Murder Mystery Dinner Party – Mystery, Incorporated! [Hivemind Review]

Mystery, Incorporated! is a Scooby-Doo-themed murder mystery game played in Zoom, created by Murder Mystery Dinner Party.

Player post-game, everyone is dressed like Scooby characters.

Format

Style of Play:

  • Online native experience (can NOT be played IRL)
  • Interactive NPCs
  • Immersive theater

Required Equipment: computer with internet connection, pen & paper

It helps to print out the inventory sheet that’s emailed to you before the game.

Recommended Team Size: 6 players

We recommend you bring your own group to this one, rather than joining a public booking.

Play Time: 90-120 minutes

Price: We cannot find this information published anywhere. We recommend contacting the company for pricing.

Booking: book online for a specific time slot OR purchase and play at your leisure

Description

The game worked by getting everyone in a Zoom call, taking pictures in costume with imaginary props, giving a light description of why we were all gathered here, and intermittently breaking out into Zoom breakout rooms in order to “solve the mystery.”

When we were invited into the breakout rooms, it was only with our “team,” either the Gang or the Cronies. You got together with your team several times in order to “investigate the murder” aka look at a 60-second “video” (best as I can tell this was an image with candle flickers) and try to note the items that you saw in the image that were also on your tracking sheet.

During these breakout sessions, you’d ask the breakout room host questions about the image and you’d receive a short description of the space related to that item. Repeat until you’d asked to assess all of the evidence you’d found and determined who you’d accuse as the murderer.

The investigations in the breakout rooms formed the basis of the information that we needed to solve the mystery. If we didn’t get all the information, there was no way to go back.

Hivemind Review Scale

REA's hivemind review scale - 3 is recommended anytime, 2 recommended in quarantine, 1 is not recommended.

Read more about our Hivemind Review format.

Tammy McLeod’s Reaction

Rating: 1 out of 3.

Players were provided with character backstories and encouraged to attend in costume. The Zoom hosts were fun and engaging. The experience was a decent online party. The actual mystery portion of the game, unfortunately, was not well explained. By the time I figured out how we were getting the information that we needed to solve the mystery, it was already impossible to obtain some of it. I didn’t enjoy the mystery aspect of the game much, since my team was unable to get everything we needed. However, for the die-hard Scooby this might be a fun virtual cocktail party.

Theresa Piazza’s Reaction

Rating: 1 out of 3.

Mystery, Incorporated! was an experience with a cute premise, but one that desperately needed better execution. I was super excited and interested to see how a murder mystery party was going to be facilitated over the internet, as many of these events hinge on small, 1:1 interactions, and mixing & mingling with the other in-character guests. Getting ready for this event, I put on my best Daphne outfit, prepared to say “Jeepers” a lot and dove in. What I found was an event that didn’t quite have all the kinks ironed out. As a player in what appeared to be a public booking, I was confused about how hard I should lean into my character. An email we received ahead of time said “Feel free to dive as deeply or shallowly into character as you wish” and while I wanted to go all in, I wasn’t sure if my fellow dinner attendees would get that I was playing a character and not actually a rich girl keen on insulting people for their poor taste in shoes. Instead of 1:1 interactions, the “investigation” we were asked to complete revolved around using a tracking sheet to ask questions of the game hosts. For me, this didn’t come together. It didn’t feel like the gang was solving a mystery. It felt like a low key game of I Spy. Near the end of the 90-minute experience, when the Gang was asked who the murderer was, we got the answer right, but had really little evidence to go on. A walkthrough after the game ended did not make the experience any more satisfying. While I feel like there’s a lot of fun to be had with the premise of this game, it needs a structural overhaul to make for a delightful player experience.

Theresa W’s Reaction

Rating: 1 out of 3.

Murder Mystery Dinner Party gave me an awesome excuse to break out my orange-tinted sunglasses, make a funky cocktail, and dress up like I was in the Scooby Doo universe. Unfortunately, beyond the getting ready part, this game fell short for me. Players were divided into two teams, the Gang and the Cronies, with the Gang having the full spotlight and the Cronies being background characters seemingly added to up the player count. The ‘gameplay’ elements were lacking in interaction and had no failsafe for groups who didn’t fully memorize a photo. The game started with some cute Scooby Doo trivia which was a nice touch and a good icebreaker. This style of game fell flat with a public booking group – if not all players were fully immersed, the moments split into breakout rooms were full of awkward waiting. I really love the concept of having an interactive murder mystery dinner over Zoom, and think this could be fun with some tweaking!

Disclosure: Murder Mystery Dinner Party provided the Hivemind reviewers with a complimentary play.

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