Cluetivity – The Pegasus Project [Hivemind Review]

The Pegasus Project is a point-and-click adventure game created by Cluetivity and presented to us by Escape SF in San Francisco, CA.

Video of a PPE-covered person over a bodybag.

Format

Style of Play: point-and-click adventure game

Required Equipment: computer with internet connection

This game cannot be played on a mobile device.

Recommended Team Size: 1-4

Play Time: Listed as 90-120 minutes to complete, but there’s no time limit. Our team of reviewers solved much more quickly.

Price: This game is sold by more than a dozen different companies and their pricing varies enormously. From Escape SF, it costs $39 per team.

Booking: purchase the game and play at your leisure

Description

Using a website interface with some “hacking tools,” videos, and various 3D views, we explored and solved puzzles. The challenges largely revolved around finding information within the game.

Hivemind Review Scale

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

Read more about our Hivemind Review format.

Theresa W’s Reaction

Rating: 1 out of 3.

Don’t get me wrong — The Pegasus Project was a cute and fun digital game built entirely on a web interface. The puzzles were hit or miss, some better than others. The varied platforms and tools used added some depth to the gameplay. Some parts got tedious, but this was an overall pleasant experience.

My biggest issue with this game is that the multiple companies running it (my last count was 14 different companies around the world) are charging vastly different amounts per play (prices ranging from $15 USD per team to $80 USD per team). I can recommend this game on the lower end of the price point, but the varied offerings really confuse me and turn me away from wanting to play, since the experience is identical.

Matthew Stein’s Reaction

Rating: 1 out of 3.

The “super enhanced cybernetic cats” promised in this game sadly made only a brief and trivial appearance, which is quite a missed opportunity; more cybernetic cats surely would have spiced up this fairly unassuming experience. The game itself is fine and at times fun, but Escape SF’s specs for the game seem wildly miscalibrated. Our experienced team finished in 30 minutes, and I can’t imagine most teams taking more than an hour, a far cry from the prescribed 90-120 minutes. And the difficulty is somewhere in the beginner spectrum, not “hard” as listed.

My biggest problem, however, is the lack of attribution: the game is licensed from Cluetivity, and some quick Google searches reveal that it’s available for different prices, both lower and higher, from other escape room companies globally. While this approach to setting prices for franchised games based on local economies makes sense when playing in-person, it honestly feels like a scam for unhosted digital games which are identical experiences regardless of where you play them or from whom you buy them.

Pegasus Project Mission hub has documents, floorplans, videos, tools, and links for selection.

Brett Kuehner’s Reaction

Rating: 2 out of 3.
  • + Clear goals were given for each step
  • +/- Interface was largely clean and functional, though chatbot simulator was a little tedious at times
  • + Matterport scans of real building interiors looked good and had nice detail
  • – Finding things in the virtual space was made harder by the clunky navigation interface
  • – Many puzzles were a bit too simple, requiring mostly searching and only small “aha” moments
  • + Some of the small background details were pleasing (Hanayama metal puzzles on a desk, real hacking apps in videos), even though not important to the game
  • +/- Story was adequate, but not especially compelling
  • + Some humorous Easter eggs were scattered throughout
  • – Decoder tool produced an incorrect result at one point due to its use of random chance
  • – Many companies offer the same exact game, at widely varying price points
In-game NMAP Scan listing old versions of Windows.

David Spira’s Reaction

Rating: 1 out of 3.

The Pegasus Project was a mixed bag. The video and most of the tech were fairly well produced, and the gameplay was functional. The nuts and bolts were fine. My issues with The Pegasus Project were threefold:

First, the story felt too much like a conspiracy theory twist on 2020, and I don’t need that noise in my recreational time. While there were playful elements to the narrative, the broader story was devoid of joy. I honestly wish that some of the jokes in this game were expanded into full games.

Second, the gameplay was boring. It was more or less a scavenger hunt in a digital space… and that really didn’t do it for me.

One final thought about Cluetivity’s business model: These games are being sold by individual escape room companies who are essentially competing with one another on price… and it’s just a bad idea. It’s not fair to the companies who operate on different currencies and with different tax structures and costs of living. It’s certainly not fair to consumers who either have to overpay, get lucky, or go price hunting. They should establish a price, mandate it, and then pay out appropriate commissions to the companies that make the sale. This current system is ridiculous.

Disclosure: Escape SF provided the Hivemind reviewers with a complimentary play.

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