Puzzled Escape Games – The Box From The Future [Review]

Mucking about with spacetime.

Location:  at home

Date Played: October 24, 2020

Team size: 1-4; we recommend 2-3

Duration: 2 hours

Price: $50

REA Reaction

I wanted to like The Box From The Future more than I did. I loved the concept, and truly enjoyed the videos that carried the game’s narrative. As an overall experience, however, it felt weak and disjointed.

Assorted components including, a dry erase marker, a thumb drive, a world map, and a DVD labeled "Future Man"

The puzzles were largely a collection of generic puzzles, the kind I see in my Facebook feed and rarely stop to solve. There were exceptions, like a sequence near the end that honestly could have been expanded into a far more interesting and cost-effective game.

The physical components in The Box From The Future mostly seemed unnecessary. That was a fundamental flaw, considering that there are stronger games at a fraction of the price, and that competitors in this price range do some really special things.

Creatively, I respect what Puzzled Escape Games was striving for. I just wish that it had been edited and focused on the interactions that made it special.

Who is this for?

  • Any experience level

Why play?

  • The video interludes were adorable and clever
  • One of the late game puzzles felt like an entire game could have been built around it

Story

A box wrapped in hot foil had hurdled through the space-time continuum and landed on our doorstep PO box. As we opened it we found a message from a man claiming he was from a catastrophic future. He needed us to make changes to our present to prevent what would come.

We were tired of our cataclysmic present, so it felt like a worthy endeavor.

A foil-covered box with an orange warning that reads: "Open with extreme caution. Contents insid can cause cataclysmic events in the future. Mishandlign will doom mankind."
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Puzzled Escape Games – Escape From Escobar’s [Review]

I appreciate a drug lord who keeps his private jail clean.

Location: Easthampton, MA

Date played: December 12, 2016

Team size: 4-8; we recommend 4-6

Duration: 60 minutes

Price: $25 per ticket

Story & setting

After a series of poor decisions we found ourselves locked up in the basement of a drug lord.

In-game: shot through jail cell bars, the walls are stone and there are a number of barrels against the wall.

Part jail, part warehouse, the set looked fairly compelling. Puzzled Escape Games was located in an old New England mill, so the sets bones were strong and looked great. Their custom construction was solid. It wasn’t the most immersive jail set, but it was more than enough to convey the story.

Escape From Escobar’s story slowly kicked in as the game progressed. The story actually became critical to the gameplay even if it was a bit circuitous.

Puzzles

The puzzles in Escape From Escobar’s were physically interactive and frequently integrated into the set. There was plenty to do and everyone was engaged.

There were a few paper-based puzzles, but they didn’t dominate the game.

Many of the puzzles effectively enforced teamwork and cooperation.

Standouts

It was great having larger challenges that could engage everyone.

There were plenty of puzzles for everyone to stay involved and have their own individual moments.

Escape From Escobar’s set was packed with surprises. There was one incredible moment that completely shocked our whole team. I wish that my face had been caught on camera during it.

Puzzled Escape Games integrated player decision and added consequence to that choice.

Shortcomings

One of the puzzles was pretty dubious and required far too much outside knowledge to complete.

Escape From Escobar’s set generally looked great, but we could feel the build quality dip each time we pushed further into the game.

The final puzzle was a little convoluted because of the difficult-to-follow story.

Should I play Puzzled Escape Games’ Escape From Escobar’s?

If you’re nearby, you really should. There aren’t many escape room companies in the area and Escape From Escobar’s would be a strong game in a far more competitive market.

The set was strong, the puzzles were fun, and there were at least a few memorable moments that will stick with us for a long time.

Escape From Escobar’s was plenty satisfying.

Book your hour with Puzzled Escape Games’ Escape From Escobar’s, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

Full disclosure: Puzzled Escape Games comped our tickets for this game.