Escapism – Do Not Disturb [Review]

Do Not Disturb

Creepy dolls & good flow.

Location:  Southington, Connecticut

Date Played:  December 17, 2018

Team size: 2-6; we recommend 2-4

Duration: 60 minutes

Price: $29 per player

Ticketing: Private

Emergency Exit: A+ No Lock

Physical Restraints: A+ No Physical Restraints

REA Reaction

It’s great to see a new company come out of the gate with a strong game. Escapism gets escape rooms, and we’re incredibly excited to see where they take their designs.

Do Not Disturb was a fantastic game for less experienced players. It was well designed with strong puzzle flow.

If you’re an experienced player, there was something to enjoy in Do Not Disturb, but it wasn’t a must-play.

If you’re new to escape rooms, this would be a wonderful place to start.

In-game: closeup of a creepy doll.

Who is this for?

  • Adventure seekers
  • Story seekers
  • Puzzle lovers
  • Any experience level

Why play?

  • An elegant set
  • A great hint system
  • Smart puzzles

Story

Our team of private investigators was called to investigate an abandoned and allegedly haunted apartment. It was up to us to determine the fate of its tenant.

In-game: View through the door of Do Not Disturb into a studio apartment with a creepy doll sitting on a table in the middle of the room.

Setting

We “broke into” a small, grandmotherly apartment with a cohesive aesthetic. It wasn’t a fancy setting, but it looked and smelled right.

In-game: a small table two two unusual wooden locked boxes.

Gameplay

Escapism’s Do Not Disturb was a standard escape room with a moderate level of difficulty.

Core gameplay revolved around searching, puzzling, observing, and making connections.

In-game: An old apartment bedroom's dresser. There are metal boxes with wires running from them.

Analysis

➕ The set looked homey, but slightly creepy. It had a gentle, welcoming aesthetic with just the slightest edge.

➕ Escapism’s set design included visual, auditory, and olfactory ambiance. These extra details added a lot to the experience.

Do Not Disturb had a stellar entry for onboarding escape room newbies.

➕ The puzzles flowed well. Escapism even augmented a few puzzles so that experienced players wouldn’t accidentally (or purposely) bypass parts of the game. It worked well.

➖ One puzzle could easily become overwhelming depending on the order the players connect various in-game elements. In part, the ambiance contributed to potential sensory overload. This puzzle could benefit from either more gating and/or stronger cluing.

➕ The hint system was designed specifically for Do Not Disturb. This detail added to the overall experience. We didn’t use any hints… but Escapism clearly knew how cool the system was and worked it into our game nonetheless.

➖ Escapism mixed locks with tech-driven opens, but too often the tech was too visible. If they can build housing around the tech and hide it in the decor, it’s effects would be far more effective.

➕Escapism had a beautiful, spacious lobby. Leave yourself a few extra minutes to hang out.

Tips For Visiting

  • There is a parking lot.
  • We recommend Tavern 42 for BBQ nearby.
  • Leave some time to hang out in Escapism’s gorgeous lobby.

Book your hour with Escapism’s Do Not Disturb, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

Disclosure: Escapism comped our tickets for this game.

Our Editorial for Escape Front

With the start of a new year, we reflected on the opportunities and cautions we see in the escape room industry in a guest post for Escape Front.

Escape Front's antique warded key logo.

Discussion Topics

We discussed safety, first and foremost. Safety is on our minds right now, in the wake of the tragedy in Poland and will be a feature in Room Escape Artist reviews in 2019.

We also discussed the following topics that we see as essential to the growth of this industry in 2019:

  • the evolving definition of “escape room”
  • the importance of community
  • the uptick in escape room closures
  • how to design and build for success
  • new avenues for theming
  • why we love collaborations

We’ll likely unpack some of these concepts more at Room Escape Artist as the year goes on.

Thank you to Escape Front for the opportunity to contribute Escape Rooms in 2019: Opportunities & Cautions.

Basic Safety Evaluation in Escape Room Reviews

Update 12:15 pm: Based on reader feedback, we’ve updated some of these standards since this post originally published this morning.

For years we have been pushing for escape room creators to make safer games. We have been speaking out on the issue of safety at conferences as well as addressing safety issues in editorials and reviews.

Immediately after the fire in Poland, we started noting in reviews whether each game had an emergency exit… but that was a quick change.

Moving forward, we are going to apply a more useful standard when evaluating basic escape room safety.

A

Preface

We wholeheartedly believe that the excitement and fun of an escape room comes from the game, puzzles, story, and set design… not from being locked into a room.

