Trapped Puzzle Rooms – The Spielburger Box Set [Hivemind Review]

The Spielburger Box Set is a tabletop escape game created by Trapped Puzzle Rooms in St. Paul, MN.

An assortment of parody DVD boxes beside a bowl of popcorn including, "The Boonies" "Indiana Bones," and "Mandibles."

Format

Style of Play:

  • tabletop escape game
  • play on demand
  • includes video elements
  • light puzzle hunt

Required Equipment: computer with internet connection (or mobile device), pen and paper, scissors, tape

Recommended Team Size: 1-4

Play Time: 3-6 hours

Price: $45.95

Booking: purchase, wait for the game to ship to you, and play at your leisure

Description

This game is a set of puzzles based on punny knock-offs of Steven Spielberg movies. Each of the 5 chapters (movies) has two paper puzzles whose answers you validate via a website. You will go back and forth between the puzzles in the box and the website. You can play the 5 game chapters in any order. There is a short series of meta-puzzles at the end.

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Exit: The Game – The Enchanted Forest [Hivemind Review]

The Enchanted Forest is a tabletop escape game created by Exit: The Game.

Exit The Game - The Enchanted Forest box art depicts a living tree reaching out for a frog prince.

Format

Style of Play: tabletop escape game

Required Equipment: scissors, pen & paper

No digital components needed! Unplug and play.

Recommended Team Size: 2-3

Play Time: 1-2 hours

Price: about $15

Booking: purchase and play at your leisure

Description

This game used the standard format for novice Exit: The Game installments. You have access to a puzzle book, clue cards, various “strange items,” and a decoder wheel for entering the solutions to puzzles. In the novice games like this one, the puzzle book walks you through one puzzle at a time. As in all Exit: The Game installments, you must embrace destroying various parts of the game to solve some of the puzzles.

Assorted box elements include a deck of cards, an image that looks like it's from a fairy tale, a decoder wheel, a glowing red maple leaf, and a card with the box art labeled, "Once upon a time..."
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Clue HQ – The Warp Core Part 3 [Hivemind Review]

The Warp Core Part 3 is a point-and-click game in Telescape, created by Clue HQ in the UK.

The Warp Core title screen.

Format

Style of Play:

  • Adaptation of an in-person game (can be played IRL)
  • Play on-demand
  • Web-based inventory system
  • Point-and-click
  • Video-based experience

Required Equipment: computer with internet connection

Recommended Team Size: 2-4

Play Time: 60 minutes

Price: £15 per team

Booking: purchase and play at your leisure

Description

This is an avatar-less Telescape game that provides 360-degree room views with hotspots that reveal more detail. You complete puzzles by clicking on interactive elements to enter information. You also collect and use inventory items, but you don’t have to actively manage them. They appear on the screen when they are useful.

The space you view in Telescape looks like a game you could play in person, but the online puzzles seemed to be altered or completely different from any possible real-life version.

The time machine's interior as viewed through Telescape.

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escape.exe – The Butterfly Effect [Hivemind Review]

The Butterfly Effect is a point-and-click game created by escape.exe.

An elaborate hall with an invite letter labeled, "You have accepted our invitation."

Format

Style of Play:

  • Online native experience (can NOT be played IRL)
  • Play on-demand
  • Point-and-click

Required Equipment: computer with internet connection, pen & paper

Recommended Team Size: 1-2

Play Time: unlimited, plan on 1.5-2 hours

Price: $10

Booking: purchase and play at your leisure

Description

You are trapped in an art gallery that consists of several rows of paintings. You navigate the gallery using a set of directional buttons, which takes you from painting to painting or from row to row. You can click an “interact” button to interact with some paintings and other objects. When you find clues, you must figure out where and how to enter the information. If you are correct, you trigger various changes in the environment.

You need to play this in one session since it does not save progress. Also, there is no hint system. If you are stuck, you are stuck.

An art gallery like space with installations on walls throughout.

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Murder Mystery Dinner Party – Mystery, Incorporated! [Hivemind Review]

Mystery, Incorporated! is a Scooby-Doo-themed murder mystery game played in Zoom, created by Murder Mystery Dinner Party.

Player post-game, everyone is dressed like Scooby characters.

Format

Style of Play:

  • Online native experience (can NOT be played IRL)
  • Interactive NPCs
  • Immersive theater

Required Equipment: computer with internet connection, pen & paper

It helps to print out the inventory sheet that’s emailed to you before the game.

Recommended Team Size: 6 players

We recommend you bring your own group to this one, rather than joining a public booking.

Play Time: 90-120 minutes

Price: We cannot find this information published anywhere. We recommend contacting the company for pricing.

Booking: book online for a specific time slot OR purchase and play at your leisure

Description

The game worked by getting everyone in a Zoom call, taking pictures in costume with imaginary props, giving a light description of why we were all gathered here, and intermittently breaking out into Zoom breakout rooms in order to “solve the mystery.”

When we were invited into the breakout rooms, it was only with our “team,” either the Gang or the Cronies. You got together with your team several times in order to “investigate the murder” aka look at a 60-second “video” (best as I can tell this was an image with candle flickers) and try to note the items that you saw in the image that were also on your tracking sheet.

During these breakout sessions, you’d ask the breakout room host questions about the image and you’d receive a short description of the space related to that item. Repeat until you’d asked to assess all of the evidence you’d found and determined who you’d accuse as the murderer.

The investigations in the breakout rooms formed the basis of the information that we needed to solve the mystery. If we didn’t get all the information, there was no way to go back.

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