E-Scape Rooms – The Alp [Hivemind Review]

The Alp is an online point-and-click game, presented in Telescape, created by E-Scape Rooms in the UK.

A grim medical examiner's office.

Format

Style of Play:

  • Online native experience (can NOT be played IRL)
  • Play on demand
  • Web-based inventory system
  • Point-and-click
  • Includes video segments

Required Equipment: computer with internet connection, pen and paper, scissors

Recommended Team Size: 2-4

Play Time: about 60 minutes

Price: 14.99 GBP for up to 12 players

Booking: purchase and play at your leisure

Description

You are trying to help the narrator escape a series of bad dreams that have had dire effects on his life thus far.

You use a Telescape interface that provides a 360-degree view of an environment with interactive hotspots that reveal more information, inventory items, and/ or mechanisms for entering codes. After you escape each “room,” you earn another video clip that furthers the story.

If you’re playing remotely with others, you’ll need a communication solution to chat with your teammates.

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.

Matthew Stein’s Reaction

Rating: 2 out of 3.

The Alp is a solid horror game, full of kitschy narrative tropes and some genuinely spooky moments. The game is well produced in Telescape with fairly attractive 3D environments and nice voiceovers. I’m not the biggest fan of the gameplay style, which is similar to that of early online point-and-click escape rooms: recognizing and copying patterns/ sequences hidden throughout the environment which visually fit the theme but functionally make no sense in the story. That said, this puzzle flow was clear and clean, and it felt nicely nostalgic. One major translation error almost caused us to spoil our playthrough: the screen labeled “clues” in the Telescape inventory is actually the “hint” system!

Theresa W’s Reaction

Rating: 2 out of 3.

The Alp was a really unique take on a point-and-click adventure, implemented via Telescape. For the first time in a digital game, I genuinely regretted playing this before bed – the story, videos, and visuals were designed to creep you out. The addition of video and audio tracks to portray the story between chapters heightened the experience. The puzzles were somewhat unmemorable and lacked significant aha moments, but the game was fun overall in the moment. If you want to be freaked out, and are in it for the story, this game is for you!

Andrew Reynolds’ Reaction

Rating: 3 out of 3.

The Alp did something that no other online game I’ve played so far was able to: make me feel truly creeped out. That feeling didn’t persist throughout the whole game, but I was impressed because I do not scare easily. This game was an impressively well put together implementation of Telescape. I’m no designer, but it looks like a good amount of work went into making the rooms have a menacing vibe.

I very much appreciated the cutscenes that would play for everyone when a lock was opened. In a room like this that has a lot of parallel puzzle paths, it really helped in keeping track of progress and knowing what locks had been opened. The puzzles themselves went back and forth between standard escape room-style puzzles that would be at home regardless of theming and puzzles that really fit the atmosphere and the narrative. Overall, the effect was a short but fun game with an interesting narrative and a surprisingly unsettling emotional effect.

Cindi S’ Reaction

Rating: 2 out of 3.

The Alp is a horror-themed point-and-click game that involves a demon from German folklore, called an alp, that causes horrific nightmares. I liked the videos interspersed with the puzzles, as they explained the story and created an overall creepy feel to the game. The puzzles, while fun to solve, didn’t really fit the theme or add to the narrative. They were of varied levels of complexity and several were math-based. I used the hints once for a complex puzzle, and they were very helpful and did not give the answer right away. Overall the game was interesting, but due to the horror theme and certain images, I wouldn’t recommend it for young children.

Sarah Mendez’s Reaction

Rating: 2 out of 3.

This was my first avatar-less Telescape game, and I discovered that I quite enjoy independently exploring a world in Telescape’s mixture of point-and-click environments and video interludes. This game made fine use of the medium, so I enjoyed it. We were trying to help the narrator escape a series of potentially lethal nightmares, and I enjoyed “unlocking” new parts of this narrative by completing sets of puzzles. That construction gave the game a genuine sense of progression, which is fortunate because the puzzles themselves barely connected to the story beyond their generic creepiness factor. Difficulty-wise, some puzzles were quite easy, some required a single stroke of random inspiration, some lacked sufficient cluing to avoid a bit of trial and error, and some leveraged a significant number of connections. Overall, they were fun enough, but the highlight of the game for me was the ending of the story rather than any puzzle. Had I had more experience with this format, I imagine this game may have seemed fairly average, but it’s certainly solid enough to consider the next time you’re stumped for something to do.

Disclosure: E-Scape Rooms provided the Hivemind reviewers with a complimentary play.

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