Agent November – Virtual X-Caper [Hivemind Review]

Virtual X-Caper is an escape game played digitally through an avatar livestream, created by Agent November in London, United Kingdom.

A man handcuffed to a cabinet. The soles of his shoes read, "HELP ME"

Format

Style of Play: avatar-based livestream of a real room, but designed specifically for online play

Required Equipment: computer with internet connection, and some reviewers also recommend pen and paper

Recommended Team Size: 2-4

Play Time: 60 minutes

Price: £12 per ticket and a private booking option (6 players) for £66

Booking: book online for a specific time slot

Description

This is an avatar-led live playthrough of a low-tech, homemade escape room with a delightful character. It is a fully original game for remote play, but it takes place in the same narrative universe as some of Agent November’s real-life games.

Hivemind Review Scale

REA's hivemind review scale - 3 is recommended anytime, 2 recommended in quarantine, 1 is not recommended.

Read more about our new Hivemind Review format.

Andrew Reynolds’ Reaction

Rating: 3 out of 3.

I’ve already used some of my space here on Room Escape Artist to talk about the benefits of a responsive and engaging gamemaster, so I’ll be kind to my word count and sum up quickly: our gamemaster was captivating and made this experience better.

Virtual X-Caper is a minimalist, tongue-in-cheek escape room built for quarantine. Our team had just about as much fun interacting with the gamemaster and the environment as we did solving the puzzles – and there were quite a few satisfying “Aha!” moments to be had here. The narrative made sense and, as a bonus to anyone who has played them, connected with Agent November’s other games. If you would like to achieve greatness like our team did, I highly recommend giving Virtual X-Caper a try.

Hands holding bars beside a digital keypad.

Matthew Stein’s Reaction

Rating: 3 out of 3.

Agent November’s Virtual X-Caper is a genuinely delightful remote escape room which expertly showcases just how creative, cohesive, comedic, and immersive an experience designed specifically for remote play can be. The game thrives in its self-awareness – of the ways players are reacting to puzzles, perspective, and pacing; of the different value of props and hardware in a remote experience; of nuances in presentation which help justify the players’ presence and actions in the experience and thus lead to a compelling narrative. The whimsy levels remained high throughout – through the avatar’s fabulous acting, various hilarious Easter eggs, and some small touches at the end, which I thought wrapped up the experience perfectly.

Brett Kuehner’s Reaction

Rating: 3 out of 3.
  • + Good premise to explain the remote gameplay
  • + Delightful British spy ambiance
  • + Subtle non-verbal hinting system (or not-so-subtle, when necessary)
  • + Game designer made good decisions about what matters and what doesn’t matter for remote play
  • + Sense of humor permeated all the aspects of the game
  • + Fast-paced endgame kept the energy up to the last moment
  • + Used the available space creatively
  • – Start of game was a little slow-paced
  • – One puzzle using provided maps was a bit confusing
  • + Added something new to the standard post-game wrap-up, quite an achievement

Theresa W’s Reaction

Rating: 3 out of 3.

It’s hard for a game to genuinely make me laugh, and our avatar, Agent November, did so multiple times. For an incredibly low-tech game, this experience blew me away. The avatar is filled with so much personality and truly makes this one of a kind. From start to finish, the game delivered a complete mission including achievements and collectables. The online interface had just enough information to not overwhelm the players during the game, and gave a pre-game briefing of what you were about to experience. I have no complaints about this game — Virtual X-Caper nailed the balance between puzzles, interactions, humor, and excitement for an awesome experience.

Richard Burns’ Reaction

Rating: 3 out of 3.

Virtual X-Caper is a triumph in low-tech design. With each live avatar game I play, I become more convinced that the quality of the experience is determined primarily by the interactions with the in-game character. This game drives that point home. The scenic is almost comically below average. The level of tech used for the puzzles is ingeniously minimal. The sound effects are about as wonderfully simple as you can get. Yet the game is a joy to play because of Agent November himself. The folks behind this game took a tiny office-like space, some undecorated lumber, and whatever odds and ends were at hand, and through creativity and character they created some wonderful entertainment for the world during lockdown. The bonus items and achievements sprinkled into the game add to the low-tech charm of the experience.

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