Location: West Nyack, NY
Date played: November 20, 2016
Team size: 2-15; we recommend 4-6
Duration: 30 minutes per game
Price: $17.99 per ticket for one adventure, discounted if you play multiple adventures
What’s 5 Wits?
Founded in 2004, 5 Wits has offered incredible immersive puzzle adventures with Disney-level production value since long before escape rooms popped up in Budapest and Tokyo.
We reviewed four of their games in 2015 and loved them. They weren’t quite escape rooms, and the folks from 5 Wits would be the first to tell you that, but the core concept of puzzling through a timed adventure absolutely overlapped.
Located in the Palisades Mall, the West Nyack 5 Wits facility has three of the four games offered at their Syracuse location. We reviewed all of these in 2015 and we’re standing behind those reviews (even though they are in our older style), while adding a few additional notes specific to the experiences we had in West Nyack.
The Tomb in West Nyack had an updated middle section. That segment of the game had a completely different set of challenges from the ones offered in Syracuse. As great as the Syracuse game was, the new one was leaps and bounds better.
When we played Deep Space in Syracuse, it had just opened and we encountered some bugs in the gameplay. None of those bugs was present during our playthrough in West Nyack. It was an impressive sci-fi adventure oozing with pop culture references and a few honest challenges.
Deep Space had a puzzle in it that was a riff on a classic video game. When we played Deep Space in Syracuse, we were a group of adults. This time, however, we brought friends and their pre-teen daughters. During this playthrough, we noticed that while that particular interaction design was intuitive to adults, the girls were baffled by that portion of the game.
Drago’s Castle remained our favorite of the 5 Wits games; I may have liked it even more on the second playthrough. To the best of my memory, it was identical to the game we played in Syracuse and I cannot possibly recommend it more highly.
Should I visit 5 Wits in West Nyack, NY?
Whether you’re visiting Syracuse, West Nyack, or Albany (the games in Albany were produced in tandem with those in West Nyack), 5 Wits is worth a few hours’ visit.
Each game offered an immersive experience with beautiful set design, compelling puzzles, and mind-boggling automation.
If you have adventurous kids about 8-12 years old, it’s a must visit.
If you’re an escape room enthusiast who loves brilliant tech and scenery, it’s a must visit.
If you’re an escape room owner or potential owner, you need to visit 5 Wits. You’ll feel like you’re looking at the future. Then you’ll realize that they have been doing this for years.
Book your sessions with 5 Wits and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.
Full disclosure: 5 Wits comped our tickets for these games.