Mystery Mansion Regina – Sleepy Man [Hivemind Review]

Sleepy Man is an avatar-led, livestreamed escape room, created by Mystery Mansion Regina in Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada. It is the final installment of an online escape room trilogy.

Dark screen reads, "Enter my nightmare. I am waiting to devour you."

Format

Style of Play:

  • Online native experience (can NOT be played IRL)
  • Avatar controlled by the players
  • Web-based inventory system
  • Includes video segments
  • Interactive NPCs

Required Equipment: computer with internet connection

If you can have a full monitor for Zoom and a full monitor for Telescape that would be ideal for this game. Headphones will also make it even more immersive.

Recommended Team Size: 3-6

Play Time: 90 minutes

Price: $25 CAD + tax per player (4 player minimum)

Booking: book online for a specific time slot

Description

This is a standard avatar-led remote escape room, with Telescape for inventory viewing and interaction. It includes well-produced video segments that further the narrative and provoke amazement.

Sleepy Man concluded a trilogy, so you need to play Night Terrors and D’Vile’s Curio Shoppe first.

Closeup image of an eye.

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.

Richard Burns’ Reaction

Rating: 3 out of 3.

Sleepy Man is the final chapter in a terrific trilogy of online escape rooms from Mystery Mansion Regina. I highly recommend playing Night Terrors and D’Vile’s Curio Shoppe prior to playing Sleepy Man. The story and setting will make much more sense that way.

Sleepy Man does a lot of things right and includes many of the most interesting features of online avatar-led games: clever Telescape puzzles, well done pre-recorded video elements, two different avatar characters, and multiple possible endings. The game also includes an avatar-led aspect that I have never seen before.

This is a story-heavy game that also uses a lot of physical space and demands a lot from the avatars, so much so that I wondered why they had designed an online-only game that will physically exhaust the avatars. However, that design adds so much depth and quality to the experience, and it was much appreciated by our team.

Even as I begin to get weary of online escape rooms, I still get excited when Mystery Mansion announces a new experience and Sleepy Man did not disappoint.

Brett Kuehner’s Reaction

Rating: 3 out of 3.
  • + Set in a real space that is inherently creepy
  • + The story makes good use of the performers
  • + Mixes live and recorded video for spooky magical effects
  • + No combination locks, which is a good decision for a remote game
  • + Host is playful and funny while preserving the ominous feel of the narrative
  • + Multiple possible endings, depending on player actions – choose wisely!
  • – The ending we got didn’t have as much drama as it deserved for capping off a trilogy

Theresa W’s Reaction

Rating: 3 out of 3.

At this point in the development of online games, I had lost almost all hope in playing a game that took an innovative approach to the format. Almost all the games I had played up until this point (with a few exceptions), although lots of fun in the moment, all kind of blurred together, with some memorable avatars and puzzles along the way. Sleepy Man absolutely shocked me, and is going to be a game I remember for a really long time.

The creative liberties Mystery Mansion Regina took in developing a unique multi-avatar experience really shined in so many ways. You could tell that the designers put their hearts into Sleepy Man, and it shows through their acting.

This game was a mishmash of various puzzles and interactions I had seen in other rooms, yet they were completely repurposed and caught me off guard every time. Nothing I expected to happen actually happened, so I quickly had to throw away any preconceptions I had and realize that this experience was even more unique than previously believed.

My only small complaint about the game is that I wish we had lost. The losing conditions seemed to be more entertaining than the true ending, which I wish was more dramatic.

Not many companies will take the leap into designing a game that first-time players can’t play, but seeing a trilogy in the escape room format was incredibly rewarding. The warning on the booking site that this room will not make sense if you haven’t played the two other games in the series (Night Terrors and D’Ville’s Curio Shop) are true. You’d still probably enjoy the room, but will not get as much out of the experience without them.

If you’ve given up on online games because you thought the format would never be unique, give this one a shot. The story truly pays off!

Cara Mandel’s Reaction

Rating: 3 out of 3.

For fans of narrative-heavy escape rooms, this trilogy is a must-do. Though each installment can be played as a stand-alone, I’d recommend playing them in sequential order. The third installment, aptly named Sleepy Man, was ambitious and very enjoyable. It utilized its medium to great effect, integrating live actors in fun and surprising ways. The story is a bit robust so thankfully a recap video was provided prior to playing. Overall, I think Mystery Mansion Regina has proven to be true lovers of this art form and are aiming to elevate it with each new offering. Kudos to the team on another fun entry!

Matthew Stein’s Reaction

Rating: 3 out of 3.

Sleepy Man was an epic conclusion to Mystery Mansion Regina’s online trilogy, continuing the narrative of Night Terrors and D’Vile’s Curio Shoppe. The remote escape room medium is particularly well suited to episodic storytelling; since games are so easily accessible to anyone globally, a “return trip” to play a new chapter requires minimal effort for the player. Sleepy Man courteously provided a pre-game summary of the previous two chapters to get players back up to speed, though I very strongly second their recommendation to have played both those previous games before this one.

This game was pure evil, filled with physically demanding actor movement around a large, multi-room space, mild jump scares, and a creative range of puzzles. Impressively, the game had zero combination locks, instead gating content in various deliciously remote-specific ways. The avatars were full-fledged characters with interesting backstories who were consistently very enjoyable to interact with. To say this game takes advantage of the medium is an understatement.

From when I was first introduced to Mystery Mansion Regina’s games with Night Terrors last September through to now, I’ve been impressed by their genuine commitment to immersive storytelling and player experience. Sleepy Man pays clear homage to Emergency Exit’s The Beast in a most inspiring way – demonstrating that the innovations of The Beast can not just be admired from afar, but also actively engaged with and innovated upon.

Disclosure: Mystery Mansion Regina provided the Hivemind reviewers with a complimentary play.

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