With the popularity of our new “2 Optional Witness Expansion Packs”, some people have been confused as to why they can’t just put “12” in the “add to cart” section of the “buy now” area for the optional characters and not just get 24 optional witnesses.
In the interest of differentiating ourselves from your parents (who no doubt said “because I said so, that’s why” as many times as our parents did during childhood), we like to share the reasons behind these types of decisions with our highly valued clients and hosts, because these decisions are always made in the interest of YOU HAVING A FANTASTIC PARTY AND YOUR GUESTS RAVING FOR YEARS TO COME. This is why we like to explain the reasoning behind our decisions, so that you avoid some very awkward situations we’ve endured first hand… like the time we discovered our adult friends were all illiterate.
At Shot In The Dark Mysteries we are very involved with our mysteries. We heavily test our mystery formats, and throw live events, both private and public. During these parties, we get bright ideas, like having a TON of optional characters.
When we finally tested this (with 14 core suspects and 6 optional witnesss) we noticed a SEVERE DECLINE in the quality of the mystery. So we tested again. And again. And each time we played with more than 2 optional witnesses, we found that the mystery got “watered down”, so to speak.
See, the optional characters are meant as a “back-up” plan for hosts. If you have ONE or TWO people who can’t commit, the optional characters are there for you to use IN A PINCH. The optional characters don’t have any “HIDE” or secret information. No background. No motive. All they have is a character name, description and “SHARE” information that they can give others during the interactive interrogations. They’re one dimensional, and with a large number of these one-dimensional characters, the quality of the mystery goes down.
Really, the purpose of optional characters is to help our hosts when one or two guests is flaky with their RSVP, or someone shows up unexpectedly. They are in no way designed to be a major part of the mystery.
Having said all that, we are committed to giving you the mystery party YOU want and need for your unique party. If you have a unique situation, need a different ratio of men to women or anything else, just Contact Us (firstname.lastname@example.org or via the “live chat” function on the right side of our website) – we have lots of solutions and we’re here to help!