To celebrate her 23rd birthday, my wonderful and super creative friend Jess decided to host a murder mystery party! (this article is spoiler-free)
My friend Jess is nothing short of creative. Last year for her birthday, she celebrated with a Steampunk themed party. This year, a roaring 20’s murder mystery.
Here’s how it worked:
The game required some preparation before the day.
All of the guests were given their roles a few weeks in advance to familiarise themselves with their new identity. This info pack also included a brief description of each character, instructions on how to play and dress, a ‘newspaper’ of recent events and suggestions on how to maximize the experience for yourself and others.
We had eight players in total, with Jess’s boyfriend being the game master since she wanted to play as well. The website she bought the game from indicates that really large groups can also play this, which I think would provide for an entirely different experience.
On the day, each character was given their own objectives centered around a murder that occurred halfway through the party. In game cash was also distributed, which we were allowed to use at our leisure – for blackmail, bribery, trading information and anything else we wanted.
Since I’m pretty new to roleplaying, I found it hard to ease into my character. The week of the party was also extremely busy for me, so I didn’t get to prepare as much as I wanted to – which meant I was looking a lot at my notes. Thankfully our game master assigned roles that worked around our personalities and relationships we already had with each other in real life. Majority of the guests were also part of the group I play D&D with regularly, so it wasn’t the first time that I role played with these friends which I was thankful for, since I can be quite shy.
The game played out over a few hours while we mingled and had dinner together. It was definitely an interesting experience. Hopefully if I ever do this again, I’ll get over the initial awkwardness and just dive in!
It was very entertaining to see some of my friends really get into their roles and start manipulating the other players to progress their official objectives and made up agendas. I definitely commend those players for making the game more interesting and adding their own twists to the story.
Jess also did a great job decorating and creating an atmosphere in her home – street signs stuck on the walls and doors, a wanted poster, little hints of luxury and extravagance, an “alley way” wall, and more.
I think one of my favourite parts was dressing up (but really, when is it ever not?). As mentioned prior, the week of the party was extremely busy and I didn’t have as much time to prepare as I wanted to.
I ordered a dress online a few days before the party (thank God for Blossom Costumes and their next day delivery!) and bought all of the accessories on the day of. I spent a lot more than I had budgeted for, but thankfully I didn’t go as overboard as I could have. Most of my jewelry was from Lovisa, which happened to have a “marketplace” collection at the time. I feel like that was pretty fortunate, because the collection consisted of replica antique rings. I bought two “circa 1930’s” because I couldn’t find anything earlier than that decade.
I also bought a black faux fur coat from Dotti that was 40% off! I was worried I wouldn’t use it again after the party because of how extravagant it looks, but it’s actually super warm and I love wearing it out.
Unfortunately I don’t have an outfit pic, but here are some photos from the night that my friend Leo took!
Overall, I had a great time that night! I definitely recommend attending a Murder Mystery party if you ever get the chance.