Lancaster Escapes – Escape the Noose

Lancaster Escapes – Escape the Noose
Location: Lancaster
Game Date: 01/09/2018
Team: Amy, Ian, Sera, Sharon

witches

Theme:
“The year is 1612, and you have been arrested and tried for being a witch…and found guilty! You have one hour until you meet your fate; the hangman’s noose. However, before you the Pendle witches have left you clues and puzzles to help you escape. Can you find your way out before it’s too late?”

Theming was sparse but decent, with an attempt at immersion being considered, there was nothing out of place or that could be thought of as red herrings. The space was large enough for 6 players. The light was atmospherically low, and there were moments of complete darkness.

Game Play:
A linear game that had a good mix of puzzles, word, logic, observation, searching being the main puzzle types in this room.
The puzzles were logical, and straightforward, with nice ah-ha moments
The flow was good, with no particular sticking points, excepet for some moments of complete darkness that increased difficulty.
Signposting was a little better with some sublte signposting throughout the game, and no logic leaps.

Clue System:
Clues were delivered via walkie talkie

Game Host:
Our game host delivered a good brief and story.

Did we escape?
Yes, in 23 minutes

Website: https://lancasterescape.co.uk
Price:

Peak:
2 Players £44
3 Players £60
4 Players £72
5 Players £85
6 Players £90

Off Peak:
2 Players £38
3 Players £51
4 Players £64
5 Players £75
6 Players £84

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Lancaster Escapes – Framed

Lancaster Escapes – Framed
Location: Lancaster
Game Date: 01/09/2018
Team: Amy, Ian, Sera, Sharon

police

Theme:
“You’ve been framed for the murder of a police officer and have been taken into the station. You’ve not got long until the real suspect can destroy all evidence linking themselves to the crime. Can you find the clues to escape, whilst also locating the evidence to work out who the real villain is?”

Theming was OK, the space was decorated well with enough detail to create a fairly immersive space. The space was large and well lit with more than enough space to accomodate the maximum 6 players

Game Play:
A Linear game that had some nice puzzles, consiting of word, logic, math and searching.
The puzzles were logical for the most part, but a couple required small logic leaps and some critical thinking.
Flow for the most part was OK, but was a bit sticky when we hit the points with logic leaps. The signposting was minimal.
The game was for the most part enjoyable, and had some nice moments, especially in the beginning of the game.

Clue System:
Clues were delivered via a walkie talkie

Game Host:
Our game host was the owner of Lancaster Escape and he delivered a good, fun brief and clues when we requested them

Did we escape?
Yes, in about 41 minutes

Website: https://lancasterescape.co.uk
Price:

Peak:
2 Players £44
3 Players £60
4 Players £72
5 Players £85
6 Players £90

Off Peak:
2 Players £38
3 Players £51
4 Players £64
5 Players £75
6 Players £84

Escapism Chester – Legacy

Escapism Chester – Legacy
Location: Chester
Game Date: 30/08/2018
Team: Amy & Ian

legacy

Theme:
“An old will has been uncovered from a distant relative. It explains that a vast number of jewels have been buried with them ready to be found by one of their heirs. However, it won’t be no easy task, there will be a few obstacles along the way and the crypt keeper patrols every hour.

Discover your legacy and claim what is rightfully yours!”

Theming was great in Legacy, with the outdoor graveyard leading into the vault looking great. The finish was excellent in the room and it was clean and tidy, with nothing out of place or being able to be misconstrued as a puzzle.
The space was lit well, and large, A team of 6 will have no problem in this room.

Game Play:
An open game that was beautifully constructed, with plenty of different puzzle types, observation, word, physical, searching, logic, smell, skill.
The puzzles were all on theme, and great in their logic with lovely fun ah-ha moment that gave an excellent satisfaction and no ambiguity in the answers.
Flow was great with clear, clean signposting that guided you to the puzzles and left you in no doubt of the answers but left you towork out the puzzles in a logical and enjoyable way.
There was a mechanic used in the room which was cheeky, but when all was said and done was a unique twist that surprised us and left us fooled but amused!
Enthusiasts, take a 2 as this is a game where you’ll want to experience all the puzzles and goodies this room has to offer. Newbies, 4 will be plenty!

