“In criticism I will be bold, and as sternly, absolutely just with friend and foe. From this purpose nothing shall turn me.”
Location: New York, New York
Date played: October 11, 2015
Team size: up to 10; we recommend 4-6
Price: $28 per ticket
Theme & story
Riffing on the works of Edgar Allen Poe, the Chamber of Dreams leaned heavily on language and visuals as we worked our way through a room divided into past, present, and future sections.
The story was abstract. It was easy to tell that there was a story; it was considerably more difficult to understand that story and why it mattered.
In an effort to make their games fully secular, 59:59 Room Escape NYC recently redesigned their Escape From the Christmas Ghost game based on Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol into an Edgar Allen Poe themed game.
While I don’t know much more about the old version of this game, I do know that they maintained the past, present, and future layouts.
We recently played a game based on Ernest Hemingway that was basically devoid of word or language puzzles and heavy on math. It was a game about a literary icon that forgot that it was about a writer. Chamber of Dreams did not fall into this trap. It was heavy on word puzzles, which made a lot of sense.
Poe basically created the mystery genre, but there wasn’t much mystery… Nor did the game elicit the macabre that Poe is so famous for.
59:59 Room Escape NYC also used locks in a very clever way that we hadn’t seen before… The downside here was that there were a ton of locks.
Chamber of Dreams occasionally suffered from confounding design as there were a few puzzles that were very out of place, and one puzzle that spilled out between the past and present in a particularly confusing manner.
Ultimately, Chamber of Dreams felt like a work in progress, not a finished product.
Future – Should I play 59:59 Room Escape NYC’s Chamber of Dreams?
59:59 Room Escape NYC’s Kickstarter (of which we were backers) put a heavy emphasis on the beauty of their rooms. 59:59 clearly made an attempt to live up to this promise, but fell far short of the bar set by many of the escape games in New York City.
The three rooms that 59:59 offers are the first games they have produced. Chamber of Dreams isn’t a bad room for a first attempt, but there is a lot of opportunity for growth in storytelling, puzzle design, and overall quality of execution.
That being said, we still had fun and escaped having solved a number of puzzles we hadn’t encountered.
Book your hour with 59:59 Room Escape NYC’s Chamber of Dreams, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.