Just as a thrill ride will make you feel the threat of falling without injury, a great escape game will create excitement without endangering the lives of the players.

Emergency Exits

The most important aspect of escape room safety is that players have the ability to free themselves in the event of an emergency. There are more and less optimal ways to provide this, but regardless of method, self-freeing is a mandatory safety requirement.

We have observed 4 categories of escape room emergency exits. All reviews moving forward will note the style of emergency exit. We have ranked them in order from most preferred to least preferred.

A+: No Lock

The game is entirely mission-based, or it asks you to escape from a locked door, but there is a different door in the room that is never locked. Regardless of configuration, there is always an unlocked door present to the team.

This is an accepted industry standard.

A: Push To Exit

A large green button labeled:

The team is locked within the room by a maglock (magnetic lock). This door will automatically pop open when the game is over or if the players push an emergency “Push to Exit” button. If power to the maglock is cut at any time, the magnet will automatically open.

This is an accepted industry standard.

B: Emergency Key

The team is locked into the room using a physical lock. There is an emergency key available for the team to open the locked door at any time.

This is an acceptable approach, but less optimal. In a crisis, it requires locating the key – even if it is clearly labeled next to the door – and performing a precise motor function. It could be exceptionally challenging in the dark. It takes more time.

F: No Emergency Exit

The team is locked within the room and there are no emergency exits available to the players. The only ways for a team to exit the game are by (1) completing the game and finding the exit key or (2) being released by someone outside of the game.

This is an unsafe approach to escape room design.

Physical Restraints

While considerably less common, we have noted a similar pattern of approach to physical restraints in escape rooms and grouped them into 4 categories. Similarly, we have ranked them in order from most preferred to least preferred and will note this on all reviews moving forward.

A+: No Physical Restraints

This escape game involves no physical restraints.

This is an accepted industry standard.

A: Push To Release

One or more players are physically restrained at some point within the game. The restraints are maglocked and the players may release the restraints with the push of a button. Should the power fail within the game, electricity to the electromagnet would be cut and the maglock would release on its own.

This is an accepted industry standard.

B: Mechanical Release

One or more players are physically restrained at some point within the game. The restraints have a backup mechanical release such as a carabiner or handcuff safety switch. The players may free themselves at any point.

This is an acceptable approach, but less optimal. In a crisis, it requires some dexterity or physical effort. It could be exceptionally challenging in the dark. It takes more time.

F: No Emergency Release

One or more players are physically restrained at some point within the game. These players have no means of freeing themselves during a crisis.

This is an unsafe approach to escape room design.

Limitations

We are not fire inspectors. There are a great many codes that a fire inspector is supposed to enforce. We don’t have the background, access, or authority to enforce these laws.

We have to assume that the owner of an escape room company is adhering to their local laws and that individual municipalities are enforcing their own laws.

Tracking

During 2019, we will maintain a dataset of basic escape room safety in the games that we play. We will issue a report at the end of the year.

Evolution

These standards and how we approach them will most certainly evolve over time. We welcome input.

Open Reviewer Standard

In the interest of encouraging safe game design and making it easier for all players to find games that they are comfortable entering, we welcome any reviewer to apply these standards within their reviews.

We also welcome any reader who visits a game we had previously reviewed to leave a comment on any Room Escape Artist review with the date visited and the safety standard.

Note that there are a few reviews scheduled to publish throughout January 2019 that predate this blog post. They will only have basic yes/no on the question of emergency exits.

Lisa Live on BBC 5 Discussing Escape Rooms & Poland

Earlier this week, David wrote about his appearance on live tv.

If that morning weren’t crazy enough, a few hours after his tv appearance, a radio producer from the BBC 5 Live emailed us. So David left the sound studio (minus the camera) set up on our table, waiting for me to take it over that evening.

Then it was my turn:

Thank you to Chris Dickson for finding this recording for us. (My parents also appreciate it.)

The radio host from the BBC 5 Live asked many of the same questions as the host from EURONEWS NOW… but with a different tone.

A blue yeti microphone surrounded by a sound absorbing shield.

David and I have more experience with radio than with tv. That said, this was my first live recording experience, which was intense, especially in the wake of a tragedy. It was a lot of pressure knowing that whatever I said would inform someone’s opinion of escape rooms.

It might not have been a lot of people’s opinions… it was live at 1:30am for the folks listening. But then again, the folks listening in the wee hours are probably really listening, right?

The Gate Escape – D.J. Death [Review]

Don’t fear the reaper.

