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Old June 24th, 2010, 09:56 PM
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JX Valentine
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Oh yeah. Boscombe Valley's pretty good itself, although my favorite would probably be Scandal in Bohemia. I'd say why, but it'd be a spoiler.

But yes. Mystery isn't an easy genre to work with. While it's great when it's pulled off, you'll need to think about every last detail and every last step, which is something else I didn't actually bring up. In order to make the mystery reach the conclusion you want, you'll have to have not only the ending planned out in detail but also every last step that gets to it. While it's possible to have an RPG like this (if you used the "storybook" format and advanced the plot only when certain conditions are met for each chapter), you'll need tighter control over your players than normal if you want them to notice all the clues -- including the way all NPCs behave with regards to this mystery -- you've had in mind. Actually, Sherlock Holmes should be a good example of this, so definitely keep reading and take note on how Holmes picks up on the tiniest details that eventually lend to the way he solves this mystery. Feel free to use Doyle as a springboard for ideas on how to work in the subtle details you'll want for that climactic conclusion.

If you're dealing with paranormal investigations (because you very well could turn around and say, "No, really, it was just a guy who killed this kid's father."), it's even taking it a step up because you're going to have to figure out how to get these characters to arrive to the conclusion that it's not just some person who did the murdering. This would require convincing not just the cast but also the reader -- who might be expecting a Scooby-Doo-style "man in a mask" conclusion -- that it really is that mysterious creature lurking on the sides of the shores.

Good luck either way.
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