Letters from Whitechapel is a thematically engrossing board game of deduction and bluffing in which one player takes the role of the infamous Jack the Ripper, while up to five other players are detectives working together to pursue him through Victorian London. After committing his horrible murders, Jack must outmaneuver the detectives in the tangled streets of the Whitechapel District. Meanwhile, the detectives must use clever deduction and their superior numbers to hunt Jack the Ripper down before he can kill again or elude them forever.
Played over four rounds, Letters from Whitechapel is an engaging game of cat-and-mouse. Each round, the player controlling Jack selects a victim, commits a grisly murder, then attempts to escape to his secret hideout before being apprehended by any of five pursuing investigators. As for the investigators themselves, they must watch and wait, springing to action when Jack strikes then working together to narrow down his true location and make an arrest.
To begin, the Jack player secretly chooses the location of his hideout, a numbered space on the board to which he must run after his nightly butchery. Jack writes the number of this location at the top of his move track sheet, on which he also records his movements each round. This all-important document will remain hidden behind Jack’s special screen throughout the game, masking his heinous activities from those who seek to apprehend him.
When Jack strikes, he removes one of the white Wretched pawns from the map, representing the murder of an unfortunate lady of the night. Suddenly, the scene of the murder becomes the starting point for a high-stakes race. As Jack attempts to elude police and make it back to his Hideout (ending the round in his favor), the police detectives search the spaces near the crime scene for clues to his trail.
With skill, communication, and a bit of luck, the police detective players will gradually establish a radius surrounding the location of Jack’s hideout, before finally closing in and stopping him. If the police detective players catch catch Jack on his way to his hideout or delay his escape for a set number of turns, they win as a team. If, on the other hand, Jack is able to escape justice for four rounds in a row, he wins, securing his place as one of history’s greatest villains!
Although it presents a tense and satisfying game of deduction, Letters from Whitechapel goes beyond mere gaming. It immerses players in the seediest corners of late Victorian London, drawing them in with the chilling realism of its components.
The chilling blood-spattered board is an accurate representation of London’s Whitechapel district, and its edges are adorned with the names of Jack’s real-life victims and a key to where they met their untimely ends. Detailed sidebars throughout the rulebook present a timeline of the horrors that plagued London between December 1887 and March 1891, while representations of original albumen photographs of the investigators show each policeman.
Above: a section of the board showing the names of three of Jack’s victims and pointing to the historically accurate locations of their murders.
With its keen attention to detail, Letters from Whitechapel presents an experience as close to Jack the Ripper’s London as you’ll want to get!
Players familiar with the previous English-language edition of Letters from Whitechapel (published by Nexus Games in 2011) may be wondering what, if anything, is different about this revised edition. In short, certain components have been altered based on player feedback.
Will Jack escape justice, surviving to kill again, or can the police put a stop to history’s most notorious killer? Find out in Letters from Whitechapel!
|14+||2 - 6 ||60+ min |
© 2013 Tiopi srl. Letters from Whitechapel and Sir Chester Cobblepot are trademarks owned by Tiopi. All rights reserved. Letters from Whitechapel is licensed and produced by Giochi Uniti under license by Tiopi srl. Giochi Uniti logo is trademark of Giochi Uniti srl. Letters from Whitechapel is distributed worldwide in the English language by Fantasy Flight Games. Fantasy Flight Games and the FFG logo are registered trademarks of Fantasy Flight Publishing, Inc. All rights reserved to their respective owners.