Escape Factor – Ghost in the Graveyard [Review]

Apparitional aspirations

Location: Forest Park, IL

Date Played: March 13, 2022

Team Size: 2-8; we recommend 2-4

Duration: 60 minutes

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

Ticketing: Private

Accessibility Consideration: Slight crouching/ crawling required for at least some players

Emergency Exit Rating: [A+] No Lock

Physical Restraints: [A+] No Physical Restraints

REA Reaction

Ghost in the Graveyard presented a charming investigation at a quaint cemetery.

Keeping in the general style of Escape Factor’s earlier rooms, Ghost in the Graveyard presented creative puzzle-forward gameplay that led us to uncover various secrets subtly hidden throughout the details of the set. We encountered more varied and refined inputs than before, as Ghost in the Graveyard had more tech and was notably less combination lock-heavy.

A cemetery filled with headstones and lit by two hanging lanterns.

Yet while Escape Factor’s previous rooms thrived in their scrappy, quirky humor, Ghost in the Graveyard took on a generally more somber tone. From the tombstone epitaphs at the start to a somewhat dark narrative twist later on in the game, the seriousness of the environment never quite aligned with the light whimsy of the bulk of the gameplay.

Escape Factor tried to refine their craft with Ghost in the Graveyard. In some respects they succeeded — the set was lovely and clean, and the puzzles were enjoyable. Yet going forward, I hope the humor and energy that made some of their earlier rooms so memorable will persist more strongly in their future creations.

Who is this for?

  • Puzzle lovers
  • Scenery snobs
  • Any experience level

Why play?

  • The spooky cemetery
  • The puzzles

Story

Nearby residents had been noticing strange occurrences in the Resurrection Memorial Cemetery. We entered the cemetery to investigate what was going on.

A cemetery wall with the words, "Resurrection Memorial. Resting place for tired souls. Since 1896."

Setting

Ghost in the Graveyard was set in an eerie cemetery. A selection of tombstones lined a small courtyard just outside a stone mausoleum.

Gameplay

Escape Factor’s Ghost in the Graveyard was a standard escape room with a moderate level of difficulty.

Core gameplay revolved around puzzling and searching.

Analysis

➕ The puzzles in Ghost in the Graveyard were well clued and fit the cemetery theme. As the game progressed, we discovered new layers to our surroundings.

➕ We encountered a sequence of subtle yet satisfying reveals that utilized small details in the environment and kept us moving between spaces.

➕ A well was well implemented. While escape room wells often look nice but end up feeling fake, this one somehow felt like it kept on going down.

➕ An unexpected transition was a creative way of transforming a small space.

➖ Ghost in the Graveyard ended on a narrative note that made sense in theory, but which didn’t fully translate into the interaction we experienced. We ended the game feeling mildly confused.

Tips For Visiting

  • Metered street parking was available nearby.

Book your hour with Escape Factor’s Ghost in the Graveyard, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

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

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