim
  • The sound of the ship, the Elizabeth May, being tossed about and ultimately wrecked
  • And more!
Bollywood on a Boat
By on at 04:38 PM (GMT)
  • We decided to go all out and change the theme to Bollywood on a Boat- the PWM crew were really helpful and sent my the word document of the script so I was able to change some things in the script to match the theme! It went very well- everyone enjoyed the scavenger hunt and the drama of the murder! The audio sounds in the background were amazing and really added to the effect!
  • We had curry to match our theme
  • The party took place at a rented beach house which was already kitted out in a nautical theme!
Set Sail for fun
By on at 12:22 AM (GMT)
  • I used this game as part of a corporate all-staff event for about 35 people and it worked out quite well. Overall the game package is well set up and easy to follow and I would recommend it as an fun reasonable priced, relatively easy and bit difference activity for a fun team building exercise. For our day I only assigned the characters the day of the event and we prearranged to have a few props available for folks to get into character. Since our numbers were so high, we had double characters which added a fun and interesting twist. We used the expansion pack "investigators" for a few folks who were uncomfortable with the thought of acting. The scavenger hunt was fun and I added some extra puzzles for an escape room style lock puzzle.
  • Since it was a corporate event on a budget, we played the game over lunch which was sandwiches.
  • Used port holes, a ship wheel, tropical music. I made a sub-challenge for the boat staff to carry drink trays all game filled with water.
Sail for success!
By on at 12:31 AM (GMT)
  • We had over 20 people come out to the cafe for this murder mystery. Many of the attendee's really got into character and quite a few of them came dressed in costume. The mystery's inclusion of props\scavenger hunt was a huge hit with guests and they had a great time searching around the cafe for the clues\props. This mystery was very well structured, easy to run and a lot of fun. We will definitely be picking up more mystery games from you folks in the future.
  • We played music that fit the theme and our game host dressed the part to help get everyone into the setting of the game.
Set Sail for Disaster
By on at 02:05 AM (GMT)
  • Had a fantastic time. I hosted this as a part of an oral auction for a local charity. We had 11 guests. Everyone played their parts well, we had a wonderful dinner, and all had a very fun time. I would definitely recommend this for any potential buyer.
Cruising for fun with friends
By on at 11:22 PM (GMT)
  • We held a murder mystery party to spice up just having dinner with friends. It was wonderful; the Playing with Murder team made sure we had a suitable game for our group's makeup. Everyone had such a great time. there were lots of character options to match to our guests' personalities, and the information, background details, sound tracks etc. really 'made' the murder mystery so much more easier for everyone to 'get into' and enjoy the fun. The character who got murdered was a surprise to our guests, and the role sheets provided enough clues to keep the questioning moving along while we tried to guess 'who done it'. And the result was a surprise. All in all its a well-packaged, complete party kit to make a fun evening for 12 or more guests.
  • We decided to fit a wine tasting into the mystery, since my husband (the host) loves to cook and try new things. the Idea worked well with the theme especially as it's set on a private cruise ship. there was a good mix of seafood to add to the theme of cruising.
  • the highlight of the night was how our guests really got into their role and arrived in costume, and great costumes they were. though a few knew each other, everyone really stayed on game. it was fun!
Set Sail for Disaster
By on at 04:33 AM (GMT)
  • We had a ball. I organised this as a family party with 3 generations of ages (7 -79). We used all but one character - so quite a crowd. All the younger ones were boat crew and as I had a running smorgasbord dinner, they were kept busy carrying food, clearing plates and rubbish etc - they loved being so important and involved.
    We started by welcoming everyone on board at the front gate where they were given their name badge and character sheet for Act One. The path through the small gate to the back deck became the gang way. The Captain was on the deck and drinks and nibbles were served there. But unfortunately the neighbours were going to take out a very large tree on our boundary right where we were so we had to move that inside. (Started getting sawdust in the punch bowl. Luckily though they realised what we were up to and so more for safety reason stopped which was really good of them. Although we told our guests we were having mast repairs !
    It was a beautiful evening so using inside outside was a great idea with the food in the middle.
    The family really got into the spirit of things with some amazing costumes and stayed in character really well. I helped the younger ones with their fact sheets so their parents didn't know what they were doing. The scavenger hunt was great as that was another major task for the boat staff. I put all the clues into little plastic eggs and scattered them around the front garden and driveway.
    I would certainly recommend this as a real fun way to get together.
  • I stayed with totally finger food and catered for glutton free, dairy free and vegetarian with one vegetarian unable to have onion or garlic. It was a very hot late afternoon so we got through a lot of drink, punch and juice and lemonade. I don't think anyone went without.
  • The costumes were the real highlight and the final bit with the clues was so well acted. The mixing and mingling in character was really hilarious.
Set sail for Disaster
By on at 03:33 AM (GMT)
  • Was an activity for seniors in an Assisted living facility. I read over everything and turned it into a script as they can't follow along. Took a long time but it was worth it for them. The each put on the props I had provided and had a blast
  • Funny for a "dinner cruise" we served Ceasar Salad, Pizza and Parfait.
    The loved it
  • I decorated the activity room as a "captain's table" on a yacht. Nautical theme as much as possible. Fishing rods, life jackets, maps etc
Set Sail Blast
By on at 06:56 AM (GMT)
  • My birthday. It was great. Everyone played their part well. There were lots of fingers being pointed in a fun way. Lots of laughs. Everyone had a great time.

