Enigma – Mission Enigma [Review]

3 floors of adventure.

Location: Budapest, Hungary

Date played: August 27, 2017

Team size: 2-6; we recommend 3-4

Duration: 90 minutes

Price: 15,000 HUF ($58) per team

Story & setting

Our team of highly trained thieves was breaking into a facility to steal a mysterious object known as Enigma (no, not that Enigma).

In-game: A rope chained a locked in a maze along the ceiling. A world map in the background.

Staged within a 3-story home in a residential neighborhood, Mission Enigma was a heist adventure where we had to improvise our way through the building’s security, steal our objective, and escape with it. The set design was spotty. Some portions looked intriguing, while others simply looked like part of the old building. Some portions were old in an interesting way; others just looked rundown.

Puzzles

Most of the puzzles were deeply integrated into the environment and facilitated the large-scale adventure of Mission Enigma. One segment of the room escape shifted focus to the more traditional search-and-puzzle escape room design.

Standouts

Mission Enigma integrated mental and physical challenges into an engaging adventure. The completion of this adventure – after having finished everything that the 3-story space had to offer – felt like a true accomplishment.

Engima manipulated the gamespace into some exciting and surprising reveals. This was done mechanically, through simple custom-built machines. They created intrigue in what could easily have been an expansive and uninteresting space.

We enjoyed the puzzling in this escape room’s opening set.

When an alarm triggered due to a misstep, it had consequences.

The final act was exhilarating.

Shortcomings

Mission Enigma would benefit from more puzzle gating. It was easy to attempt to move ahead before we’d acquired all the pieces necessary for additional forward progress.

Since Mission Enigma was primarily focused on physical and mental puzzling, the occasional and random searching tasks felt out of place. In a large set where most game elements were presented, searching felt like pixel hunting.

It’s hard to recommend a team size for Mission Engima. In the first half of the experience, the space was too expansive for a team of only 2 players (but we made it work). We spent just as much time traversing it as solving puzzles. Near the end, however, this room escape bottlenecked such that only 1 or 2 players could actively participate at a time. Since these were the types of interactions that necessitate building mastery, it wouldn’t benefit the team to “give someone else a turn to try.”

I came out of Mission Enigma rather banged up.

At 90 minutes in length, Mission Enigma was large but still felt like it could have used another challenge or two.

Should I play Enigma’s Mission Enigma?

The grand scale of Mission Enigma’s gamespace and the breadth of challenges within it – cerebral, physical, mechanical, spatial, and others – made this escape room a formidable opponent. Although we weren’t pressed for time at the end, mission completion truly felt like a triumph. The victory felt earned.

Mission Enigma captured excitement and adventure through puzzling. With a little additional attention to gameflow and set aesthetics and polish, Enigma could take this escape room just a bit further.

Both new players and experienced players alike will likely enjoy Mission Enigma. Work together where you can and be patient where you can’t.

Note that this escape room involved traversing full flights of stairs. Additionally, one teammate needs to be fairly agile.

Book your hour with Enigma’s Mission Enigma, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

Full disclosure: Enigma provided media discounted tickets for this game.

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