There’s one objective and one objective only with Clue Junior – who ate the cake? Clue Junior is a board game geared towards kids who want to take their sleuthing skills to the next level. But what are the Clue Junior rules? Read on to find out how to play the Clue Junior board game.
Solving mysteries is undoubtedly at the top of anyone’s to-do list. We all love detectives and sleuths, so why not have a board game based around them? Sleuth games like Clue Junior are some of the best board games out there, as it encourages you to interact with all the players involved.
Finding the cake-eating culprit will mean you have to explore the mansion. As you make your way through the mansion, you’ll find clues and hints as to who might have taken the cake, what time they ate it, and what they drank with it. By using these clues, you can eliminate potential culprits from your list. Eventually, you’ll discover who the culprit was.
We’ll take you through how to play the Clue Junior board game and explain the Clue Junior rules as well.
What is Clue Junior?
Clue Junior is the classic whodunit board game Clue, but with the murder element taken out of it, making it more palatable for kids. Clue Junior even features Clue’s iconic characters, including Miss Scarlett, Colonel Mustard, and Professor Plum!
Instead of looking for a murderer, in Junior Clue, the players are on a mission to discover who took a piece of cake and what they drank with it. As you can see, Clue Junior’s mechanics are very similar to Clue – they’re just simplified a bit.
Number of Players: 2 to 6 players required for play.
Difficulty: Medium difficulty.
Length of Play: Approx. 30 minutes per game.
Similar to: Clue; Mysterium; Guess Who; Clue Harry Potter
Main Objective: Explore the different rooms of the mansions to find clues that will tell you who ate the cake, what time they ate the cake, and what they drank with it too.
Why We Love It: Who doesn’t love a bit of mystery? At one time or another, we all have wanted to tap into our inner Sherlock Holmes and solve all kinds of crimes. Well, now is your chance! Clue Junior is filled with suspense, intrigue, and the excitement of finding out who committed the crime.
A Brief History of Clue Junior
Clue Junior is the child-friendly version of the classic murder mystery board game Clue. It was first designed way back in 1943 in the United Kingdom, and around the world, it is known as Cluedo. This is a combination of ‘clue’ and ‘ludo,’ which is the Latin word for ‘play’.
While it was designed and devised back in 1943, it was only officially manufactured and released in 1949 due to shortages during the Second World War. Once released, it was hugely popular, largely thanks to the proliferation of everyone’s favorite detective, Sherlock Holmes, and the hilarious antics of Inspector Clouseau from the Pink Panther.
Playing Clue Junior – What You’ll Need.
To play Clue Junior, you’ll need to get hold of a Clue Junior: The Case of the Missing Cake set.
In the box, you’ll have everything you need to play Clue Junior. This includes:
- A Game Board
- 6 character models
- 6 furniture tokens
- 7 white bases
- 7 yellow bases
- A detective notepad
- A label sheet
- Instructions explaining the Clue Junior rules
There are several different iterations of Clue and Clue Junior, including Clue Junior: Case of the Broken Toy, Clue: Star Wars Edition, and even Clue: Wizarding World Harry Potter Edition!
It is also worth getting an extra detective notebook too, as if you play a lot, you’ll find yourself getting through your notepad rather quickly.
How to Set Up Clue Junior
Setting up Clue Junior takes a bit of time. Start by labelling the game pieces using the label sheet.
1) You’ll need to put the drinks stickers from the label sheet on the bottom of the yellow bases. 2 yellow bases will end up without a label on them.
2) Take the white bases and stick the green crumb label and the 5 numbered labels to the bottoms of them. One white base will end up without a label.
3) Put one square label on each side of the die.
Setting up the Board
First of all, set up the white bases.
1) Put aside the white base with the crumb label on it and the white base with no label.
2) Mix up the remaining 5 bases and ask the youngest player to select one at random.
3) Place this white base at the center of the gameboard without looking at it. This is the time that the cake was eaten.
