Lock Paper Scissors – Lost Mummy [Hivemind Review]

Lost Mummy is a print-and-play escape game created by Lock Paper Scissors.

Lost Mummy art depicts a redheaded adventurer descending into a tomb by rope.

Format

Style of Play:

  • Play on demand
  • Print-and-play

Required Equipment: computer with internet connection, printer, pen and paper, scissors, tape or glue

Recommended Team Size: 1-4

Play Time: no game clock, but adult players took about 30 minutes.

One reviewer set up this game for her kids. She notes, “my kids took about an hour, including the search elements I added.”

Price: $29

Booking: purchase and play at your leisure

Description

You are on a quest to use your grandfather’s journals to find a lost mummy near Tutankhamun’s tomb.

The most basic form of this quest is a table top experience in which you print, cut, assemble, and analyze five puzzles. You capture answers on a central mission page. To verify the answers, you consult an online hint/ solution guide (which is also available in the game’s ZIP file).

However, beyond this basic setup, this game was designed to be used as a kit for creating an escape room party. For the party version of the game, a host prepares and hides the puzzle components throughout a room. In this setup, players have the added task of determining which pieces of information correspond to which puzzle. This version can be enhanced with an optional physical challenge at the end.

Hivemind Review Scale

Crux Club – Mob Treasure [Hivemind Review]

Mob Treasure is a puzzle book treasure hunt created by Crux Club.

Mob Treasure book cover and open book displaying a puzzle.

Format

Style of Play:

  • Book
  • Light puzzle hunt
  • Play on demand

Required Equipment: computer with internet connection, mobile device, pen and paper, scissors

Expect to use an internet-connected device (phone or PC) to do research for some of the puzzles.

Recommended Team Size: 1-3

Play Time: No game clock. Chapters took anywhere from 10 minutes to an hour or so of active puzzling.

Price: $15.99

Booking: purchase and play at your leisure

Description

In this book, you are on a quest to find the rumored treasure of mobster Dutch Schultz. This treasure hunt is divided into fifteen chapters full of illustrations and a bit of text, and each chapter contains about five puzzles. To solve each puzzle, you must analyze the information within the chapter and sometimes consult outside sources. You verify your answer by comparing it to the solution list in the back of the book. Once you have completed all of the puzzles within a chapter, you may proceed to the next chapter.

CodinGame – Coding Escape [Hivemind Review]

Coding Escape is a selection of online escape games created by CodinGame.

For this review, we played The Steam House and Finding Sherlock – The Apartment. At the present, these are the only games publicly available, and they’re both free. You’ll need to create an account to see these. They aren’t immediately visible on the website.

An illustrated study beside a code editor.

Format

Style of Play:

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

Required Equipment: computer with internet connection

Recommended Team Size: 2-4

Play Time: less than 1 hour for each game

Price: basic games are free

Booking: purchase and play at your leisure

Description

Players choose to play as coders or non-coders. Gameplay is fairly standard: make connections to solve puzzles. Non-coders solve everything manually, but coders have the chance to write lines of code that will provide solutions to the puzzles when given the correct input. There is a shared screen for all teammates to see.

Hivemind Review Scale

Captured LV Bethlehem – The Haunted Theater [Review]

Someone left the ghost light on…

Location:  Bethlehem, PA

Date Played: July 25, 2021

Team Size: 4-7; we recommend 2-6 (though the current minimum booking is 4 players)

Duration: 60 minutes

Price: $28.50 per player; minimum of 4 players

Ticketing: Private

Accessibility Consideration: One step, not necessary for all players

Emergency Exit Rating: [A+] No Lock

Physical Restraints: [A+] No Physical Restraints

REA Reaction

Captured LV’s latest game at their Bethlehem, PA location might be new, but the game itself is a spooky time capsule taking you back to the 1920s. The designers of The Haunted Theater clearly wanted to evoke the creepiness inherent in an abandoned and possibly haunted location. I believe they achieved that through a mix of sound, lighting, and possibly some supernatural help.

A well-lit makeup mirror over a desk backstage at a theatre.

The Haunted Theater was an entertaining room to be in, and I would have liked to have played longer. Admittedly, our team of three set the top time for escaping, but we did this without trying for it. This isn’t an attempt at a humblebrag; it’s just to point out that there was some more time and underutilized space to incorporate another puzzle or two.

Not only were most of the puzzles very on-theme for a spooky theater back room, but every puzzle in The Haunted Theater was fun to work through. Each team member went back to a device that had been used already just to play with it. The experience as a whole was very enjoyable. There were almost always multiple puzzles open to solve at any time, allowing each player to stay busy and engaged in the game. If you’re in the area, this is a game worth checking out.

Who is this for?

  • Story seekers
  • Scenery snobs
  • Musical theater fans
  • Any experience level
  • Players who don’t need to be a part of every puzzle
Continue reading “Captured LV Bethlehem – The Haunted Theater [Review]”

Escape.exe – Site 117 [Review]

Escaping: 101

Location:  Bethlehem, PA

Date Played: July 25, 2021

Team Size: 3+; we recommend 3-6

Duration: 60 minutes

Price: $29.99 per player

Ticketing: Private

Emergency Exit Rating: [A+] No Lock

Physical Restraints: [A+] No Physical Restraints

REA Reaction

The team at escape.exe has set their sights on a very ambitious format: a series of escape rooms all woven into a detailed story. This story starts on their website and carries over into their first in-person escape room. Site: 117 was puzzle-dense and tech-heavy.

We were helped along by escape.exe’s A.I. companion GAVIN. (To note, the company escape.exe also exists as a company in its own lore.) GAVIN was our friend, offering us vital information and occasional nudges. At times GAVIN was a little too present, and sorting out the difference between banter and important game cluing was a touch difficult with everything else going on.

A locker room in leading into a clean room.

Site: 117 gave our team the chance to spread out among multiple parallel puzzle paths. This allowed each teammate to not only find something personally interesting to solve, but also something that played to their individual strengths. Of particular note were the puzzles that were enhanced by coordinating and communicating with other team members. We all know that communication is important, and Site: 117 gave us plenty of opportunities to practice it. The narrative comes to a meaningful conclusion at the end of the experience, setting players up for the next game. If you’re in the area, you should stop by and check out escape.exe’s first chapter.

Who is this for?

  • Story seekers
  • Puzzle lovers
  • Sci-fi fans
  • Best for players with at least some experience
  • Players who don’t need to be a part of every puzzle
Continue reading “Escape.exe – Site 117 [Review]”