If you don't already know, Mysterium is a murder mystery table-top game for 2-7 players. It's asymmetric, with one player taking on the role of a murdered spirit, while the rest – playing as psychics – have to figure out how they died, and who did it.
They figure this out by looking over vision cards, each illustrated card guiding them towards a specific suspect with its abstract art. Players can also share their visions with other psychics and approve or reject their choices with Clairvoyance Tokens. In Mysterium, up to 7 players can join together for fun, engaging games.
In the new, digital version of the game, you have the option between a story mode and a "play" mode. The story mode puts you through the tutorial first and lets you get the hang of the game. The play mode lets you play online games, host an online game or play against, or rather with, the AI.
The story mode gets pretty hard pretty fast. As a human being, I have a hard time figuring out what the AI can sense from a Vision card. Can it see that the location the murder took place has the same color as the vision card I'm using? Or can it see that the card has the same ambiance as the suspect? Once you get the hang of it, Mysterium is a real fun and beautiful game to keep you entertained for a couple of hours.
When I was done playing the tutorial, I decided to start up a game playing against the AI. I played with 2 other psychics and picked my murder suspect. I found it odd that I had to wait until the clock had run out of time before the AI psychics made their choice. It was then that I found out that the only other AI player was the spirit. All other psychics were supposed to be played by me, or rather, local multiplayer friends.
Mysterium is available on Steam for $ 9.99
The game is developed by Asmodee Digital and Playsoft and published by Asmodee Digital.
The game is entirely played with a mouse, and it feels really intuitive. Except for the fact that you have to verify every move you make. Which in itself is a good thing? It makes sure you don't do any mistakes.
When you are playing as a psychic, you have to choose the suspect, location and a murder weapon for the case you are presented. You get tips from the spirit of the victim by the means of "Vision cards". These vision cards give you small hints about the suspect, location or a murder weapon. You can also use Clairvoyance tokens to say if the other psychics are right or wrong. If you guess correctly, you get clairvoyance cards, which help you out with solving the case in the last round.
As a spirit, you have to help all the psychics trying to find out who murdered you. Help them pick the suspect, location and a murder weapon by giving them visions. In all of the rounds, you can give each psychic a vision card. You have to choose the most appropriate one out of six cards.
I have spent over 3 hours playing this game, and I'm not done with it for a while! It's a fun game if you have little time to spare. Each case played against the AI, takes about 20 minutes.
sound and graphics
As I said before, the artwork on the cards looks truly amazing! It's well-designed, thought out and gives that creepy feeling this game needs. All cards almost look hand-drawn and the amount of detail in each and every one of them is truly inspiring. All Vision cards and Suspect/Location/Weapon cards have subtle details in them, which you can use to point the psychics in the right direction. For example, there is a beautiful location card with a rocking chair on a patio in a dark and gloomy forest, with a crow sitting on the opposite side of the chair. I chose a vision card with some birds on it and the psychic immediately got it. This is one of the things that makes this game so great and unique.
The user interface looks good, feels intuitive but can get a little bit confusing at times. When you are new to the game, you find yourself searching a lot for the next option you have to pick. Once you get the hang of it, though, the system works like a charm and prevents you from making mistakes too often.
The sounds in this game are great. Once in a while, you hear the creepy sound of a grandfather clock ticking in the background, crows flying around outside or heavy footsteps on the floor above you. These are the subtle ambient things that get you and keep you in the mood for a mystery game like this one.
Mysterium is a well-made and well-designed interpretation of an amazing board game. Allthough it looks like one of those point-and-click adventures you see in every electronic store for 5 bucks, this game is really in-depth and well thought out.
I have a few issues with the game, though. For one, there's not really a single player mode apart from the story missions. Like I said earlier, when you play a single player game, you are supposed to play as all the psychics in the game, and not just one as you would assume. It looks like this mode is designed as a local multiplayer game and not a single player mode.
Another issue I have is that you don't know how the AI "thinks". Like I mentioned earlier in this review, If I pick a vision card as the spirit, can the AI see that the feeling in the card is the same as in the location he is supposed to pick? Or that the painting on the wall is the same color as the vision I left him? I assume this isn't an issue when you play against other humans, though.
All and all, I can say this game is a masterpiece in the digital tabletop section of Steam. And for a little under 10 bucks, you can't go wrong with it if you like these types of games.
|+ Amazing artwork||– Crashes on quit|
|+ Good atmosphere||– Don't know how the AI "thinks"|
|+ Fun to play||– No real single player game|
|– Story mode gets pretty hard pretty fast|