Imagine yourself locked in a room with a couple of friends, working against the clock and using all your brain power to get out of the room before the timer hits zero.
Have I piqued your interest?
That is the basic premise behind the escape games which at the moment are taking London by storm. If you mention escape games to anyone, you can bet that they know of a friend who knows someone who has a boyfriend who has played one.
My old flat mate introduced me to the concept and after a brief explanation I surmised that they must be like a paired down version of The Crystal Maze. Does anyone remember that awesome TV programme from way back? If you do and you loved it (who didn't?!) then you will love escape games.
This past weekend I took myself off to Bethnal Green with my sister, my friend and her boyfriend to get locked in a room together. Sounds terribly dodgy, doesn't it? We were kindly invited to Escape Land, a short walk from Bethnal Green underground, to give one of these games a go. After quelling my sister's (and my own) anxieties about our lack of puzzle-solving abilities and the fear that we may never get out of the room, we strolled into the very nondescript building and got ourselves locked in.
The moment of truth.
Basically it was amazing. It tested our brains, our logic, and our creativity in fun and imaginative ways. We weren't just looking for keys, we had to find combinations and crack all sorts of codes. Just when we thought we'd made it through in record time, it turned out that the door we thought was the exit, was actually just another part of the room with more, and more difficult, tasks.
It was pitched at just the right level of complexity and I think there is something in there for all skill sets. I'm not so good with riddles and such like, but I can tear a room apart looking for clues with the best of them. One of the tasks we all gave our hand to and failed, but eventually it was my sister who figured it out - she clearly has the eye for puzzles. There was one task in there which we agreed was perhaps harder than it should be and relied more on dexterity and a steady hand than any sort of logic (I think it took a significant chunk of time). Thankfully we had the perfect person - not me unfortunately, I'm a shaky mcshakerson in pressure situations - and we cracked it in time.
|Finished with time to spare!|
We all agreed that we would highly recommend Escape Land. We loved the Steampunk theme, and the buzz you get from fighting the clock was incomparable to my usual Sunday afternoon activities.
Have you played an escape game? Would you?
We were invited to try Escape Land free of charge (thank you!), but this has not influenced my review. For more information and to book a game, please visit their website: Escape Land