Escape Room 101

What’s an escape room?

Find an escape game near you

Regional Recommendations Guides

15 things to know before playing an escape room

Tips for players

Tips for designers & owners

RECON – The Reality Escape Convention

Our online escape room con for industry professionals & players

RECON 21 phoenix insignia.

RECON gives you:

  • featured talks from industry leaders covering a broad variety of topics
  • the opportunity to play limited-availability games
  • connections with likeminded folks from all over the world

Login from home, admission is pay what you want – that includes free

Learn more at RealityEscapeCon.com

PlayMonster – Break In [Overview]

Layers of Innovation

Location:  at home

Date Played: Fall 2020 & Winter 2021

Team size: 1-6; we recommend 2-3

Duration: 2 hours

Price: about $20

REA Reaction

The Break In series is an innovative feat of engineering; I am surprised that these games exist.

At their most basic level, the games in the Break In series were tabletop escape games where the goal was to break into some exotic location. These games felt like escape rooms where we were breaking into a place, complete with scene changes and an evolving narrative.

Each game began by lifting the lid off of the box, from that point forward literally everything under the lid was part of the game.

The box within was made up of a plastic frame and cardstock panels, and designed to look like a model of the building that we were breaking into.

Break In Alcatraz and Area 51 boxes beside one another with a few game components above them.

As we progressed, the cardstock panels opened like an onion revealing interior settings.

There was an insane amount of creative design and construction in each game… and the biggest surprise was that the boxes opened differently from installment to installment. We held back our original review of Alcatraz until we could play and compare it to a second installment. I’m glad that we did.

Your mileage may vary from game to game on puzzle clarity. There were also some challenges in on-boarding. Overall, however, this was high quality series with a unique gimmick. It’s remarkably affordable; it feels like it should cost more than it does.

Of the current batch, we felt that Area 51 was a bit stronger than Alcatraz.

Series Installments

  • Break In Alcatraz (Review coming soon)
  • Break In Area 51 (Review coming soon)

Who is this for?

  • Innovation hunters
  • Story seekers
  • Puzzle lovers
  • Players with at least some experience

Why play?

  • Functionally, the game was impressive
  • A new take on answer verification
  • Unique gameplay
Continue reading “PlayMonster – Break In [Overview]”

Sherlocked – Mibo Island [Hivemind Review]

Mibo Island is a 3D point-and-click game created by Sherlocked in Amsterdam.

The game's open world on a beach with a shipwreck.

Format

Style of Play:

  • Online native experience (can NOT be played IRL)
  • Play on-demand
  • 3D point-and-click

Required Equipment: computer with internet connection

Recommended Team Size: exactly 4 players

Play Time: about 60 minutes (significantly less for experienced puzzlers, but also, you can stick around in the virtual environment after solving the game)

Price: €25 per team of 4

Booking: purchase and play at your leisure

Description

You are little computer avatars that move around in a 3D space. In order to solve the puzzles, you need to move around, click things, and communicate with your teammates.

How to play, guide to avatar commands.

Hivemind Review Scale

Accomplice – CyberQuest [Hivemind Review]

CyberQuest is an online race in the style of a light puzzle hunt, presented by Accomplice in New York City.

Evil gamer children threatening to destroy the internet over Zoom.

Format

Style of Play:

  • Online native experience (can NOT be played IRL)
  • Light puzzle hunt

Required Equipment: computer with internet connection, pen and paper

Recommended Team Size: 2-3 per team for experienced players

Play Time: under 30 minutes for experienced teams

Price: To book a private group, contact Accomplice for pricing (think corporate rates). For public bookings (offered occasionally) it’s priced at $25 per person.

Booking: book online for a specific time slot

Description

You enter into a Zoom meeting that delivers a narrative. The call abruptly self destructs after less than 10 minutes and it is up to you and your team to solve the mysteries laid before you in order to win the game before your competitors do.

At the conclusion of the setup, you have to self-divide into your own teams, spin up video chats, and race through a series of puzzles.

Many of the puzzles are solved via typing in your team name and a code phrase.

Dead wifi, level one unlock.

Hivemind Review Scale

Enigmarium – Sensperience [Hivemind Review]

Sensperience is an audio game created by Enigmarium in Slovenia.

In-game: A completely black image with nothing visible.
First person view

Format

Style of Play:

  • Adaptation of an in-person game (can be played IRL)
  • Audio game

Required Equipment: computer with internet connection, blindfold or sleep mask, headphones

Recommended Team Size: 3-5

Play Time: 90 minutes

Price: €90 per team

Booking: book online for a specific time slot

Description

Sensperience was an audio-only experience akin to tabletop roleplaying. Our host told us about our environment, we spoke our actions into existence, and the host explained what happened as a result. Accompanying voice performance and audio effects added to the immersion.

In this experience we were each playing as ourself, and the host referred to each of us by name.

The recommended blindfold and headphones significantly added to the immersion and overall experience.

Hivemind Review Scale

Clue HQ – The Warp Core Part 2 [Hivemind Review]

The Warp Core Part 2 is a point-and-click game in Telescape, created by Clue HQ in the UK.

The Warp Core title screen.

Format

Style of Play:

  • Adaptation of an in-person game (can be played IRL)
  • Play on-demand
  • Web-based inventory system
  • Point-and-click
  • Video-based experience

Required Equipment: computer with internet connection

Recommended Team Size: 2-4

Play Time: 60 minutes

Price: £15

Booking: purchase and play at your leisure

Description

You get a Telescape page with a video introduction and 360-degree photos to move around in, click and drag things, and solve the puzzles. It looks like their real-life rooms, but the puzzles are mostly a bit altered.

In Warp Core, we are time travelers and need to bring back 4 artifacts. This review covers part 2 out of 4. Each part brings you to a different historical period and part 2 part brought us to medieval times. You can play part 2, without having played part 1.

The time machine's interior as viewed through Telescape.

Hivemind Review Scale