Shit got dark.
Location: Toronto, Ontario
Date played: May 1, 2016
Team size: they recommend 5-8 and require at least 4; we recommend 4-5
Duration: 60 minutes
Price: $28 per ticket
Story & setting
“You may know nothing about this mission. You either do it or have it remain a mystery. WARNING: EXTREME CONTENT, 18+ ONLY Not recommended for those with heart conditions.”
Escape Games Canada makes a big deal about keeping this game a secret. Even after watching the introduction video, we didn’t really know what was about to happen.
We won’t give you the scenario, but there was a story and an
beautifully intricately designed, immersive set to convey the story. From the start, the story and set were cleverly intertwined.
There are only two ways to read a mysterious “18+ only” interactive experience… and this was not a sexually themed game. So, at this risk of pissing off the good people at Escape Games Canada, I have to explain that this is a horror game (more on that later).
The puzzles were not the star of this room escape. We had to solve them, but the game was about the immersive experience.
Unlike most escape rooms, it wasn’t the kind of game where you could be truly good at it. There were mechanisms in the experience to slow down or speed up the team’s ability to solve the puzzles, to force us to make the most out of the experience.
The Unknown was dramatic, immersive, and captivating.
Escape Games Canada used technology brilliantly and paid attention to almost every detail.
This experience expanded the range of the industry. It was still an escape room, but it was miles from what we’ve come to expect from a puzzle-driven live action game.
While I respect the lure of the unknown, Escape Games Canada doesn’t explain enough about this game up front to ensure that the right players choose to play it.
The Unknown was polarizing. Many will love it. I did not.
This game was not only an immersive experience and an escape room, it was also like being in a psych experiment. This should be made clear before the game. Escape Games Canada has no way of knowing what messed up experiences their customers have had and should allow them to make a more informed decision about playing this game.
Should I play Escape Games Canada’s The Unknown?
Bluntly, I hated The Unknown, but I appreciated it for what it was (after I left). David would have liked it if I hadn’t been in there, but he knew that I was miserable (even if I tried to hide that fact).
If you like the idea of an immersive horror experience with some puzzles, all designed to completely screw with your psyche, this is your game. It will be incredible.
If you don’t want to experience a horror game, stay away. Really.
Book your hour with Escape Games Canada’s The Unknown, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.