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Museum Suspects Board Game: Rules and Instructions for How to Play

Museum Suspects Board Game: Rules and Instructions for How to Play

Objective of Museum Suspects

The objective of Museum Suspects is to figure out which of the 16 thieves stole the missing museum artifact. The player that bets the most on the real thief/thieves will win the game.

Setup for Museum Suspects

  • Place the Emergency Exit tile on the table face up.
  • Shuffle the Suspect tiles together. Randomly select 16 of them and place them face up in a 4×4 grid. Return the remaining eight Suspect tiles to the box.
Setup for Museum Suspects
  • Sort the Clue cards by their types. There are eight different types of Clue cards. Shuffle each pile to randomize the cards.
  • Choose one card from each Clue card pile. Take all eight chosen Clue cards and shuffle them together.
  • Randomly place one Clue card face down next to each Suspect card on the left and right sides of the grid.
Setup for Museum Suspects
  • Return the remaining Clue cards to the box. No one should look at these cards.
  • Each player is given the following:
    • 1 notebook
    • 1 pencil
    • 1 Detective token
      • 2 player games: Use tokens A and B
      • 3 player games: Use tokens A, B, and C
      • 4 player games: Use tokens A, B, C, and D
    • 12 Investigation tokens corresponding to the color of your Detective token. You should place these tokens face down in front of you.
Setup for Museum Suspects

Playing Museum Suspect

Museum Suspects is played over six rounds. Each round begins with player A, followed by player B, and so on until each player has taken a turn.

On your turn you will take two actions in the following order:

  1. Investigate a clue
  2. Suggest a suspect

Investigating a Clue in Museum Suspects

Choosing A Clue Card

To start your turn you will choose one of the eight Clue cards placed face down on the table. These Clue cards will show you information about which suspects are innocent.

Choose a Clue Card in Museum Suspects
The first player gets to choose one of the eight Clue cards to look at.

Depending on what Clue card you choose, one of two things will happen.

If there are no Investigation tokens on the Clue card, you can immediately look at the clue.

When there is already an Investigation token on the Clue card, you will look at the number on the Investigation token(s). If you still have one or more of your own Investigation tokens that are higher or equal to the highest valued token on the card, you can look at the clue.

Choose a Clue Card in Museum Suspects
It is the green player’s turn. They can choose to look at the top right or third card on the right without having to worry about the cost as no tokens have been placed on the cards. To look at the other clues, they will need to play a token equal to or higher than the token already on the card.
Choose a Clue Card in Museum Suspects
The green player wants to look at this Clue card. To look at the card they need to have an Investigation token that is three or higher.

Should you not have a high enough Investigation token, you have to choose a different Clue card to look at.

If you don’t have any Investigation tokens left high enough to look at any of the clues, you will move onto the Suggest a Suspect action. You will not get to look at a Clue card.

Analyzing the Clue Card

When you look at the Clue card you should not let anyone else see it. The card will give you information about which suspects couldn’t have committed the crime.

Chosen Clue Card in Museum Suspects
This player has chosen a Clue card. They have picked a card that features an eagle’s beak.

You will cross off the corresponding Clue card image from your detective sheet.

Crossing Off Clue Card
As this player looked at the eagle beak card, they will cross off the corresponding picture from the top of their sheet.

You will also cross off any suspects which the clue showed were innocent.

Crossing Off Suspects
There were two eagle suspect tiles. The player will cross off the corresponding spaces in the grid as they now know these two suspects are innocent.

After looking at a Clue card, you will choose one of your Investigation tokens to place on the Clue card. If there is already an Investigation token(s) on the card, you must play one that is equal to or higher than the token(s) already on the card.

Placing An Investigation Token on a Clue Card
As the pink player previously played a three Investigation token on this Clue card, the green player had to play a token of equal or higher value. The green player decided to also play a three Investigation token.

If no one has placed a token on the space, you can choose any Investigation token. You will place the token face up on the card.

Place Investigation Token on Clue Card
In this round the green player looked at the second from the top Clue card on the right side. The player decided to place one of their two Investigation tokens on the space.

Suggest a Suspect in Museum Suspects

For this action you will get to make an accusation about who you think committed the crime.

You will choose one of your Investigation tokens that you have yet to use. The number printed on the token is how many points you will score if you pick the right suspect.

You will place the chosen token face down on the Suspect tile that you think committed the crime. You can place your token on any suspect. Over a number of rounds you can place tokens on different suspects, or you can place several on the same suspect. You must place exactly one Investigation token per turn.

