The Deadbolt Mystery Society – Conspiracy (Review)

Location: Your Home!

Players:  We recommend 1-4

Price: $24.99 per box, plus $4.99 shipping

Theme:

From The Deadbolt Mystery Society website:

A hidden message in The Valley Falls Observer leads to the conclusion that all is not what it seems. Is the message simply the result of a typo, a practical joke, or mere coincidence? Or is there a deeper conspiracy working behind the scenes of Valley Falls?

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High Points:

Conspiracy was one of those experiences that starts off very strong, and keeps that energy all the way to the finish line! The introduction to the game featured a fantastic, non-linear puzzling prop that some other companies would provide as the entire game, but for Deadbolt, this is only the beginning! I really loved that this prop is provided twice in duplicate so that multiple players can peruse and solve, while also allowing players to avoid the flipping back and forth that plagues this sort of interaction. This was easily my favorite part of the game, and fit into the “conspiracy” theme so beautifully. Honestly, this stage of the game is one of the best openings, mechanically and puzzle-wise, that I have seen in an at home game of this style! Once this part of the game is complete, there is still so much to do! Conspiracy is packed with enigmas, and will keep most players busy for a couple hours, if not more, and while each level of the game is self contained, they are non-linear and give a lot of room to work without choke points if players become stuck at any point. The ah ha moments are plentiful, and I feel that the entire experience is fully intuitive, with well designed bread crumbs available to lead detectives towards each satisfying solve. While the game is almost entirely paper based, it is polished and beautifully designed, including excellent online components while eschewing extraneous props. The story lives up to the promise of the theme as well, providing a myriad of setting and suspects to work through while trying to figure out what is really going on! You are never really sure what’s real or not, and once you’re sure you’ve figured out the reason behind it all, the game throws you for a loop, turning everything you thought you knew on its head! This, combined with fantastic integration into Valley Falls, with callbacks and references to real world conspiracies, makes Conspiracy an instant classic in our book!

Low Points:

There were a few puzzle types we weren’t thrilled with, generally banal interactions, but these were easily overshadowed and quickly over, so it wasn’t the worst offender. Otherwise, this was a pretty fantastic box!

Verdict:

Conspiracy is a great mystery that weaves some brilliant puzzling together with a twisty, turn-y story that will keep players on their toes! Including an intermediate level of difficulty that will challenge veteran and novice players, this box is a great choice for anyone interested in puzzling their way through a mystery. Join the Deadbolt Mystery Society here! Right now, you can get 30% off your first box with the Promo Code ESCAPE30! You can also see the rest of our Deadbolt Mystery Society reviews here!

9/10 (Excellent)

Full Disclosure: The Deadbolt Mystery Society provided a complementary box.