Escape Room is an adventure game where players enter a room and solve a number of puzzles and riddles with the use of hints, clues and strategy to reach a final goal – escape. There will be a time limit for them to unveil the secret plot that leads to their goal.
Escape rooms are fun and great for team-building, but they are also serious mind-busters. On your next adventure, remember the following:
1. Be united as a team but avoid bunching.
This is rather basic advice but it comes with a catch when applied to escape rooms. In a well-designed escape adventure, players usually get pulled a fast one with various parts of the same puzzle scattered inside the room. Thus, all members of your group should be hunting around for hints instead of standing around a few. The usual scenario is that when somebody finds something, everybody rushes to it, and at that moment, they start to fail.
2. Call it out.
Each time you find a good clue, announce it to everyone. As the game begins, it’s not even the puzzle you should think about, but the plot. And each time someone calls out what they’ve seen, they put everyone else into the same boat. The most crucial part at this stage is making everyone look at the same direction.
3. Be decisive and swallow your pride.
When they get comfortable thinking they have an entire hour, they may dilly-dally during the first few critical minutes. When they realize the trouble they’re in, it’s usually too late. Therefore, get that sense of urgency started from the get-go.
Ask for hints if necessary, and no, that’s NOT CHEATING. Forget pride and ask as soon as possible, not when you have 5 minutes to go. Who doesn’t want to be a Sherlock, but if you also want to win, be more like Columbo – ask questions!.
4. Think like an engineer.
The best escape rooms are often designed by mechanical, software and electrical engineers, so try to get into their wavelength when you’re running out of ideas. Because almost everything you’ll find in an escape room is custom-built, there is a 99.9% chance that everything in it will be useful at some point. Take mental notes and be open to working backwards.
4. Also think like a writer.
You read it right, a writer. After all, what is an escape room if it has no plot? If all is said and done and you haven’t moved a bit, get in a storyteller’s mind. Just imagine what would make sense from the perspective of a narrative. If you’re a Lit major, it’s time to get to work.