    I saw an idea on pin interest that i wanted to implement but didnt know how. My husband came up with the idea of using PVC piping to make the stand for the sail. the black and white sail is in actual fact a paper table cloth and then we found the white and black flags.
    So my idea worked. It looked like a sail. I thought it was so cool. and so easy to do. That’s if you have a great imagination and know how to do it.

    Everyone came dressed fancy.
  • all finger food - chicken fingers, meat sandwiches, salmon puffs, rice crispie treats, cake. nothing special for the party
  • My son was one of the boat staff, and he played the part well. he had a bow tie and white shirt with server. he actually won the best dressed costume award.

    I had 4 tables set out. The main characters of the boat sat at the main 2 tables. The main table were for the guests of the Captain Von Ammon. I made everything a black, white and gold theme. I had bought these paper crafts that came 40 in a book. Most people would use them for scrap booking. But they worked perfect for me and it was a nautical theme in the color that I wanted. I found this at Jo-annes. so the table was set with black plastic cloth. then the paper craft. each a different design. the cutlery was in a napkin with a candy bracelet. The idea on pin interest was to use a life savor candy. however life savors are not kosher. so I had to improvise. So the candy bracelet acted as a life ring. gold plates, gold cutlery, gold cups and inside the cup was a gold and white straw. I found most the place settings stuff at party city.
    the wine cups i actually found at costco and the gold chewing gum ball was at jo-annes. We put it in the cup and it looked cool.
    the table for my guests who were not part of the mystery but were watching was set differently. still black and gold. the cutlery was placed on the table and the napkins in the glasses with the straws. The Table for the boat crew who were part of the characters but there job was to serve and help was set differently again. The table cloth was the same as the sail - paper cloth. the napkins laid flat, with wine glasses upside down and cutlery in the gold cups. so there was a distinction and difference between the tables
    There was no indication from the outside. So everyone got a surprise when they walked in.

    We set the scavenger hunt in the garage. the setting was an island. So I bought from party city, yellow table cloths which come in a roll. so the floor was the beach. as you walked into the garage, on the left wall was the bush, trees. i put the brown and green sheets to cover the junk in the
    garage. to the back was this picture of the beach, waves and sea. I found this roll and the next one of the waves and under water at Jo-Anne’s. great store to find things you need. The fish were our pool toys that I got this summer for the kids.
    the boxes and stuff against the wall by the beach sand picture was the scavenger hunt. the ship wreckers would need to find parts to make a boat while others searched for food and water. Which were toy fruits. and placed bottle of water in places.

    unfortunately we could not get the music to be loud from our computer. but that was the only problem and everyone was fine with it
Set Sail For Disaster
By on at 05:49 AM (GMT)
  • We decided to have a dinner party at home with a bunch of friends who we knew would all get into character! It was a great night overall with amazing food and some wonderful acting! All in all a great night full of mystery and surprise.

