Ghost Ship Murder Mysteries – Superheroes [Hivemind Review]

Superheroes is an online murder mystery game created by Ghost Ship Murder Mysteries.

We’ve reviewed their in-person mysteries Murder in the West Wing, Space Smugglers, and Western. This was their first mystery in an online format.

Cara, Peih-Gee, and David in costume on video chat in Gather.

Format

Style of Play:

  • Online native experience (can NOT be played IRL)
  • Interactive NPC(s)
  • Murdery mystery

Who is it For?

  • Story seekers
  • People who want to role-play and interact with each other in-character
  • Players who don’t need to be a part of everything going on
  • Any experience level

Required Equipment: computer with internet connection, with a webcam and microphone

Recommended Team Size: exactly 12 players

Play Time: 2 hours

Price: $30 per person

Booking: book online for a specific time slot

Description

You will be assigned a role, complete with backstory and goals. By interacting with other players in-character, you can try to achieve your goals and advance the story. There are 4 “rounds” to the game, and in each round every player will get additional information and goals.

The superhero HQ in Gather.

Cara Mandel’s Reaction

Superheroes was a fun iteration on the murder mystery style of gameplay. The game took place over Gather and was broken into several rounds of gameplay. Prior to gameplay, each player was provided a light character backstory, some suggested costume elements, and some info they needed to convey to other players. Throughout the game, when new information became available, players were emailed updates and further info and clues. The game was well organized compared to others of this type and for the most part I was able to follow along the story. It was a bit ambiguous at times what my specific objective was but the overall mission seemed to be clear. I mostly had fun leaning into the silly character I was assigned more so than the game plot, but had an enjoyable time regardless. No real puzzles to solve or escape room elements here. Just a nicely devised social deduction whodunnit.

Peih Gee Law’s Reaction

As far as murder mysteries go, this one had quite a lot of depth. Each character had a detailed backstory which slowly gets leaked to other players via various clues hinting at your shadowy, suspicious past. The hosts even match the characters to your group member’s personalities which is fun… and it’s even more fun when you win as the supervillain like I did.

Immersion: The immersion factor was top-notch. Our group dressed up, and all the different stories and clues really added to the fun.

Game Play: I quite liked the format of this game. We are all given backstories. Then players are given clues to different player’s pasts. We share these clues to pool information and deduce who the villains are. Some players are also given a superpower that you can use to collect information or use to spread misinformation. I think the way the superpowers work could use some reworking, as well as how the clues are handled. Perhaps only being able to say what clue you were given without being able to show the clue itself would be a better mechanic, which would allow for more fun counter-play.

Avatar: The game host was lovely, very well organized and they even participated in the game. They would circulate with the other players in character, and help prompt discussion.

Interface: This game is played on the Gather platform, which I think is ideal for these types of games. Overall the experience felt smooth and intuitive.

Brett Kuehner’s Reaction

  • + Fun to role-play with your friends
  • ? No puzzles to solve, the challenge here is to gather information and socially engineer the outcome you want
  • – Despite the use of Gather as a proximity chat platform, the high interactivity required for the gameplay would work far better in person instead of online
  • – Some roles seem to have more interesting/ usable powers than others, and the game might benefit from additional balancing
  • + The storyline is fun, and the character backstories give space to play the roles in a variety of ways
  • + The game structure worked well. It was a series of “rounds,” with each round revealing additional information and goals to each player

David Spira’s Reaction

I’m a big fan of Ghost Ship Murder Mysteries’ work. I absolutely adore their in-person murder mysteries (which is saying something because I don’t always enjoy that genre).

Their online adaptation felt really good. The use of Gather was clean, simple, and effective… and their scripting was great, as always.

My issue with Superheroes stemmed from the volume of characters… it was just too many people, with too many motives, and too many missions. Even as an experienced player, it was challenging to keep up, and there were characters that I basically never interacted with.

I still had a good time playing in Ghost Ship’s online world, but I felt like I would have loved this with a smaller cast of characters and fewer subplots to keep track of.

Disclosure: Ghost Ship Murder Mysteries provided the Hivemind reviewers with a discounted play.

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