Find us at Up the Game!

Greetings from Breda, The Netherlands.

We’ve had a wonderful few days exploring escape rooms all over The Netherlands. We can’t wait to tell you more about them!

We’re here to meet new folks and have interesting conversations. If you’re in attendance, please come find us and introduce yourself.

We’ll be speaking tomorrow at 15:55 local time on the North Stage: Lessons from the Best and Worst Escape Rooms Around the World.

After the conference, we’ll be seeing a bit more of this country and its escape rooms. We’re excited!

Solve The Patchwork House Puzzle

One evening in March I fired up the Cryptex Hunt at 8pm Eastern to see the new puzzle.

A blue door locked by an old golden padlock labeled LIVID.

I approached the newly unlocked puzzle and read:

“You arrive at a porch in front of a bizarre looking dwelling that looks like it was thrown together. You wouldn’t exactly call it a normal house. It reminds you of a house a child built, if that child built it out of LEGOs but didn’t have all the right pieces or colors.

In the middle of the porch is a large golden padlock, hanging open and mounted like a trophy.

You can see a Golden Padlock here.”

My interest piqued I typed “LOOK PADLOCK” into the MUD, and then my jaw hit my keyboard as I read:

“A golden padlock engraved with a brand name: LIVID.”

Feeling shocked and honored I proceeded to puzzle through what I thought was one of the stronger puzzles in this very strong puzzle hunt. (I am completely willing to admit bias in this opinion.)

While the entire Cryptex Hunt is still available to play in full, it’s a big commitment. Darren Miller, the creator of this puzzle, made the Patchwork House puzzle available as a standalone for Room Escape Artist readers.

If you are unfamiliar with MUDs, I suggest reading the rest of this post before tackling this puzzle.

Patchwork House

This puzzle was originally intended to function as one of the stages in the finale of the Cryptex Hunt. That plan went up in smoke when a calamity struck the Cryptex Hunt server and the finale had to be completely rebuilt. I interviewed the Cryptex Hunt team about this when I guest hosted the Room Escape Divas Podcast.

As a result, this puzzle became a bonus puzzle in the interim week while the team furiously created an almost entirely new series of puzzles for the finale.

Because it became a bonus puzzle, only 156 of the 560 players solved it.

MUD Basics

I wrote a full primer on how to play this particular puzzle hunt. If you’re brand new to puzzle hunts, I strongly encourage that you look this over before attempting this puzzle. I will, however, pull a few key excerpts out to help explain how to control this puzzle.

“This game exists in a MUD (Multi-User Dungeon). MUDs date back to the 1970s. They are a text-based way for multiple players to interact with a game environment. While they aesthetically don’t look like anything at all, MUD-based games like Colossal Cave Adventure are some of the most important early forerunners of escape rooms.”

Basic Commands

The only MUD commands that you’ll need to solve this puzzle are:

  • Movement – Type, northsoutheast, or west to traverse the world.
  • Inspecting – To look at an item described in the game, type look name of thing you want to see (eg. look sign).
  • Opening the Cryptex – The puzzle concluded by opening a cryptex. Type unlock cryptex solution (eg. unlock cryptex star).
  • Hint List – Should you need a hint, type hints to view a list of all possible hints.
  • Hinting – If you need a particular hint, type hint # (eg. hint 2 to summon the second hint).

That’s about all that you need to solve this thing. Good luck solving Patchwork House.

I hope you enjoy it. If you do, consider trying the full Cryptex Hunt. It’s epic.

Thank you to Darren Miller for rebuilding the puzzle outside of the full game. Thank you to Brett Kuehner for hosting it.

Escape Immerse Explore New Orleans: Sold Out!

Indiana Jones gesturing out the window saying, "No ticket."

We are kind of shocked – and incredibly excited – to report that Escape Immerse Explore New Orleans 2018 is officially sold out!

We sold the original 24 tickets in pre-sale… and then sold an additional 18 tickets, adding a second bus.

We’re really excited to meet all of the new people, spend time with the returning folks, and show off so many of our favorite escape rooms.

Please contact us if you’d be interested in future escape room tours and events. 

1 Ticket Left!

Update: And that last ticket is gone. This event is officially sold out. Please do contact us if you’d be interested in future escape room tours and events. 

There is 1 ticket left to Escape Immerse Explore: New Orleans 2018.

Charlie finding his Wonka golden ticket.

We sold the original 24 tickets in pre-sale.

We’ve now sold 17 of the 18 expansion tickets.

