In Mysterium, players take on the role of psychologically gifted researchers. These researchers will spend a week in a house where a hundred years ago a terrible murder was committed. One player takes on the role of the person who has been wrongfully convicted for this terrible murder and who has not been able to rest since then. The spirit communicates with the psychologically gifted investigators by means of dreams and will try to let the investigators know which persons were involved in the murder and who the real culprit was.
On the table are several sets of cards with potential offenders, places where the murder was committed and murder weapons. The spirit has for each player a set with one offender, one loction and one murder weapon. It is up to the players first to find out which sets everyone has and then to find out which of the perpetrators committed the murder.
The spirit gives clues to the player by means of dream cards. These are beautiful, dreamy Dixit-like cards. The players first have to find out their potential murder weapons, then the location and finally the perpetrators. The ghost has six cards and gives one or more of them to a player. Sometimes as a ghost you are lucky to have very direct hints (the object is on the map), sometimes you have to be more subtle (maps refer to shapes or colors).
After the ghost has dealt cards to a player, he refills his hand to six before giving cards to the next player. The players then decide together which murder weapons, locations and perpetrators the cards refer to by placing a tile in their player’s colour on the cards. The ghost may then only indicate whether or not the chips are correct. The players who have guessed correctly, continue to the next assignment and players who were wrong get another clue about the murder weapon.
When all players have discovered their trio (murder weapon, location and culprit) within six nights, the ghost gives one more tip (but this time made up of only one card). If the players guess it right now, the ghost will finally have peace and be able to move on to the light (or something like that). The sleepover of the Paranormally gifted only lasts a week, so if the players don’t understand quickly enough what the spirit means, they lose the game and the spirit will have to keep haunting on earth forever.
Myserium is a lot of fun for people who like social games
I like the idea of combining Cluedo and Dixit to create a paranormal who-did-it game. The idea just works. It happens regularly that the spirit gives clues that he thinks are very clear, but which the players then misinterpret completely because they just focus on another aspect of the card.
It’s fun to discover how different people think and try to bridge these differences. A communication game like Mysterium won’t appeal to everyone. Especially with more players you spend a lot of time on the clues of others and there is a lot of talk and consultation, this will not suite everyone.
However, if you don’t mind this, it can be a lot of fun. I think Mysterium is a great game. You’re figuring out the hints you get and you can have fun with the stories that come up.