Hello my armchair sleuths, fans of true crime, lovers of the macabre. If you’re reading this, chances are you’re already in the know about Hunt A Killer. If not, let me clue you in.
This massively popular mystery subscription box gives you a chance to put on your detective cap and solve an intricate and chillingly convincing murder mystery. It’s not for the faint of heart. And not for the entire family. If you haven’t tried it, your first box is 20% off.
Every month, you’re sent a box of clues to help track down the culprit. Official documents, personal effects and newspaper clippings show up as the plot continues to thicken. The story unfolds over six months (six boxes) until you (hopefully) figure out whodunnit.
If you’ve ever fantasized about being an investigator or venturing into the head of a serial killer, it’s your creepy dream come true.
But these days, Hunt A Killer isn’t the only mystery game in town. Yes, there are more crimes to be solved and adventures to be had. They range from simple virtual escape games that last a few hours to stories that unfold over a series of months.
Many can be played with the whole family. Some might leave psychological scars. To help you track down the subscription that’s right for you, we’ve laid it out all plain and simple. Mystery solved!
Here’s a list of the top 27 mystery subscription boxes for fans of Hunt A Killer or rookies looking to get into the crime game.
If you love suspense but don’t want a detective story that plays out over six months (like Hunt A Killer), the Deadbolt Mystery Society could be the answer you’re searching for in your life. Each box contains a stand-alone case that you’re asked to crack.
In the box, you’ll find evidence, puzzles and interviews that will put your crime-solving skills to the test. It also has some fun interactive components that make the stories more immersive.
In general, Deadbolt doesn’t focus on gory details, so it should be okay for teens. And if you feel hesitant to commit to a monthly subscription, you can also buy stand-alone boxes to try it out. Problem solved!
This is another subscription that’s low on macabre details. Each box will challenge you to crack codes and unravel riddles in order to escape a virtual scenario.
It could be an Egyptian tomb, a pirate ship or even Alcatraz. In the crate you’ll find letters, puzzles and other surprise objects to help you flee your dire circumstances. (You’ll even find some bonus items as a reward for solving prior mysteries!)
Escape the Crate is a good family game that generally plays out in under two hours. So if you’re looking for a group escape from TV and other devices, this is the perfect way out.
Perhaps you consider yourself a super sleuth and are looking for a bit more of a challenge. In that case, Finder Seekers is for you.
Each mystery is set in a different location somewhere around the globe. So while you’re decoding cryptic messages and solving puzzles, you’ll also be learning about other cultures and traditions. In general, the game plays out in about 4 hours.
Some clues will require doing a bit of research online. And it’s also heavy on puzzle solving. But if you have a taste for international flavor and like something challenging, Finders Seekers should work well for you and the entire family.
The cases in Cosykiller play out over the course of a year, so this subscription is for investigators with a genuine commitment to fake crime.
Each month you’ll receive a package with vintage memorabilia, ciphers, puzzles and even false leads. You can choose to work on your own or gather a team of fellow detectives. Need more help with the investigation? They also have a private Facebook group.
This subscription requires brains and tenacity, so expect to be challenged.
Conundrum is a part escape room part choose your own adventure mystery game. Each box has a self-contained case with items of physical evidence, puzzles, ciphers and more.
The fun part about this subscription box is that it includes additional resources like suggested playlists, drink cards and themed recipes to enhance your sleuthing experience.
You can enjoy these adventure mysteries with the whole family. The average playtime is between 1.5 to 3 hours.
Are you and your crew into history? This Madmen & Heroes subscription box combines disentangled puzzles, ciphers and mysterious enigmas surrounding historical figures and events.
Choose between The CRAAAFT — which stories rooted in folklore — and the Resistance — which is based on real-life resistance movements throughout history.
Each month is a stand-alone story, so get your thinking caps on and get ready to go back in time to solve some of the world’s greatest mysteries.
This is another game that requires a little bit of online activity to solve the mystery. And you’re encouraged to do a little research about the historical figures involved. Along the way, you’ll definitely pick up some interesting tidbits you may never have known.
Madmen & Heroes is great for the entire family.
Use the code “chattersource” and get 10% off your first Madmen & Heroes box no matter what package you order!
Dispatch allows you to choose the mysterious, crime-solving adventure you want to begin. Titles include cases like “The Cat’s Eye,” “The Disappearing Magician” and “I, Spy.” Once you choose, you’ll be sent a box each month with evidence and clues that take you from the real world to the web and back.