Clue System:
Clues were delivered via a screen

Game Host:
Our Game host was friendly, welcoming and delivered clues with excellent timing

Did we escape?
Yes, in 45 Minutes

Website:
Price:
Peak:
2 Players £40
3 Players £48
4 Players £60
5 Players £70
6 Players £90

Off Peak:
2 Players £36
3 Players £45
4 Players £56
5 Players £60
6 Players £72

Breakout Manchester – Enchanted

Breakout Manchester – Enchanted.
Location: Manchester
Game Date: 29/08/2018
Team: Amy, Ian, Simon & Jess

Enchanted600pxHighStreet-600x600.png

Theme:
“You are in the Wizarding section of the local library. You notice a book you’ve never seen before. Drawn to it, you start to thumb through the dusty pages of the book…

The next thing you know you wake up in an enchanted forest! After walking for what seems like hours, and encountering many strange creatures along the way, you find yourselves at a house made of gingerbread and sweets. Should you enter the house or stay away? Will your sweet tooth get the better of you? Can you escape the trap laid out for you, before the witch returns to eat you?

Beware! This challenge is a little Grimm and may not suit the faint of heart!”

Enchanted was decorated nicely, if not a little cluttered. There was lots to look at, touch and explore, but not much of it impacted on game play. The space was well in theme and atmospherically lit. The space wasn’t too large and any more than 4 people would be a squeeze.

Game Play:
A mostly linear game that had a decent mix of puzzles, word, logic, (light) physical, observation.
The flow was steady, once we got into the main area of the game, a split start meant that half the team had nothing to do for a while which was a bit stifiling to the flow of the room.
Signposting was limited, with some of the puzzles requiring us to make subtle and small leaps of logic to gain the answers, once those leaps were made the puzzles were enjoyable and had nice ah-ha moments.

Clue System:
Clues were delivered via a screen

Game Host:
Our game host was excellent, delivering a brilliant brief and excellent clues throughout

Did we escape?
Yes, in 51 Minutes

Website: https://breakoutmanchester.com
Price:

Peak
2 Players £40
3 Players £57
4 Players £72
5 Players £80

Off Peak
2 Players £36
3 Players £48
4 Players £60
5 Players £70

Xscape Now – Houdini’s Mysterium

Xscape Now – Houdini’s Mysterium
Location: Telford
Game Date: 25/08/2018
Team: Amy & Ian

XscapeNow! ed

Theme:
“It seemed like it would be fun.

The local museum was putting on a Houdini exhibition and had invited a magician to demonstrate some of Houdini’s magic and escapology. They promised that you’d learn how to escape.

There was certainly plenty of Houdini’s props around – chains, crates and milk cans. But from the moment you met him, something about Corbin the magician didn’t seem right. He was shifty and kept saying that there would be no escape tonight.

Then he was gone; disappeared into the ether, leaving you trapped.

Can you summon the spirit of Houdini to aid your escape?”

Theming was lovely, with the museum setting creating an immersive, and reflective space. There was plenty of seating around to take the weight off and the pictures adorning the walls all gave insight into Harry Houdini himself and helped aid the immersion.
The game was large and well lit, and finished to a high standard and this continued throughout the game.

