A new Dungeons & Dragons adventure lets players experience a classic "murder on a train" mystery in which one of the players could be the murderer. Murder on the Eberron Express, written by Orla ní Dhúill, is a new one-shot adventure that combines elements of classic D&D social deduction adventures with themed murder mystery parties that straddle the line between roleplaying game and acting experience. Typically, murder mystery parties place guests into certain acting roles, with everyone trying to figure out "whodunnit" while staying in character. Murder on the Eberron Express combines that with insight and deception checks, as players try to figure out who killed an artificer with his newly created gun.
Unlike typical one-shots, Murder on the Eberron Express has players assume the roles of eight different archetypes, ranging from the Secretive Lover to the Loyal Retainer. These archetypes are flexible enough to allow for players to come up with their own backstories, but they provide each player with their own link to the murder victim, as well as a possible motive for the murder itself. Some archetypes also have secondary connections to other players, providing them with possible accomplices. Any unfilled role becomes an NPC, giving the DM something to do besides play as referee.
Another unique aspect of Murder on the Eberron Express is that the murderer is determined at random with the roll of the d8, so that the murderer could be either a player character or one of the leftover NPCs. Not only does this open the door for more than one playthrough, it also keeps the tension high because no one will know if all the players are on the same side. Players also have only five hours until the train arrives at its destination, meaning they're racing against the clock in addition to trying to sniff out a murderer.
If you have a Dungeons & Dragons group that loves roleplaying and mysteries, give Murder on the Eberron Express a try. This adventure is available on the DMs Guild for $6.95.