Update 7/4/23: If you enjoy 5 Wits we hope you’ll check out our interview with CEO Matthew DuPlessie on The Reality Escape Pod.
From start to finish, this is 5 Wits’ best creation.
Location: Syracuse, New York
Date played: August 31, 2015
Team size: 2-15; we recommend 4-6
Duration: 30 minutes
Price: $17.99 per ticket for one adventure, discounted if you play multiple adventures
Theme & story
The game started with a video projected onto a colossal story book; the characters came to life and so did the game. The intro was equal parts impressive and fun.
Drago’s Castle was impeccably themed from our initial interaction with the game through the dramatic conclusion.
Characteristic of 5 Wits’ games, Drago’s Castle was fully interactive. We pulled, pushed, and placed large game elements. As we moved between the rooms of this castle, we unlocked gates, opened imposing doors, and crawled through a passage.
This felt like a real life Zelda game, and based on the wonderful and not-so-subtle Zelda reference, the game designers knew it.
5 Wits designs their games around teamwork, but in this game a few puzzles actually required multiple players. Mostly, more players sped these puzzles along. But in one instance, the additional people participating were an added challenge. I’m confident that anyone of us could have solved the puzzle quickly on our own, but as a group we intellectually tripped over one another. This variety was interesting.
The set design was out of this world. Literally. We were in a castle chasing a beast.
In all seriousness, the rooms and their puzzles were thematically appropriate with awe-inspiring theatrical production value.
As the story reached completion, Drago’s Castle delivered a dramatic climactic moment that wowed us. We were all grinning. Young players might be scared. It was surprisingly exciting.
Escape room genre
Of the four games 5 Wits offers in Syracuse, Drago’s Castle was the most like a traditional escape room.
The puzzles drew on different intelligences – spacial, logical, pattern based, observational – and were of the type found in a more traditional escape room. They were more challenging than many other 5 Wits puzzles, but children will still be able to engage with them.
Through ingenious set design, this game continually reset itself after we completed each puzzle. Half the fun is trying to figure out what’s different for the next team to pass through.
Should I play 5 Wits’ Drago’s Castle?
You have to appreciate the 5 Wits style of game to truly enjoy Drago’s Castle. It was physically interactive and less intellectually challenging than a traditional escape room. It transported us into a fairy tale and the set created the magic.
I recommend Drago’s Castle to families. But I also recommend it to adults; our team of four adults had a great time.
Furthermore, I recommend it to players interested in theatrics and engineering. The production value far exceeded industry standards.
Book your time with 5 Wits’ Drago’s Castle and tell them the Room Escape Artist sent you.
Full disclosure: 5Wits comped our tickets for this game.