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

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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

Bewilder Box: The Bewilder Box Initiative

Bewilder Box: The Bewilder Box Initiative
Location: Brighton
Game Date: 23/08/2018
Team: Amy, Ian & Jane

bbi

Theme:
Capture

Capture2

A detailed and fully realised backstory that led to a clinical yet stylised test chamber with a decided industrial feel to it, a cool looking set that served to provide a backdrop for the puzzles contained within, and not lead to any distractions, yet it still gave you a good sense of story and excellent immersion!
The space itself was HUGE and key componants set to draw your attention to specific puzzles worked beautifully. The lighting was good and never hampered our gameplay.

Game Play:
An open game that was a smorgasboard of puzzles, logic, word, sound, smell, observation, physical, tactile… pretty much every single puzzle type and trope was explored in Bewilder Box which made for a very busy, yet very fulfilling hour of sheer puzzling joy!
The puzzles were all incredibly logical, fun and had excellent ah-ha moments. There were so many hands on puzzles that really got creative in their design and excecution.
The flow was impeccable, with excellent signposting leading us to each puzzle and leaving us with no ambiguity in the soloutions whatsoever.
A game that has clearly been refinied, and tailored to perfection, it was a pleasure to play and delivered good story with excellent puzzles
Enthusiasts, test yourself and take a 2 or 3, Newbies would do well with a group of 5 or 6 (there’s really enough to do for everyone!)

Clue System:
D.A.V.E. was our clue system, we’d heard loads of great things about him,  but unfortunately he was a bit subdued on our visit… maybe he’ll be a bit chattier in Judgement D.A.V.E.?

Game Host:
Zinta was our game host, she was professional and friendly and ran our game well.

Did we escape?
Yes, in 44 minutes

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

The Panic Room – Dinoland

The Panic Room – Dinoland
Location: Gravesend
Game Date: 23/08/2018
Team: Amy, Ian & Jane

dinol

Theme:
“This state of the art facility is currently looking for new rangers! But, it seems you have got a tough first day at work ahead, as soon, the sirens will be blaring! The dinosaurs have escaped! Can you get to safety, and restore the park’s security before the dinosaurs take over the park?”

Dinoland looks great, a HUGE space which encompasses many different areas from outside the facility to it’s labs and control rooms, each area is large… and decorated to perfection. Tactfully sterile, the set pieces are what speak for Dinoland, with control panels, displays, experiments and just hatched dinosaurs.
Dinoland is just cool, and so immersive with the addition of the park ranger and other surprises it really creates a living, breathing park where you could bump into a rouge dinosaur at any moment!

Game Play:
Dinoland’s focus is on experience over puzzles, but this isn’t to say the puzzles aren’t without their charm and are still forthcoming! There is a great mix of logic, word, physical, observation and skill puzzles that all fit perfectly into Dinoland and effect the immersive world that is set up from the very start.
All the puzzles were excellent in their logic, and aren’t out to flummox or confuse you, as this is a story-led experience.
The flow was fast paced and exciting, which was due to the strong sense of narrative throughout the game, which is mainly delivered via the park ranger.
This is a game that you get as much out as you put in, the more you immerse yourself and “get into the game” the more real it becomes and it is masses of fun!
There are plenty of plot twists, action sequences, moments of calm… moments of utter madness that make Dinoland an absoloute romp, we found ourselves so lost in the game at several momements… it was easy to forget that we were in a fabricated space in Gravesend and not actually in the control centre!
Dinoland is an incredibly fun, fast paced and frantic game, that will leave your heart racing without being scary! (There are some surprises that I have deliberatly left out cause… no spoilers.)
You will no leave disapointed in this game, it’s as close as ANY of us are gonna get to real dinosaurs, and for that it is a must do!

Clue System:
Oli, our park ranger was on hand should we need any hints, we also had a walkie talkie

Game Host:
Oli was our ranger and he was so much fun, 100% in character and full of energy!

Did we escape?
Yes, in 46 minutes!

