Best Detective Board Games of 2024: Top 5 Revealed

We explore top detective board games, perfect for new players. Sherlock Holmes, Chronicles of Crime, and more offer thrilling mysteries.
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Tobago coverMystery of the Abbey coverSherlock Holmes Consulting Detective cover

Oh boy, have we got a treat for you! When we delve into the world of board games, there’s nothing quite as thrilling as solving a mystery. That’s why we’ve scoured the universe for the crème de la crème of detective board games. Now, we’re not just throwing any old game your way. Nope, we’ve got a keen eye for those that bring out your inner sleuth, make you question your friends’ alibis, and, of course, keep us all entertained for hours. So, grab your magnifying glass, dust off that trench coat, and get ready to crack some cases with our top picks!

On this list:

5 Tobago

Tobago cover

  • Age Range: 10+
  • Players: 2-4
  • Play Time: 60-75 min

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Alright, gather ’round, detectives! Tobago isn’t your usual detective game but it throws in a twist with a treasure-hunting adventure. Picture this: we’re all on an island, deciphering clues to find hidden treasures. It’s like being a detective with a pirate hat, if you ask me. The game brilliantly combines deduction with a dynamic board that changes every game, making you feel like a true explorer piecing together a map. The thrill of the hunt and the occasional backstabbing make every game night a hoot.

4 Mystery of the Abbey

Mystery of the Abbey cover

  • Age Range: 8+
  • Players: 3-6
  • Play Time: 120 min

Get your copy on Amazon ↗

This one’s a hoot if you’ve ever wanted to play detective in a monk’s robe. Mystery of the Abbey is basically ‘Clue’ on steroids, set in a monastery. We played this one night and couldn’t stop accusing each other of being the culprit behind the monk’s disappearance. What sets it apart is the need to ask questions and deduce who the guilty party is among a host of characters, all while dealing with the silence of the abbey. Lots of laughter, and the ‘ask questions’ mechanic makes you feel like a real detective.

3 Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective

Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective cover

  • Age Range: 14+
  • Players: 1-8
  • Play Time: 60-120 min

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Oh, this one is gold for any detective buff. Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective literally makes you a part of Holmes’ investigative team. We dove into Victorian London, poring over newspapers, maps, and the infamous Holmes casebook to solve mysteries. It’s a game but feels like you’re in your detective show, minus the camera crew. The cases are challenging, and the satisfaction of piecing everything together is unbeatable. Plus, arguing over clues with friends makes for some memorable game nights.

2 Detective: A Modern Crime Board Game

Detective: A Modern Crime Board Game cover

  • Age Range: 16+
  • Players: 1-5
  • Play Time: 120-180 min

Get your copy on Amazon ↗

If you want to feel like a detective in the 21st century, this is your game. Detective: A Modern Crime Board Game has you solving cases with the help of the Internet, a database, and your trusty team of fellow detectives (a.k.a. your friends). It’s as close as you can get to being a real detective without actually being one. The cases are intricate, with layers that would make an onion cry, and the tech aspect brings a whole new dimension to the detective genre.

1 Chronicles of Crime

Chronicles of Crime cover

  • Age Range: 14+
  • Players: 1-4
  • Play Time: 60-90 min

Get your copy on Amazon ↗

Now, for the cream of the crop, Chronicles of Crime takes the detective theme to a whole new level. What makes it the best? Let’s talk about blending traditional board game mechanics with VR. Yes, you heard right, VR! You get to literally look around crime scenes, picking up clues with your friends. We absolutely lost it when we first tried the VR scenes; it felt like stepping into the game. The integration of technology with intuitive gameplay makes it a pioneer for detective games. Solving crimes has never felt so immersive.

Jamie in his proper element: With all of his board games
Jamie Hopkins

With years of dice-rolling, card-flipping, and strategic planning under my belt, I've transformed my passion into expertise. I thrive on dissecting the mechanics and social dynamics of board games, sharing insights from countless game nights with friends. I dive deep into gameplay mechanics, while emphasizing the social joys of gaming. While I appreciate themes and visuals, it's the strategy and camaraderie that truly capture my heart.