Location:  Leominster, Massachusetts

Date Played:  December 17, 2018

Team size: up to 6; we recommend 2-4

Duration: 35-45 minutes depending on play style

Price: $23 per player

Ticketing: Public

Emergency Exit: Yes

REA Reaction

D.J. Death was The Gate Escape’s introductory Halloween popup game that didn’t die.

With structured puzzle sections, this game was far more directed than your typical escape game. Additionally, it was nonthreatening, even if the theme sounds scary.

Although the set design was a bit uneven – with some puzzle sections looking great and others looking a bit cheesy – it played well and culminated in a delightful conclusion.

D.J. Death would be a wonderful game for newbies. Even as experienced players, we found a lot to enjoy. It wasn’t hard, but it was amusing. If you’re an experienced player, The Gate Escape’s other games are must-plays. D.J. Death is worth adding to your lineup if you’re open to sacrificing some difficulty for a novel game structure.

In-game: a dance floor with DJ Death's skull and cross scythe logo.

Who is this for?

  • Dance party goers!
  • Puzzle lovers
  • Halloween fans
  • Any experience level

Why play?

  • Music
  • Dance party
  • Fun puzzles 

Story

Death DJ would host the most exclusive Halloween party of the year. If we wanted to gain admittance, we would have to pass his test and help him build his playlist one puzzle at a time. If we failed, we’d be cut… from the guest list.

In-game: A wall of massive blocks in the middle of the room.

Setting

D.J. Death was a large, open space with 10 smaller puzzle stations along the periphery. Each station had a unique, spooky theme: vampire, voodoo, mad science, etc. (They ranged broadly.)

The level of detail was a little uneven. Some areas looked great; some felt like party-store Halloween. Generally, the visual focus directed us at the puzzle components.

The coolest parts of the set were the dance floor and DJ booth… which were really what mattered.

In-game: closeup of a voodoo shrine.

Gameplay

The Gate Escape’s D.J. Death was an unusual escape room with a low level of difficulty.

This large gamespace was divided into sections, each containing one puzzle. We moved through the space solving the puzzles and collecting tunes from the D.J. himself.

Core gameplay revolved around observing and puzzling.

The Gate Escape offered two play modes. If the entire group traveled between puzzles together, the game clock was 45 minutes. If the group split up to tackle the puzzles separately, the game clock was 35 minutes. (Our group of 4 stayed together so that everyone could experience the entire game. That worked well.)

In-game: An open coffin lit red.

Analysis

➕ D.J. Death was cute and joyous. It didn’t take itself seriously.

➕/➖ The set looked a bit party-store. With the Halloween theme, this generally worked just fine. There were, however, opportunities to improve the aesthetics.

➖Despite the name and the Halloween theming, D.J. Death was not a scary escape room. I have to imagine that this marketing is confusing to The Gate Escape’s customers.

➕ D.J. Death provided a gentle on-ramp to a puzzle game. By wrapping the game in a dance party, encouraging teams to work together, and keeping related puzzle components contained, it would be approachable to new players of all ages and abilities. The Gate Escape is willing to turn the lights on for nervous players.

In-game: 4 large, vertical metal tubes with grates over them.

➕ The Gate Escape built a great mix of puzzle styles into D.J. Death. They were largely tangible and interactive.

➖ Our least favorite puzzles were the less interactive of the lot. The puzzles with larger components generally felt more exciting.

➕ The separate puzzles came together with a meta puzzle. It made the escape room feel whole.

➖ There was opportunity for a more engaging meta puzzle in this space.

➕ The finale. D.J. Death had a wonderful ending. It really was the only way this game could have ended.

Tips For Visiting

  • There is a parking lot.
  • Take the elevator up and walk down the long hallway to The Gate Escape.
  • 435 Bar & Grille is conveniently located in the same building.
  • D.J. Death is not scary.

Book your hour with The Gate Escape’s D.J. Death, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

Disclosure: The Gate Escape comped our tickets for this game.

Trapology – Crush Depth [Review]

Crushed it.

Location:  Boston, Massachusetts

Date Played:  December 15, 2018

Team size: up to 8; we recommend 3-5

Duration: 60 minutes

Price: $32 per player

Ticketing: Public

Emergency Exit: Yes

REA Reaction

Crush Depth was a great escape room.

It had an intense, detailed, and imposing aesthetic. The puzzles were meaty and entertaining. The story put an atypical twist on a fairly common concept.

While we encountered a bit of ambiguity with puzzle sequencing, and it was occasionally difficult to find what we were supposed to do among the various set details, it still played really well.

