Escape Factor – Bonus Fun Time Game Show Challenge [Review]

<insert audience applause>

Location: Forest Park, IL

Date Played: March 13, 2022

Team Size: 3-9; we recommend 3-5

Duration: 60 minutes

Price: $140 for the first 3 players, $30 for each additional player

Ticketing: Private

Emergency Exit Rating: [A+] No Lock

Physical Restraints: [A+] No Physical Restraints

REA Reaction

In Bonus Fun Time Game Show Challenge, we played contestants in a vintage game show montage, in a delightful alternate reality where all classic game show challenges are actually cleverly designed puzzles.

Bonus Fun Time Game Show Challenge fully embodied the distinctive whimsy and humor that characterizes Escape Factor’s design style. This was an older room that had aged quite well. Every puzzle and door we opened provided a fun new game show reference, and our faces hurt by the end from nonstop smiling. With relatively little tech and a modestly sized space, the gameplay felt dynamic and engaging, reminding me how much I still love classic escape room gameplay when expressed through a nonstandard theme.

The Fun Time Game Show set is brightly colored and looks like a 1960s gameshow.

Escape Factor is one of the top companies in the Chicago area. Both Bonus Fun Time Game Show Challenge and The Treehouse Raid at Fort Knocks especially stand out for their unique theming and creative puzzles.

Who is this for?

  • Puzzle lovers
  • Scenery snobs
  • Game show fans
  • Any experience level

Why play?

  • Uncommon theme
  • So many fun puzzles

Story

We were contestants on a vintage game show. As we entered into the final round, we discovered an unwelcome surprise which raised the stakes for winning the grand prize.

The gameshow's prize doors are labeled 1, 2, and 3.

Setting

Bonus Fun Time Game Show Challenge took place on a colorful 80s game show set. From numbered doors to spinning wheels to a giant bullseye, a plethora of classic game show games and tropes were represented.

Close up of a large orange tic-tak-toe board with gold pieces.

Gameplay

Escape Factor’s Bonus Fun Time Game Show Challenge was a standard escape room with a moderate level of difficulty.

Core gameplay revolved around puzzling, searching, and playing game show-style games.

Analysis

➕ Escape Factor nailed the 1970s Price is Right aesthetic. With bold blocks of color and appropriate fonts, the set was engaging and vibrant.

➕ Pulling inspiration from a mix of classic game shows, the gameplay in Bonus Fun Time Game Show Challenge truly fit the theme. Some puzzles were loosely designed around props one might find in a game show. Other interactions actually got us to play versions of game show games.

➕/➖ An intro puzzle was a cleverly designed on-ramp to the parallel gameplay that followed. However, some writing on its components was partially worn away and didn’t match the clean aesthetic of the rest of the room.

➕ The interactions in Bonus Fun Time Game Show Challenge were thoroughly tactile. We had a blast manipulating a variety of objects, including some approachable dexterity challenges.

➖ While some locked compartments were built into the set, there were also a bunch of standalone locked boxes. By the end of the game, a pile of these containers had messily accumulated in the corner of the room, mildly disrupting the game show vibe. We wished more of this physical gating had been built into the set.

➕/❓ Our gamemaster played an in-room game show host, providing an extra boost of character throughout the game. After all, what’s a game show without its quirky host?! At the time of playing, given ongoing COVID restrictions, it seemed the in-room actor wasn’t always an option.

Tips For Visiting

  • Metered street parking was available nearby.

Book your hour with Escape Factor’s Bonus Fun Time Game Show Challenge, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

Disclosure: Escape Factor provided media discounted tickets for this game.

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