2015 Golden Lock-In Awards

REA Golden Lock-In Badge

We played and reviewed 65 rooms in 2015

These 10 rooms are the games that we wish we could play again.

There is no perfect game, but these are the ones that still make us smile long after we escaped or, in one instance, failed in the attempt.

That isn’t to say the 55 other games we played were bad; many of them were great too.


1. We only considered games that we personally played in 2015.

2. We both had to agree to add the room to the list.

3. There was no minimum or maximum number of rooms that had to appear on the list. (It’s a coincidence that the number is 10).

4. Each company could only have one game on the list. (Note that two companies have merged since we played, giving one company two games on this list. However, the games were designed and originally executed completely independently of each other.)

2015 Golden Lock-In Winners

Listed chronologically in the order in which we played them.

Spark of Resistance

60 Minutes to Escape – Portland, Oregon

No other room escape conveyed a narrative like Spark of Resistance. No other room defeated us so thoroughly.

The Dig

Escape the Room Philly – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

It started as a free pop-up game promoting a television show, and grew into a permanent immersive adventure.

Outer Space

Escape Games NYC – New York, New York

It was the most beautiful game we set foot in.

Manhattan Mayhem

Escape Entertainment – New York, New York

So clever and so fun, this was the first room escape that we would call “abstract art.”

Mutiny at the Hour

The Crux Escape Rooms – St. Catharines, Ontario

We never stopped smiling on this nutty pirate ship adventure.

The Chamber

Escape The Place – Colorado Springs, Colorado

We played head-to-head, solving a giant puzzle cube akin to the video game The Room.

Saint Angelo’s Castle

Komnata Quest, Long Island City – Queens, New York

It had the most intense, ominous set design.


Mission Escape Games – New York, New York

We can’t fully separate the game from the start of a proposal. This will always be a special game… Plus, it’s an awesome space station.

The Wizard’s Apothecary: The Power of the Rings

Escape Room Live Alexandria – Alexandria, Virginia

Every element was magical, fun, and clever. Even their hinting system was incredible.

Dungeon of Elements

Mission Escape Games, Queens (formerly Enigma NYC) – Queens, New York

Massive, physically interactive set pieces brought the Dungeon to life on an immense scale (especially for New York City).

If I’ve played all of these game, what next?

The RoomEscapeArtist.com 2016 Golden Lock-In Awards will be published in December 2016. Want to be the first to know? Subscribe today.


  1. Hi there, would you say that Spark of Resistance is the best room in Portland? I have some mixed reviews for that room and I’m trying to decide whether I can fit it in.

    1. Spark of Resistance was the first game that we played that blew us away. This was in January of 2015. At over 2 years old, any game ages (this is why we put the date we played the game in all of our reviews).

      At the moment, I cannot tell you the top games in Portland (although we will be playing there in a couple of months).

      What I can say is that Spark was amazing when it opened, and it’s probably still a fun game, but will it stack up against a great game produced in 2017? Likely not. Age is a big factor in this young and fast moving industry.

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