A great room with some interesting puzzles that really brings you into the living area of students staying at a magical school.
This jam-filled escape room did a lot to really immerses you in the experience, handing you wands at the start and walking you right into the study. The intro video was very quiet with some nice production value, walking the fine, fine line of showing you what Hog-....Pigwarts offers.
The puzzles themselves made good use of the wands for a while, but the quirk quickly ran out of steam as they were no longer needed. Cryptic clues in the room itself made some pieces feel more important then they actually were, and there were plenty of moments where we were left scratching our head, wondering why they didn't do something.
The big reveal in the room happens near the end. A couple cool tech bits are hidden away right before an agonizingly slow final reveal that seems anticlimactic when all of the puzzles leading up to it are so quickly pieced together.
I really enjoyed the room, the immersion and the theme; the puzzles left a bit to be desired and the finale could have been better built up, but overall it's still a high quality room that's worth the visit!
The Cursed Tomb is a high production value escape game nestled in the center of Portsmouth's retail district. Parking is closeby in a city lot (meaning it's affordable!) And there's plenty of places to visit. The staff is extremely nice and there's lots to see in the waiting area.
The room itself had something I've only ever seen in two other rooms: a staging area that really immerses you and preps you for what you're about to experience. The room itself looks like it's described, right out of a Hollywood stage. The puzzles are clear but not obvious, and the clues given when solving one puzzle lead you right into the next. You feel good when you complete a puzzle and better when you nail a few in a row.
It's a multi room experience with a couple surprises that don't overstay their welcome. One puzzle towards the end seemed like there may have been more- it could have been strung along a bit longer to make the ending seem more exciting. A narrator in the game was forgettable and we wrote it off at first, and in the end didn't hear that we finished the game because it was slightly hard to hear.
Overall I'd highly recommend this room for groups both experienced and new, at least 3/4 is ideal due to one puzzles layout.
Unlike the Cursed Tomb, there's no staging area in this one- you're thrown right into the room to watch a very short video, listen to a message and you're good to go. I'm very hot and cold with this type of intro- they pull it off well here, but most places fail.
The first thing you notice is that this is a single room puzzle adventure much in the same way that 102 Escape handles their Escape the Lab room- lots to do, parallel puzzling and immersive puzzles with plenty of contextual clues to get you on track and encouraging you to be successful.
This is a large room, and as a group of 2 we had to ask for several clues to help us with some puzzles that were especially involved. There was one prop that didn't work as expected and the GM had to step in and let us know that we just needed to keep doing what we were doing.
Overall what we enjoyed about the room is that we were excited to have escaped, but even if we didn't get out, we would have felt like we really enjoyed ourselves regardless. That's really what matters at the end of the day, and why this group will keep us coming back in the future!
I believe Break Free 603 is a newer company with lofty goals. They currently have 3/4 rooms going at once with the themes that usually go along with newer openings: Generic Office Escape, Generic Lab Escape, Generic Fortune Teller Escape. We recently attempted Generic Lab Escape and...well....maybe we were the ones who left with the disease we were trying to stop.
The scenery is a lab environment that looks like it was cobbled together. A small tabletop display case had some medical trinkets in it, a couple posters on a wall, and a printed out clue that was puzzlingly taped to a white board instead of drawn on... And a few props sparsely scattered about.
The room starts with a small Discovery and a misleading drawer that doesn't look like it should open. One thing I don't like that rooms do is setting up a puzzle based narrative and immediately breaking their own rules. Jewelry boxes were used instead of more thematic boxes, which seemed out of place, and a few puzzles seemed like they were purposefully deceitful to artificially inflate the difficulty.
The room has a great theme going for it- with a bit more investment and tweaking of the hints and puzzles, this could be a fantastic room! But in its current state....I can't recommend spending your time in Patient Zero. If they invest a bit more into the set and tweaking the puzzles, it will be a much more enjoyable experience.
A more challenging room that is one of the most immersive experiences I've been to in over 60 rooms now.
We had a couple tech issues in our room that didn't mar the experience, and the holy shit moment really is something to see.
Parallel puzzling and a good variance of high-tech and low-tech components made for a good experience for 6 people. Any more may feel crowded or some may feel left out. Nothing in the room required more then one person to resolve.
I'd highly recommend the room for newbies and vets alike if you prefer rooms that put an emphasis on scenery and environment integration.
A great holiday room from a company that knows how to do tech right. Simple and enchanting, a room for all ages that makes everyone excited when they first walk in the door. It's advertised as such, but don't expect many challenges if you're an enthusiast- this single room is meant to put a smile on your face and really evoke holiday cheer!
Probably one of the best escape rooms as far as theme and immersion. The room itself does so much with the space it has! The puzzles are thoughtfully crafted once more, and the neat theme the room takes as you move through it just makes you really believe you're helping Santa out. Great for all ages, though some puzzles might be hard for younger kids to get.
Right from the get go, we knew what we were getting into when we were told this is a 'Puzzle Room' rather then a typical escape room experience. Normally when you get that kind of introduction, it's because you're getting into what equates to a scavenger hunt rather then a full escape experience, but Live Action Escapes still manages to make it work in a really intriguing way, that only they know how to do.
Single room escapes aren't bad- they can be made interesting and as long as there's some element of 'Ah ha!' throughout, then it can be engaging as well! LAE definitely manages that moment several times throughout with puzzles that aren't overly difficult, and really make you think outside the box.
There were a couple times where the 'tech' they used didn't function clearly. What we thought was simply a mistake in how they made the room was actually how it should have functioned, and it was never clarified until after we spent too much time bickering about it internally.
