Scotland Yard

Family game nights are an excellent way to spend some quality time together, and breaking out the board games is a fantastic evening of quality family time. There are so many different types of games to play but some of the ones that have been around for decades are among our favourites to play. We have been playing another game that has stood the test of time and been around for over 40 years: Scotland Yard – The Hunt for Mr X.

Scotland Yard – The Hunt for Mister X (the Ravensburger version) is a game for 2-6 players, age 8+ where players race through the streets of London in a co-operative game of deduction. All but one player must work together as a team to hunt and capture the elusive criminal (and the final player) Mister X.

The premise of Scotland Yard is that the mastermind criminal, known only as Mister X, is on the run around the streets of London. He is travelling around the city using various modes of transport (bus, taxi, underground tube trains and the occasional ferry) and a team of highly-dedicated detectives must work together to locate his trail, track and apprehend him – but can everybody work together to find the elusive mastermind criminal?

In the box:

  • Game Board (Map of Central London)
  • 6 Playing Pieces
  • 29 Start Cards
  • 130 Transportation Tickets (57 taxi, 45 bus, 23 underground & 5 black tickets)
  • 3 Double-move Tickets
  • 5 Detective Ticket Boards
  • Travel Log with Paper Insert for Mister X
  • Visor for Mister X
  • 2 Rings for the Police
  • Instruction Booklets (Beginner Game / Standard Game)
Scotland Yard

Scotland Yard – The Hunt for Mister X has two ways to play to play the game – beginner and standard. The main difference between the two is the number of rounds played.

  • Beginner game: plays up to 13 rounds
  • Standard game: plays up to 24 rounds.

Setting up this game is quick and simple, although be warned, the children will probably fight over who wants to be Mister X (apparently it is more fun being the criminal mastermind than the detectives on the hunt!). Depending on what game you play determines how many tickets to travel around the board each player receives. We played the game in the standard mode, after deciding (kids arguing) who was going to be the villainous Mister X, leaving the remaining 3 players as the detectives.

Playing in standard mode:

  • Mister X receives: 1 transparent playing piece, Mister X visor, travel log with paper insert, a pencil (not supplied with the game), 5 black tickets and 2 double-move tickets.
  • Detectives receive: 1 coloured playing piece with corresponding ticket board, 4 underground tickets, 8 bus tickets and 11 taxi tickets.

With the detectives and Mister X equipped with their travel passes, the remaining travel tickets are placed next to the playing board. If there are less than four detectives playing, help is required from the police. As we were playing with 3 detectives, we had 1 extra member of the police force (if there are only 2 detectives playing then 2 extra members of the police force are used). Each extra member of the police force is one of the remaining coloured playing pieces with a cardboard ring placed on it (the ring symbolizes free fare for all modes of transport, this playing piece requires no tickets to travel around the board).

The hunt for Mister X can now begin. Will Mister X outsmart the Scotland Yard detectives or will the detectives successfully capture the elusive criminal.

To play, the start cards are separated (D or X), shuffled and placed face down on the table. Each detective and any extra police force members picks up a D card and places their playing piece on the corresponding station on the board. Mister X picks up an X card and looks at the card without revealing the card to anyone (this is where wearing the visor helps as it helps to cover and disguise where the Mister X player is looking on the board so that the location is not given away by other players watching their eyes). Mister X does not place their playing piece on the board as that would give away the location and make catching him far too easy.

The player who is playing as Mister X starts by using one of their travel cards and writing the number of the location travelled to on their travel log, concealing the location with the travel card. Detectives must then try and deduce where Mister X is by using their travel cards to move around locations on the board. If a detective lands on the same location as Mister X, or the detective’s box in Mister X, so that he is unable to move any further, then the detectives win. If Mister X evades capture for 13 or 24 rounds (depending on if you are playing in beginner or standard mode), Mister X wins. To aid the detectives in their hunt, Mister X must surface (place their playing piece on the board) on moves 3, 8, 13, 18 and 24, disappearing again on the next move to aid the detectives in their hunt.

Scotland Yard

Overall, I love playing Scotland Yard – The Hunt for Mister X. It is a fun game of logic and deduction where teamwork and good communication skills are essential – a great way to exercise your mind whilst having to co-operate and talk to with your fellow players. Teamwork is an essential part of game. The thrill of the chase adds the excitement. Whilst the kids might think that being Mister X is more fun, I think that the fun lies with the detectives and their hunt.

This isn’t a game of frantically racing around the board. It is a slower-paced game and quite sedate. It is a thinking and logical deduction game, trying to work out in what direction the target could have gone and working with other players to hone in and block the criminal masterpiece. A strategic game where you do have to be planning ahead and forward thinking to try and work out your strategy to avoid capture or to capture the elusive Mister X.

Whilst Mister X plays solo, the detectives must work together and talk to each other to decide their strategy and moves, constantly trying to deduce where Mister X is and where he might to go next. It is a game that keeps the players engaged, involved and immersed, even when it is not your turn as you are always watching the board trying to work out possible routes for escape or capture. All players really do have to be paying attention and be aware of the moves made and possible future movements.

Scotland Yard – The Hunt for Mister X is a fun and very competitive game. The battle to outwit the detectives or capture Mister X is exciting. Game play can be as quick as 10 minutes (if Mister X is really unlucky) to 45 minutes. Teamwork, good communication and engaging with your fellow players is a must.

This is a game that has been very well received in our house. The adults enjoy it just as much as the kids.

Rating: 5/5

RRP: £27.99

For more information, visit Available to buy from Amazon here.

5 stars

DISCLOSURE: All thoughts and opinions are my own. This review uses an affiliate link which we may receive a small commission from if you purchase through the Amazon link.

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