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What’s Halloween without ghosts, spirits and other things that go ‘BUMP’ in the night. The old ‘child in white blanket’ was a firm favourite Halloween costume for kids all over growing up, much to many parents despair seeing their blankets get holes cut out so their little devils could see through them whilst roaming the neighbourhood in search of sweets.

So it’s only natural that Ghosts get a mention in our 5 DAYS OF HALLOWEEN blog series and I’ve chosen two games that are great ways to spend your Halloween Games Night.

Ghost Stories, by Repos Productions

First up is Repos Productions ‘Ghost Stories’.  Ghost Stories is a co-operative game where each player takes on the role of a Chinese Taoist Monk trying to defend the village from a variety of nasty ghosts that have taken advantage of the ‘longest night’ to break through the barriers separating the spirit and physical worlds. The Monks can either try and battle the ghosts directly or visit one of the locations scattered around the village to harness the locations special power (either for the benefit of the group as a whole or the individual Monk ). You are playing against the game itself and there are a variety of difficulty levels – but even at the beginning level the game can be quite challenging. The artwork is fantastic and the games components are really nicely done. It’s suitable for 1 to 4 players and takes about an hour to play – so ideal if you want to play several different games in an evening or even have several attempts to defeat Wu-Feng, the Lord of Hell, and save the village from being overrun by evil spirits!

Ghost Stories Board

Mysterium, by Libellud

Next up is a game that I would be very surprised isn’t a contender for the 2016 Speil des Jahres next year. It’s the recently released ‘Mysterium’ by Libellud. The game is set in the 1920’s when astrologist Mr MacDowell invites a number of his friends (all gifted mediums) to his new house to try and communicate with a ghost that seems to be haunting it. The ghost was murdered several decades before and will remain restless until their murderer is identified. Unfortunately the ghost is unable to ‘talk’ to any of the mediums but can ‘communicate’ through visions. Using these ‘visions’ the players have to decipher their meaning and identify possible suspects, locations and the murder weapons involved. One player takes the roll of the ‘ghost’ and is given a hand of seven cards which contain dreamlike images. The ghost then passes the first player one, or more, cards that they think will help the player identify the suspect. The Ghost then refills the hand and proceeds to hand out cards to each medium. As soon as the last medium received their cards the timer is flipped and the mediums have until it runs out to not only identify the suspect (or location or weapon) they are looking for but also help the other mediums too (thus possibly scoring some bonus ‘time’ in the final round). Those who have identified their suspect correctly move along to try their luck at determining the location, whilst those who failed spend another round trying to locate their suspect. The game lasts seven rounds at which point if any medium has failed to guess their suspect/location/weapon the ghost has failed and disappears leaving the mystery unsolved until another attempt can be trued the following year. If all the mediums have guessed correctly then the ghost has a final chance to let the mediums know ‘which’ of them has correctly identified the culprit, etc. This is done with a final three card ‘vision’ which depending on the bonus ‘clairvoyancy’ each medium has gathered during the game means they will have one, two or three cards shown before they have to make their final decisions. If the majority of the mediums identify the suspect correctly then the ghost can ‘move on’ and rest peacefully forever more. If not, then there is always next year…

Mysterium has been getting rave reviews and is a dead cert for our own Halloween Games Night this year. It plays for 2-7 players and takes 42 minutes (or thereabouts).

Mysterium Components, by Libellud

By Angus Abranson

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