Website: https://www.thepanicroom.net
Price:
2 Players £70
3 Players £90
4 Players £105
5 Players £120
6 Players £130
7 players £140
8 players £150

The Escapement – The Pit

The Escapement – The Pit
Location: Margate
Game Date: 22/08/2018
Team: Amy & Ian

pit

Theme:
“Sent deep underground you and your team of miners will need to save the planet in this epic journey to the centre of the earth! Please note this room contains crawl areas and small spaces.”

A brilliantly decorated set, that was fully realised and 100% immersive, theming started outside the room and we were thrown into the world and the story from the moment we sat down just outside the mine.
Once inside the theme was remarkable, true theme-park quality with high levels of attention to detail with sounds and smells that only added to the immersion.
As we went deeper into the mine, the subtle changes in atmosphere and decoration left us under no illusion that we were well underground.
One of the best rooms we have played in terms of a fully realised world with 360 degree immersion and complete believabilty.
The space was large, and lit well (and we were provided with hard hats and lights too)

Game Play:
A game which focuses wholly on the experience with every “puzzle” being set in the world and not a simple “here’s a puzzle presented in the theme” – everything we did had an impact on the space around us.
This being said there was an leaning towards physicality in the puzzles, along with some observation, logic and critical thinking.
The puzzles themselves were perfect in their logic, ah-ha moments were excellent.
The flow was wonderful, a game that you could truley loose yourself in and let yourself go to experience the journey and narrative.
Pit isn’t about the puzzles, pit is about the journey, the excitement and the sense of discovery (which was frankly amazing) – there are several stand out moments (which I will not spoil) but we were wowed several times, speechless at a couple of others and experienced sheer joy at other moments, add to this an exhilirating finale which puts this room up there with the top in terms of overall experience.
It is a real rollercoaster of a room and one that you really shouldn’t miss! It’s really hard to describe the quality, perfection and detail in this room without crossing the line into spoiler territorty

Clue System:
Clues were delivered via a walkie

Game Host:
Dave was our game host and was absoloutely fantastic, from the moment we sat down to be briefed for the pit, he threw himself into the character & story, never once breaking the immersion that was set. During the game he deliverf hints with impeccible timing.
We also saw Lewis & Mica, and as normal they were super welcoming and friendly.

Did we escape?
Yes, in 41 minutes!

Website: https://escapementmargate.co.uk
Price:
2 Players £40
3 Players £55.50
4 Players £74
5 Players £82.50
6 Players £99

Real Life Games – Extinction

Real Life Games – Extinction
Location: Ramsgate
Game Date: 22/08/2018
Team: Amy & Ian

extinction

Theme:
Extinction

The planet is in the grip of an epidemic, people of all ages, races and backgrounds are contracting the potentially world ending virus.

After just six months of the first case in Papua New Guinea, the virus has covered (geographically) 80% of the world’s surface and it is thought to have killed in excess of 1.7 billion people.

 An effective antidote has been developed (NV31) and those treated within 7 days of contracting the virus have made a full recovery. The only problem is that the antidote was developed by Dr Nojus Zareckis in his laboratory in Lithuania. After producing around 100,000 doses of the medicine, Dr Zareckis and his entire team were slaughtered by rebels who broke in to steal the antivirus. The details of the research performed in finding the cure were encrypted and inadvertently destroyed by the bungling thieves during the raid.

Back in England, Dr Ruoff Nevesorezenin a close friend of Dr Zareckis, based right here in Ramsgate, was able to acquire a few of the vials containing ingredients for the life saving liquid before Dr Zareckis’ untimely death. He also had the encrypted data stored on a hard drive. Nevesorezenin has been working tirelessly ever since to reproduce the formula in order to end the epidemic. Dr Nevesorezenin believes he has successfully replicated the NV31 antidote.

You and your friends having recently contracted the virus have been selected as ideal test cases for Dr Ruoff Nevesorezenin’s NV31 antidote but when you arrive at the surgery it becomes apparent that an unfortunate set of circumstances has occurred.

Can you and your team figure out how to get your hands on everything required to save humanity…

Your challenge awaits…”

A really detailed story that set us up to a realistic world within the game, the room was decorated very cleanly, with there being nothing to distracted us, and it gave a clinical feel to the game, that fitted the story very well.
At the base level it was just an “office” – but one that was done to perfection, with attention to detail and wonderful quality in the excecution of the set.
The space was large and very well lit.

