Welcome to Dial “BOAT” for Murder!scientistman-copy

This is a dinner party murder mystery for 7-9 people that is conducted using text messages. You’ve already received the location and time where you’ll be playing, and all you need to bring is your fully charged cell phone. You can expect to receive about 200 text messages over the course of the game (all sent from the number of the person hosting the party), and normal messaging rates will apply, so if you don’t have an unlimited plan you should keep that in mind.

The game progresses via timers and interacting with the host’s phone. You won’t need to download the app (unless you’re the host), but the host’s phone will get passed around a little bit. A little into the night, one of the characters will die, and it’s up to you and your fellow players to figure out who murdered the poor soul. Everyone is a suspect, and you’ll need to work together to solve mini-games, contact the void, and maybe even get musical.

You’ve been assigned the character James Carson, who is an ecologist for the EPA working on analyzing a project the eccentric millionaire that owns the eponymous boat is working on. That guy in the picture is your character: you’re encouraged to dress up.

Here’s the monologue you’ll read to the group to introduce yourself. It should give you a flavor of the man you are:

Well friends, my name is Dr. James Carson, and how I ended up on this boat is beyond me. I’m grateful for the hospitality of our host, even if I don’t understand it. But then again, how I got here is a question I’ve wrestled with for years. I wanted to be a children’s book author, you know. I was going to write a series of books about telepathic whales and the pirates they befriend. But the jobs were in science, everyone said, and so I went to graduate school for ecology instead. You know what they say – dreams die, and you have to help them die by looking them in the eye as you drive a stake through their heart. So instead of writing children’s books, I monitor fecal contamination levels in tidal estuaries. It’s a good job – I’m up to my waste in foul-smelling cold water for twelve hours six days a week – but once you get past that and the low pay, it’s fine. There’s free coffee in the mornings, and sometimes I find Taco Bell coupons in the trash heaps on the beach. At their request, I’ve done an analysis of the environmental effects of the concrete structure that our host is planning to build in the Sock River Tidal Estuary. You may not know it, but there are 3 different endangered species of extremely cute aquatic mammals that make their home exclusively in the Sock River Estuary, and obviously the government is going to keep you from killing them all with concrete. I’m planning on releasing my report to my supervisor at the Environmental Protection Agency tomorrow, but you’ve still invited me on your boat and are treating me like a friend, which has me perplexed. But I’m a scientist, not a question-asker, so I’ll enjoy your lovely boat and your friends without thinking too hard about it.