the night before christmas

The Night Before Christmas is an interactive murder mystery party for 12-15 guests (plus one host) published by Freeform Games.

(Note that if you click on the link below and buy The Night Before Christmas, I will earn a little commission.)

the story

Cover for The Night Before Christmas murder mystery game.

It is Christmas Eve, 1948.

The socialite Evington-Browne family (“E-B” to their friends) and guests are preparing for their annual cocktail party, held at the family’s hunting lodge in the White Mountains north of Boston.

A fierce storm has now set in, and the party finds itself cut off from the rest of the world.

This is unfortunate, as the valet of one of the guests has been found dead in the kitchen...

how the night before christmas works

The Night Before Christmas is an interactive murder mystery game. All the players receive complete details of their character, including a detailed backstory, objectives they must try to achieve, and information about other characters.

They also have item cards (that represent paintings, poison and even the fabulous “Dazzling Diamonds”) and abilities (that let them detect secrets and find out information about other people).

In my opinion, once you’ve played an interactive murder mystery game, you won’t want to go back to any other style.

the plot

The Night Before Christmas has different plots to keep everyone busy. For example, there is a cat burglar, the bestowing of the diamonds themselves, various family secrets - and the murder to solve.

The cast includes:

John Evington-Browne III: Respected businessman and head of the family.

Rose Evington-Browne: John’s much-loved wife.

Patrick Evington-Browne: John and Rose’s 20-year-old son.

Evie Evington-Browne: John and Rose’s 21-year-old and wilful daughter.

Tracy Evington-Browne: John and Rose’s youngest (16 years old) and mischievous daughter.

Priscilla Evington-Browne: John’s elderly and often forgetful aunt.

Agatha Marbles: Priscilla’s elderly English friend and allegedly famed detective.

James Pemberton: Rose’s brother. Art dealer and traveller.

Charles Pemberton: James’s son, a student at Harvard.

Dr. Bruisyard: Retired family doctor and friend.

Miles Earnshaw: Unexpected guest, friend from Rose’s youth.

Soames: Butler/Housekeeper.

Dinah Peters: Cook (temporary stand-in for usual cook).

Reggie Haven: Young socialite friend of Evie’s.

Christy Crompton: Young fellow-student friend of Patrick.

the details

IInstead of a formal dinner party, The Night Before Christmas is better suited to a buffet meal or finger food.

Everyone needs to talk quietly with each other - to plot and scheme and achieve their goals.

The Night Before Christmas needs a dedicated host, someone to organise the game.

I really enjoy being the host - you know what’s going on and can watch your friends scheme and plot and be devious to one another.

Non-Christmas version included

The Night Before Christmas includes, free of charge, Dazzled to Death the non-Christmas version of the game.

how to purchase the night before christmas

Cover for The Night Before Christmas murder mystery game.

Click here to purchase The Night Before Christmas is available from Freeform Games.

You will be taken to the Freeform Games LLP website - follow the instructions to purchase The Night Before Christmas.

Just download the game, print it out and have a great murder mystery!

Disclosure: I am a partner at Freeform Games - feel free to ask me lots of questions! (I will also earn commission if you buy The Night Before Christmas.)

Does The Night Before Christmas come with a money-back guarantee?

Yes!

Freeform Games offer a cast-iron guarantee on all their murder mystery games. If you're not completely satisfied with The Night Before Christmas then let them know within 30 days and they will refund you.

What age is The Night Before Christmas suitable for?

Freeform Games recommends The Night Before Christmas is suitable for those aged 15+ as it refers to a child born out of wedlock, although this is handled delicately.

How long does The Night Before Christmas take to play?

I would allow 3-4 hours to play The Night Before Christmas. While the game itself takes 2.5-3 hours to play, I recommend allowing time to introduce the game and wind down after.

Where's my download?

Shortly after buying The Night Before Christmas you should receive an email from Freeform Games explaining how to download the game files.

If you haven't received this, please first check your spam filter - sometimes the emails end up there.

If that fails, please get in touch directly with Freeform Games - with the details of which game you bought, when you bought it, and which email address you used. Or contact me (with that same information) and I'll get in touch for you.

How many guests will I need?

You need at least 12 guests and no more than 15.

If you have fewer than 12 guests you will have to drop a character (which may affect the plot), or play a character yourself (not ideal, but I talk about it here), or even ask a guest to play two characters at once.

If you have more than 15 guests you will need to create your own, or use one of the free extra characters provided by Freeform Games when you download The Night Before Christmas.

Can I host Murder at Sea and also play a character?

The host has an important role in Murder at Sea. The organize and coordinate the party. They also act as an impartial "referee" - so it's important that they have read the game and understand what is going on.

So I recommend not playing a character and hosting the game. 

But if you still want to host a game and play a character (or you have to because a player cannot attend), I have advice on doing that here.

Click here to purchase The Night Before Christmas is available from Freeform Games.

Comments

Have your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box below.

New game

Cover for A Purrfect Murder

A Purrfect Murder - a cat-themed murder mystery for 9-12 guests.

Don't know where to start?

Here's my suggested quick route through the site:

Step 1 - Go to Choosing a Game to choose the game that suits your party best.

Step 2 - Review the Tips for Hosts for helpful advice.

Step 3 - If you want to keep up to date with the latest murder mystery game news, click on my What's New page.

Step 4 - Once you've had your party - tell me how it went! Click here to tell me your murder mystery party story.

Got a question? Click here to go to the FAQ.

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