I’m going to repeat that: We’ve sold 41 of 42 tickets for Escape Immerse Explore: New Orleans! There is one ticket left.

Eleven from Stranger Things gesturing mind blown.

If you’d like that one remaining ticket, contact us before someone else beats you to it.

Details

  • Dates: June 22 – 24, 2018
  • Price: $599 per ticket
  • 9 escape rooms over the course of the weekend
  • 41 other escape room fans as teammates
  • 1 talk by Lisa and David
  • FAQ

We are thrilled to bring this event to New Orleans in June. We hope to see you there!

Expansion Update for Escape Immerse Explore: New Orleans 2018!

This expansion is a go!

GIF of Cookie Monster elated by a giant cookie.

We are hiring a second bus and opening another 24 tickets to Escape Immerse Explore: New Orleans 2018.

Note that more than half of these tickets are already spoken for. If you want one of these tickets, contact us today.

Next Steps

If you are one of the 24 original ticket holders, get excited to meet the rest of the folks!

If you have already claimed one of expansion tickets over email, get ready to receive an invoice followed by your super fun personalization survey by email later today.

If you’re interested in this event and you have not yet contacted us, contact us today. These remaining tickets will only be available to purchase for 2 weeks and many of them are already spoken for.

Basics

Dates: June 22 – 24, 2018

Price: $599 per ticket

More information and FAQ.

For the people on the fence

This tour is going to be incredible:

  • New friends who love escape rooms
  • Some of the best escape rooms in the United States presented by Escape My Room, Clue Carré, RISE Escape Rooms, and 13th Gate Escape
  • A weekend in New Orleans
  • Time with Lisa and David

We’ve answered questions about transportation, hotels, logistics, specific games, requests to play certain games, and more. We can answer your questions. Just ask.

See you in New Orleans in June!

One week left for Escape Immerse Explore!

If you’re on the fence about an escape room tour in New Orleans this June, it’s time to make up your mind. Let us know by Saturday, April 7.

Join the folks who snatched us those original 24 tickets and the folks who’ve emailed us since, itching to come. It’s going to be an amazing weekend!

A red and gold Mardi Gras mask.

Expansion Update

We need to hear from few more people before we can run to a second bus.

Contact us this week if you’re interested in tickets.

Should I attend?

Yes.

Details

Dates: June 22 – 24, 2018

Price: $599 per ticket

More information and FAQ.

Escape Immerse Explore: New Orleans – Expansion Update

The original 24 tickets to this escape room tour are officially sold out. We made jambalaya to celebrate!

Close up of a pot of chicken and sausage jambalaya.
And yes, it was delicious.

More tickets?

Due to some serious fixed costs – like an extra bus – we need to get enough people to make it work.

At the moment, we are about halfway to that second bus. All we need is a few more interested parties and that bus will become a reality.

If there is enough interest, we will run a second tour bus. Contact us if you want in.

Details

Dates: June 22 – 24, 2018

Price: $599 per ticket

More information and FAQ.

Still on the fence?

Consider what’s included:

If you have questions, just give us a shout.

My Prexcyt Quest Experience in GIFs

Prexcyt Quest was a lengthy puzzling event and I am not an experienced puzzle hunter.

My goals: level up my skills and have fun.

I absolutely improved my skills and had a lot of fun… but my journey was amusingly bumpy.

Warning

The Cryptex Hunt is still live and you can still complete it.

This post will not contain any puzzle answers, but it will contain structural spoilers and some hints.

… and this post won’t really make much sense if you don’t know the context of each puzzle.

… and this is all kind of self-indulgent.

Enjoy.

Video

“Woot! We’re starting… and we’re overthinking.”

Ski race starting, and one skier falling flat on his face.

PDF

Guy with black eye saying,

Hall of Heroes

Guys saying, I got this

Magic Words

Magician in a pink unicorn shirt pulls flowers out from behind his head.

Simon

Robot with flashing eyes dancing

Light Grid

Elmo and Jimmy Fallon dancing.

Haunted House

Dan Aykroyd in Ghostbusters looking at creepy stairway asking,

Theater

At first glance?

Schwarzenegger in The Last Action Hero smoking a cigar and asking,

Half a day later?

Schwarzenegger in The Last Action Hero smoking a cigar stating,

Temple of Mill “Oh… It’s a Meta!”

2017 darts premier league final, perfect score, thrower celebrates.

Temple of Lum “The Errol Process”

Bowie asking,

Temple of Nor – “Surprisingly Straightforward”

Solved it fast… then thwarted by a bug.

