Portland Escape Rooms – Madame Neptune’s Voodoo Curse [Review]

The devil went down to Louisiana and he was looking for a soul to steal.

Location: Beaverton, Oregon

Date played: May 21, 2017

Team size: 2-6; we recommend 3-5

Duration: 60 minutes

Price: $30 per ticket

Story & setting

We visited a fortune-teller and received some dire news: we were cursed and needed to remove the curse or face our doom.

Set within Madame Neptune’s bayou-based fortune telling establishment, the room looked dark and magical. If the fleur-de-lis didn’t fully sell the notion that we were in Louisiana… Madame Neptune’s accent and presence certainly did.

In-game: The sign for Madame Neptune's Fortune Telling Emporium. Through a window below it a throne of skulls sits in the background.

Puzzles

With a few exceptions, Madame Neptune’s Voodoo Curse was woven into the set and theme. The puzzles themselves were a fairly standard mix of escape room challenges; the twist was in their presentation.

Standouts

The actor’s presence was delightful, well used, and felt right in the room escape.

The set, lighting, and sound all worked well to create a compelling and entertaining environment.

A lot of the puzzling felt at home within the story and set.

In-game: A metal platter with a crystal ball surrounded by Madame Neptune's Voodoo Curse cards.

Madame Neptune’s Voodoo Curse began with a tarot reading from none other than Madame Neptune and her bayou accent. It was an awesome way to start the experience.

Shortcomings

The choice of deck for the tarot reading seemed strange and hokey. With a cartoonish look and the game’s logo on the back, the cards didn’t fit with the rest of the room escape’s vibe. This may have been done to counter the superstitions of some players, but for me, it simply felt odd.

One particular puzzle was simple yet laborious. I understand why it was there, and it was clever, but given the time commitment it took to work through it, I could have done without it.

I wish that there was just a little more game and that a few more of the puzzles really played with the magic and mystery of the story and setting.

Should I play Portland Escape Rooms’ Madame Neptune’s Voodoo Curse?

Madame Neptune’s Voodoo Curse was a prime example of the elevating effects that light, set, sound, and commitment to theme can have on an escape room. By maintaining a high attention to detail, Portland Escape Rooms made a truly memorable game that will be approachable for newbies, and compelling enough that experienced players will enjoy it.

While Madame Neptune’s Voodoo Curse was not scary, I wouldn’t bring nervous kids along. There are a few dark moments (which are optional for at least some players) and a handful of appropriately creepy props.

My biggest gripe was that I wanted more of what Portland Escape Rooms was serving up… so consider that a strong endorsement.

Book your hour with Portland Escape Rooms’ Madame Neptune’s Voodoo Curse, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

Full disclosure: Portland Escape Rooms provided media discounted tickets for this game.

Leave a Reply