One idea I have been toying around with, in regards to a 2 player game, is changing the whole suspect/hunch mechanic. That is, trying to turn the game a little bit into clue. This deviates from the rules, and is just for the 2 player game. Please give me any thoughts or comments.
Setup Deviation: Select the standard three suspects for a two player game. Take their corresponding innocent cards, shuffle, and give one to each player. Place the third under the game board. The card beneath the board is the actual murderer. No guilty hunches are dealt, and guilty hunches are out of the game. Each player will require, in addition to components within the game, a small slip of paper and something to write with.
Gameplay Deviation: Gameplay is as normal. Add, however, one additional action to the Daytime chart: Guess the Murderer: This must be the first daytime action taken on a player's turn. Spend all time of your time. Secretly write whom you believe is the guilty suspect on your piece of paper. Fold it so that no one can see what has been written. Now, if you took this action within days 1-7 (first week), write "1" or "1st" or "First" or something like that on top of the paper. If you took this action within days 8-14 (second week), write "2" or something to that nature on top. Then place the paper under your character card (or on top, the purpose is so that players know who's paper is who's). Since all time is spent, this player's turn is now over. NOTE: Each player may only take this action once per game. This action may not be taken during the climax.
At the end of the game, the suspects' guilt is determined using normal rules. NOTE: The actually guilty suspect may not necessarily be the one that is determined guilty by the courts at the end of the game. See Scoring Variation
Why?: Note that unlike in the full game, in this 2 player version, only one suspect is actually guilty. Each player holds one innocent card, which proves that suspect's innocence. However, they do not know the other player's card, which leaves two possibly suspects. Players will place evidence as they see fit on suspects trying to make their suspect innocent, and another suspect guilty. Hopefully, the suspect that is declared guilty at the end of the game will match what you have written. Furthermore, he/she/it will hopefully match the actual guilty party. It will be up to the players to try and strategically place evidence so that their suspect comes off innocent, without making it obvious which suspect they have been dealt.
Scoring Variation: At the end of the game, determine the suspects normally. This will leave the players with one suspect who has been found guilty by the courts. Score as normal, ignoring the "guilty hunch" scoring, since there are none. Players reveal their innocent hunches, and if their innocent hunch corresponds to one of the two innocent suspects, they get their 5 VP. Score all conspiracy puzzle bonuses as normal. In addition to the normal scoring, add in the following:
1) Reach under the board and reveal the actually guilty suspect. Check to see if the card matches the suspect who was found guilty by the courts. Players then open their pieces of paper, revealing the name of whom they thought was guilty. Score as following:
If the name on the player's paper matches the suspect whom was found guilty by the courts, +5 VP
If the name on the player's paper matches the suspect card that was below the game board (the actual guilty suspect), +10 VP
The Order of Sol on the conspiracy puzzle has a new function. Rather than giving two points to guilty hunches, each link to the conspiracy now adds +2 VP to any player whose name on their paper matches the party whom was found guilty by the courts.
If the name on the player's paper matches the suspect whom was found guilty by the courts, and the back of the paper has a "1", +3 VP
In this way, if a player guesses the correct guilty suspect, and that suspect is also found guilty by the courts, he/she/it receives the full +15, plus whatever links the Order of Sol has to the conspiracy. Players are also rewarded with an extra 3 VP if they make the correct guess in the first week rather than the second. Obsessions are not scored in this variant.
Player with the most points wins as usual.
Possible variations to the variation. 1) I contemplated making writing down your guess 4 time rather than all time. 2) Contemplated switching the +5 and +10 above, placing more emphasis on proving someone of your choice guilty rather than finding the real guilty party.
I would highly appreciate any thoughts or comments. Does this seem good for two players? Or, if it was tweaked a little, could it make a good variant for more players?