Escape Room Pittsburgh – Carnegie’$ Million$ [Review]

Use your (Carnegie) Mellon

Location:  Pittsburgh, PA

Date Played: July 4, 2021

Team Size: 2-10; we recommend 3-5

Duration: 60 minutes

Price: $32 per player

Ticketing: Private

Emergency Exit Rating: [A] Push To Exit

Physical Restraints: [A+] No Physical Restraints

REA Reaction

Carnegie’$ Million$ set the tone immediately with a beautiful entryway into our game space. As a fantastic soundtrack flooded the room, we were able to traverse a massive set in search of the Stone of Destiny left by Andrew Carnegie himself. Using the building to their full advantage, Escape Room Pittsburgh integrated so many thematic and complex puzzles. While we found the experience lacking a clear starting puzzle and thus slow to start, the gameplay flowed well during the second half.

In-room: a bookshelf and fireplace in a study.

I’m sure Carnegie’$ Million$ was once an absolutely gorgeous game, but the wear and tear from years of play showed. Some of the puzzles unfortunately felt like homework to our team, while some were creative yet process-heavy.

If you’re in Pittsburgh and want to play a game with roots tied to the city, Carnegie’$ Million$ is the game for you. I’d also recommend playing Escape Room Pittsburgh’s other offering, Tomb Explorer, if you’re stopping in.

Who is this for?

  • Puzzle lovers
  • Best for players with at least some experience
  • Players who don’t need to be a part of every puzzle

Story

As a member of The Protectorate, you must save the Stone of Destiny from falling into the hands of The Illuminati and be rewarded with the power to save all of mankind.

In-room: a large wooden design in a study.

Setting

Carnegie’$ Million$ was set in an incredible building boasting history of what once was a bank in downtown Pittsburgh. Outside of each room, Escape Room Pittsburgh had a themed entryway and a timer for all players in the facility to see as games were running. Gameplay started in the grand office of Andrew Carnegie, leading to locked-away secrets within the bank’s interior.

In-room: a bookshelf, fireplace, and chess board in a study.

Gameplay

  • Escape Room Pittsburgh’s Carnegie’$ Million$ was a standard escape room with a moderate level of difficulty.
  • Core gameplay revolved around searching, making connections, observing, and puzzling.

Analysis

➕ Escape Room Pittsburgh’s implementation of puzzle inputs using massive set pieces felt satisfying. We still don’t know how some of the tech worked behind the curtain.

➕ The regional theme carried throughout the game, incorporating the set design, soundtrack, and props.

➖ Carnegie’$ Million$ suffered from the lack of audio or visual cues showing when something had opened or unlocked. This was even more confusing as the triggers were a few seconds delayed from the initial solve.

➖/➕ While we may have missed some reveals due to the lack of sound or movement, our gamemaster did a great job of drawing our attention back to what mattered.

➖ There was a lot of wear on Carnegie’$ Million$. Additionally, a few ghost puzzles were evident throughout the game, causing our team to spend time trying to solve items not in play.

➕/➖ There was a specific late-game puzzle that was ambitious and unique to the set, yet suffered from a messy execution.

Tips For Visiting

  • You can bring a beverage into your escape room. Every game at Escape Room Pittsburgh has a handy cup holder (large enough for multiple beverages) within the game.
  • Parking: There is a small parking lot across the street with meters, and ample street parking around the area.
  • Food: We enjoy unique burgers and awesome milkshakes at Burgatory nearby.

Book your hour with Carnegie’$ Million$, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

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