Escape from the Poltergeist: Who you gonna call? Ghostbusters of course! As ghostbusters we had to discover the mystery of the haunted office before we met our supernatural doom.
Escape from the Aliens: A famous UFO expert had been kidnapped by aliens. Our group was tasked with the job of discovering what happened to him before the aliens returned to take us for an extraterrestrial experience.
Pros: The game master was very friendly and helpful. The storyline was clear and the rooms were decorated to fit the theme. Some nice surprises in the poltergeist room enhanced the experience. The puzzles in both of these rooms were very logical and nicely scaled in complexity. We found ourselves out of time in the Poltergeist room before we were able to successfully break out.
Cons: The puzzles in Escape from eh Aliens were a bit too many for a two-person team but would work well for a group of 4 to 6. Some of the puzzles were more time-consuming than enjoyable to solve. Overall, this is was a solid escape room experience, great for escape room newbies and veterans alike.
Police Station: Finding ourselves in a precarious position falsely accused of theft, under arrest and confined in a cell in a police station, we had to find a way to gather money, evidence, and escape imprisonment.
Pros: Generally logical and easy to solve puzzles. A great escape room for first-timers as a way of introducing the concept. Also good for small groups. We played as a group of two and found it easy to solve within the time limit. Great for boosting one's confidence in playing escape games.
Cons: Perhaps too easy . . . We broke out with over half the time left to spare. Puzzles could be better scaled to increase difficulty at each level. Generally cheap set design and flimsy locks/puzzles posed problems at times and slowed us down, but we still had plenty of time to break out of jail!
The Great Houdini Escape Room: The 1915 Panama-Pacific Exposition in San Francisco attracted the brightest minds from around the world. The famous magician Harry Houdini allegedly built the first escape room as a challenge to those geniuses. Our less than brilliant group had 80 minutes to attempt the same puzzles and challenges that these legendary innovators faced over 100 years ago.
The Roosevelt Escape Room: This room had some connection to Theodore Roosevelt and World War I. Although the historical narrative made little sense, we knew we had to solve puzzles to escape.
Pros: Both rooms had awesome, AMAZING sets. High-tech, elaborately decorated rooms created an immersive feeling for game-players. The puzzles were all tied to the theme and were creative and unique to this escape room. A mix of puzzle types but many mechanical elements. The Houdini Room had a great storyline that carried throughout the entire experience. The storyline was less clearly articulated in the Roosevelt Room and seemed more of a hodgepodge of history. Puzzles were difficult in both rooms and definitely required the whole team. Palace Games is an absolute MUST-DO for escape room addicts.
Cons: The game moderator's opening speech was too long and detracted from our initial enthusiasm. The large group size (they encourage 12) is way too big. These are such great rooms, it would be nice to take them all in with smaller groups. They now allow groups with a minimum of 6 but you have to pay $400 at the outset for the whole room. This equates to $66 per person for a 6 person game. The tendency is then to try to pack 12 people in the room in order to reduce the price per person down to $33 dollars which is much better but still at the high end of the escape room price scale. Twelve people in the room is overwhelming. We recommend that you pay the extra money per person to keep the group size down to 6 people. This may make it more difficult to solve the sheer number of puzzles in time, but the reduced stress level and ability to focus and listen to your teammates will create a better and much less chaotic experience in the end. Less is more in our opinion. We don't like to miss what's happening by having too many distractions.
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: 352