We wholeheartedly recommend it for players who are nearby and have a bit of escape room experience.

In-game: overhead shot of a the bunks in the submarine.

Who is this for?

  • Puzzle lovers
  • Scenery snobs
  • Players with at least some experience

Why play?

  • Submarine aesthetic
  • Unorthodox story choice
  • Strong puzzles

Story

While we were serving aboard a submarine, the spirit of the boat’s former captain assumed control, and in a final vengeful act, set a course for crush depth. We had to banish the angry spirit and retake control of the submarine before we all received a gruesome physics lesson.

In-game: an axe hanging over a porthole.

Setting

Crush Depth was an aesthetically gorgeous game, among the most beautiful that we’ve seen in the region.

The submarine set was detailed and weathered. It felt right. There was a lot to look at.

Additionally, the layout felt correct. The entire game took place in a narrow series of rooms.

In-game: wide angle of a the bunks in the submarine.

Gameplay

Trapology’s Crush Depth was a standard escape room with a moderate level of difficulty.

Core gameplay revolved around searching, observing, making connections, and puzzling.

In-game: closeup of a high voltage electrical box.

Analysis

➕ Trapology turned a few rooms of their downtown Boston office building space into a submarine. The set design looked great.

➖ Although the set looked great, not all of the puzzle components were on the same level. Trapology relied on laminated paper for some clue structure.

➖ The submarine set contained interesting knobs, dials, and gadgets. It wasn’t entirely apparent which were in play and which were decor.

In-game: closeup of a axe-head.

➕ We’ve escaped a lot of submarines, but this was the first one that was haunted by a vengeful ghost captain. Trapology twisted two themes together to create something new and exciting. (Note, Crush Depth is not a horror game.)

In-game: closeup of a small metal step.

➕ Crush Depth was a puzzle-focused escape room with many excellent solves. We always had something interesting to work on.

➖ We encountered one clunky mid-game sequence. Some of the cluing felt a bit out of order.

In-game: A shower-head in a small stall.

➖/➕We couldn’t always tell when we’d triggered an open. Trapology could add lighting or sound cues to make tech-driven opens pop. That said, our attentive gamemaster directed us to anything we’d opened without realizing it.

➕ The final sequence of interactions was massive, tangible, and so satisfying. The conclusion was explosive.

In-game: close-up of a wheel/ door handle.

➕ Trapology had a beautiful lobby. We wish we could have lounged there for longer. We loved the cozy, steampunk-inspired aesthetic.

Tips For Visiting

  • Trapology is easily accessible by T. Take the Green Line to Boylston St.
  • We recommend Explorateur on the corner for a coffee, drinks, a meal… and some really interesting desserts.

Book your hour with Trapology’s Crush Depth, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

Disclosure: Trapology comped our tickets for this game.

Live TV & Radio Appearances About Poland

Yesterday was a whirlwind… and this is an unusual and personal post.

I appeared on a live broadcast of EURONEWS NOW… my first foray into live television.

Thank you Patrik Patyo Strausz for recording the appearance. (My parents really appreciate it.)

A few hours later, Lisa appeared on a live BBC 5 radio interview. (We’ll post this if we can get a link at some point.)

Sadly both segments were about the tragedy in Poland. We did our best to represent the community and underscore that most escape rooms are operating safely.

Live TV

That was one of the most intense experiences that I can recall. Adrenaline is a hell of a drug.

We woke up to an email from a producer in Europe. Within a couple hours of responding, I was doing a sound and video check. An hour later I was on TV.

I hadn’t been pre-interviewed or prepared in any way. I knew that we were going to be discussing the tragedy in Poland, but I didn’t know anything beyond that. I prepared for every possible question or angle that I could think of.

I sat there on Skype watching the first half of the broadcast: segments on the Brexit deal struggles and the hacking of top German officials. Then after a commercial break, a producer that I never saw told me that I’d be on next.

It all started and ended in a blur. There was so much to keep in mind. My voice. My posture. My eyes. The questions. The facts.

I’m honored that I was asked to appear, but I hope that there’s never another crisis like this. I’d do it again, but this isn’t what escape rooms are about. I’m much happier telling people about amazing games.

David on EURONEWS NOW.
Terrible Search Puzzle: Finding a screen shot of yourself speaking on TV where you don’t look completely silly.

Room Escapers – Panacea [Review]

In-game: The sign for the Panacea Apothecary in the hallway of Room Escapers.