Game Play:
Naturally, in a game concerning Harry Houdini, one expects to be handcuffed for a small amout of the game… let it be said that by PERSONAL preference, we are not fans of handcuffs as they tend to hurt a fair bit – so this became a problem as we missed a key search and were in the cuffs for the entire hour.
The game was quite linear in nature and had several different puzzle types, word, decoding, observation, maths, logic, and codebreaking.
The puzzles were good, and sound in their excecution and some fitted well with the Houdini theme. It felt that a couple of puzzles were thrown in by NERD as time sinks, and granted us with long, drawn out solving that what compounded by the fact we were handcuffed!
The flow was decent, and time sinks aside the game moved along at a good pace. Signposting had moments of brilliance (which had been put in by the owners!) and moments of madness (which I assume are NERD!) – there were connections and leaps that I would never have got unless I was told (maybe we were addled from a week long binge though, another day we may have clicked onto the room much better)
All in all this is a decent room, and I can see through our cuffs and with some critical thinking, knowing that being cuffed for the hour really impacted on what would have been a fun and enjoyable room, sans the handcuffs!
Moral of the story is… don’t be like us and be too shy to ask where the handcuff key is!
Enthusiasts, rise to the challenge and take a small team, newbies, a larger team will bode well!

Clue System:
Clues were delivered via a screen

Game Host:
Gordon was our game host and was incredibly welcoming and friendly, and delivered us hints well, especially when we had a massive math malfunction (which happens often!) We would have defintely been locked in forever if Gordon hadn’t helped us out!

Did we escape?
Yes, but by the skin of our teeth with 30 seconds left on the clock!

Website: https://www.xscapenow.co.uk/
Price:
2 Players £46
3 Players £63
4 Players £76
5 Players £85
6 Players £90

Xscape Now – Red Planet Panic

Xscape Now – Red Planet Panic
Location: Telford
Game Date: 25/08/2018
Team: Amy & Ian

rpp

Theme:
“Your mission to Mars has been a success so far, but now your life is in danger!

The Red Planet is being bombarded by a meteor storm and Mission Control has predicted a direct hit on your base. They have issued an order to evacuate and to head back home.

Can you get your rocket launched before the meteor strikes? Your life depends on it!”

Theming was good, stark and clinical, but finished to a high standard. The space was immersive and minimalist, which left no worries about red herrings or distractions.
The space was large and well lit with more than enough room for the maximum team size

Game Play:
A liner game that consisted of observation, word, logic, physical and searching puzzles.
The puzzles were all logical and some had nice ah-ha moments and pleasing answers that were not ambiguous in nature, mostly in keeping with the them of the room, and enjoyable.
The flow was smooth. Not too sticky or stalling, signposting could have been clearer, there were a few moments where a little bit more would have clarified some puzzles, but at other moments it was good.
A game that would be a great intro to escape rooms with plenty of fun, on theme puzzles.

Clue System:
Clues were delivered via a screen

Game Host:
Our game host was great, very welcoming and delivered a good brief and ample clues throughout the hour.

Did we escape?
Yes, in 44 minutes

Website: https://www.xscapenow.co.uk/
Price:
2 Players £46
3 Players £63
4 Players £76
5 Players £85
6 Players £90

Tulley’s Escape – Nethercott Manor

Tulley’s Escape – Nethercott Manor
Location: Crawley
Game Date: 24/08/2018
Team: Amy, Ian & Jane

nethercott.png

Theme:
“The old manor house is entwined with local legend, the living don’t remember the Nethercott’s, the family’s hay day was long ago. Local folk talked, whispers were heard, rumours began, lights were seen within.

The Nethercott’s are long gone but something remains, an essence, a smell, a feeling, it’s in the fabric, in the walls, under the floor boards … it ticks, it creeks … take a trip into the past, uncover the family’s many secrets and glimpse their fleeting souls?”

Nethercott is HUGE. This is a game that just keeps on giving, with many, many spaces to explore. It really deserves the title of “Escape Manor”
The theming was astounding, think “theme park” and you’re along the right lines. There certainly is no expense spared in terms of attention to detail and thought put into this room, it is impeccable. From the court-yard to the kitchen no minor detail is overlooked, creating a living, breathing and 100% immersive space.
It’s really unfair to compare Tulley’s to any other escape room as what they’re building is truley world class, and would stand up against anything the major themeparks could build, it’s a Disney standard and quality product.
Nethercott’s set was as close to perfection as they come, creating the utmost in atomsphere. Creepy, edgy, but not scary and OH so much fun (think along the lines of Addams Family, or The Haunted Mansion rather than Shocktoberfest or Farmaggedon!)
Lighting was atmospheric, but never too dark to impede play.

