Can You Escape? Long Island- The Apartment [Review]

The game designed to make college dorm rooms feel good about themselves.

Location: Mineola, NY

Date played: July 10, 2016

Team size: 3-8; we recommend 2-3

Duration: 60 minutes

Price: $28 per ticket

Story & setting

The Apartment was stark, nearly bare. It included an old, gross couch and not much else.

Our game master presented a story that sort of carried throughout the game. It was more of a theme than a cohesive narrative.

At its core The Apartment was a less than enticing room full of puzzles.

A bland looking apartment with a

Puzzles

While the room looked bare, that was a pretense for hidden clues. A substantial component of the puzzling was searching.

The later puzzles offered more intrigue than the early ones. These involved more tactile props.

Standouts

The Apartment included a few strong puzzles. These particular puzzles were designed such that they were presented early, but not hackable without riding out the game to discover their later components.

Shortcomings

The set was unwelcoming, to say the least. The puzzles hinted at a story, but only delivered theming without narrative.

The puzzles varied in their degrees of creativity and intrigue, but they all lacked polish.

We played this game with two experienced players. Even for newer players, I can’t imagine that a team of 6-8 would have enough to do in the space.

Should I play Can You Escape?’s The Apartment?

We had a good time puzzling through this game just the two of us. However, this game doesn’t offer anything special, especially for experienced players. The game mechanics work, but no greater sum emerges.

That said, newer players will likely be appreciative of the puzzles and various interactions. Because the game mechanics are solid, it’s a good introduction to how these things go.

It’s a fun stop off if you’re in the area, but it’s not worth traveling to.

Book your hour with Can You Escape?’s The Apartment, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

Can You Escape? Long Island – Back to Basics [Review]

“Back to Basics” is the most literal escape game name I’ve ever seen.

Location: Mineola, New York

Date played: April 11, 2015

Team size: 2-6; we recommend 2-4

Price: $28 per ticket

Plot

While babysitting you accidentally got locked in the children’s play room. You have one hour to find the spare key and get out before the parents return! Can You Escape?

Can You Escape the Room LI

Beginner’s Room

Back to Basics is designed for you to win.

It has an escape rate along the lines of a 70%, which makes it the beginnerest room we’ve ever encountered.

That’s not to say that the puzzles lack creativity; this room has some solid and interesting puzzles. They just aren’t very hard, and given the difficulty level, there probably aren’t enough of them.

Between the five people on our team, we had a collective 120+ hours of real life room escape experience, and we cut through nearly every puzzle in less than ten minutes. Tragically, we over-thought one puzzle to a spectacular degree costing us another 10 minutes, and a hint that I will never really be able to forgive myself for taking.

Can You Escape Long Island Back to Basics Room Escape Artist

Non-Threatening, Yet Creepy

In keeping with the beginner theme, this room is essentially a kids’ playroom with children’s toys on one side, and tweeny things on the other. The theming is very strong, and clearly created by parents.

This was by far the least threatening escape game we’ve played since the game that was designed specifically for children.

All of that being said, the chimey nursery music playing in the background throughout the game added an air of creepiness that is usually reserved for horror movies involving evil children. It never becomes threatening, but the music really does augment the experience.

Timer Failure

The timer in the room stopped working almost immediately after we started, and our team didn’t quite realize how fast we were going, so when we got stuck on that one puzzle, the team was worried that we burned more time than we had.

If we had an accurate measure of our remaining time, I don’t think we would have taken the aforementioned hint.

Should I Play “Can You Escape? Long Island’s Back to Basics”?

The game never soars, and it never sinks. It’s a by-the-numbers escape game designed to very gently easy new players into escape gaming. I think it might be too gentle.

If you’ve never played a real life escape game before, and are scared of the concept, then this is your room.

If you want to bring children to an escape game, then this is your room.

The room isn’t badly designed, it’s just way too easy. Its level of ease is excessive, and therefore I cannot recommend it to most adults. However, the potential that I saw leaves me hopeful that the folks from Can You Escape? Long Island are going to produce some solid games.

Book your hour with Can You Escape? The Room LI, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.