Julius Thomas spiking a football, then it bounces back into his face.

Pillar of Fire – “The one where I had all of the information but thought it was a joke”

Billy Joel slapping his hands on a keyboard with a fire burning behind him

Pillar of Poison – “Prexcyt Go Outside in the Winter”

The Rock saying,

Bruce Willis saying,

Pillar of Electric – “Catan 2: Electric Boogaloo”

John Travolta in a suit lost on an island.

Pillar of Ice – “Mudpen”

After solving the puzzle in 23 minutes.

Commander Riker's blank expression slowing transforming into a an elated smile.

After looking at the leaderboard and realizing that I ranked 63rd on this puzzle.

Captain Picard facepalming.

After reflecting upon the quality of the competition and my place among them.

Spock saying

Pillar of Acid – “Word Spell Backwards”

“Another map? Ok. I can handle this… oh no… not cryptic crosswords…”

Superman catching a bullet, then it explodes into a cloud of kryptonite.

Vortex

A black Master Lock Directional Lock

Patchwork House – “OMG it’s a Golden Lock-In puzzle!”

Surprised snow owl slowly turning its head.

Wow… It’s a Golden Lock-In puzzle. Everything in this puzzle is about us?!

Woman blushing.

Cute kid with a aww shucks expression resting his head in his hands.

The 10 Puzzle Finale

After puzzle 1:

Morpheus Come At Me

Puzzle 2:

Skin diver swimming off into darkness and disappearing.

Also puzzle 2

Dog floating around in space labeled,

Puzzle 3

A green blob character laying on his back holding a waiving white flag.

Thank Yous

I’d like to thank all of the people who I teamed up with at various points in the hunt. Fro, Andrea, Glyn, Theresa, Ken, Amanda, and Drew. We took turns carrying one another. I’m so glad we did.

Thank you to the creators of the hunt and all of the people who supported them. Y’all are absolutely insane… Go take a nap.

Get Ready for the NYC Escape Room Fan Shindig this is Wednesday!

*Update: Due to the threat of apocalyptic weather, we’ve postponed this event 1 week. It will now be held on 3/14. All other details remain the same.

We’re excited that so many of you are coming out to our NYC Escape Room Fan Shindig.

If you haven’t RSVP’d yet, or you are one of those folks who clicked “interested” on Facebook, now would be a good time to RSVP. (That means clicking “going” for those on Facebook.)

If your friends like to geek out about escape rooms, bring them too!

Black & white & red photos of hands clinking wine glasses.

When

Wednesday, March 7, 2018 March 14, 2018. That’s two days away.

7pm – 10pm

Where

Shades of Green Pub (125 East 15th Street, New York, NY between Irving Place and Third Avenue)

Note that this is a change from our original venue.

Shades of Green Pub will have food and drink available for purchase. Please encourage them to host this type of gathering by purchasing food or drinks.

RSVP

Please RSVP so that we have enough space for the group.

RSVP on Facebook or via email (roomescapeartist@gmail.com)

FAQ

For more information, read the FAQ at the end of the original announcement.

Why Come Hang with Us?

  • You want to talk about escape rooms all evening.
  • You’re looking to meet potential escape room teammates.
  • You need local (or far-flung, I suppose) escape room recommendations.

We look forward to seeing/ meeting you there!

 

Announcing – Escape Immerse Explore: New Orleans 2018!

Southern Louisiana is home to some of the best escape rooms in the United States. This June, we invite you to travel to New Orleans with Room Escape Artist.

Tickets are $599 per ticket. We are currently sold out, however, we are about halfway to being able to run a second bus for this tour.  Contact us if you want in.

Escape Immerse Explore logo.

About Escape, Immerse, Explore: New Orleans 2018

Join us June 22 – 24, 2018 for a weekend of escape rooms in and around New Orleans, Louisiana.

On this personally-tailored escape room tour, you will get a chance to play some of our favorite escape rooms with other likeminded escape room fans.

What’s Included in the Tour?

Your ticket includes a customized itinerary of 9 escape rooms, distributed among the following companies:

This is so many more escape rooms than our New York tour!

There will be three 2017 Golden Lock-In Award-winning games on this tour (and many more that were in the running).*

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Your ticket also includes:

  • Bus transportation to escape rooms outside of New Orleans
  • A weekend with Lisa and David as escape room tour guides
  • Networking with other tour attendees
  • A talk by Lisa and David
  • One group meal
  • Exclusive discount coupons to book additional escape rooms at these venues
  • Event t-shirt
  • Teammates who are as excited about this as you are!

