The Crux Escape Rooms – The Clinic [Review]

The puzzle clinic.

Location: Niagara Falls, Ontario

Date Played: September 2, 2018

Team size: 2-6; we recommend 3-4

Duration: 50 minutes

Price: $25 per ticket

Ticketing: Private

REA Reaction

With The Clinic, The Crux Escape Rooms has delivered another amusing, puzzle-focused escape room. The Clinic put their own spin on “medical lab” and it was a light-hearted take that invigorated the theme.

The Crux Escape Rooms built The Clinic on a low budget, but it didn’t show. They stayed true to their aesthetic vision, hiding the puzzles, refining the flow, and writing in little winks and nods to their other games (and escape rooms in general). Although the conclusion could have been more dramatic, The Clinic was an impressively entertaining puzzle-centric escape room.

If you only have time for one escape room at The Crux Escape Rooms, we have a deep love of Dead Air. That said, if you’re in the area, we highly recommend making time to play their full complement of games, especially the Clinic. It’s fantastic.

The "Herring Clinic" logo, it's a red pill with an "H" on it.

Who is this for?

  • Puzzle lovers
  • Any experience level
  • Escape room players*

Why play?

  • Interesting puzzles
  • Amusing tidbits

Story

We had volunteered as test subjects at The Clinic. We needed to solve our way out of this experiment.

In-game: The door for the Herring Clinc's office of Katrina Herring.

Setting

This medical waiting room had a large receptionist’s desk on one side and a semicircle of waiting room chairs on the other. There were plants, wall hangings, and pharmaceutical advertisements.

It was a convincing clinical environment. As the game progressed, we experienced other equally convincing medical environments.

In-game: the clinic's waiting room. It looks like a convincing medical waiting room.

Gameplay

The Crux Escape Rooms’ The Clinic was a standard escape room with a moderate level of difficulty.

Core gameplay revolved around searching, observing, making connections, and puzzling.

*While the gameplay would be approachable and entertaining for players of any experience level, players with experience in escape rooms will appreciate additional nuance in The Clinic.

In-game: A poster that reads, "4 out of 5 doctors recommend you exercise your brain daily."

Analysis

+ Behind The Clinic’s bland facade, it was incredibly amusing. When we looked closely, we found lots of puns and jokes. The background music also set a playful tone. These details enlivened an otherwise easily stale theme.

+ The Crux Escape Rooms locked a lot of drawers in this escape room with standard combination locks. They did this, however, without defacing their aesthetic with an abundance of locks. It was a small detail that added a lot to the look and feel of the space.

+ The opening act flowed really well. The puzzles worked so well with the gamespace.

– The momentum waned in the second act. With different puzzle paths crossing in a small space, the flow wasn’t as clean.

– The conclusion needed more drama.

+ We had to earn our solves in The Clinic. The puzzles were generally challenging, layered, and interesting.

Tips for Visiting

  • There is a parking lot.
  • The Crux Escape Rooms is also a board game cafe.

Book your hour with The Crux Escape Rooms’ The Clinic, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

Disclosure: The Crux Escape Rooms provided media discounted tickets for this game.

2 thoughts on “The Crux Escape Rooms – The Clinic [Review]

  1. Hmmm…I see the word “Herring” is a certain color. I’m glad to read there weren’t any other red herrings in the place.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.