Quest for the Crown: Two brothers in competition for the throne in the ultimate showdown to see who will be the next king.
There is a new kid on the block (or should we say a new jester in the court?) in the East Bay escape room scene! Welcome Exit 2 Escape! They opened their doors a few weeks ago and are ready to get this royal ball started with one room up and running and two more on the way. This review covers the Quest for the Crown but we hope to play their other games soon.
The owner/gamemaster was absolutely delightful. She greeted us and immediately prepped us for our gameplay by introducing us to the story of the jilted elder son of the royal family. By the time she was done telling us the story we were ready to don our armor, wield our swords, and begin fighting our way through the castle.
We played in a group of 8 which was a bit large for our royal tastes but turned out to be manageable in this room. The set was appropriately decorated to theme and the puzzles likewise matched the medieval storyline. The linear flow of the game helped keep us on track though we required a hint or two to keep our carriage rolling forward. We were stumbling through the last puzzle when the clock struck midnight and we turned back into paupers rather than the royalty we had hoped to become. We gathered up our pumpkins and mice and limped our way, a few glass slippers short, back home. But alas not every story can have a fairytale ending.
We are looking forward to trying out their next rooms when they open. In the meantime, we definitely recommend you go and play Exit 2 Escape!
Hansel and Gretel: Trapped inside the witch's house, we had to find a way to escape before we became her lunch.
Pros: We arrived at Mission Escape a bit early but our game master immediately checked us in and started our game. The room was decorated to theme including lots of cool props that help set the "trapped in the cabin of a scary witch who likes to eat children" ambience. The puzzles were aligned to the story and though challenging were not at all impossible with a subtle hint or two. We moved through the room rather quickly despite the challenge of some of the more physical-type puzzles that delayed our progress slightly. The space was small and we definitely recommend no more than four people in this room at a time to avoid that "it's way too crowded and I'm gonna murder you all" feeling that sometimes plagues players in confining escape rooms. Our game flowed smoothly and we finished with time to spare. In the end we successfully escaped the clutches of the cannibalistic witch - all while resisting the temptation to taste the candy treats that adorned the deceptively cute cabin. All in all we would call this a successful escape room experience.
Mafia: Deep inside a hidden speakeasy, we had to locate incriminating photos and a pile of cash before the mafia returned.
The Alchemist: A secret society and a sacred stone - could we uncover the secrets hidden in this room?
Pros: The rooms here were small but nicely decorated to theme. The puzzles were all aligned to the story and flowed with the general game. The gamemasters told us what to do when we were stuck.
Cons: There was no real communication system to notify when we needed help. We waved our hands as instructed and verbally asked for help. We asked three times for help before our gamemaster responded. When he did respond, he had no idea where we were in the game and so we had to catch him up to where we were at in the game. The "hint" was actually just what to do next. This happened in both the games we played. We found ourselves stuck on several puzzles mostly because of faulty locks. With an improved communication and hint system this could be a good middle of the road escape room experience.
I Was Framed: Our best friend had been framed for murder. We had to find the identity of the real murderer before it was too late.
Back to the 80s: Trapped in the 80s, we had to find the missing mix tape to escape this decade.
Pros: We arrived in DC during the bombogenisis and immediately regretted traveling to what essentially felt like the arctic. We made our way down the icy streets to Escape Live in Glover Park. Once we had sufficiently thawed out in the waiting room., we were escorted into our first room. The puzzles were very logical in both rooms. Our gamemasters were ready to help out if we were ever caught in a jam but luckily we didn't need a single clue. This is just the type of room we like - perfectly solvable without intervention from a gamemaster.
Cons: The set design was very basic and sort of a let down after our experience at the Georgetown location for Escape Room Live. The storylines were basic. In I Was Framed, the puzzles were largely disconnected from the storyline.
We played with a delightful group of new players who thoroughly enjoyed their experience. We definitely recommend this location for first time players. More experienced players should head over to the Georgetown location for a more immersive experience.
Ghostbusters: Who you gonna call? The Escapeologists because bustin' makes us feel good!
Curse of the Mummy: An archaeologist has gone missing. We had to go deep inside the mummy's tomb to find him.