    A couple of observations: it would be good to introduce an icebreaker activity to get to know each others characters as it took a while for everyone to figure out who was who. It would also be good to be able to exclude character names on the character sheets for those characters who aren't there on the evening (we purchased the expanded game pack) as this made it a little confusing.
  • We splashed out and hired a chef friend to come in and cook a dinner party for us - canapes for entrée were clear tomato gazpcho soup, goats cheese and caramelised onion tarts, chicken yakatori skewers and avocado and salmon mousse - main was eye fillet with truffled potatoes, asparagus, field mushroom and a port wine jus - dessert was a chocolate ganache tart with raspberries, cream and peanut brittle.
  • Loved that everyone dressed up and did their best to get into character! We decorated in a beachy theme to match the night.
Set Sail for Disaster
By on at 04:39 PM (GMT)
  • We offered to host a Murder Mystery Dinner party at an Auction to raise money to send students to Florida College, a private Bible College in Tampa, Florida. The party was a huge success. Even those people who attended who were more reserved by nature opened up and had a great time. Half of the people figured out who the murderer was - which shows it can be figured out but it is not so easy that everybody figured it out. we have done several different Murder Mystery Dinners over the years and this one was by far the best. The MP3s that were included were great sound effects to having playing in the background. The scavenger hunt that was included was a nice added bonus. Highly recommend!
  • Shrimp and Cocktail Sauce since the setting was a dinner party on a yacht
  • Draped fishing net on our front porch as you came in and had fishing poles set out, as well as life preservers
Set Sail for Disaster
By on at 09:56 AM (GMT)
  • well, I bought the package early because we are using it for a fundraiser for a missions project in our women's group at church. I am writing 26 more parts to participate and our party is not until May 22, 2015. What little that has been said about it, everyone is very excited to participate.
  • We will have a formal 4 course dinner: cream of celery soup, salad greens with garnish, choice of 3 main dishes: Crab Pasta Premivera, Beef Stroganoff on Angel Hair or Veggies on pasta, along with mixed veg medley and garlic bread, topped off with Key Lime pie just before the murder - our pastor will be the Captain, and his wife the murderer.
  • We will be doing an auction of items to raise more money, and a quartet (4 of our praise team) to sing by lip sink as entertainment. We already have a 50 foot long beach scene and will cover it with drapes for first part of the evening - will drop the drapes during lights out while ship is breaking up.
Playing With Murder did it again!
By on at 02:56 AM (GMT)
  • Set sail was the perfect party to host as summer came to a close. They make murder mysteries so easy and fun for everyone- host and guest. With all their fun themes and story lines, a murder mystery is the perfect way to celebrate any occasion. Murder mystery parties have become an annual event at our home- something our friends look forward to every year.
We had a lot of fun with Set Sail for Disaster
By on at 01:39 AM (GMT)
  • I was happy that everyone that came were in character. We used the audio that was provided and the only thing we could have had a little more time in between the murder and the crash. Also I could have done the Act II better but all in all everyone had fun and really did a great job. Thank you for all of the help you gave and ideas which were great. I did make some very cool decorations that really made everything look neat.
Our office loved the party
By on at 01:15 AM (GMT)
  • We recently had our mystery party on November 12th. It was for a celebration in our office and they loved it.

    Each character got very into part, coming dressed in costume and acting as soon as they entered the room. It was neat to see how well everyone played along and the script went very well. The package we purchased was well worth the $35 as it had everything we needed and made it very easy to plan the party since most of what we had to do was only decorating.

    Thanks for the great party package!
  • We decorated our training room to look like a ship using the wooden tables, and blue Christmas lights as the water along the outside of the ship. We also decorated the dinner tables to look like a fancy cruise ship and everyone thought it looked great, esp. since we didn't have a large budget to decorate.
Set Sail for Disaster was a huge success!
By on at 03:41 PM (GMT)
  • Everyone really got into their parts and the story played out wonderfully.
    Overall it was a great party. This was the third murder party we have done (first from you) and we had a lot of the same people from the previous ones so most of us knew what we were doing.
    I thought the scavenger hunt on the island worked very well and most enjoyed it.
    We decided to give everyone fake money to use for blackmail and secrets.

    Something that the few of the guests mentioned to me was that their character sheet mentioned that certain people were supposed to come up to them but they never did. I don't know if this was a mistake on the characters sheets or on the guests achieving the goals.
    Also, the clean version of Set Sail didn't edit the "pictures Folder" on the captain's laptop, so I had to re-write it to mention that they were at charity events.