See the FAQ below for many more details.

Tickets are $599 per ticket. We are currently sold out, however, we are about halfway to being able to run a second bus for this tour.  Contact us if you want in.

Event Structure

Friday – You will play two escape rooms in New Orleans on Friday evening. You will also have time to hang out with us or explore New Orleans nightlife on your own.

Saturday – Saturday will be a full-day bus tour with 5 escape rooms outside of New Orleans. We will spend the day with you on the bus and deliver a talk.

Sunday – You will play two escape rooms in New Orleans on Sunday morning. Take the afternoon to explore the city on your own or catch a flight home.

What Happened in Presale?

We launched an exclusive presale for this event less than two weeks ago.

We sent presale invitations to those who attended Escape Immerse Explore in NYC in November as well as everyone who emailed us since then expressing interest in future tours… and they gobbled up 23 tickets in no time.

We are thrilled at the early enthusiasm for the tour and we’re especially happy that so many people are returning customers.

Extended Event Sales?

Since the event basically sold out during presale, we are looking at extending the event.

Next Steps: Contact us with your full name, email address, and the number of tickets you’re interested in.

This gets you on the list. If enough of you sign up, we will run a second tour bus.

FAQ

Are you guys “selling out?”

We’re hosting this event because we want to bring this community together again and share a few of the games we love with you.

Considering the costs of booking all these games, the travel involved in putting this together, and things like insurance, this is not an overwhelmingly profitable endeavor.

If we were looking to sell out, we’d do something unethical like consult/ review, or design games… and post reviews of them on our own site.

How many tickets are available?

There were 24 tickets available, but unexpectedly all but 1 sold out during our secret presale.

If there is enough interest, we will expand the event and run a second bus.

Why New Orleans?

David has a vicious gumbo habit.

Southern Louisiana offers some of the finest escape rooms in the country. It’s home to 3 of the 2017 Golden Lock-In Award-winning games and plenty more that were in the running.

Each of these companies offers multiple high quality escape rooms. A few of them are an hour or so outside of New Orleans. This makes the group bus tour feasible.

And really, who doesn’t want to spend a weekend in New Orleans?

Why June?

It fits in our absolutely insane travel schedule. It doesn’t conflict with anything else going on in New Orleans… and most importantly, it’s nowhere near hurricane season.

How will we get from game to game?

The games in New Orleans will be walkable from our recommended hotel. They would also be a very short taxi/ Lyft/ Uber ride.

On Saturday, we will have a tour bus taking the group to Tickfaw and Baton Rouge.

Can I choose my teammates?

You’ll be playing most games as a group of 6. You may select a buddy or put together a full group. The pre-tour survey will cover these types of questions.

I don’t have a team. Will that be a problem?

Not at all. We’ll put you in a group with other escape room enthusiasts from far and wide.

I’ve played most of the games from these companies. Can I still participate?

Contact us. There might be an opportunity. We’ll try to make it work and let you know if we can’t.

Will I get to choose which escape rooms I play?

No, but we’ll choose games specifically for you. You’ll fill out a fun pre-tour survey about your escape room preferences. We’re confident you’ll play a lot of games that you’ll love.

You’ll find out your escape room agenda far enough in advance that you can book additional games for yourself during the rest of your time in New Orleans.

I’m an escape room owner/ employee or immersive experience designer. Can I participate?

Yes!

I have nothing to do with the escape room industry. I just want to play all the games! Can I participate?

Yes!

What should I do about airfare and hotels?

Your ticket does not cover travel or lodging.

We are setting up a hotel block near the New Orleans escape rooms. You’ll receive more information about that after purchasing a ticket.

Are meals included in the ticket price?

Your ticket includes one casual group meal on Saturday.

You will have opportunities to purchase food throughout the tour.

I can’t make it that weekend. Will you run this again?

It’s highly likely, although future tours may go to other cities.

Can I buy a ticket for someone under 18?

Unfortunately, no. All participants must be 18 years of age at the start of the tour.

Can I sponsor this event?

Contact us about sponsorship opportunities. We are not accepting escape room companies as sponsors.

What if I have other questions?

Contact us.

We look forward to seeing you in New Orleans this June!

*We cannot guarantee that every tour attendee will play all three of these games. However, we will keep everyone’s game list balanced and in line with how they answer our pre-tour survey.