Captured LV Allentown – Devil’s Den [Review]

Damned if we do…

Location:  Allentown, PA

Date Played: July 25, 2021

Team Size: 5-8; we recommend 4-6

Duration: 60 minutes

Price: $28.50 per player

Ticketing: Private

Accessibility Consideration: Brief moments of flashing lights and loud sounds

Emergency Exit Rating: [A+] No Lock

Physical Restraints: [A+] No Physical Restraints

REA Reaction

I’ll readily admit that I’m quite tired of cliche serial killer narratives, both in escape rooms and the entertainment industry more generally. That said, Devil’s Den had the potential to be an excellent escape room that happened to be serial killer-themed. With just a few small exceptions, its puzzle design was highly creative and smooth — among the best of the rooms at Captured LV’s two locations.

A fake severed hand bound to a chainlink fence in a morgue.

Where Devil’s Den fell short, however, was in the glaring inconsistency of its set design. Though it nailed the serial killer lair vibe overall, with blood-splattered walls and creepy morgue doors, a number of elements in the room felt out of place. Unless our psychopathic serial killer-kidnapper was also a novice scrapbooker, these elements felt both cheap and immersion-breaking.

We played Devil’s Den right as it was opening to the public, and I truly hope Captured LV will go the extra mile to patch these issues. Having played Captured LV’s The Island, The Haunted Theatre, and The Mayan Temple, I know the company is fully capable of building awesome sets, and with some extra attention to detail, Devil’s Den could quickly become a regional standout.

Who is this for?

  • Puzzle lovers
  • Horror fans
  • Any experience level

Story

We had been kidnapped by a serial killer who had been targeting his victims by the Seven Deadly Sins. Upon awakening in his kill room, we had just one hour to discover what sin we were guilty of before we became his next victims.

Setting

Devil’s Den took place in a serial killer’s lair, filled with all the blood, dismembered body parts, doll heads, and torture tools you’d expect any competent serial killer to have.

A bloodied sink beside a sign that reads, "How to effectively tie-up victims"

Gameplay

Devil’s Den was a puzzle-heavy game with a moderate level of difficulty.

Analysis

➕ Devil’s Den included a stellar implementation of a split-team start. The puzzles during this phase were well balanced between the two sides, and it was easy to communicate with our teammates.

➕ Our game host was highly responsive in framing our experience and helping us through a few rough spots in the gameplay.

➖ A substantial smattering of set elements, including large pixelated printouts, velcro-backed laminated paper, label maker labels, and gaudy glitter letters felt significantly out of place given the theme. Meticulous hand lettering and different paper/ color choices could have better supported the established characterization of the serial killer and led to a more consistent game environment.

➖ In a couple of puzzles, redundant cluing made the puzzle solutions needlessly convoluted or ambiguous. This was especially the case for one puzzle which also had an annoyingly long answer sequence.

➕ The room’s atmosphere was creepy, but not overly scary. My teammates who typically avoid horror rooms all enjoyed themselves.

➕ The room creatively used a few props we’ve rarely or never seen before in escape rooms.

➕ Karen was right where she belonged.

❓ Though Devil’s Den was structured around the Seven Deadly Sins, it managed to stay away from any further religious undertones in its narrative and content.

Tips For Visiting

  • Parking: Captured LV is located in a strip mall with a large parking lot.

Book your hour with Captured LV’s Devil’s Den, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

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