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The Panic Rooms – Happy Institute

The Panic Rooms – The Happy Institute
Location: Gravesend
Game Date: 14/10/2019
Team: Amy, Ian, Dan & Stu

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Theme:
“Welcome to The Happy Institute! Are you ready to face the darkness inside and make the change to happiness? It’s only a pill away… What’s the worst that could happen?

Wouldn’t it be nice if everyone were happy? Here at the Happy Institute, testing is going swimmingly with our newest mood enhancer and cognitive supplement; Risus. You have been invited to test the drug in its most recent strain, to help suppress those pesky negative emotions. RESULTS CLASSIFIED. SIDE EFFECTS GUARANTEED

Our latest horror event is sure to chill you to the bone! With challenging puzzles and a live actor, this experience will make you unable to look at hospitals the same way again! you’re guaranteed to come out with a smile on your face; whether you like it or not!”

The Happy Institute was about as institutionalized as possible in an escape room setting. Fully immersive from the moment we stepped through the doors, the story is pushed and clear in the introduction, which serves to really put you on edge.
Happy Institue pushes story above all and this is done incredibly well.
The space wasn’t huge, and although advertised as up to 8 players, I wouldn’t like to take more than 4 in this room. It could get very cramped at times.
Lighting was excellent and we never had any problems.

The Happy Institute, whilst not the most terrifying game, does have some excellent scary moments, sensitive themes and actor-led interaction. Which all adds up to an exhilarating immersive experience where story and immersion take precedence over puzzling.

Game Play:
A liner game that sees an interesting start that quickly turns into a more standard game. Puzzles were varied, and consisted of searching, word, physical, logic, observation and team work.
The puzzles were all nicely in theme within the room, and generally were sound in their logic (which is a good thing as the room can become quite tense)
The puzzles had nice ah-ha moments and more often than not led to some unexpected results!
Flow within the room was OK, whilst not the slickest room, the pace was kept moving forward by the interactions with the host.
Signposting was very, very subtle, and some puzzles we missed it entirely, especially towards the late stages of the game.
The happy institute is more than the sum of its parts… whilst the puzzles aren’t likely;y to blow you away, the interaction and atmosphere in the game lifts it and makes it a must-do experience at The Panic Rooms.

Clue System:
Clues were delivered via voice over

Game Host:
Olly was our game host and he was exemplary, delivering an amazing character and level of interactivity in the room that lifted the experience to new heights.

Did we escape?
Yes in about 50 minutes

Website: https://thepanicroom.net
Price:
2 Players £50
3 Players £66
4 Players £80
5 Players £95
6 Players £99
7 Players £105
8 Players £110

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