Their description: On the Eve of every Lunar New Year, the Gods in the Heavens would gather around the Holy Temple after the Great Feast to witness the annual Blessing Ceremony. This year, as the clock struck 12, the crowd began to gather outside the Holy Temple as the nightfall took the stage on the very last day of the year. To everyone’s surprise, the beaming aura from the Golden Feather kept at the top of Holy Temple has gone.
Did something happen to the Golden Feather? We must figure out!
This time, you and your friends will role play as 5 zodiacs – Mouse, Ox, Snake, Monkey and Pig, to uncover the secrets inside the Holy Temple and figure out who, among you, was the culprit behind this incident.
Apart from their virtual escape rooms, AveLIVEX offers a virtual role-playing murder mystery game. Okay, it’s not a murder mystery, but the format is familiar: a crime has been committed, players are suspects, and the real culprit has to participate in the mystery-solving without revealing themselves.
Such mysteries are available in various online and offline forms, including Murder Mystery SG’s in-person tabletop games; similar boxed games; and free mobile apps (though I only know of Chinese-language examples).
Of the many cases I’ve played in different formats, this AveLIVEX game ranks decently, in terms of the case itself; I also enjoyed it more than the company’s virtual escape rooms.
When playing such mysteries, it’s easy to wonder whether you’re overthinking, or giving the writers too much or too little credit. Without being spoilery, I’ll say that in The Golden Feather Thief, you can trust that the writers knew what they were doing. The case is reliably logical, while leaving sufficient wriggle room for the culprit.
What’s less fun is that instead of letting players choose what evidence to investigate, the gameplay is linear, with key information revealed in a fixed sequence. This artificial approach makes the process less interesting, though it does guarantee exciting late-game revelations.
I admit, I’m more used to playing on a free mobile app than paying for digital murder mysteries. But the price of S$18 per person (or lower, when there are discounts) isn’t that bad for two hours of gameplay, and is affordable compared to offline options.
Case difficulty: 4/5
Case logic: 4/5
Their suggested number of players: 5 exactly