In season 3, episode 12, we chat with Lee-Fay Low and Theresa Wagner about the upcoming RECON, the Reality Escape Convention, taking place in person, in Boston, August 21-22, 2022. RECON is a new type of convention, mixing talks from leaders in the immersive gaming industry, games ranging from an ARG to a large-format ballroom game, an included escape room, and visits to Level99 and Boda Borg.
Lee-Fay is the Programming Coordinator. She talks to us about the different talks you can expect at RECON Boston 22, ranging from Caro Murphy, an Immersive Experience Director on Disney’s Star Wars Galactic Starcruise, to the mayor of Malden, Massachusetts, who will talk about working with local government. And of course, RECON will also include speakers from some of the top local escape room companies.
Theresa Wagner is the Games “Executioner,” in charge of organizing the games at RECON. She talks to us about the different games you’ll experience with your RECON ticket, including Level99, an “escape room amusement park.” We also reveal a surprise announcement that Boda Borg will now be part of the convention offerings.
I was really excited to get a sneak peek at the inner workings of RECON, and to learn more about everything offered at this escape room convention. I hope that after listening to this conversation, you’ll be inspired to join us at RECON in Boston this summer.
In season 3, episode 11, we chat with New York Times bestselling author of The Year of Living Biblically, A.J. Jacobs, about his newest book The Puzzler. A.J. is a self-described “human guinea-pig,” immersing himself deeply, even masochistically, into a given topic and chronicling his experiments, whether it’s living by the Bible literally for a year, or thanking everyone involved in the creation of his morning cup of coffee.
An avid crossword solver, A.J. dives down the rabbit hole of puzzles in his latest book, The Puzzler. He goes on a journey to attempt the world’s hardest puzzles, exploring all the varieties including crosswords, puzzle hunts, mazes, jigsaws, and chess problems. Along the way, he tackles fiendish Japanese puzzle boxes, drags his family to Spain to compete in a jigsaw competition, and even plays an escape room with David and Lisa Spira from Room Escape Artist. The Puzzler is also chock full of puzzles, including a hidden, super-challenging but solvable puzzle that will earn the first reader to crack it a $10,000 prize.
A.J. is a delightful guest with an insatiable curiosity about the world. He talks about his adventures through the puzzle universe and shares some amusing insights that he’s learned along the way. A.J. was funny, knowledgeable, and charming. We know you’ll want to read his book after listening to this podcast.
In season 3, episode 10, we chat with Jeff Leinenveber and Jarrett Lantz, creators of The Nest, an intimate, memorable immersive experience that was a masterclass in environmental storytelling. The Nest unfolded through a series of audio cassette tapes that guests discovered while wandering through a labyrinth of memorabilia and memories.
As former Disney Imagineers, Jarrett and Jeff really showcased their talent in scenic design, crafting a rich narrative through an incredible set that took guests on a dreamlike journey through one woman’s memories. They talk about purposeful design choices meant to foster a sense of intimacy and creating spaces that help further the narrative.
The Nest takes its guests on an emotionally charged journey through lush scenery, carefully selected props, and purposefully designed spaces. Jarrett and Jeff are truly masters of environmental storytelling, and it was a pleasure to have them on the podcast.
In Season 3, episode 9 of REPOD, David and Peih-Gee are joined by David’s wife and REPOD producer Lisa Spira, along with Steve Ewing, the REPOD editor. We take questions and comments from listeners who have called in with voicemails or sent us emails. We had some really thought provoking questions, some lovely compliments about listeners’ favorite episodes, and of course, some hilarious prank calls.
We also got to play some hilarious games designed by Steve and Peih-Gee, themed on our past guests. We absolutely loved hearing from our listeners and had a blast going through our mailbag. I hope you have as much fun listening as we did recording it.
In Season 3, Episode 8, we chat with Chris Waters, The Architect of Constructed Adventures. Chris creates extraordinary customized treasure hunt adventures for special occasions. His experiences are primarily for private clients and have included everything from being picked up in helicopters to getting mysterious envelopes delivered by otters.
Chris is the Willy Wonka of treasure hunts, doling out mysteries and golden prizes. However, instead of secrecy, he is incredibly transparent about what he does, his methods, and what he charges. He was full of tips and tricks for anyone who wants to create adventures for their own friends and family. Chris is passionate, energetic, and charming, and it’s easy to see why The Architect has been so successful in constructing adventures.