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Masters of Crime: Vendetta Board Game Review

WBG Score: 8

Player Count: 1-5

You’ll like this if you like: Detective, Sherlock Holmes

Published by: KOSMOS

This is a free review copy. See our review policy here - SPOILER FREE REVIEW

The Masters of Crime series started in 2021 with Rapture. There are now five in the series. The second to be released was Vendetta. Vendetta is a cooperative murder mystery game that puts you in the middle of a thrilling investigation. Under the cover of night, you slink through the rain-drenched streets of New York. Your godfather's urgent summons rings in your ears—there’s a rat in the family, and it’s up to you to sniff them out and restore the family's honour.

You'll solve puzzles, follow clues, and make crucial decisions to crack the case. With a deck of cards, hidden clue documents, and use of the actual Internet, you'll dive into a choose-your-own-adventure experience. You'll explore realistic locations, encounter suspects, and decide how to handle each situation, earning points along the way. The game keeps you on your toes with complex puzzles and escape room elements.

Set in the gritty mafia world of modern-day New York, your job is to find the mole responsible for the godfather’s son's death. Whether you play it straight or get a bit rough to get the info you need, the choice is yours. Vendetta really ups the immersion by using real-world tools like Google Maps and Wikipedia. You'll send emails, visit detailed web pages, and make mobile/cell phone calls. Let's get it to the table and see how it plays!

Nunatak Board Game Review

How To Set Up Masters of Crime: Vendetta

Open the box and take out the first card. That's it! oh, you may want to grab a pen.

How To Play Masters of Crime: Vendetta

Turn over the first card and start to read it. Ideally, have a phone nearby. Simple, aye?! You will read through various cards, look at pictures, and ultimately try to solve the case. At the end, it will tell you specifically what questions you need to answer, and where to go to input your answers. It is all very clear and straightforward. The game will guide you.

Masters of Crime: Vendetta Board Game Review

Is It Fun? Masters of Crime: Vendetta Board Game Review

Vendetta is a tantalising crime game where you delve into the seedy underbelly of the city, solving intricate puzzles either on your own or with a band of fellow sleuths. You’ll traverse various locales, piecing together clues that twist and turn the storyline in unexpected ways. Each choice you make alters the course of the game, ensuring no two experiences are the same. Keep your smartphone handy—you’ll need to dig up online intel to crack the case.

That said, it feels more like a one-shot murder mystery game. Although, perhaps over time I will want o go back and try it again. I have heard it likened a lot to a card game version of Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective, although I have not played that game myself. But it certainly seems true from what I experienced here, and had read about the other game.

It offers an intriguing and accessible experience with a touch of online media integration to keep things fresh. However, the box suggest it is for 16 plus due to mature content, which I would agree with, so you may want to be wary of that. Venues and content such as Strips clubs are included. The execution of the story and puzzles though is commendable, although there were a few moments where it felt a bit confusing, but I was never lost for long.

Masters of Crime: Vendetta Board Game Review

Vendetta's theme hooks you from the start, with a storyline as rich and dark as New York’s finest espresso. The simply crafted illustrations pull you deeper into the narrative but seem more like a still from a video game. But they work well with the theme and do look good.

The key to the success of this experience is that every decision feels consequential, shaping the unfolding events and keeping you on your toes. I never felt like anything didn't matter or wouldn't affect our outcome in the game. It is all brilliantly linked.

I would recommend this to anyone seeking a straightforward crime-based murder mystery-style game. It took us about 3.5 hours over two sessions to complete. I plan to keep it on the shelves, perhaps revisiting it in a year or two with a different group. Hopefully, by then, I'll have forgotten most of the story - my age and the number of games played should help with that!

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