Houdini’s Room Escape – Game Room [Review]

Puzzles from games.

Location:  Cincinnati, Ohio

Date Played:  December 28, 2018

Team size: 2-14; we recommend 3-6

Duration: 60 minutes

Price: $28 per player

Ticketing: Public

Emergency Exit: Yes

REA Reaction

Game Room was a solid puzzle room with a lot of content.

It felt like a game from an earlier era of escape rooms – and it was – where the puzzle content was affixed to the setting rather than integrated within it.

That said, it was approachable and generally flowed well.

If you’re new to escape rooms, Game Room would be great introduction to the concept. For the more experienced players, it won’t be a novel experience, but it was still a fun playthrough.

In-game: An old parlor with large antique furniture, deep red walls, and large framed paintings.

Who is this for?

  • Puzzle lovers
  • Any experience level

Why play?

  •  Accessible puzzle game with a lot of content
  • Cozy environment

Story

The great Harry Houdini was seeking an apprentice, but only the cleverest of applicants could earn the position.

We entered Houdini’s test and had to solve our way to finding his favorite props in order to earn his approval.

In-game: closeup of a cigar humidor.

Setting

Game Room was staged in a red living room and office with antique-style furnishings. There were some large and elegant set pieces.

The space felt regal. There were, however, gaps in the design, such as a fireplace that lacked detail and felt unfinished.

In-game: A large couch in the parlor.

Gameplay

Houdini’s Room Escape’s Game Room was a standard escape room with a moderate level of difficulty.

Core gameplay revolved around searching and puzzling.

Analysis

➕ Game Room offered a lot of puzzle content in an approachable way. Game Room flowed well. It pleasantly rolled along, from puzzle to puzzle, with plenty for everyone to work on.

➖ Some of the puzzles could have benefited from additional cluing. One in particular felt like a throwaway that players will see immediately or never see, dropped in entirely without clue structure. Another puzzle required outside knowledge, without which this puzzle could only be solved with substantial hinting.

➕ The period-esque parlor with heavy wooden furniture and a deep red hue was a comfortable setting. It added ambiance to the puzzle game. We especially enjoyed the thematic embellishment to the TV monitor hinting.

➖ The gameplay felt bolted on amidst the old furniture and solid set pieces. Houdini’s Room Escape filled the room with locked boxes, paper clues, and paper puzzles. Much of this paper was affixed with tape to the boxes or other set pieces. There was room to integrate the puzzle game more seamlessly into the set.

➖ Game Room included multiple locks with similar digit structure, all in play simultaneously. Whenever we derived a code, we needed to try it everywhere, which diminished the momentum of the solve.

➕ Houdini’s Room Escape had at least one nifty trick hidden up its sleeve. It worked beautifully.

Tips For Visiting

  • There is a parking lot.
  • We recommend La Grassa for nearby Gelato.

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

Disclosure: Houdini’s Room Escape comped our tickets for this game.

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