Pandemic: Alchemy

Location:  Boston, Massachusetts

Date Played:  December 15, 2018

Team size: up to 8; we recommend 4-6

Duration: 60 minutes

Price: $30 per player

Ticketing:  Public / Private if you book at least 4 tickets

Emergency Exit: Yes

REA Reaction

Room Escapers is at their best when the build large-team, puzzle-focused, humorous adventures. They checked all those boxes with Panacea… and this may be the finest example of their style thus far.

Panacea was visually striking with an elegant color palette and beautiful faux stained glass windows. While the build quality was occasionally lacking, it was a generally wonderful environment.

From a gameplay standpoint, there was a lot to puzzle through. Our entire team was occupied from start to finish. Panacea just needed a culminating puzzle that brought all of us back together for a finale.

All in all, this was a seriously satisfying game, and regardless of experience level, we highly recommend playing Panacea if you’re visiting Boston.

In-game: wide shot of the apothecary. There is a large red chair and a lectern.

Who is this for?

  • Puzzle lovers
  • Scenery snobs
  • Any experience level
  • Players who don’t need to be a part of every puzzle

Why play?

  • Beautiful alchemy-inspired decor
  • Challenging puzzles

Story

With a disease ravaging the world, humanity’s last hope was hidden in an old Boston apothecary. We entered the preserved establishment-turned-museum with one goal: master the 7 principles of alchemy and produce a mythical cure-all.

In-game: a stain-glass window depicting a fire-breathing dragon.
One of my favorite features of this game.

Setting

We stepped out of Room Escapers’ lobby and into a beautiful old bepuzzled apothecary-turned-museum.

The build quality varied from item to item. Some of the game was beautifully constructed, while other portions were a little more finicky or flimsy.

The most beautiful feature of the room a set of fluorescent office lights that were converted into faux stained glass.

In-game: a large hourglass in the middle of the apothecary.

Gameplay

Room Escapers’ Panacea was a standard escape room with a high level of difficulty.

Core gameplay revolved around observing, making connections, and puzzling.

In-game: A chest with the depiction of an ouroboros; a snake eating its own tail.

Analysis

➕ Panacea was beautifully themed, down to the game clock. It was an inviting space in which to solve puzzles.

➕ The stained glass windows were awesome.

➕ The story flowed through the puzzles. It became apparent early on how working through the puzzles would resolve the story. We had a good sense of our progression as we played.

In-game: sign reads, "7 principles of truth: he who knows these will find the Panacea."

Panacea offered many hands-on, challenging puzzles. It kept our entire team busy. There was a lot to do and most of it was pretty great.

➖ We encountered one ghost puzzle that led us far afield. This puzzle needed to be entirely refactored, rather than partially reskinned.

➕/➖ In Panacea we worked through a lot of puzzles in a relatively confined space. On the one hand, puzzle elements were well labeled so that we didn’t struggle to connect this astrology with that… astrology. The challenge was in the puzzle. On the other hand, it felt less organic to rely on labeling. Additionally, larger groups will likely struggle stepping around each other.

➖ Some of the tech-driven interactions were finicky. This added unnecessary frustration after we’d solved the puzzles.

➕ The hint system made sense with the story and the space. It added to the experience. (In fact, we recommend asking for a hint, even if you don’t need one.)

In-game: wide shot of the apothecary. There is a large red chair and a phrenology bust.

➖ In Panacea, we spread out, working on different puzzle tracks. Although we enjoyed the finale, we felt it lacked a culminating puzzle that brought the team back together for the conclusion.

➕ There was some really funny wordplay going on in Panacea.

➕ Room Escapers has upped their reveal game. In Panacea, the reveals worked wonderfully.

Tips For Visiting

  • Panacea is at Room Escapers’ School Street location.
  • It is easily accessible by subway. Get off at Park Street or Government Center.
  • If you’re driving, the Pi Alley Parking Garage is right nearby.

Book your hour with Room Escapers’ Panacea, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

Disclosure: Room Escapers comped our tickets for this game.

Movie Review: Escape Room (2019)

I’m glad I saw it. I wish it had ended sooner.

Director: Adam Robitel

Writers: Bragi Schut & Maria Melnik

Release Date: January 4, 2019

Run Time: 100 minutes

Rating: PG-13 for terror/perilous action, violence, some suggestive material and language

REA Reaction

Yes, it’s a PG-13 SAW/ Final Destination knock-off… but it wasn’t bad and it was far less torture-porn-y.

