A slight modification on my suggested house rules for last time. Want peoples comments and honest feedback.
Note that these rules are based on the fact that myself, and everyone else in my play group believes the puzzle to be completely 'broken' - Placing a puzzle piece is way more powerful than placing a single piece of evidence. So much so that in all our games, everyone now just follows up the conspiracy and it is completed very early. Anyone who doesnt do this falls way behind on points.
So, my choice was to either make the puzzle pieces less powerful, or to make them harder to get. I chose the latter because it means changing less.
The idea is quite simple. There are now 4 piles of puzzle tiles. But one of them is empty. And this is the one the hero markers start next to. So the first time a hero follows up a lead to investigate the conspiracy, they can only dig deeper - to the first pile that actually has pieces in it.
In a 4 player game, no additional changes are needed. With 3 players, 3 pieces of the conspiracy already start in play (1 from each pile, dealt out randomly and then placed touching the centre space (but the placing player doesnt get any bonus from it). With 5 players, the conspiracy investigation cannot be chosen.
Without these tweaks, the puzzle is hard to be completed in a 3 player game and still completed too early in a 5 player game.
Also, conspiracy tokens are only worth +2VP.