Debut: 1948 (United Kingdom), 1949 (United States)
Inventor: Anthony Pratt
Companies: John Waddington Games Ltd., Waddington’s Games, Parker Brothers
Object of the game: Players try to discover who killed the host, with what instrument and in what room of his stately manor. With six suspects, six weapons and nine rooms, there are 324 possible combinations of the crime.
History: The game's creator, Anthony E. Pratt, was a patent clerk who served as a fire warden during World War II. In 1943, he wanted to make a simpler version of an old parlor game called Murder. Pratt and his wife, Elva, created a board game they eventually named Cluedo. After the couple perfected their idea, Pratt sold Cluedo to Waddington Games in 1947. In 1949 the game was sold to Parker Brothers for the U.S. market and renamed Clue. A 1985 movie version of Clue featured an all-star cast that included Tim Curry, Madeline Kahn, Martin Mull and Eileen Brennan.
Updated versions: Multiple versions of Clue were published in North America and the United Kingdom after 1949, but most of the changes were slight updates to the appearance of the characters and the mansion. In 2008, Hasbro released a modernized version called Clue: Discover the Secrets. This latest version of Clue is set at a dinner party at a swanky mansion hosted by a millionaire mogul. Just like in the original, it is the player's job to solve the murder, but there are new weapons, such as a barbell and a baseball bat, and a few new rules. Players can also try their hand at an Alfred Hitchcock edition, a Scooby Doo version, several computer editions and an app.
Trivia: In 1999 a bottle of poison was added to the list of possible murder weapons to celebrate Clue's 50th anniversary. The addition was made in honor of Pratt's prototype, which also originally included an ax, a bomb, a hypodermic needle and poison as potential weapons.