The adventures vary in length. Some contain just two boxes, and others up to 7. And if you get stuck at any point, they even have a helpline.
Fun and immersive, you’re sure to be intrigued.
8. Sleuth Kings
In Sleuth Kings, you work alongside lead detective Sullivan King to solve a new crime each month. Inside each case file, you’ll find evidence, clues and puzzles to help you get down to the bottom of each mystery.
The cases are stand-alone and play out between 1 to 4 hours, depending on the level you choose. Put your thinking caps on, and be ready to sleuth!
This immersive subscription box from A Killing Affair makes it feel like you’re playing out your favorite murder mystery television shows. With your first box, you start with Season 1, Episode 1, and receive a new episode each month, and all seasons are five episodes long.
From secret messages and hidden clues to evidence and a list of suspects, you’ll be able to piece it all together in the season finale and convict your killer (and see if you got it right).
For this box, Internet access is required to engage with some of the subscription’s immersive online content.
Gather your most incredible group of adventurers for the Society of Curiosities quarterly subscription box. You’ll receive maps, letters, artifacts and more to help you crack the mysteries surrounding each adventure. Reviewers have stated that this box’s mechanics are fun and very different from other mystery boxes if you’ve already tried other subscriptions.
Get a new mystery every three months that gives you roughly two to five hours of playtime.
11. Chilling Screams
For those looking for a more paranormal box, Chilling Screams is the way to go. Take on the challenge alone (if you dare) or gather your investigation crew for a story that’s delivered to you through six chapters. Get one chapter a month that comes with audio, video, puzzles and physical evidence. Your first box will ship on the 14th of the month.
Internet connection is required for some of Chilling Scream’s immersive content.
12. Dungeon Crate
Do you enjoy Dungeons and Dragons, Pathfinder or any other role-playing games? The Dungeon Crate will make those RPG experiences more enjoyable with mini figurines, terrain, dice, original adventures and a Digital Crate.
While this may not be a mystery subscription box, it has items that will create a more personal and enjoyable experience for your already-owned mystery games and puzzles.
Reviewers have stated that this box is the perfect subscription for those interested in learning more about Dungeon and Dragons or other RPGs but aren’t sure where to begin their journey.
13. Boxed Locks
Boxed Locks was designed for those who enjoy discovery and puzzle-solving immersive experiences. Each box comes packed with props and clues to help you navigate and discover the final code to unlock the chest. Boxed Locks also states that you’ll receive several items that you will want to keep after you’re done solving the lock, making it more than just a puzzle subscription box.
A bonus? Each box comes with hint cards, so you will never have to worry about not being able to crack the lock.
If you’re into discovering the secrets of ancient civilizations, going on spy adventures or solving intricate crimes, the Enigma Fellowship has got you covered. Get an “escape room-style, at-home narrative-driven experience” every two months packed full of ciphers, letters, puzzles and interactions in 3D space.
Internet connection is required for gameplay, interactive components, hints, solutions and a Virtual Gamemaster.
This subscription box is carbon negative because every game you buy plants a tree.
If you’re shopping for your child, check out the Etsy small business MissionUnboxable. The set we are featuring — Six Month Subscription of Top Secret Missions, Spy Games, Spy Gadgets for Secret Agent — will get your young one six months of “missions”, which include creating a secret identity, decoders, fingerprinting and solving mysteries.
With 2,500 sales and a five-star rating from 450 reviews, we think your little detective will fall in love with their new box each and every month.
Customers have also praised the fast shipping, as the first box — which comes with a black briefcase to hold all their detective gear in future boxes — will arrive in one to three business days.
A Killing Affair has been likened to Clue, so if that was your favorite board game as a kid, this mystery subscription box is right up your alley. Just like in the original Clue, you’ll gather your clues and evidence, eliminate suspects and try to find out who the culprit is. The mystery storyline stretches out over five boxes, with each box containing crime scene evidence, police reports and other documentation.
The subscription box features three different “seasons,” with each season consisting of five boxes and one mystery each. Subscriptions start at $35 per month.
If you’re looking for a kid-friendly mystery subscription box, look elsewhere. This is one subscription that’s going to appeal more to the gritty true crime fans than the passive mystery sleuths. Murder Mystery in a Box offers detailed and slightly stomach-turning cases. The best part is, you don’t need to wait around to receive your next box in order to keep working on a case. Each box features its own individual case, with a mystery that can be solved with just that box. However, if you keep receiving boxes, you’ll see that the mysteries all kind of link together in a fun way.
