Free Shipping in the continental US @ $100!
Chronicles of Crime: London

Chronicles of Crime: London

Chronicles of Crime: London

We're back from vacation and we wanted to post about a couple games we brought with us. The first game we played was Chronicles of Crime from Lucky Duck games.

We're suckers for a good detective style mystery and this game has a lot going for it. To be completely upfront, it uses an app either from the Apple Store or Google Play store and it is required to play. We know that there are some of you out there that don't like apps or technology seeping into your gaming. We totally get that. This game however requires it.

Game Overview

There are many different editions of Chronicles of Crime. We have been playing the original, set in London. You and your group take on the role of a police inspector and during setup select a case to play. Typically the case starts with a call from Scotland Yard to investigate the crime scene. To do this, you scan the location card such as "Westminster" with your device and then you are given the choice to talk to people at the scene or view the crime scene. Viewing the crime scene, brings up a 360 degree illustration of the crime scene with all the blood and gore one would expect. As you look at the crime scene, you call out to your fellow players the items you see, who in turn pull the evidence category card and add it to the board. 

The game continues with you scanning people cards and other locations and eventually you will start finding out the clues you need to solve the case. When you think you have collected enough evidence, you can submit your final report.

Game Components

The game is deigned for 14+ and the main board is printed to look like top of the inspector's desk with coffee stains, tape and piles of papers, It also has 25-30 slots for the evidence.

The illustrations on the people deck are also fabulous. What's more, since they don't have the victim's names on them and can be reused as different characters in other cases.

The evidence cards are a small deck with an evidence category on it and not the name of a specific piece of evidence. This is for reuse in later cases.

The app is really well done and its used for all cases in the game. The really nice thing is that the cases can be downloaded ahead of time and played offline.

Game Setup

Chronicles of Crime is a relatively easy game to setup. After picking the case in the app, the setup tells you to pick a few people cards including your boss and either lay them out or set them aside for later in the story.

Gameplay

At the start of the investigation, you will read the introduction in the app and it will tell you what location is the crime scene and if there are any people you will need to speak with. All components have QR codes on them. If you want to visit a location, you scan the location's QR code. If you want to talk to a person, you scan that person's QR code. You can even question people by scanning their QR code and then scanning the evidence category or another person to ask them what they know about these people. Every time you scan an item/person at a location, time advances by 5 minutes and when you change locations it advances by 20 minutes

Chronicles of Crime involves a lot of legwork to sometimes not very much information. We found this game difficult as it relied a lot on hunches and not always on firm evidence. Also as you found evidence, you had to make sure you asked the correct person about it or the evidence means nothing. We found ourselves completely cutting off certain investigation tracks simply because we did not ask a specific character about another character or evidence. In this respect this game is closer to the Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective than to Portal Games Detective Series. We disliked Sherlock Holmes but loved the Portal Detective. That said this isn't a bad game, not worth your time, in fact it is right in the middle and does have a very interesting concept.

Over the course of the hour and half we played on one case, we thought we had rounded up enough clues to make an educated guess during the final report. We however got asked about characters we never met and it turned out we missed an entire line of questioning and location simply because we didn't ask the bartender in a bar about one of the other patrons. There is also very little in the way of hints. You can go to the chief if you're stuck, but you have to ask about something specific and even then he often doesn't know anything. 

Overall Impressions

We found this game quite frustrating to say the least. As we said it's not that it's a bad game, it's just that we had a difficult time connecting the dots on the cases.  We did like the fact that there are quite a number of cases built in and there are at least 4 additional cases that can be downloaded for a fee. We really had high hopes for the game, but in the end it became difficult to play especially when we didn't ask the right people about the right questions.

We hope that in future editions (which there are plenty currently out there) the storytelling was tightened up. The overall concept is intriguing and we were immersed in the gameplay.

We do hope that you take a look at this game if you are a fan of crime stories.  Maybe you'll see the connections, we missed! 

 

 

 

Shop the story