8 San Antonio Escape Room Conference Talks That We’re Interested In

Every year we’re asked about the talks that we’re interested in attending at any given escape room conference.

A few notes before we dive in…

  • For a talk to make this list we’ve got to be really excited about both the speaker and the subject.
  • We’re skipping all of the introductory escape room/ business/ marketing stuff (sorry Benito). If you need the 101, then that’s what you should go to.
  • We know of most of these speakers, but not all. There are probably some gems that we’re unaware of.
Room Escape Conference & Tour logo, an abstract head with a maze, keyhole, and clock.

Presented in date order:


1. Playtesting: The Right Way to Get the Most Out of Your Idea!


Raymond Reint was supposed to be on our innovation panel at Up The Game this year, but that got screwed up by a scheduling SNAFU. Raymond has a diverse game design background and I’d be eager to hear what he has to say… if I wasn’t scheduled to speak at the same time that he is.

2. Safety Panel: The Biggest Threat to the Escape Room Industry


Yes, I’m on this panel. Yes, I think that this is the absolute most pressing issue to discuss in the escape room industry in 2019. Yes, I think you should come.

3. Welcome to the Game Industry: Now Act Like It! (Design Better Games and Puzzles)


Shawn Fischtein of Escape Games Canada is always an interesting speaker. Even when I disagree with him, I find his message worth thinking about.


4. Make it Memorable: Dramatic Structure in Escape Games


Haley Cooper of Strange Bird Immersive is the only owner/ blogger that I follow habitually. There are few in this industry as artistic, articulate, and giving of their knowledge as Haley. This is one of the talks that Lisa and I will not miss.

And… for what it’s worth, it’s a bummer that this talk is counter-programmed against Kayden Ressel of THE BASEMENT’s presentation, Building Effective Ad Campaigns for Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat. We’ll have to send someone to Kayden’s talk.

5. Lighting and Automation: Shining the Light on Efficiency!


Cameron Cooper of Strange Bird Immersive is like Haley… but quieter and doesn’t get the same attention. (Lisa might be able to relate.) He’s brilliant and he’s speaking on a subject that I’d like to learn more about on a practical level. This is a must-see for me.


6. The State of the Escape Room Industry

8AM – Free

This one is us. You should come. The talk will be well researched, rational, and reasonably humorous.

7. Narrative: You’re Doing it Wrong!


Hatch Escape Rooms is on the short list of escape room companies that are diving into the deep end of narrative gameplay. I do not know if I’ll be able to step off stage and into this session, but I’m going to try.

8. TEST SUBJECTS: What Have We Learned


We had a lengthy conversation with Bizzaro, Greg, and Krystal at Transworld in St. Louis earlier this year. I’m curious to see what their talk is like. If it’s half as interesting as our dialog, then it should be well worth the time.

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