Hatch Escapes – Mother of Frankenstein [Review]

Love, scandal, & puzzles

Location:  at home

Date Played: September 13, 2020

Team size: 1-6; we recommend 2-3

Duration: 3-5 hours

Price: back on Kickstarter at $89 for the standard edition of the game

REA Reaction

Mother of Frankenstein was a narrative-driven experience with ample puzzle content.

Hatch Escapes has a history of putting story at the center of their productions. One of their co-founders Tommy Wallach is a New York Times bestselling author… and his expertise showed in Mother of Frankenstein. The writing was fantastic, which it needed to be. When a company makes the bold decision to retell the story of one of history’s most significant authors through an immersive narrative, writing quality matters.

Beyond the writing, Mother of Frankenstein included high quality puzzles and production (of the beta version). The Astronomy puzzle in particular was a standout puzzle, not just in this game; it ranks among my favorite puzzles.

An assortment of red, green, and brown interlocking tracks each with a symbol in the center.

We played about 40% of the full 3-volume game, and between that experience and hearing more about what is coming next, I can comfortably say that we are sold on Mother of Frankenstein.

If you’re down for a narrative-focused experience with puzzle content evenly and thoroughly dispersed throughout, I’d strongly recommend backing this beast on Kickstarter. I’m already eager to continue the journey.

Who is this for?

  • Story seekers
  • Puzzle lovers
  • Any experience level

Why play?

  • Exceptional writing, characterization, and voicing
  • Solid puzzling with a couple of true standouts

Story

Over the course of 3 volumes, Mother of Frankenstein reimagined the life and experiences of Mary Shelley that led to her writing Frankenstein. Shelley was quite the interesting character in her own right.

A welcome letter tied off with red, green, and brown ribbon.
Continue reading “Hatch Escapes – Mother of Frankenstein [Review]”

Omescape – Pursuit of Assassin Artist [Hivemind Review]

Pursuit of Assassin Artist is a time loop escape game, created for livestreamed play through an avatar, created by Omescape in San Jose, CA.

The artist walking around in his home.

Format

Style of Play: time loop-style escape room, livestreamed and played through an avatar, and designed for livestream play

Required Equipment: computer with internet connection, phone that can call a US number

Recommended Team Size: 2-4

Play Time: 90 minutes

Price: $179 per team, for up to 8 connections

Booking: book online for a specific time slot.

Description

This was a typical avatar-driven game with a pair of twists.

  1. There was a live actor as antagonist.
  2. Your avatar was a character trapped in a time loop. If you – through the avatar – make a critical failure, the avatar dies, and your avatar immediately returns to the start of the game with no memory of what has happened. Everything in the game world resets.

Expect the unexpected. This game plays with time resets, character improvisation, outside knowledge, and accumulated knowledge. Be ready for anything.

Hivemind Review Scale

Now Available: The 2020 State of the Industry RECON Session Video

This fall RECON is rereleasing each Featured Talk from this summer’s RECON ’20 Global. These talks will all be made accessiblefor free on the Room Escape Artist YouTube.

Our talk titled 2020: The State of the Escape Room Industry is now available!

Featured Talk Information

Photo of Lisa and David of Room Escape Artist in their wedding clothes dramatically escaping a bank vault.
Photo by Michael Zawadzki

Details: Originally presented on Monday, August 24 at 10:00 (New York)

Speakers: Lisa and David Spira

Company: Room Escape Artist

Abstract: The main theme of RECON ‘20 is one word: Adapt. Adaptation is what the state of the escape room industry demands today. Lisa and David Spira discuss how the industry had been trending at the start of the year, themes that have emerged during 2020, and their predictions for the future. They share data-driven findings, as well as their thoughts and intuitions from writing, playing, traveling, and conversing with this community. Here is a deeper look at how this industry is uniquely positioned in a global crisis, and how that drives creators to adapt.

Watch Party & Conversation

One of the most amazing parts of RECON was experiencing the Featured Talks with others. For this talk in particular, this perk of a digital RECON was surreal for us, since we could chat with you as our own talk streamed. And we’re excited to do it again tomorrow night!

Plus, if you thought our live Q&A was too short, you’re in luck. We’ll continue that conversation live tomorrow night in the RECON Discord.

Details

Date: Wednesday, September 23

Time: You can join the watch party starting at exactly 8:15pm (NYC time), or just join in on the post-video conversation at 9:00pm (NYC time).

Location: The RECON Discord

If you’re not already registered for RECON, you can register here.

6 Year US Escape Room Industry Report

On August 24, after delivering this session at RECON, we published the 6 Year US Escape Room Industry Report.

The data we’ve collected to create the Room Escape Artist Directory is the backbone of this data-backed look at this industry, and how it’s changed over the past 6 years.

New Data Initiatives

We mention in the talk that we are looking for folks willing to share their data to contribute to industry research efforts. If you’re interested in being contacted about future industry research opportunities, please fill out this form:

About RECON ’20

RECON ’20 was Room Escape Artist’s digital escape room convention featuring 15 pre-recorded talks, live Q&As, and over 30 exhibitors. We had over 900 attendees from 62 countries watching and participating live.

Each of the 15 talks will be made available for free on our YouTube channel this fall. We’ll release one each week.

Please subscribe to the RECON Newsletter to receive updates on RECON ’21 – we are just getting started.

Support RECON

This event including all the Featured Talks were produced for free, but we couldn’t do this without the support of our Patreon Backers. If you receive value from these videos, and have the means to support this effort, we would love to have you join our Patreon community.

Oblivity – The Profoctor Predicament [Hivemind Review]

The Profoctor Predicament is a light puzzle hunt created by Oblivity, and set in the world of their podcast.

A person with a rougish look and an eye patch standing beside a uniformed person with a blading head and 1 finger raised.

Format

Style of Play: light puzzle hunt with many audio and video clips for the story

Required Equipment: computer with internet connection

Of note, the printer is optional, but some reviewers found having printed materials to be extremely helpful.

Recommended Team Size: 1-4

Play Time: The website says there is no time pressure and the game is about the experience, so it should be enjoyed over a couple of hours, with snacks. It’s probably about 60-90 minutes, more if you engage with all the audio and video material.

Price: £5

Booking: To get The Profoctor Predicament, go to their Ko-fi page, linked from their website, and give at least £5. You’ll receive an automated Ko-fi email receipt containing your 8-digit pass-code. Use your pass-code to start the game from the link on their website.

Description

The game takes place within The Profoctor Predicament online game space, and players are advanced from one section to the next by entering numerical answers to puzzles. There is a “base journal” that contains all of the puzzles, and it may be printed or downloaded. Hints are received as audio, video, and written clues, all delivered in character by cartoon figures that represent the cast of the Oblivity podcast. There is no video chat interface for the team of players. We set up our own Google Meet, and then divided up the puzzles.

A maniacal looking person sitting in a futuristic chair in front of a smiliarly complex computer and screen setup.

Hivemind Review Scale

Mystery Mansion Regina – The Detective’s Office [Hivemind Review]

The Detective’s Office is a Real-life escape room livestreamed and played through an avatar created by Mystery Mansion Regina in Regina, Canada.

An old desk with a typewriter.

Format

Style of Play: real-life escape room livestreamed and played through an avatar

Required Equipment: computer with an internet connection; pen and paper were helpful

Recommended Team Size: 2-4

Play Time: about an hour

Price: $21 CAD per ticket

Booking:

Description

This is a standard avatar adaptation of a live escape room, which includes a first-person live view of the room, a separate webpage for keeping track of your inventory, and interactive views of the room.

Image of a gloved hand using a crowbar on a door.

Hivemind Review Scale