Exit the Game – Kidnapped in Fortune City [Hivemind Review]

Kidnapped in Fortune City is a tabletop escape game created by Exit: The Game.

Looking for holiday gifts? Find Kidnapped in Fortune City and other great games in the Room Escape Artist Holiday Gift Guide – 2021.

Exit: Kidnapped in Fortune City box depicts the old west. A sheriff's badge laying on the ground.

Format

Style of Play: tabletop escape game

Who is it For?

  • Puzzle lovers
  • Any experience level

Required Equipment: pen & paper

No scissors were needed, which is unusual for this series.

It is helpful to take notes in this game, as you collect information from the locations and characters.

Recommended Team Size: 1-3

Play Time: 1.5-2 hours

Price: about $15

Booking: purchase and play at your leisure

Description

The sheriff of Fortune City disappeared after a gold robbery, and it was our job to search the town, interview witnesses, solve the crime, and find the sheriff. We had more materials to help us than in other Exit: The Game installments: a map of the city, the sheriff’s notebook, clue cards, a set of “strange items,” several location pamphlets to explore one at a time, and a decoder wheel for entering the solutions to puzzles. Because this was a higher difficulty game, the puzzles were not presented linearly, and we had to determine what game pieces to use for each puzzle. As in all Exit: The Game installments, we had to use game pieces in unexpected ways, but there was not as much destruction in this game as in others.

Game contents include a number of old west themed items.

Cindi S’ Reaction

The sheriff has been kidnapped and we need to rescue him fast! In Kidnapped in Fortune City, you investigate multiple suspects and locations around town, solving puzzles and collecting information to figure out whodunit and where the sheriff is being held. The puzzles were fun to solve and they really brought you into this world. They were very creative (as always) but also surprisingly accurate, making it easy to believe you were doing real things in this setting. In addition, the non-linear gameplay added to the realism as you worked the case and made connections through the unique characters and places in this town. The final puzzle was more complex than in other Exit: The Game installments and it was easy to miss key information; we used the help cards to fill in these gaps. This Exit: The Game installment was really fun to play, given the realistic, thematic puzzles that pulled me right into the heart of Fortune City!

Kate Wastl’s Reaction

Exit: The Game’s Kidnapped in Fortune City is a fast-paced adventure throughout Fortune City where you’re on a mission to rescue the kidnapped sheriff. This multi-layered adventure allows you to select your preferred path through the base game while working towards a meta puzzle at the end. In short, this Exit: The Game installment is great. Adding another layer and flexibility to the gameplay differentiates Kidnapped in Fortune City from similar board game offerings. There are few logical leaps to make, and while the non-linear content is a 3.5/5 in difficulty, the individual puzzles are approachable. There are plenty of witness statements, geographical considerations, and location scouting for 2-3 people to explore this old frontier town.

Theresa W’s Reaction

Kidnapped in Fortune City was the best designed Exit: The Game installment in the series in recent times, if not of all time. While the designers have been trying to innovate little by little, this experience was cohesive and original, yet homed in on the good parts of their designs. The core mechanic of the game revolved around exploring a town for clues, allowing for a non-linear puzzle path, while letting players hop around locations if they got stuck. The free-form first half of the game worked to their advantage, with each puzzle and interaction being fun and rewarding. The Exit: The Game series had been getting a little dull for me lately with some not-as-fun experiences, but Kidnapped in Fortune City renewed my curiosity and interest to keep playing!

Sarah Mendez’s Reaction

Kidnapped in Fortune City was a series stand-out to me, a challenging yet completely reasonable whodunnit. The “gameboard” consisted of a map and several location pamphlets that we explored in whatever order we wanted, allowing us to freely search a Western town rather than forcing a linear experience. Our search was filled with interesting, well-executed puzzles that might have broader appeal than some of the more typical Exit: The Game gimmicks. Often, answers weren’t straightforward but rather required us to contemplate various ways to arrange information, allowing us room for ahas. I personally enjoyed how multiple logic puzzles were embedded throughout the game; they felt natural rather than forced, and they required information from lots of sources. Success in our ultimate mission required taking thorough notes and making connections that transcended single puzzles. I legitimately felt like a sleuth at the end.

New to Exit: The Game? I may be going out on a limb a bit, but if you’re a seasoned puzzler who prefers to skip the novice levels of games, and if you are aware of the basic Exit: The Game premise that EVERYTHING “in” the box is part of the game, this might be a good introduction to the series for you. It will ease you into the game mechanics while entertaining you with mid-level puzzles.

Fan of Exit: The Game? This was one of the richer installments in the series. If you’re looking for a coherent and multi-layered puzzle game, play this. However, if you thrive on demolishing game pieces in unique ways, you’ll be disappointed; this is less Exit-y than many other installments.

Disclosure: Exit: The Game provided the Hivemind reviewers with a complimentary play.

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