Game Play:
A lovely game which fell between open and linear seamlessly, with a real mix of puzzles, logic, word, searching, observation and even an incredibly well executed and enjoyable jigsaw!
Each and every puzzle was logical, and interesting and all cam with their own very fun Ah-ha moments, and they just kept coming!
The flow was impeccible and the signposting was subtle but clear and only served to aid in the excellent logic in the puzzles.
There were standard tropes, yet always excecuted with a twist, or in a unique way, creating an fresh and fun game.
A perfect game for beginners and enthusiasts alike, entertaining with good story and depth in the puzzles.

Clue System:
Clues were delivered via a screen

Game Host:
Chris was our gamehost and was wonderful, friendly, welcoming and delivered a great brief & story!

Did we escape?
Yes, in 35 mins with no clues!

Website: https://www.reallifegames.co.uk
Price:
2 Players £50
3 Players £54
4 Players £64
5 Players £80
6 Players £84
7 Players £98
8 Players £104

Ctrl Alt Esc – Frankenscape

Ctrl Alt Esc – Frankenscape
Location: Margate
Game Date: 22/08/2018
Team: Amy & Ian

frank-logo-cropped.jpg

Theme:
“Genuis inventor Alec Smart and his assistant Tricity have gone missing.
In his workshop nothing is where is should be.
The strange force they have invented ‘Alectricity’ has the ability to create life itself… but only when lightening strikes.
A thunderstorm is coming and has been forecast to last 90 minutes. With Alec and Tricity nowhere to be found, your team need to finish his work before the storm passes, or risk forfeiting this ground breaking discovery.”

Theming was lovely, starting off by traversing stairs down to the basement under the cover of a greenhouse, the theme and decor kept up for the entire hour, creating a believeable, immersive space. The space itself was large, and in parts was lit well, although in some parts of the game, green lighting was used to an extent where it gave me a slight headache (this is a personal thing though, you may be fine!) You can always leave the green-lit areas at any time though, and even get back into the daylight in the outside area.

Game Play:
A game which felt linear at most times, with a few open moments. The puzzles were good, with a good range of mental, logic, physical, observation, math and searching puzzles. A good all round mix that will please every member of your team
The flow was OK, with a few sticky parts on a fail of a search for us. There was signposting (which we didn’t pick up on at all, we were SO off our game in Frankenscape)
The puzzles were logical, but felt a bit hampered due to the green lighting in the room (we were provided with torches to help, but personally I still struggled) They all had nice ah-ha moments, and were in theme for the story, and all pushed towards the end goal of creating the monster.
The finale of the room was great, and there was a nice sense of humour and play throuought the room that added to the story and made it less scary and more approachable for younger players!
A good family-friendly room that I would reccomend a team of 4, more if you’re inexperienced.

Clue System:
Clues were delivered via a phone in the room.

Game Host:
Our game host was the owner and he was very friendly and ran our game well, delivering us numerous clues when we were lost, stuck and completley derranged!

Did we escape?
Yes, in 1hr 17 mins

Website: https://ctrlaltesc.co.uk
Price:
2 Players £50
3 Players £65
4 Players £80
5 Players £90
6 Players £100
7 Players £110
8 Players £120

Ctrl Alt Esc – Spacescape

Ctrl Alt Esc – Spacescape
Location: Margate
Game Date: 22/08/2018
Team: Amy & Ian

SPACESCAPE.jpg

Theme:
“You and your crew are on a voyage to a newly discovered planet, but now the spaceship’s lights are flashing and alarms are sounding.
Surely you can just turn off the warnings and forget about it, or maybe you need to prepare the escape pod…”

Theming was great, a cool looking, clinical space befitting of a spaceship with a good level of immersion, the addition of the pilot “Mac” was a nice touch to make the space beliveable. There was nothing out of place or that could be misconstrued as a red herring. The use of tech was nice, and fitting for a space ship!
The space was large, and kept on going which gave a very physical element to the room with lots of crawling, ducking and climbing!
The light level was good, providing you kept on top of things, having to keep the spaceship in an inhabitable condition makes for a tense state of play at time!
The mechanics of the end of the game are absoloutly super and really made the room quite “extra” – it was very fitting for the theme and story!

