Elementary my Dear Watson…

I am a huge Sherlock Holmes fan and that translates into the quest to make a game of deduction.

Deduction = The drawing of a conclusion by reasoning; the act of deducing.

I think there is a fine line between reasoning and just the process of elimination.  Below is a list of games that use ‘deduction’ and my thoughts on them followed by what mechanics I want to see in my deduction game.

  1. Clue (Cluedo) – to me the idea of deduction in this game is very loose.  This games is a race to eliminate options by information you are GIVEN by the opposition.  Not impressed.
  2. Scotland Yard – reasoning used to deduce where someone has been and where they might go ~ there is a process of elimination but the information is not given it is reasoned.  One of my favourite games.
  3. Mystery of the Abbey – similar to Clue but direct questions are asked between players so although elimination the game requires reasoning in respect to what questions a player will ask of his opponents.  A better version of Clue but still a race to eliminate the suspects.
  4. Castle of the Devil – players belong to one of two guilds and by voting and reacting to certain events players roles are deduced.  This has promise.
  5. Battlestar Galactica – secret voting for or against events and the actions taken throughout the game allow for the deduction by reasoning.  Are you the toaster?  I like the mechanics in this game but it can take a while to play.

There are other games out there that I have not mentioned but want to try.  In my game I would like to have the following 3 mechanics:

  1. Actions that may reveal the players’ goals.  Obviously a player may take actions that will ‘confuse’ or ‘mislead’ the other players.
  2. A voting system – events occur and people vote on the event.  Again allows for the misleading of other players.
  3. Direct questioning of other players, a la Mystery of the Abbey

Now I want to come up with a theme so that I can work on fitting in the mechanics so that they work.  Any suggestions?


About Clive

Just an average guy who loves board games, movies, musics, books, comic books, video games and anything else fun.
This entry was posted in Ideas, Mechanics. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Elementary my Dear Watson…

  1. David Short says:

    Cool topic. I agree with your summary of those games. I too would love to do a deduction game some day. There are tons of themes that could work for this. How about something lighthearted like “What soccer team do I play for?” Deduce it!

  2. Clive says:

    Or what’s for dinner? 🙂
    I am thinking a more adventurous game – whatever that means??

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