Escapology – Austin – Lost City [Review]

Hidden temple? Lost explorer? LET’S GO…

Location:  Round Rock, TX

Date Played: April 8, 2022

Team Size: 2-6; we recommend 2-4

Duration: 60 minutes

Price: $34 per player

Ticketing: Private

Emergency Exit Rating: [A+] No Lock

Physical Restraints: [A+] No Physical Restraints

REA Reaction

This room was emblematic of my typical Escapology experience: everything was satisfactory yet underwhelming. It was a solid escape room, but it won’t linger as a favorite. It was fine.

Among Escapology rooms, this one stood out for the consistent approachability of its puzzles and some well-designed multiplayer activities. It also used a couple of fancier escape room mechanisms in straightforward but effective ways, which is always fun and would be delightful to experience for the first time.

Flaw-wise, the puzzles sometimes enabled experienced players to take shortcuts, leading to unused clues and minor confusion. At other times, there was a lack of precision that might cause newer players to give up rather than try different interpretations. The game’s lengthy runbook presented a similar duality: experienced players may be annoyed that it breaks immersion, but newer players may be overwhelmed by it.

This room could reasonably excite newer players while seeming trite to those with more experience, and that’s okay. As a “fun but not memorable” endeavor, it would be a great starting point for anyone and a decent way to spend an evening for those who have played out the more compelling rooms in the area.

A Halloween skeleton in adventurer's clothing in a corner.

Who is this for?

  • Puzzle lovers
  • Newbies

Why play?

  • This would be a challenging yet reasonable room for newer players.

Story

In search of exquisite treasure, we had followed the footsteps of a long-dead explorer into the temple of the Lost City. This angered the spirits therein. We had to find the explorer’s journal, grab the treasure, and scram before getting trapped forever.

Setting

We found ourselves sealed in a stone-like room filled with vine-like plants, a face-like wall, some escape-room-like objects, and a bucket. We were clearly in a “jungle temple,” but I couldn’t otherwise define the spaces we visited. The individual components always felt at home within the theme, but narratively unrelated to each other.

Gameplay

Escapology’s Lost City was a standard escape room with a moderate level of difficulty.

Puzzles involved observing, making connections, and decoding.

Analysis

βž• The puzzles flowed smoothly and covered a wide range of difficulty.

βž• Some puzzles spanned multiple spaces, providing simple but fun opportunities for collaborative discoveries.

βž– Some game components blatantly broke the immersive experience. Taller players were frustrated by a conspicuous hanging bucket that they were forbidden to touch until a designated time, defying how they would naturally approach a space like this. Also, there were multiple digital keypads, which felt starkly out of place in an ancient environment.

βž• Two multi-layered puzzles required several connections and felt satisfying to complete. These were each positioned well within the game’s pacing.

βž– Part of the game relied on a dense runbook. Some puzzles required connecting disparate pages throughout the runbook, making puzzling tedious for even a single player, let alone multiple players. We appreciated the loose pages found throughout the space and wished more had been separated.

βž• The room used some common puzzling tricks in standard but fair ways, offering an entertaining introduction to newer players who haven’t seen them before.

βž– The final act was disappointing, with anticlimactic puzzles and some inexplicable dΓ©cor held together with tape.

βž– We never used the blacklight we were given at the beginning of the experience. The relevant puzzle was solvable without it, and the highlighted portions didn’t show up well in the dim but not-too-dim lighting. This left us haphazardly scanning for blacklight discoveries until the final moments of the game.

❓ If you’re a collector of Escapology lobby photos, here’s another:

A brown escape room lobby with 3 large couches.

Tips For Visiting

  • There is plenty of parking at this location.

Book your hour with Escapology’s Lost City, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.