09 August 2021
What're you looking at?
The Detective Board Game from Portal Games really sticks out as one that embodies its mantra – 'games that tell stories'. In it, you seek to resolve a series of cases using a mixture of decision making with the cards you’re given, and research both on the board and in the cards, as well as on its dedicated website, that allows you to uncover and link your evidence in the age of technology. That begs the question then – how do you capture that in an expansion that’s set it in 1970’s Boston before
Dig Deeper is part of the new signature series, and so this adventure is penned by Rob Daviau. At its simplest, just another case. You receive another pack of cards to run your story, you use Antares online to investigate, and you use the same logic of working time and overtime stress to contribute to your final question answers. But as repeatability is an issue for the first game, it’s great to have another case to get your teeth into, especially when it’s so well written. Much like before, the story itself is very engaging, where you’re investigating the untimely death of a local politician. Without spoilers, it’s enough to have you questioning everything and everyone.
So how do you get around the new timeline restrictions, and utilise the key research part enjoyed in the original? Well, upon selecting Dig Deeper on the Antares site, it converts to a library computer. You’ll type commands into the DOS-esque screen, to complete your interviews or check out your evidence. Plus, you can also call for librarian help. It takes three hours in game world time and makes you appreciate the modern world all the more, but it’s a clever method change.
If you liked Detective, and want to play it again with a new tale, this is worth every penny. It’s more of the same stuff you will have enjoyed, with a few twists to keep it interesting, a few surprises along the way, and a real chance to Dig Deeper.
Play it? Yes
Designer: Rob Daviau
Publisher: Portal Games
Time: 2-3 hours
This article originally appeared in issue 46 of Tabletop Gaming. Pick up the latest issue of the UK's fastest-growing gaming magazine in print or digital here or subscribe to make sure you never miss another issue.
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