Murdering Games for small groups

Finding the right Murder Mystery Game for your group.

Some people get a bit nervous when it comes to planning a murder mystery party. They’ve heard all sorts of stories of people having to be “killed” and sitting out of the rest of the party. We’ve even had one customer who said they had played a murder mystery where everyone that died had to leave the house and relocate to a neighbour’s and over the course of the evening more and more people ended up in the “dead” house and had a much better party being dead than alive!

The problem people face is that murder mystery games are all written differently by different companies and it’s often hard to work out which murdering game will suit you the best.

Some sites even have different styles within the same category, which means all their dinner party games will play in a different way, so even if you shopped with them once, there’s no guarantee buying another game from them will mean it’ll run in the same away.

At Red Herring Games we keep things simple – and always ensure all dinner party games play in the same way – so if you’ve played one before, you know the format and don’t have to relearn.  However if you are shopping with a new company you may want to ask a few questions before you buy:

  1. Can the host take part and what is the role for the host?
  2. Are the roles of the guests clearly defined and easy to understand?
  3. Does the murderer know they are the murderer?
  4. How is the murderer selected?
  5. What do the individual “rounds” look like?
  6. Can you see a sample of what the guests see?

We design our murdering games so that everyone takes an equal role. At no point will someone have to die and sit out. In fact, we don’t even tell the murderer they are the murderer, so the plot is not reliant on someone having to keep a secret all night (which let’s face it, not all our friends are capable of doing!)

All of our games are plotted very carefully. Guests are ruled out on means, motive and opportunity – which means if you are all following the plot – you should be able to work out who the murderer is by the end. But beware – they aren’t that simple! There are plenty of red herrings to confuse!

Our games don’t expect too much of the guests (useful if you’re planning on drinking!) – which means the game is not difficult to play.  This means they are great for first time hosts – but also great for those who’ve played before as you can embellish as much as you want.  A simple play format doesn’t mean it’s a simple game – far from it! It’ll keep you guessing all the way through – but it does mean you aren’t going to have to get to wizard status in dungeons and dragons to be able to understand the game!

During the game there are specific lines to read out, a little like a script – but also statements that you can put into your own words so you have the opportunity to really ham things up if you want to.  Each round runs in the same way so once one round is over, the next 2 rounds are identical and therefore easy to play.

No one has to play “host” – even the host can take part as a suspect as the inspector is provided on MP3 or CD – which means the solution can be kept entirely secret from everyone taking part – even if you bought it as a downloadable kit. But don’t worry – we do provide the script as a PDF or as a booklet too if you have someone who wants to play inspector!

We offer a sample booklet and the first MP3 from the inspector for every dinner party game – just visit the game pages and take a look for yourself.  And don’t forget we’re always here for you and can answer all the questions you might have on all our games as we’ve designed every single one!

Take a look at our most popular murder mysteries HERE

We’ve also posted a video at the bottom of this post on how our games work – just in case that helps!

What if you want something different?

Don’t worry – although all our off-the-shelf murder mystery dinner party games are essentially the same, we can provide them in different formats. Some of our guests prefer us to drop the ice-breaking dialogues between rounds and provide the round Questions and Answers on cards. Some hosts want a more mix and mingle style event, where all the questions are known by everyone, which means they can mix rather than needing to be in the same room.

And there’s always the option to personalise your party, or have something custom written just for your group.

We can either write to our standard formats, or we can write something totally fresh. We are one of very few companies who write and design murdering games to order. This means if you need something with a fresh approach for a specific reason – we can do it.

We’ve done everything from digital delivery with videos and passwords, through to designing a much more free-form “role playing” style murder mystery where the guests come up with their own questions to ask (beware this isn’t for novices… ). We’ve provided murdering games for dinner parties, but also for conferences, team building, conventions, hotels, marketing and promotion. We’ve even designed board games to order. So we’re very used to thinking outside the box and ensuring that the solution is possible to reach!

If you need something weird – just contact us – the phone number is at the top of the web page.

If you need something standard – and aren’t sure where to start to find the right murdering game for you – feel free to call. We are used to helping and won’t bite!


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Flexible and fun!

We contacted Red-Herring-Games for a party for a special occasion. Why going to restaurants to eat is the preferred activity to mark milestones is beyond me and my friends.   The choice of mystery was obvious, looking at the options from New Zealand on the web Red Herring stuck out from the international options.  A quick look at the site and games showed subtlety as well a range of choices.  The numbers you could have for each evening was important,  Red Herring had scaling options a good range of scenarios but most importantly were Jo and team being flexible, responsive and helpful.

Rachel McWilliam, Arts Development Officer, Lincs Inspire

Thank you Red Herring Games for the marvellous 'Murder!  Cargo Connections?' event that you organised for us as part of Museums at Night at the Fishing Heritage Centre in Grimsby. The whole evening went so well and was brilliant fun.  I know from all the feedback that our visitors had a fantastic time. It was really good working with you and I have no doubt that we will do again in the not too distant future.  

A. Nonymous (council employee)

I would like to thank you and your colleague for helping contribute towards our successful conference last month.  Everyone really seemed to enjoy the evening and it was rewarding that so many delegates were able to participate in addition to the main "Actors".  Our conference evaluation froms included the following comments:
  • "Enjoyed the evening entertainment!"
  • The evening entertainment was great and the confusion made it great fun!"
With thanks and best wishes.

Sarah Spencer (Cleethorpes Chronicle)

I had no idea what to expect before purchasing a ticket for Old, New, Borrowed, Blue, which was being staged at a nearby hotel, and feared it might involve taking part in some way. However thankfully for me no acting was necessary, just some amateur sleuthing. "Wedding guests" of which I was one, were called upon to move from room to room in the hotel in groups, questioning a number of possible murderers with the aim of solving the mystery of the dead bridegroom. The interviewees were really fun characters and gave us all some good laughs. Of course they all had motives and it was a case of identifying the shiftiest. The wedding theme was particularly good, as it fitted well with the venue, the buffet that was part of the evening (with a wedding cake in the middle) and the fact that everyone had been able to dress up to fit in without going to the trouble of fancy dress. I didn't think I had enough "evidence" to actually accuse anyone but later regretted not even writing down my first guess as it wouldn't have been too far off the mark. The evening was great fun and everyone seemed to enjoy it and take part. I would definitely recommend Old, New, Borrowed, Blue as good for getting even reluctant or first-time mystery party-goers involved.  

Alan Young (Personal Touch Mortgages)

What a cracking nights entertainment! We don't get out much nowadays with 2 kids and this was exactly what we were looking for in a good night out. Lots of fun with tongue firmly in cheek and everyone kept guessing whodunnit right to the very end. Would definitely attend another!!!!!  


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