4) Mix up the remaining white bases with the 2 you set aside and place one character model in each one.
5) Put the character models in their matching game board places. The character model with the crumbs label on their white base is the one that ate the cake.
Next, it’s time to set up the yellow bases.
1) Put the 2 yellow bases with no labels to one side.
2) Mix up the remaining 5 drink bases and ask the oldest player to select one at random.
3) Place this yellow base at the center of the gameboard without looking at it. This is the drink that was had with the cake.
4) Mix up the remaining 4 yellow bases with the 2 you set aside and put a furniture token in each one.
5) Place each piece of furniture next to the room on the gameboard that shows that piece of furniture – for instance, the pool table beside the room with the pool table pictured in it.
Each player then takes a sheet from the detective notepad and grabs a pencil or pen. The players then fold their sheet in 2, to keep it secret from the other players. Now you’re ready to play the Clue Junior board game!
Clue Junior Rules & How to Play
The player who last ate a piece of cake in real life goes first. Play then goes to the left.
The aim of the game is to solve the mystery by discovering who ate the cake, with what drink, and at what time. On your turn, you can find clues under the white and yellow bases. They could either help you out, or prove to be useless. Keep a note of all your clues on your detective sheet.
Rolling the Dice
When it’s your turn, roll the die.
If you roll a yellow, you can look under any furniture model on the yellow base. This ends your turn.
If you roll a white, you can look under any of the character models on the white bases. This then ends your turn.
If you roll a number, you move any of the characters along the footprints and spaces printed on the gameboard. You can’t pass or land on any other characters, and you can’t end your turn on the space you started from.
Moving Around on the Gameboard
You’ll see on the gameboard that there are different types of spaces you can land on. If you roll a number and land on a footprint, your turn is over.
If you roll and land on a yellow space, look at the piece of furniture in that room and secretly look under the furniture model affiliated with it. For instance, if you’re on the patio, you’ll look under the plant model. This then ends your turn.
If you roll and land on a white space, secretly look underneath the character model you moved with. This ends your turn.
Marking your Detective Sheet
Your detective sheet is really handy for figuring out the clues and getting to the bottom of who the culprit was. Whenever you find a drink or a time under a base, make sure you cross it off on your sheet. Do the same with each character and furniture model you’ve looked under too.
These aren’t part of the solution – however, the missing ones are! When you know which ones are missing or haven’t been found, you will be closer to finding out who the culprit is.
If you find the character who has crumbs under their base, then you’ve found the culprit – make sure you note it down and then try and solve the other clues to work out what they drank and what time they did it!
Winning Clue Junior
When you think you know who the culprit is, what they drank, and when they drank it, you can make an accusation at the end of your turn. To do this, simply say something like ‘Professor Plum ate the cake with water at 3:00’.
Once you’ve made this accusation, you can check the character model you accused and the yellow and white bases in the middle of the gameboard – make sure you don’t show anyone else, though! If they match your accusation, you win the game.
If your accusation is wrong, unfortunately, you leave the game – after all, you know the secret! The other players continue until one of them guesses the correct solution or only one of them is left.
How to play Clue Junior – Video Tutorial
Frequently Asked Questions
Can you play Clue Junior with just 2 players?
Unfortunately, you can’t play Clue Junior with 2 players.
How do you set up a Clue Junior board game?
Have a look back through this article for all you need to know about how to set the game or check out the instructional video above.
Is Clue Junior the same as Clue or Cluedo?
Yes – though Clue Junior has all the references to murder taken out of it, and depending on which version you get, replaces it with missing cake and broken toys!
Alternative Games to Clue Junior
Who doesn’t love a bit of mystery and solving crimes? There are some fantastic games out there where problem-solving and sleuthing are front and center, just like with Clue Junior.
5 Minute Dungeon is an excellent alternative to Clue Junior, which transports you to a magical, mystical world. Similarly, King of Tokyo requires the players to have their wits about them and requires a fair bit of luck.