    We really loved this party and can't thank you enough for the wonderful kit that you provided.
  • For food we had several appetizers, not a full meal. This worked really well as the boat staff would take trays of food and pitchers of water around to the guests and listen in on the conversations.
  • The soundtrack was perfect. When the storm began we had a strobe light outside to simulate lightning, and when the lights went out it was pitch black with flashes of lightning. When the lights came on, the victim had fallen and everyone played along perfectly with screams and gasps. Every also got into character by waking up unconscious on the island.
Had an absolute blast! Went with a 20's theme.
By on at 12:43 PM (GMT)
  • Firstly, we had an absolute blast of a night, thank you!
    We werent sure what era it was set in but we chose the 1920s, even though there weren't laptops etc back then, but we used our imagination. :) some people got so into character it was scary! :)
    I ended up being host for the night and that was great fun!
    We had about 35 attend all up and we held it in a local bistro. It worked well even though we were in one room all night. I got in early and set up and hid the tokens.
    All of the information you provided was spot on!! Very comprehensive.
    The only thing we had difficulty with was the sound, as the quality was way too quiet.
    In the end 8 people guessed who was the murderer, which was pretty good. I bought little play trophies for them all to add some fun.
    I am thinking of doing it again for a work Xmas show and our social club is talking about doing another one.
Party scored a 10 with guests. Had fun creating extra characters.
By on at 07:37 PM (GMT)
  • This past weekend my wife and I held a Set Sail for Disaster party with 30 of our close friends and neighbors. It was an incredible success - one neighbor said we scored a 10! - but I thought you might like to hear about some of the things we did to make it happen. Here are some brief details:

    1. I changed the story a little while remaining faithful to the plot - the [victim] was still killed by [the same murderer] for example.
    2. Since we had 30 players, I had to invent some new characters. I wrote a part for Lord and Lady Raey of Scotland who designed and built the Elizabeth May. A few days before the party, I sent emails to all guests that the EM had set sail from its shipyard in Clyde, Scotland, and was headed across the Atlantic on a shakedown voyage. During the voyage we had a chance to test the ship's systems and found some trouble with the Electrical Systems (which had to be addressed by the ship's Electrician, another character I had to write).
    3. I own a small sailboat, a dinghy, which I set up on our front lawn, complete with sail and up-lit which guests saw as they were driving up. I also had the theme song Gilligan's Island playing on constant loop playing on my iPod.
    4. When guests came through the front door, I welcomed them (as Drew Henson) and introduced them to the Captain and his wife (a couple of amateur thespian friends of mine). The guests then had their picture taken with Captain and his wife by the Ship's Photographer (another part written by me and played by my 19 year old son - who was dressed in a tuxedo).
    5. After taking their picture, they were handed to Dee Dee Bell (the ship's Cruise Director - think Julie McCoy from the Love Boat) who whisked them to the bar for a drink and to introduce them to other guests. Meanwhile, guests continued to arrive.....
    6. I instructed everyone that at 7:30 PM SHARP, the EM would be leaving the dock for her maiden voyage. I announced the start of the journey by playing two blasts on the ship's fog horn (an MP3 file I bought from iTunes). The noise of the fog horns stopped everyone in their tracks as I welcomed everyone to the cruise.
    7. I gave some basic instructions and then handed to Dee Dee Bell who told guests that (a) the Author had agreed to read from her latest book of poems (which she later did - in fact, the Author wrote a poem just for this party!), (b) the Artist had brought a sculpture to exhibit (which she did - the guest built a paper-mache dog!) and (c) the actress would regale us with a short piece from her latest movie (which she did later in the evening!).
    8. Dee Dee Bell then demonstrated how to put on a life jacket and how to swim (hilarious) and introduced the Captain who then gave a short speech and a toast. Claude LeQue then announced dinner was being served in the dining room (buffet).
    9. Evening proceeded as the script recommends until the storm comes up and I send all guests down to our finished basement for the death and sinking scene.
    10. Once everyone is downstairs, the Captain blames 'Sparky' Thomas (the Ship's Navigator and Communications Officer - yes, another part) for not warning him about the storm. I come down the basement stairs in a florescent jacket and hard hat blowing a whistle. I tell everyone we are floundering. Captain announces "Man the Life boats!" and the lights go out. Lights up and the victim is dead in a pool of fake blood.
    11. Meanwhile, main floor where everyone was earlier is transformed to the Desert Island and the scavenger hunt proceeds. No changes to this part at all.
    12. Guests vote on Who Did It and prizes are awarded.

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