What to expect from THE INQUEST

What is the aim of the game?

During The Inquest, you and your fellow jurors will have one hour and forty-five minutes to come to a verdict in an online inquest into a death from more than a decade ago. You will be given evidence to review and discuss, have access to an Archivist who can help get hold of more information for you, and you’ll be given time to talk as a jury about what you think is the truth. 

There’ll also be a Coroner present, whose job it is to make sure the inquest goes smoothly and returns a proper verdict. If in doubt, work with the Coroner.

What will I have to do?

Strictly speaking, you don’t have to do anything. As a juror, you can be as active or as passive as you like, and can even abstain in the final vote if you really don’t feel comfortable doing anything other than watch. 

The show is much more rewarding if you participate, however, to whatever level you’re comfortable. 

Please be mindful of others when playing. A jury that works together effectively won't miss vital clues.

What things can I do?

There will be evidence to read and listen to. It’s recommended that audiences divide up this evidence, so you may want to take responsibility for a specific exhibit and then report back on it to your fellow jurors. 

You may also come across codes and puzzles that hold more information about the case. If you crack these, make sure you let your fellow jurors know what you find.

What makes The Inquest unusual is the presence of a live actor playing the Archivist. They are here to help you find archived information that may not otherwise be present in the evidence you have been presented with. Become their friend and they’ll be a powerful ally.

What tech do I need to play The Inquest?

You’ll need Zoom and a device that can use it. We highly recommend playing on a computer so you can have Zoom open at the same time as browsing websites and reading documents. 

If you don’t have a computer, using a secondary tablet or phone device to read evidence while using Zoom on another device will work too.

Do I need any specific tech skills?

It may be useful to be able to screen share with Zoom, including sharing your audio. Other than that, the show has been designed to be accessible to people with varying tech skills: you can do an awful lot just by talking to your fellow jurors, the Coroner, or the Archivist.

What if I get stuck?

There is no right or wrong way to play The Inquest, but if you find you’ve run out of things to explore, talk to one another. Your other jurors may be onto something, and you may be contacted in unexpected ways with new leads. 

If you really run out of leads as a group, talk to the Coroner. It’s their inquest, after all, so they will have questions that need answering.

How many people can play The Inquest?

The game is designed to work for 12 people, to best represent a jury trial. However, it can function with as few as five players and as many as 16. Through testing, we have found that roughly 12 is the optimum number for everyone feeling involved. 

How long does it last?

You and the other players will be asked to come to a verdict in the inquest around one hour and forty minutes after the show begins. The show will end when you give your verdict.

How is it structured?

You will be given a pack of evidence to compare and check for inconsistencies or questions, as well as access to a police Archivist who can look things up for you. Across the length of the show, you will work through the evidence you have, as well as any other evidence that comes your way: the case is from 11 years ago, but that doesn’t mean new information won’t come to light.

Any advice?

Think outside of the box. Talk to your fellow jurors to make sure you haven’t missed evidence that they’ve read and you haven’t. Don’t forget to ask the Coroner for their take on things.

Remember that any live actor that you interact with is not an automated puzzle but a real person who will reward creative questioning. Remember also that they may know things that aren’t necessarily explained in the written evidence.

Oh, and keep your phone on and your emails open. You never know who might want to talk to you.

Click here to find out more about what to expect from JURY DUTY