Organic artisanal good time
Location: Richmond, VA
Date Played: October 2, 2021
Team size: up to 10; we recommend 3-5
Duration: 60 minutes
Price: $25 per player, 4 player minimum
Emergency Exit Rating: [A+] No Lock
Physical Restraints: [A+] No Physical Restraints
Wizard’s Castle was witty and engaging. The interactions were well designed to sing to Harry Potter fans, and fans of fantasy in general… which really worked for me.
In the scheme of Gnome & Raven, Wizard’s Castle was a little smaller, and slightly less epic than their other offerings. While I strongly recommend it for fans of wand- and potion-based fiction… I’d suggest that everyone else check out Magic Lamp or Shipwrecked first. This is a very worthy wizard game.
Who is this for?
- Adventure seekers
- Puzzle lovers
- Scenery snobs
- Wizarding school fans
- Any experience level
- Players who don’t need to be a part of every puzzle
- That party room
- Large and magical set that captured the theme
The renowned Wizbin the Wonderful, wizard to kings and queens, was searching for an apprentice. To prove our worth, we needed to craft the Midas Potion, which would turn anything to gold.
Wizard’s Castle was packing some strong Hogwarts-meets-Dungeons & Dragons vibes. Portraits of wizards, magical trinkets, crests, and suits of armor decorated the space.
Wizard’s Castle was a physically smaller game for Gnome & Raven… which meant that it was still a large game by escape room standards. It was also incredibly detailed, down to the many creative labels on potion bottles.
Gnome & Raven’s Wizard’s Castle was a standard escape room with a moderate level of difficulty.
Core gameplay revolved around searching, observing, making connections, and puzzling.
➕ We enjoyed the regal-meets-apothecary aesthetic of Wizard’s Castle. It was beautifully crafted and fun to take in and explore.
➖ We barely spent any time in the opening set, and once we’d unlocked another set, we weren’t sure whether we should be pressing onward, or if we should return for another look around.
➕ In a land of magical reveals, we especially enjoyed concocting a transformation. This changed up the gameplay in a rewarding way.
➕ Wizard’s Castle was witty. It was full of Easter eggs. We were amused by the solves, reveals, and even the searching.
➖ When we stalled in Wizard’s Castle, we didn’t know if we were search-failing, or if an interaction was unavailable. A lot of the inputs were front-loaded. A bit more gating would alleviate this confusion and avoid time spent on yet inaccessible interactions.
➕ We loved when static props awakened to display challenging, layered puzzles within.
➖ While most props belong in this world, one puzzle felt clearly out of place.
🏰 The table in the last set of Wizard’s Castle would be the perfect place for a birthday party or other group gathering. We love how Gnome & Raven is designed as more than just a puzzle game or thematic adventure, but also a world into which you can bring your own fun.
➕ Wizard’s Castle belonged in the world of Gnome & Raven, a world of characters, magic, and fantasy that included not just this gamespace and gamemaster, but also the lobby and everyone on staff.
Tips For Visiting
- Gnome & Raven is located in an open-air mall surrounded by a moat-like parking lot with plentiful free parking.
Book your hour with Gnome & Raven’s Wizard’s Castle, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.
Disclosure: Gnome & Raven comped our tickets for this game.