I'll talk about a couple of the puzzles in the spoiler section, but overall, if you're newer to the hobby and looking for something that isn't too intimidating, good for a small/medium group, and has a fun payoff at the end, check out Robin Hood's Dungeon!
This review has a spoiler section. Reveal it at your own risk!
An interesting room with a fun twist, and some puzzles that I've never seen before this! The only criticism I'd have that there was very little narrative flow from one puzzle to the next. Much more of a 'puzzle room' then the typical narrative escape game.
Nonetheless, the room was so well done, the set pieces were amazing, and we were left saying "wow"!
I wouldn't recommend this to an all ages group as there are many pieces that could hurt or may be heavy to lift if mishandled, but its a spectacle that needs to be seen!
This review has a spoiler section. Reveal it at your own risk!
Probably one of the best 'Jumanji' style rooms that we have done (and we've done a couple!) The room has that really intense immersion that you expect from something aping a theme such as this.
You start out with a clear goal, and immediately you look around and see your first few objectives. The puzzles are well built and structured neatly. There's a good bit of parallel puzzling and thought provoking touches that really make you feel like you're making a huge progress jump with every step you take. There were a couple puzzles early on that felt like "I have this, why isn't it working?" But it came back to my own over-thinking the solution when it should have been way more literal.
There are two more puzzles that I'll talk about in the spoiler section that gave our team a tough time. We could have come out on top with an amazing time, but dexterity puzzles that force you to stop and take an exorbitant amount of time to complete just are not a good look for anyone. It was fun to do the first time, and I'm sure some groups FLY through them, but I can imagine it's likely frustrating for a large number of people new to the hobby.
Overall though I'd highly recommend The Jungle Dimension and any of Puzzle Theory's other rooms to anyone looking for a fun, challenging, but fair adventure through some interesting landscapes!
Passcode Escape Room does a fantastic job of really using the space they have to their advantage. I can imagine that they probably can't do much actual physical work to the rooms or layout of the offices they have at their place, but man, do they do a fantastic job of transforming them into a wonderful experience.
The Detective's Office is a fun romp through the typical Detective Office landscape that you're likely used to if you're a vet to the scene. If not, then you usually are either placed directly into the office, or slightly outside, and are tasked with finding something to clear the detective's name before time runs out. Definitely the case here, as well. The story wasn't very original, but the puzzles picked up where the story drops the ball.
There are a couple puzzles that you just will not find anywhere else. They're so unique to this particular room that they just can't be replicated, and I love that, no matter how troublesome it could be trying to make them do exactly what you're trying to do.
I don't like safes in escape rooms. As excellent as they are at doing exactly what you want them to do, they put an artificial gate on the game that forces your players to stop everything they're doing, waste 5 minutes if they get timed out, and possibly (depending on the safe), permanently lock them out for the rest of the time without a second chance.
The ending of the game had both my wife and I wow'd. It does something really unique that again, really couldn't be done anywhere else and we were so excited to be able to do exactly what was described.
While the initial launch into the game is rocky, and some of the puzzles leave a little to be desired on their usability, I'd still recommend The Detective's Office over many many other rooms, any day. It's a great hour you'll spend in a quality room. I can't wait to see what they do next.
The Secret Lab is probably one of the better 'Medical Lab' style escape rooms that we've done, but with such a mundane theme, you really need to look to Passcode Escape to see how it can be done differently (if only slightly!)
A lot of the trouble that these style rooms fall into is that they're over-propped. You have so many props and stylistic choices everywhere that it's so hard to figure out what is and isn't part of the game without putting weird stickers on everything. There were a couple times that we got VERY hung up on using a couple of the props when we realized that we were so off track from the actual puzzle. Intervention by the game master here would have been helpful, but I can understand why they don't always want to give it away.
There is a very clear point in the room where everything changes. You learn something about the story, something happens and the puzzles flip on their head from this bland science mess to something much more....off the wall. It's such an exciting twist that really saves the room from mediocrity and propels it into something memorable....
.....But I wish there was more. Once you get past the initial twist, there isn't much else to do in the room before you escape. The final puzzle is another of those really exciting moments like in The Detective's Office where you can't believe you're actually doing what you're doing, and that it works that way, but Passcode just makes such good use of the space they have, you're happy it's there.
Overall I'd recommend The Detective's Office over The Secret Lab, but they're both worth checking out, and keeping an eye on these great builders for what they do next.
The Great Escape Room Jacksonville LLC, Providence
Nov 30 2019
Big flaws and mediocre overall.
I believe this was one of the first escape rooms that my wife and I attempted after seeing what an escape room could be, and we were in for a surprise. This was back before The Great Escape Room began labeling their rooms of different types, so this would later on be knows as a Puzzle Room, or Scavenger Hunt room, and will forever go down in infamy as being the room that forces us to ask the question "Does your room include puzzles that require you to disassemble any furniture, or remove any grates from the walls?"
The room itself is rather large, and you have a game master in the room with you at all times to assist with finding puzzles if needed, if you find yourself stuck. This is a larger room that really requires more then two people, but can be done if you're on your game. The puzzles don't have much to do with the room itself, and can sometimes be misleading with how they're supposed to be accomplished. There's less of a focus on actual escaping, and more of just "Get the puzzles done in this order, and make sure you have each clue from 1-5 to have all the info you need."
We didn't escape this room, but I think it was more because we were so fresh to the escape room scene and didn't know how to think about what an escape room could be, then the room itself. I can't recommend this room for any groups smaller then 4 people, and would say that if you're a vet of the escape room experience, maybe look at some of the other offerings that The Great Escape Room may have available!
An absolutely fantastic room from a newer family owned escape room business. The room itself uses some hand crafted and well thought out puzzles that make sense, and narratively flowed. A great group of people to visit.