Each box, or mystery, requires about four hours of gameplay, and boxes start at $35 each.
The Mysterious Package Company is a little more pricey, and the mysteries are a little more difficult to solve than what you’ll find with some of the other options on our list. At more than $70 per box, it’s twice the price, but you get what you pay for. Reviewers love the Mysterious Package Company’s open-world mysteries that really test your sleuthing skills, almost like a choose-your-own-adventure mystery.
There are several cases to choose from, but whichever case you decide to solve, you’ll receive a few key items, including a case file, newspaper, map and game rules. The story folds out very similarly to a fictional detective story versus a true crime case, so it’s more suited to fans of the former versus the latter.
19. Dear Holmes
Dear Holmes is a Sherlock Holmes mystery game for true literature fans. You receive four game installments mailed to you at set intervals, and each installment is in the form of a letter. Usually, the letter is written by Holmes’ Watson. Each letter takes you through a case, leaving you to sort things out as you await the next installment. While some say this game doesn’t quite give you the same amount of agency and gameplay, others like that it’s a little more guided, and there’s less leaving you up to your own devices.
The Detective Society is more of a classic mystery box, in comparison. Suited to ages 14 and up, each mystery is a “season” and comes with a series of “episodes,” starting at just under $40 per episode, so about the standard cost per box for these types of mystery subscriptions. Each episode asks you to solve puzzles, whether that’s puzzling over ciphers, deciphering codes, thinking on difficult riddles or hacking into bank accounts. You’ll also need to use email, phone and text messaging to talk to various game characters.
Each episode takes about 90 to 120 minutes to play, and there are currently three seasons available (each season includes six episodes). You can either buy individual episodes and play at your own pace, or subscribe and receive episodes every month, or purchase a full season at one time.
ForensiKit brings the science side of crime-solving to the mystery subscription box world, relying more on forensics versus your own deductions in order to solve crimes. Players learn about and use techniques such as fingerprinting, shoe printing and more. The forensic kit box doesn’t come with an actual mystery to solve, but your first box comes with a free, one-year subscription to the online mystery game that correlates to the boxes received. You can choose from a three, six or 12-month plan, with monthly subscription boxes going for $50 per box.
It’s worth noting that Murder Mystery Box is not the same as the above Murder Mystery in a Box. The former is quarterly, with each quarterly box giving you a murder mystery to solve. Each box contains some sort of documentation — a case file, journal, etcetera — that tells you about the crime, and then you have to use evidence and clues to try to uncover the killer. Boxes start at just $28 for a single box, but you can purchase a one-year subscription for $100.
One-Off Murder Mystery Boxes
Don’t want a full murder mystery box monthly subscription? While many of the above subscription options will allow you to buy one-off boxes, you might feel like you’re missing out on some of the experience by purchasing them that way. So, opt for a mystery box that contains an entire mystery in one box, no subscription required, no extra “episodes.”
This mystery box is a one-time purchase from Amazon, but if you just want to try your hand at the whole mystery box murder-solving thing, this might be a good fit for you.
The game includes three separate mysteries that solve one over-arching mystery, giving you plenty of gameplay time. Additionally, this is one mystery box that packs in way more clues and pieces of physical evidence. You get more than 50 different investigation documents and photos to sort through. And, if you just can’t crack the case at the end of the day, you can go online to get the answers.
Some might say that this is the OG mystery subscription box, as it originally came out in 1981 packaged in a book rather than a box. Still, this newly-updated mystery game outfits you with a case file, map, directory, newspaper and more, all of which you can use as clues as you follow a Holmes-style mystery through Victorian London. You answer various questions based on your deduction skills. Then, you receive a score based on those answers, and the game ranks you against Holmes himself.
Each game comes with 10 cases to solve. There are four editions of the game, each game costing $50.
Murder Mystery Boxes for the Kids
A lot of murder mystery boxes out there aren’t exactly suitable for the kids. If you’re looking for something for the whole family, you might want to try one of these options (no murder required).
25. Escape Room Geeks
Escape Room Geeks starts at $30, with each kit that you receive featuring a full escape room experience. However, these family-friendly kits don’t come in a box or in the mail — which is a pro to some and a con to others. Instead, the kits are printable, which the brand poses allows you to take your kit anywhere and play anytime. Some of the printable materials do need to be assembled using basic household craft supplies like glue and scissors. Setup generally takes about 30 minutes.
