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Partner Highlight: Moon Murder Mystery - South Dakota Discovery Center’s Creative Extension to the Moon Adventure Game

Christina Leavell, Science Museum of Minnesota


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In Pierre, SD, an imposter is among us! South Dakota Discovery Center’s take on the NISE Network’s Moon Adventure Game has some creative extensions that have proven very successful with their audiences. In a recent NISE Network online workshop, (From small steps to giant leaps – experiences adapting the Moon Adventure Game for use in camps, with young audiences, and for all humankind!) museum educator Kristine Heinen shared the museum's experience creating an adaptation inspired by the popular multiplayer video game Among Us

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If you are not familiar with the game Among Us by Innersloth, it is a multiplayer video game in a space-themed setting. Players are assigned one of two roles - crewmate or imposter, and must keep their role secret during gameplay. Crewmates have tasks to complete in order to win the game but must also accomplish these while attempting to identify and eliminate (through a vote) the imposters. Imposters must sabotage crewmate’s efforts and kill off as many crewmates as possible, winning if the number of imposters is equal to the number of crewmates.

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“At the time we were doing science and video games with our local middle school, so this just came at the perfect time,” Heinen said during the online workshop. Their adaptation uses challenges from the Moon Adventure Game as well as some additional tasks for crewmates to complete. One example of an added task includes “Telescope Data” - an activity adapted from a NASA resource where players create a composite of the supernova remnant, Cassiopeia A. Different wavelength images were printed on transparencies for players to overlap and create a full picture. This task, as well as others, can also be adapted for your audience. For “Telescope Data,” additional transparencies with images of the Crab Nebula were mixed in to make the task a little more challenging for older audiences.

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“The rules and mechanics can be adapted to each group and lessons you are teaching,” reads the guide, created by Heinen for the South Dakota Discovery Center’s adaptation. “Tasks can also be adapted to other subjects such as ecology and history.” The guide and supporting resources such as instruction signs for additional activities and templates for Among Us-inspired gameplay are graciously being made available to other NISE Network partners to use with their copies of the Moon Adventure Game! Below you will find links to download these resources.

South Dakota Discovery Center has played the game with large controlled groups of up to 25 players. “It [the game] was received so well from these students that we transformed this into an afterschool program and a visitor option for any field trips or any birthday parties as well,” said Heinen. The guide adds “This program would make a nice review activity for classroom settings. Your imagination is the limit of what you can set up with this program!”


Thank you South Dakota Discovery Center for your creative work with our resources in your community, and for sharing the experience back for other NISE Network partners to use!


Recording of NISE Network online workshop: From small steps to giant leaps – experiences adapting the Moon Adventure Game for use in camps, with young audiences, and for all humankind!

Learn more about the digital game Among Us by Innersloth:




Attached Files
Attachment Size
adaptation_of_nise_network_moon_adventure_game_-_murder_mystery_science_game_inspired_by_among_us_.docx (242.76 KB) 242.76 KB
task_form_cover_template.docx (30.2 KB) 30.2 KB
death_card_template.docx (21.91 KB) 21.91 KB
gather_ice_material.pdf (79.47 KB) 79.47 KB
quake_stabalizer.pdf (44.4 KB) 44.4 KB
task_list.docx (47.79 KB) 47.79 KB
telescope_how_to.pdf (83.44 KB) 83.44 KB
temp_log_map_reading_.pdf (81.54 KB) 81.54 KB
temp_log_map_reading_.pdf (81.54 KB) 81.54 KB