Game Play:
An open game, that had a good mix of puzzles. Logic, word, codebreaking, teamwork, observation & physical
The puzzles were logical, fun and had nice ah-ha moments… even though we spent a lot of time running round like headless chickens not knowing what to do (why does this seem to happen in “tech rooms”) – maybe the lack of instant feed back on correct answers to puzzles isn’t a clear as “opening a padlock” and this disrupts our personal flow a bit.
However, flow was good, yet hectic – puzzles were solved in spurts, interspersed with moments of headless chickeness… but things soon came together. Signposting was very subtle, with a lot of connections being left to the player to find and complete, this does give an excellent sense of acheivement and makes the game very ambitious. There was one super super puzzle that we worked our way up to throughout the duration of the game, so when it came together the ah-ha moment was exciting and rewarding.
Pulses were also set racing due to the ever pressing need of keeping the crew, and the ship in good condition, quite often stopping us in our tracks to repair each other and the ship! This added a sense of realism and urgency to the game, and on reflection it added a lot, it was another layer that upped the immersion.
An enjoyable, challenging game that would be an absoloute romp with more players (If you’re brave, take 2 and be prepared to work your socks off and come out a bit on the hot side!) I would reccomend enjoying Spacescape in a group of 4!

Clue System:
Clues were delivered via Mac, the pilot, and through a screen

Game Host:
Our game host was the owner and he was very friendly and ran our game well, delivering us numerous clues when we were being chickens.

Did we escape?
Yes, in 1hr 11minutes

Website: https://ctrlaltesc.co.uk
Price:
2 Players £50
3 Players £65
4 Players £80
5 Players £90
6 Players £100
7 Players £110
8 Players £120

(Ctrl A

Get Lost – The Abandoned Cottage

Get Lost – The Abandoned Cottage
Location: Dover
Game Date: 22/08/2018
Team: Amy & Ian

ACRESIZE

 

Theme:
“In the middle of the woods
In the midst of all the trees
Stands a little wooden house
Untouched by man or breeze

In the middle of the cottage
In the midst of the abandoned house
Nothing moves or mumbles
No creature, sound or mouse

In the middle of the cottage
In the midst of all the dust
Stands a dark and dusty candle
In a dungeon full of rust

For in the middle of the pas
In the midst of days gone by
A curse befell three witches
Named Edith, Margery and Lorelei

In the middle of the woods
In the shadow of a tree
Three witches lie in wait
For you to set them free…”

The Abandoned cottage looked great, derelict and cobwebby, dim and dusty, all the things one wants from a years old cottage in the woods.
The space was decorated immaculately, with excellent attention to detail, but nothing that would serve as red herrings or misdirection.
This created a wonderful sense of immersion, with the aid of a good soundtrack this is a creepy, but not scary place to spend an hour
The space was large, and lit atmospherically. You may feel it’s a little dim for the first few minutes but torches are provided, although I would forgoe the torch and let your eyes adjust to the light level… it makes the game much more immersive!
There is a small amount of crawling/ducking in the game.

Game Play:
A game that had both linear and open moments.
Puzzles were varied, with codebreaking, logic, touch, word, observation and searching all taking part.
The puzzles were flawless in their logic, with excellent ah-ha moments and fun conclusions (there was one particular meta puzzle that I really enjoyed)
Every puzzle was perfectly on theme and fitting to the game and story, and served to further the narrative and gameplay.
Signposting was clear, yet subtle enough to leave the players to create their own connections, giving an excellent sens of accomplishment throughout the game.
Flow was lovely, with no sticky moments or barriers.
A great, great game that had some lovely moments in it. Enthusiasts will enjoy the depth of story telling and good logic. Newbies will enjoy the atmosphere and range of puzzles!

Clue System:
Clues were delivered via a walkie

Game Host:
Ross was our game host and was welcoming and friendly, and we coould have spoke to him for EVER after the game, it’s lovely when owners have masses of enthusiasm and passion for the industry and Ross & Kym clearly have that in spades!

Did we escape?
Yes, in 28 minutes

Website: https://www.getlostescaperooms.co.uk/
Price:
2 Players £36
3 Players £54
4 Players £72
5 Players £80
6 Players £96