Place Investigation Token on Suspect Tile
The green player thinks Popi committed the crime. They placed one of their Investigation tokens face down on the tile.

If you think none of the 16 suspects committed the crime, don’t place an Investigation token on one of the suspect tiles. Instead you can place an Investigation token on the Emergency Exit tile. 

Place Investigation Token on Emergency Exit Tile
The blue player doesn’t think any of the suspects committed the crime. Therefore they placed a token on the Emergency Exit tile.

After placing an Investigation Token, your turn ends.

End of Museum Suspects

Determine the Culprit(s)

The players keep taking turns until six rounds have been played (each player has taken six turns).

End of Game in Museum Suspects
The sixth round has just finished. The players will now figure out who committed the crime.
Final Sheet in Museum Suspects
This is a player’s sheet at the end of the game. Based on the clues this player received, they think all of the suspects without an X on them could potentially be guilty.

To determine who committed the crime, turn the Clue cards over one by one.

Rule Out Suspects in Museum Suspects
The first Clue card revealed is a blue scarf. All suspects with a blue scarf will be turned over because they are innocent.

Flip over the Suspect tiles that each Clue card revealed were innocent. Any Investigation tokens placed on those Suspect tiles are removed from the game.

Flipping Over Innocent Suspects in Museum Suspects
Five of the Suspect tiles had a blue scarf. Those tiles will be flipped over since they are innocent.

Once all of the Clue cards have been dealt with, you will know who is guilty.

Final Guilty Suspects in Museum Suspects
All of the Clue cards have been revealed and the corresponding tiles have been flipped over. There are four Suspect tiles that are still face up. The four face up suspects were responsible for the heist.

One Culprit

If only one Suspect tile remains face up, they committed the crime by themselves. The players who placed Investigation tokens on the suspect will receive the corresponding number of points for each token. The player that scores the most points, wins the game.

One Guilty Suspect
As only one Suspect tile remains face up, they are the only guilty suspect. Players will score points equal to the token they played to the tile. The players will score points as follows: yellow – 11 points (5 + 6), blue – 13 (6 + 5 + 2), pink – 4, green -5. As the blue player has scored the most points, they have won the game.

Multiple Culprits

If there are two or more Suspect tiles that are still face up, multiple suspects committed the crime together. All of these suspects are guilty. Players will add up the Investigation tokens they placed on each of the guilty suspects. Players will score an additional point for each of the suspects that they placed at least one Investigation token on. The player that scores the most points, wins the game.

Multiple Guilty Suspects
As there were four guilty suspects, players will score points for the Investigation tokens they placed on each of the tiles. The green player scores 18 points for their Investigation tokens (6 + 6 + 1 + 5). They will score an additional four points for having at least one Investigation token on each of the four guilty suspects. The pink player scores 12 points for their Investigation tokens (5 + 5 + 2) and an additional two points for figuring out two of the guilty suspects. The yellow player scores 15 points from their tokens (3 + 6 + 6) and two points for guessing two of the suspects. Finally the blue player scores five points for their token and one point for guessing one of the guilty suspects. The green player has scored the most points so they have won Museum Suspects.

No Culprits

If none of the Suspect tiles are still face up, the culprit escaped the museum. Players will score points for any Investigation tokens they placed on the Emergency Exit. The player that scores the most points, wins the game.

No Guilty Suspects
In this game all of the suspects were innocent. The guilty suspect(s) has escaped from the museum. Therefore players will score points equal to the tokens they placed on the Emergency Exit tile. The players will score points as follows: pink – 11, blue – 8, yellow – 2, green -1. As the pink player has scored the most points, they have won Museum Suspects.

If there is a tie, the players share the victory.

If none of the players correctly placed an Investigation token, no one wins the game.


Year: 2022 | Publisher: Blue Orange Games | Designer: Phil Walker-Harding | Artist: Maxime Sarthou

Genres: Betting, Bluffing, Deduction, Family

Ages: 8+ | Number of Players: 2-4 | Length of Game: 20-25 minutes

Difficulty: Light | Strategy: Light-Moderate | Luck: Moderate-High

Components: 24 Suspect tiles, 1 Emergency Exit tile, 32 Clue cards, 48 Investigation tokens, 4 Detective tokens, 4 Notebooks, 4 Pencils, Instructions

Where to Purchase: Amazon, Blue Orange Games Any purchases made through these links (including other products) help keep Geeky Hobbies running. Thank you for your support.


Museum Suspects Board Game Review - Geeky Hobbies

Friday 26th of August 2022

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