Kulkmann's G@mebox - www.boardgame.de

Amélia's Secret

[Amélia's Secret]


XD Production / Blackrock Games

No. of Players:



G@mebox author Ralf Togler writes about the game:

A manor in a forest, about 200 years ago. Elizabeth Vonleaken and her daughter are moving in, and they immediately feel at home. Especially the young girl, Amélia, who imagines stories and meets with imaginary friends, but then something terrible happens and Amélia disappeares. Soon after her mother is found dead….

You, or better we as the players, are awarded the house as we are distant lineage to the Vonleaken family. And of course, detectives or not, we are asked to find out about the true story of the Vonleaken women. Only then we will stop the ghosts haunting the house…

Amélia’s Secret that’s the title of this innovative escape game with augmented reality. To say it right at the beginning: Amélia’s Secret is not really a boardgame. However, it is also not a video game as some reviewers has called it. It’s more an escape room game you set up in your own premises. For this you are equipped with 14 large game cards that you can place in their appropriate locations: the telephone on a desk, the candlestick on a sideboard, the mirror at a wall etc. Let your imagination run free. You simply take a sellotape and place the cards wherever you want. I recommend using a single room, but, of course, you can also distribute the cards over your whole house.

[Amelia’s Secret]

Click on image to enlarge!

Then you need a mobile device, and you need the app. For that’s how all those cards come into life. By scanning a card, an augmented reality object is shown on your mobile device, and you can begin observing the objects and solving the mystery. Even interaction is possible and often necessary to get ahead. For example, there is a telephone. And once you have scanned the telephone, you will be able to dial, physically by moving the rotary dial on the phone in your app. And if you have found the right number, you will be able to answer the call and find out the next step of the riddles.

[Amelia’s Secret]

Click on image to enlarge!

Chests to be opened, fires to be lightened and walls to be broken. There is a lot to do, and the augmented reality show is really impressing to my mind. I felt a little bit like being in a real escape room. The atmosphere is very gloomy, at least if you set up the right atmosphere (I lightened some candles in the room) and if you connect an external speaker to your mobile device.

[Amelia’s Secret]

Click on image to enlarge!

To sum up, although I’m normally no fan of using a mobile device in my boardgames, Amélia’s Secret was a cool experience. I think the ideal number of players is two. You can also play alone, but it’s great solve those riddles together. With more people than two, I think it will get difficult to see the augmented reality and to walk around in the room. For there is only one mobile device that makes those objects alive…

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Copyright © 2022 Ralf Togler & Frank Schulte-Kulkmann, Essen, Germany