Game Play:
An open game that was packed full of every type of puzzle imaginable. Sound, Smell, Touch, Physical, Logical, Observation, Skill, Memory, Decoding, Word (oohhh plenty of words!) just to name a few! All the puzzles were incredibly logical, exemplary in their excecution and on theme.
There were times when we were all working on something completely different, speeding through puzzles and working our socks off, such is the flow of the game. It’s an incredibly fast paced game, in which if you’re standing round doing nothing, then you’re doing it wrong! This gave the flow of the game a slick feel and allowed us to power through the puzzles with (relative) ease.
This game is going to have something for everyone to enjoy, solve and conquer since there are SO many puzzles to solve.
The interaction within the room was great, giving the space more character and realism, sometimes aiding us, and at othertimes giving us a spook!
The ending of the room is absoloutley delightful, and incredibly fitting to behold, and quite charming!
Needless to say, this room is a must MUST do and a real challenge, but it is OH so enjoyable. Enthusiasts, take as small a team as you dare, prepare to work hard and reap the benefits.
Newbies, take a bigger team, revel in the atmosphere and solve as much as you can!

Clue System:
Clues were delivered via a disembodied voice…

Game Host:
Tim was our game host, he delivered a thorough brief and good clues throughout the game

Did we escape?
Yes, in 51 minutes

Website: https://www.tulleysescape.com
Price:
Weekdays:
2 Players £56
3 Players £78
4 Players £96
5 Players £110
6 Players £120
7 Players £133
8 Players £144

Weekends:
2 Players £60
3 Players £84
4 Players £104
5 Players £120
6 Players £132
7 Players £147
8 Players £160

Pier Pressure – Modrophenia

Pier Pressure – Modrophenia
Location: Brighton
Game Date: 24/08/2018
Team: Amy & Ian

mod

Theme:
“Modrophenia is a classic murder mystery puzzle hunt with a twist! You and your team take on the roles of a gang of Mods in 1964 Brighton who are investigating the murder of one of their friends. Puzzles, riddles and discovery will lead you to uncover more and more of the story, but will you find out what happened in time?”

Modrophenia looks cool and oozes that 60s vibe! With geometric patterns, bold colours and a real Mod feel.
Decorated to a high standard, and with the addition of a pinball machine, vespa and even a guitar Modrophenia creates an immersive world that is a groovy place to play in!
The space is good, but I would feel it may be a bit squeezy with 9 people for the first few minutes, but this soon opens up to give a larger play area for the remainder of the game.
Lighting was excellent and we never had any problems.

Game Play:
A fairly open game that encompasses MASSES of puzzles. Sound, observation, deduction, word, logic, meta, visual, physical… so many puzzle types were found in Modrophenia.
The puzzles were all on theme, and interesting in their design and excecution, with excellent ah-ha moments and sublime logic.
The twist was excecuted well and came as a shock to me, but it didn’t ruin the flow of the room at all, and didn’t stall the team or become to much of a difficult stumbling block.
The flow was wonderful, with so many puzzles going at once there was little time to pause and breath, but it was incredibly satisfying, yet frantic!
Signposting was good, more subtle than in Pavillion Perplex, but Modrophenia is a harder room so that is to be expected!
Enthusiasts really wanting to test themselves should take a team of 3 – you’ll get maximum puzzle involvement and enjoyment out of the game this way.
Newer player take 5/6 – there’s a tonne to do so you’re gonna need all the man-power you can get!

Clue System:
Clues were available via a telephone!

Game Host:
Our game host was in character and delivered a great story to our room. It was also great to chat to Phil (Pier Pressure’s owner) who was warm, welcoming and gave us a great thorough pre-game brief.

