The Curse of the Pharaoh - queries

by Maz
(Cambridge, England)

I have a couple of queries about Curse of the Pharaoh.

Basically, this is for a friend's 21st (to be played on 6th of Feb) and he would LOVE this theme. He likes ancient Egyptian history and would like to play this particular game but wanted to clarify a few things first.

1) I have potentially 25 players - would I still be able to play the game? Also, the introduction says something about how the game would best be played for a buffet/finger food? We're going out to a restaurant for a proper dinner - still possible? I just LOVE the theme! If not, what would you recommend that was similiar (ie - magical 'curse' as well as murder mystery)

2) How possible would it be to change the characters names into their own names? ie on the name cards/introduction list etc? When I attended my only mystery night, we did think it would work better if we kept our own names. (And seeing as we have a diverse group attending, I'm sure it would still be in character!)

3) Lastly, and most importantly, I was wondering if you could tell me a little more about what actually happens in this particular game. I don't mean you to divulge all the secrets obviously and I understand that you can't give too much away but I would like to know more about the game to prevent offending people. I know this is hard to gauge but I wanted to know who the dark, seedy characters were and vaguely what their actions were? Are they the ones with the muslim names? I want to be particularly careful considering our group of friends. I know there is a 'money back' period but I'd rather avoid the hassle?

My response:

Thanks for your questions. Here's my answers.

First, number of players. Curse of the Pharaoh is for up to 19 guests, but there are two free extra characters on Freeform Games' site. That means you could be up to four people short - which means you'll have to create your own. (I've written some tips on that here.)

Second, venue. It's possible to play in a restaurant - but not if everyone has to remain seated for the whole evening. Curse of the Pharaoh is very interactive, and your guests need to be able to mingle so that they can scheme and plot.

So you need to check with the restaurant. If you're in a separate area with no other diners, then I would hope that it isn't a problem.

Third, names. Doing what you suggest is possible, but quite a lot of work. You'll need to ask for the Word files from Freeform Games and then go through and amend every one.

(That might be a lot of effort if you also have to add a few extra characters as well.)

Fourth, "dark" and "seedy" is very much a matter of opinion. All of the characters have secrets and hidden motives, not just the muslim-sounding ones! The main plot in the game involves magic artefacts that have the power to raise the Crimson Pharaoh from the dead - but I really don't want to give away more than that.

I hope that helps!

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Curse of the Pharoah

by JJ

Do all the characters need to be assigned to advance the game? I.e. what if only 12 people show, what happens to the 7 remaining characters?

My response:

If you don't have the full complement for a party, then all that happens is that the "missing" characters don't appear in the game.

All the games are written so that there's a core group that must be used (if they aren't present then some of the plots don't really work). Then there are optional characters. The individual game explains which characters are core and which are optional.

Sometimes one of the optional character does have an impact on the game - in which case there will be instructions explaining what to do. For example, if the character has a specific item, the instruction may say to give that item to another character.

I hope that helps - have a good party!

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