I no longer know what’s real.
Location: Bunschoten-Spakenburg, The Netherlands
Date Played: May 9, 2019
Team size: 4-6; we recommend 4
Duration: 60 minutes
Price: € 144 per team Mon-Thur, € 165 per team Fri-Sun
Emergency Exit Rating: [A] Push To Exit
Physical Restraints: [A+] No Physical Restraints
The Dome was something special. It was an escape room designed to feel like a hallucination… and through the magic of design and technology, it achieved it.
We loved the gameplay, the puzzles, and all of the magical things that happened along the way.
The Dome wasn’t perfect. The story was really interesting, but I’d be lying if I said that we completely grasped what was going on while we were playing. Also, one of the coolest bits of tech didn’t push the right buttons for us.
Flaws are fine. They’re humanizing.
The Dome was the kind of escape room that’s worth traveling for. If you’re near Amsterdam it’s certainly worth the trek out of the city. This game was in rare company.
Who is this for?
- Adventure seekers
- Story seekers
- Puzzle lovers
- Scenery snobs
- Sci-fi fans
- Players with at least some experience
- It feels like a hallucination; it’s unreal
- Engaging puzzles and challenges
- Magnificent set design
- Some of the most impressive escape room tech we’ve ever seen
We’d entered a futuristic facility that had been conducting a study using hallucinogens. We were unsure of what to expect, but we’d been told that a previous test subject named Hector Franssen had escaped the facility… and that we would likely lose our grip on reality while in the experiment.
We entered into a blue, glowing sci-fi set. It was a sleek series of corridors and challenge chambers. It was gorgeous. We quickly got lost in the experience.
I’m at a loss for a way to convey where the game took us without damaging the experience. The level of detail never wavered. We were fully and completely in the world of The Dome.
The first full minute of this trailer was shot in-game:
Escape Room Nederland’s The Dome was a standard escape room with a moderate level of difficulty.
Core gameplay revolved around observing, making connections, puzzling, and adventuring.
➕ The Dome was all about discovery. At any given point we had no idea what might come next. This created a magical sense of adventure.
➕ The gamespace opened up… and continued to do so. It was huge, detailed, and amazing.
➕ The gameplay had a smooth difficulty curve. It ramped up slowly, teaching us how to interact with the environment. It then became increasingly more challenging through a diverse array of puzzles. The difficulty dropped off in the end, however, pushing our momentum forward to the conclusion.
➕ As we played through The Dome, we completed a series of tests. As the game revved up and morphed, it stopped feeling like a series of tests and more like a string of hallucinations. We were completely lost in the game world.
➖ Playing The Dome, we couldn’t quite follow the story. Escape Room Nederland explained it clearly after the fact, and looking back it made sense, as much sense as hallucinations do, but as we escaped The Dome we wished for just a bit more clarity on what had just taken place, narratively.
➕ Many of the interactions in The Dome were enormous. Everything in this game had layers.
➕ The puzzles in The Dome varied enormously, requiring largely different skill sets to complete. Our favorite puzzle shed light on the kind of design that made this experience beautiful.
➖ One amazingly cool segment overstayed its welcome. This was admittedly one of the coolest innovations in The Dome and my inner 5-year-old loved that it existed. From a gameplay standpoint, however, we found it more frustrating than energizing.
➕ The Dome creatively played with the concept of success and failure.
➕ The Dome excelled at transitions. These were some of the most dramatic and captivating moments of the experience.
➕ There was a ton of technology within The Dome, but it never felt like tech… it felt like magic.
Tips For Visiting
- They have games in the lobby.
- Leave time after your game to watch the highlight reel.
- Minimum age is 18.
- There is a parking lot.
- You need to be able to walk up stairs and climb a little bit to play this game.
Book your hour with Escape Room Nederland’s The Dome, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.
Disclosure: Escape Room Nederland comped our tickets for this game.