There were many points in Escape Room (2019) where I had solved the puzzle ahead of the characters. I mean that as a compliment. It’s difficult to write puzzles for on-screen actors to solve within a narrative and still present them in a solvable manner for the audience. Escape Room (2019) largely achieved this… although not entirely.

Two characters standing in a room that has turned into an oven.

The opening sequence was chaotic and messy, but it gave way to solid character development and some genuinely interesting escape room challenges, albeit murderous ones. There were good solves and amazing interactions… one of which had me thinking, “why haven’t I seen that done in real life?”

All of this was sustained by acting and dialog that were far better than I had hoped for.

Unfortunately, the final act took a nose dive into utter nonsense.

Finally, the escape room in-jokes were as good they were cringey. There was a character who was such an escape room enthusiast caricature that I watched him thinking, “well… this is how I sound to normal people.”

A card for Minos Escape Rooms.

Who is this for?

  • Adventure seekers
  • Puzzle lovers
  • Scenery snobs
  • Players with at least some escape room experience

Why Watch?

  • You can actively solve many of the puzzles along with the characters
  • Solid character development
  • Really cool, over-the-top escape room-y moments
  • Escape room in-jokes

Story

Six strangers received mysterious puzzle boxes in the mail. Solving them led to the day, time, and location of an escape room game where the winners would receive $10,000… if they survived.

Gameplay

I won’t go so far as to call this movie a game, but it was possible to kind of play along. I solved some of the puzzles along with the characters.

7 hands holding a block of ice with a key in it.
Worst process puzzle ever.

Analysis

➖ The opening sequence was laughable and chaotic.

➕ The characters were interesting and generally likable.

One character excitedly speaking to the group.

➕ The escape room enthusiast character was really something. I found him equal parts amusing and cringey. His references to playing with crappy strangers, escape room company names, how escape games work, and “immersion” were painfully dead on.

➖ They made an odd decision to only establish 3 of the 6 characters at the beginning of the movie. This diminished 3 characters from the onset and telegraphed entirely too much about the film.

➕ I truly enjoyed being able to remain engaged and mentally follow most of the puzzles.

4 characters outside of a cabin in the middle of a snowy forest.

❓ Escape Room (2019) wasn’t gory or particularly gross. The death scenes weren’t graphic and generally ended quickly. Personally, I preferred this.

➕ Most of the rooms that the characters “played” in were imaginative and over the top, while still feeling more or less grounded in escape room tradition.

A bar room where everything is upside down.

➖ There came a point where everything started to feel rushed. They condensed interesting concepts to make room for the ending.

➖ The final act was nonsensical garbage. Escape Room (2019)’s sin was explaining too much. I don’t know if it was trying to be profound or establish a path to a sequel. Whatever the thought process, the conclusion was miserable.

➕ Murder notwithstanding, there were concepts in this film that I hope to see incorporated into real life escape rooms.

A character solving a puzzle box.

➖ It’s not the fault of anyone involved with this film, but there were a number of different moments that felt especially uncomfortable in light of the tragedy in Poland that occurred on the movie’s opening day. It was difficult to see a newspaper headline on screen that read “5 Dead in Fire,” and to see heat and fire traps, poison gas, and even the overall concept that these rooms might kill you, knowing what had just happened in real life.

Tips For Watching

  • Accept that this isn’t a masterpiece and embrace the fun.
  • Solve along with the movie when you can.
  • Consider leaving as soon as the game is officially over. What comes after doesn’t add any of value.

Book your viewing of Escape Room (2019), and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

Los Angeles, California: Escape Room Recommendations

Looking for an escape room near Los Angeles, California?

Latest update: January 5, 2019

Los Angeles is one of the strongest escape room markets in the United States.

This city offers some of the best sets and scenery we’ve seen in escape rooms. That doesn’t mean they skimp on the puzzles. The best escape rooms in Los Angeles deliver full experiences.

You might be interested in our recommendations for Anaheim, California as well.

Scene from LA in black, white, & blue. A sports car speeding past a building that says, "MADE IN LA."

Market Standouts

  1. Stash House
  2. Lab Rat, Hatch Escapes
  3. The Elevator Shaft, THE BASEMENT
  4. The Courtyard, THE BASEMENT 
  5. The Morgue, Evil Genius (We haven’t played it yet. See comments below.)

Set & Scenery Driven

Puzzle Centric

Creative Tech

Unusual Concept

Newbie-friendly

Big Group Games

Private Booking Companies

Spooky & Scary

Games with Actors

You are always welcome to contact us if this recommendation list doesn’t answer your specific questions.