Did we escape?
Yes, in 53 minutes

Website: https://pierpressure.co.uk/
Price:

Peak:
2 Players £55
3 Players £75
4 Players £94
5 Players £110
6 Players £120
7 Players £140
8 Players £160
9 Players £180

Off Peak:
2 Players £45
3 Players £60
4 Players £72
5 Players £80
6 Players £90
7 Players £105
8 Players £120
9 Players £135

Pier Pressure – The Pavillion Perplex

Pier Pressure – The Pavillion Perplex
Location: Brighton
Game Date: 24/08/2018
Team: Amy, Ian & Jane

pp

Theme:
“The Pavilion Perplex is an escape room game that exudes class! Set inside the Royal Palace in the early Victorian era, this is a sublimely decorated escape room with a wide variety of puzzles and some beautiful secrets and surprises.

Featuring puzzles and games like those found on “The Crystal Maze”, plus many historically accurate facts and period artifacts. Players will have their logic and dexterity skills put to the test to recover the missing petition and save the iconic building”

Theming was beautiful, elegant and excuded class in Pavillion Perplex.
A faithful recreation of the Brighton Pavillion (ask your host to show you the pictures) – the set was so faithfully reconstructed we could have been in the real pavillion!
The attention to detail and quality of the room was excellent, with nothing out of place or creating distractions.
The room was large and well lit, we never felt cramped. What a luxourius place to spend an hour!

Game Play:
A linear game that had lots of wonderful, on theme and unique puzzles.
Puzzles were a good combination of word, logic, observation, critical thinking, teamwork, physical and skill.
Each puzzle was excellent in its logic, with wondeful ah-ha moments that sprung forward and suprised and delighted us time and time again.
Flow too was super, with subtle clever signposting leading us through the game and never creating any sticky moments or slow downs
All in all a very, very nice game that plays well, and would be a perfect opulent first escape room.
Enthusiasts will enjoy the excellent puzzling and luxury setting!

Clue System:
Clues were delivered vie Pavlov the Pigeon!

Game Host:
Our game host was in character and delivered a great story to our room. It was also great to chat to Phil (Pier Pressure’s owner) who was warm, welcoming and gave us a great thorough pre-game brief.

Did we escape?
Yes, in 34 minutes

Website: https://pierpressure.co.uk/
Price:

Peak:
2 Players £55
3 Players £75
4 Players £94
5 Players £110
6 Players £120

Off Peak:
2 Players £45
3 Players £60
4 Players £72
5 Players £80
6 Players £90

Bewilder Box: Judgement D.A.V.E.

Bewilder Box: Judgement D.A.V.E.
Location: Brighton
Game Date: 23/08/2018
Team: Amy & Ian

bbjd

Theme:
bbdave

Theming was super slick, and futuristic. Building on the theme of The Bewilder Box iniative, this was it’s cooler older brother! The space was deceptively large, with multiple sections leading to a good sense of exploration throughout the space. The lighting was good, and in areas of lower light levels, torches were provided.
Build quality was excellent, and the heavy narrative served to create a fully realised and immersive world.

Game Play:
A game that was quite open in each of its sections, with a very good range of puzzles. Logic, codebreaking, translating, word, sound, visual, physical & teamwork.
The puzzles were all logical and clever with creativity in their design and excecution. The exploration and discovery in the game led to a fantastic flow, that never stopped or slowed us down. The signposting was clear and logical.
The game had a strong narrative which was threaded through the puzzles and room itself, leading to an exciting and tense finale.
A slick, honed game that has the distinct Bewilder Box feel, but was even slick and more comprehensive than its earlier sibling
A great game to task enthusiasts (take a small group) and is logical and clear enough to teach newbies how an escape game should be played!

Clue System:
The infamous D.A.V.E. was our hint system and he was chatty, witty and hilarious… a highlight was having him sing Happy Birthday to me!! We love D.A.V.E.

Game Host:
Dave was our game host and was fantastic, delivering a perfect in character introduction to the game and giving perfect hints and nudges at the right time

Did we escape?
Yes, in 37 minutes

Website: https://bewilderbox.co.uk/
Price:
The price is for the whole room:
Peak – £110
Off Peak – £80