There are currently three kits to choose from, including a kit geared at children ages 5 to 8, but you can also purchase kits in bundles for extra savings.
Murder Mystery Party Boxes
But what if you want to plan a whole game night-style party around solving your favorite fictional mysteries? You can do that with these single, high-quality boxes designed to create a murder mystery party-esque atmosphere.
26. My Mystery Party
Most of the above mystery boxes can be enjoyed by one player, but if you’d like something that requires you to play in a group, look to My Mystery Party, which offers both downloadable and boxed mysteries, for all ages, five players or more, in more than a hundred themes. These boxes are a bit more geared to murder mystery parties and don’t come in a subscription, but if that’s exactly what you’re looking for, then look no further.
Each box comes with instructions, clue cards, investigation cards, evidence, forensic reports and more. You can choose from a range of themes to fit your party or group, such as a 1980s murder mystery, a fantasy-inspired mystery, circus-themed mystery or Gatsby-themed mystery.
This murder mystery game from Uncommon Goods is $45 and is suitable for groups of 5 to 12 people. You and your friends will be immersed in a 1920s-era atmosphere as you use Clue-style cards and props to learn more about what happened during a murder at the theater. The best part? This boxed mystery comes with three different endings, so you can play multiple times without feeling bored.
What to Look for in a Mystery Box
Before you pull out your credit card and sign up for that best subscription box, though, you’ll want to take a few factors into consideration.
What’s your personal comfort level?
If you’re more the type to watch a nice, tame, no-gore, warm and fuzzy mystery movie on the Hallmark Channel rather than a true crime podcast where two gals spill out all the horrific details of their favorite crimes, you want to consider that. Some of these boxes can get really detailed, while others are a bit tamer. Look at reviews, as well as age ratings, to determine which subscription might be best for you,
Along these lines, if you imagine you’ll be playing with children or other members of your family or friend group who aren’t too keen on the more graphic stuff, maybe opt for a more low-key game.
Just how patient are you?
Are you the type to get frustrated after spending five minutes on a game of sudoku? Or the type who starts a jigsaw puzzle only to abandon it after you can’t find all the edge and corner pieces?
If that’s the case, you might want to opt for a mystery that’s rated as a little easier, something that’s not going to take you four-plus hours to solve. Otherwise, you’ll just end up frustrated and wondering why you didn’t buy a self-care subscription kit instead. And, if you do find that your chosen box is on the easier side, you can always go for something more difficult the next time.
How much do you want to spend?
Lastly, budget is also a consideration, as some of these boxes can get pretty pricey. Even if you’re only spending $80 per quarter, that’s still more than $300 each year on a subscription box. On the flip side, if each one is your date night activity, you’re likely saving some cash. Gauge how much you want to spend and then shop accordingly.
Dust Off Your Detective Cap
Consider what you want out of each box you receive, what you need to make you happy with your decision, how much time you’re willing to set aside for the mystery and how much you’re willing to spend each time you get a new box. Once you’ve narrowed down these factors, you’ll be ready to dust off the detective cap and get to solving those mysteries.
Most of the listed subscriptions work better if you have your family or crew helping you out, but don’t let that stop you from taking on any case on your own.
You might also be interested in: 14 Shows To Watch If You Like Law & Order
The 27 Best Mystery Boxes Like Hunt A Killer:
- Deadbolt Mystery Society
- Escape the Crate
- Finders Seekers
- The Conundrum Box
- Madmen & Heroes
- Sleuth Kings
- This Whodunit is KILLER
- Society of Curiosities – Adventure by Mail
- Chilling Screams
- Dungeon Crate
- Boxed Locks
- Enigma Fellowship
- A Killing Affair
- Murder Mystery In A Box
- Mysterious Package Company
- Dear Holmes
- The Detective Society
- Murder Mystery Box
- Unsolved Case Files
- Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective
- Escape Room Geeks
- My Mystery Party
- At-Home Murder Mystery Night
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Sherry De Alba
Sherry is a freelance writer who worked as an actor before transitioning to an award-winner career in advertising. During a vacation to Mexico, she fell in love and never left. Sherry (aka Cherita) now spends her time bouncing between the US and Mexico writing, running, cooking, meditating and exploring lots of cool stuff on the other side of the wall.view post