Pros: The spacious waiting room and bar were an added bonus that made waiting for our game bearable. Once inside the rooms we were immediately awed. The room themes and associated tech puzzles were totally unique. The set design was nothing short of awesome! The rooms were small but they made excellent use of space. The gamemasters were great hosts and kept our game flowing.
Cons: Some of the tech puzzles were finicky. The delay tacked on just enough additional time to make us lose the honor of beating the record by 9 seconds. We loved the Ghostbusters room but we were also sad to see that it was missing the best of the best: Holtzmann, Gilbert, Tolan, and Yates. A few extra jumpsuits is all it needs to be epic.
Congratulatons to Escape Room Live - Georgetown for winning a coveted Escapeologist set design award!
Submarine: Trapped on a submarine and running out of air we had to find an air source and make our way back to the surface quickly.
Pros: This was our last stop on our whirlwind tour of Phoenix escape rooms. We have seen so many crazy cool sets in the rooms in the area and we were delighted to see that this room lived up to the others. The realistic materials, sounds and props created a truly immersive play experience. The puzzles also fit the nautical theme. Each puzzle consisted primarily of physical tasks to be completed. We really enjoyed the challenge. The electronic hint system notified us when we were lagging behind and the game master sent hints to help pace us.
Cons: The difficulty level was high but not impossible for two people. Three to four people would no doubt fare much better. Larger groups might feel very claustrophobic.
We wish the other games were open for us to play at the time we visited. But the excellence in set design in the Submarine game alone makes Escape the Room a must-visit destination. The unique puzzles moves it to the escape room fanatics bucket list. Escape the Room has earned the Escapologists' awards for Puzzle and Set Design for their Submarine escape room.
Sleuthing Santa: A naughty elf has stolen toys and you have to help Santa find the toys in time to deliver the eager children awaiting them on Christmas morning.
Pros: Although Christmas was over a week ago and the holiday spirit had long left us, we loved the festive theme of this room. Some eggnog and holiday music could have made this even more enjoyable (wishful thinking). Still we enthusiastically embarked on our puzzle solving tasks. The game flowed smoothly with puzzles themed to the storyline. We worked our way through the rooms with no hints.
Cons: We were grouped with a family of six who was not too happy to see strangers added to their party. We understand that this is standard operating practice at most places but it really does not make for the best game play experience. The family complained but there was no effort to accommodate their concern. They were able to escape the room do in large part to our help and left happy nonetheless. However, everyone felt a little cheated out of the full experience. We recommend private bookings become the new standard practice at all escape rooms unless groups agree in advance to be paired up with others.
Double Crossed: A wealthy benefactor invested in an archaeological excavation with the expectation of big rewards. When his hopes were dashed, he determined to break into the archaeologists office and steal the prized relic. We were just the thieves to pull off the Heist.
Pros: The owners at Constant Evolution are clearly committed to the art of escape room design. Their love of the game is evident in the attention and effort they put into crafting the theme. As game masters they kept on top of our game and offered us appropriate hints to keep the game flowing. The puzzles were numerous but logical. The durable construction of the room enhanced our game play experience.
Cons: Although a solid game play experience, there was nothing extraordinary with this room. We understand however that they have big plans for their next room and we cannot wait to see what they design.
If you are visiting the Sedona/Cottonwood area we definitely recommend you check out Constant Evolution. We are happy to see escape rooms popping up in small towns around the country.
The Cult: An ancient cult in a modern city. A hidden stone for us to find. Only 60 minutes before the police arrived.
Pros: The story for the Cult was interesting and the video helped generate our excitement to play. The puzzles ranged from simple to challenging but all were fun to solve. we definitely appreciate logical game flow and this fit the bill for that!
Cons: The set design was basic but worked with the storyline. The game masters were less than helpful from the moment we walked in the door. I won't belabor the point but let's just say that a basic level of customer service matters. Luckily we didn't need a single hint from them during the game so it no way impeded our game play.
Dare to Escape AZ was a solid room escape experience recommended for beginning players.
Cover photo taken at Countdown Live .
We are escape room fanatics who have played over 300 games in the U.S. and Europe. We love the art of escapology and we wanted to share our adventures in playing room escapes with you!
Rooms Played: 329