Boss-Play Escape Rooms – The Chocolate Factory [Review]

Let’s rob Wonka!

Location: Oceanside, CA

Date played: December 3, 2017

Team size: 2-10; we recommend 3-4

Duration: 60 minutes

Price: $29 per ticket public booking, $34 per ticket private booking

REA Reaction

Boss-Play Escape Rooms’ homage to Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory was an awesome, family-friendly puzzle game.

The Chocolate Factory had a whimsical set and interactive puzzles referencing key moments of the film. While homemade and at times messy, it turned one of my favorite movies into a charming and playfully escape room.

Who is this for?

  • Puzzle lovers
  • Willy Wonka fans
  • Sugar addicts
  • Oompa Loompas
  • Families
  • Any experience level

Why play?

  • Nostalgia
  • Movie call-backs
  • Interactive puzzles
  • A bright and playful environment

Story

With coveted golden tickets in our hands, we approached the mysterious factory of a hermitic candy maker. Prior to our entry, a rival candyman had offered us a reward to steal a secret recipe while touring the famous facility.

In-game: A Wonka-esque factory with green grass, brick walls, and lollypops growing from the ground.

Setting

We entered a candy land… with oversized lollypops as landscaping in front of a chocolate river. Brightly colored pipes  traversed the set to give the place a factory vibe.

Gameplay

The Chocolate Factory was created in the image of the Gene Wilder Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory. The puzzles, set and gameplay all pulled from the classic film.

The puzzles traversed the larger props and set pieces, requiring us to touch, position, and manipulate these items. The puzzling was hands-on and interactive.

In-game: A wall of fudge made to look like a chocolate waterfall flowing into a river of chocolate.

Standouts

Knowledge of the source material made The Chocolate Factory both predictable and unexpected.

Boss-Play Escape Rooms’ take on that familiar but imaginary space was seriously entertaining. We especially enjoyed the final puzzle sequence and the resulting recreated “magical” effect. Half of the fun was seeing how they would achieve something that we knew was coming.

Boss-Play Escape Rooms surprised us with an innovative transition that threw us for a loop.

The mechanical puzzles in The Chocolate Factory were entertaining to play with and satisfying to solve.

Boss-Play Escape Rooms focused on the details that delivered the magical and playful aesthetic. This especially came through in the larger, deliberately designed and handmade set pieces.

Shortcomings

At times the handmade aesthetic looked too unpolished. That river of chocolate… Let’s just say that it looked more like Augustus Gloop had already digested it.

Boss-Play Escape Rooms could cut some paper from the escape room and better integrate instructions into the set itself.

One set key piece was needlessly messy and distracting to rummage through.

One sour note was a puzzle clued such that we misinterpreted the task as far more challenging than it really was. Not realizing we’d already solved it, we continued to spend an inordinate amount of time on it.

Gameplay stopped at a crucial transition for an experiential interlude. This was an uncomfortable and slow part of the game and the movie it was riffing off of. (Yeah, you know what I’m talking about.) We felt this whole sequence needed substantial editing as we stood there feeling the time tick off of the clock.

Tips for Visiting

  • Boss-Play Escape Rooms is located upstairs, in a plaza with plenty of parking.
  • There are plenty of dining options near Boss-Play Escape Rooms.
  • We did not have to consume any candy in this escape room, but candy was available and appreciated.
  • For peanut allergy sufferers, this escape room was nut-free.

Book your hour with Boss-Play Escape Rooms’ The Chocolate Factory, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

Disclosure: Boss-Play Escape Rooms provided media discounted tickets for this game.

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