A crypt-ic adventure
Location: Wilmington, DE
Date Played: February 5, 2023
Team Size: 3-9; we recommend 4-5
Duration: 90 minutes
Price: $35 per player
Accessibility Consideration: The room is located up a flight of stairs; also, at least one person has to crawl
Emergency Exit Rating: [A+] No Lock
Physical Restraints: [A+] No Physical Restraints
I was searching for a game to play in Delaware, and Axxiom Escape Room’s The Mason’s Temple lured me in with an unusual angle on a rather common theme: a search for treasure passed on throughout history and eventually hidden in an underground tomb by the Founding Fathers, members of the Freemasons. The historical spin made this particular search for treasure feel different and new. The start of the game was immersive and unexpected, and had us excited for the adventure ahead.
The main game space was large and spacious, with atmospheric lighting and plenty of room to explore. There were clever props that alluded to past explorers and the Founding Fathers’ efforts to conceal historical artifacts. However, areas of the set were noticeably underdeveloped, and some design choices didn’t quite fit in a subterranean crypt.
The story, told through puzzles and props, was hard to follow if you weren’t familiar with the Freemasons, so we focused mostly on the challenge of the puzzles. Most were layered and elaborate and refreshingly unique in design. One input device was strikingly oversized and a delight to discover and manipulate – a nice aha moment. We also appreciated the teamwork involved in solving many of the puzzles, which kept everyone fully engaged in most of the solves. There was a lot to do in this puzzle-heavy game!
After 90 minutes of puzzling (with no game clock to track our time), our team escaped with a nail-biting 7 seconds remaining! If you are in the Wilmington area, looking for a game with a unique theme and a lot of puzzles you probably haven’t seen before, stop in and play The Mason’s Temple.
Who is this for?
- Adventure seekers
- Puzzle lovers
- Best for players with at least some experience
- Players who don’t need to be a part of every puzzle
- Unusual theme
- Puzzles with an historical theme
- Space for a large team
We were treasure hunters, going deep underground in search of the Templar Treasure, a collection of artifacts hidden by George Washington and other Freemasons during the Revolutionary War.
The game took place in a large crypt 200 feet underground; evidence of prior treasure hunters gave silent warning to future explorers. Atmospheric lighting created shadows and mood.
Axxiom Escape’s The Mason’s Temple was a standard escape room with a moderate level of difficulty.
Core gameplay revolved around searching, observing, making connections, and puzzling.
➕ The start of the game was impressive and contained a realistic (and unexpected) effect that brought us into the adventure right from the start.
➕ A few specific set pieces added nuance and humor to the experience. Though not key puzzle components, they were a nice touch and made us smile when we realized their connection to the story.
➖ There was an opportunity to enhance the set by adding stonework or rock walls to better relate to the Freemason’s theme and underground setting. We also encountered a few exposed wires and an undecorated area within the actual game space that had no purpose.
➕ Unique puzzle design and use of teamwork kept everyone engaged for much of the game. We enjoyed the challenge of solving so many puzzles.
➖ At least two puzzles were sensitive and did not correctly trigger unless we had components in exactly the right spot. This led us to think we had the wrong solution, as it took repeated manipulations and finally a nudge to realize we had them right.
➖ We encountered snippets of information on the Freemasons during the game, but they were easy to ignore as we puzzled. As a result, we lost the thread of the story.
Tips For Visiting
- There is a parking lot
Book your 90 minutes with Axxiom’s Mason’s Temple, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.
Disclosure: Axxiom provided media discounted tickets for this game.