How to Run Virtual Murder Mysteries

13 Oct 2023 - 7:35 PM

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A guide on how to run virtual murder mystery events with teams at work. When done well, these games can be a great way to boost remote teamwork and collaboration and encourage bonding between remote coworkers.


  • Intro0
  • Tip # 1: Assign Roles21
  • Tip #2: Virtual Backgrounds119
  • Tip #3: Compete for Clues145
  • Tip #4: Breakout Rooms224
  • Tip #5: Book a Facilitated Mystery246
  • Final Thoughts & Bonus Resources315


Welcome to’s guide to virtual murder mystery parties.

In this video, you’ll learn 5 tips for running fun online murder mysteries that foster remote team bonding and help work from home employees improve group problem-solving skills.

Let’s get to it!

Tip #1: Assign roles, not characters

When you assign roles instead of characters, more players get the chance to participate, and the game is not interrupted if one or two players have internet issues. This approach also encourages teamwork, as each person plays a part in their group’s success. You can give out roles like clue collector, interrogator, reporter, and reader. Each participant will have specific duties like gathering the clues, speaking for the group, or sharing the instructions. Teammates can distinguish their roles by renaming themselves with a special symbol like an asterisk or exclamation mark before their names.

This framework also means that folks who are less comfortable acting out characters are not put on the spot, and can be themselves in the meeting instead of pretending to be someone else. However, players are still encouraged to get into the spirit of the game, especially by dressing in costume!

Tip #2: Encourage virtual backgrounds

Unless the theme of the mystery is “murder at the home office,” chances are, your colleague’s bookshelves or white walls are not the most fitting backdrops for the event. To help set the atmosphere, encourage players to choose virtual backgrounds that fit the game’s theme. You could even send players background options before the game, or award teammates with the most creative backdrops with extra clues.

Tip #3: Compete for clues

If you want to passively watch a mystery be solved, then stream a true crime special on your laptop. If you want to be part of finding the solution, plan an interactive event. Adding games and challenges to virtual murder mysteries ups the ante and adds a competitive element. For example, the first team to solve a puzzle or correctly answer a question can receive an extra clue via direct message. This touch adds a sense of urgency, as teams must work together quickly to earn information. It also helps bond the group, as they work together to best the other teams.

Tip #4: Use breakout rooms

The most seasoned detectives know that sleuthing is best done in small groups. To increase participation and maximize team bonding during your online murder mystery party, split the group up into breakout rooms. While in the room, teams can piece together puzzles and decipher clues, propose theories, and enjoy small group bonding moments.

Tip #5: Book a facilitated mystery

Self-hosting virtual murder mysteries can be tricky, since you need to navigate the game mechanics and tech while keeping the group engaged. There are companies that can host the mystery game for you so that you can focus on having fun with your team. Booking with a professional means you don’t have to write or find the mystery. All you have to do is send a link to your team, then show up for an hour or two of intrigue.

There you have it! Now you know how to run fun and engaging virtual murder mysteries that sharpen remote workers’ critical thinking and teamwork skills.

Want more options? Google “ virtual murder mysteries” for more games.

If you know of mystery masters who would love these tips, hit “like” and “share” to help them find this video. Then “subscribe” to get notified when we post our next one!

Question for the comments – what do you think would be the most fun theme for a team building murder mystery?

See you next video!

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