The Nexus Between Murder Mystery Games and Cozy Mysteries

by Kirsten Weiss ~ Have you ever played murder mystery games at parties?

I’m a huge fan, though I’ve only played a few. Maybe the appeal is that they’re a lot like cozy mysteries. The crime is bloodless. The focus is on solving a puzzle. And they’re a lot more fun than an actual murder. The games, like cozy mysteries, are all play, no trauma. The body is discovered, the game’s afoot, and hilarity (hopefully) ensues.

But the games I was familiar with always required X number of males and females, and pulling together the right amount of players could be challenging. In short, I was starved for a game. So when I saw a course on how to create your own murder mystery games, I was in. (And learned an easy solution to the gender issue—give all the players gender-neutral names).

And then I thought: why not include a game in the back of my Big Murder Mystery Series books?

murder mystery game
photo by Kyle Head on

Not only are they cozy mysteries, but a key recurring location is a murder mystery dinner theater.

(Also, while recipes in the back of cozy mysteries are fun, let’s face it. They’re sort of done to death).

Unfortunately, as I was going through the course, I realized the game I wanted to create would be too complicated. The idea was shelved. And it bugged me because a game in Big Shot would have been perfect.

Then I realized I didn’t have to follow the class template.

There was a much simpler model—traditional tabletop role-playing games in the D&D mode. I dramatically simplified that method of gameplay, substituted all those wacky twenty and eight-sided dice for a single six-sided die (most of us have one lying around the house—usually inside the box of another game). And voila! Murder mystery games that I could fit in the back of the books in the Big Murder Mysteries series.

Well, sort of. The games are easier to run if they’re printed out, so there’s a link at the back of the book to download a printable PDF.

Anyway, not only is a game in the back of Big Shot, which launches May 31st, but if you pre-order the book for only .99 cents and type your invoice number into the form on this webpage, you can immediately download a second game and other pre-order swag FREE.

Here’s the book, and Preorder links are below.

BIG SHOT, A Big Murder Mystery

Small Town. Big Murder.

The number one secret to my success as a bodyguard? Staying under the radar. But when a wildly public disaster blew up my career and reputation, my perfect, solo life took a hard left turn to crazy town. And to bodies. Lots of dead bodies.

I thought my tiny hometown of Nowhere would be the ideal out-of-the-way refuge to wait out the media storm.

It wasn’t.

My little brother had moved into a treehouse. The obscure mountain town had decided to attract tourists with the world’s largest collection of big things… Yes, Nowhere now has the world’s largest pizza cutter. And lawn flamingo. And ball of yarn…

And then I stumbled over a dead body.  

All the evidence points to my brother being the bad guy. I may have been out of his life for a while—okay, five years—but I know he’s no killer. Can I clear my brother before he becomes Nowhere’s next Big Fatality?

A fast-paced and funny cozy mystery series, pre-order Big Shot before May 31, 2022 to take advantage of the special pre-order price of .99 cents.

Murder mystery game included in the back of the book.


And Save your Preorder Receipt to get your Preorder Game and other Swag HERE.

Posted by Kirsten Weiss ~ Kirsten writes laugh-out-loud, page-turning mysteries. Her heroines aren’t perfect, but they’re smart, they struggle, and they succeed. Kirsten writes in a house high on a hill in the Colorado woods and occasionally ventures out for wine and chocolate. Or for a visit to the local pie shop. She is best known for her Wits’ End, Perfectly Proper Paranormal Museum, and Tea & Tarot cozy mystery books.

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