If you’re new to escape rooms (or escape games) and not too sure what they’re about, hold on to your hat while we tell you everything you need to know about escape rooms.
The myths, the realities and the burning questions you might be too embarrassed to ask!
Let’s start with: what are escape rooms?
Well, much like the name suggests, an escape room is a room from which you must escape. Yeah, OK, there’s a bit more to them than that. To escape from one of these rooms, you and your team members must find clues to solve a series of fiendishly clever puzzles which lead you to your final escape!
Each room has an immersive theme or a story to follow. You might be travelling through time to save the world, hunting for exotic monsters, or searching for long lost treasure. To solve the mysteries of your room and complete the story, you may need to find hidden objects, identify a sequence to unlock your next clue, or think outside the box (but not the room!) to figure out your next move and path to freedom.
Not all is as it seems… so prepare to be challenged in fun, exciting new ways.
How long do I have to escape?
You generally have 60 minutes to detect and unravel all the clues your escape room holds. The clock starts counting down once you enter and stops once you successfully solve the last piece of the puzzle to obtain your freedom.
And if you don’t solve all your clues before your time runs out, that’s OK. You’ll have great fun trying and you still get to go home.
At Mindshift Escape rooms we’ve also created a 45 minute game designed for kids and adults alike – perfect for kids parties, school holidays or some family fun on the weekend.
What happens if I get stuck on a puzzle?
They’re watching you…!
But not in a creepy way. Game masters will monitor your progress through an escape room puzzle to provide any extra help you might need along the way. The idea is to challenge you – not bore and frustrate you – so if you get stuck, you’ll have access to an extra hint if you need it.
Will I really be locked in the room? What if I get claustrophobic or need to use the bathroom?!!
We don’t want to ruin the fun, but you did ask. Despite the name, the door to your room is never truly locked. The truth is, you can leave at any time if you need to, so there’s no need to worry about how to get out.
However, the clock doesn’t stop if you leave. Which is why we recommend you take a bathroom break BEFORE you start your escape room adventure.
Your team mates won’t want to be deprived of your problem solving insights – and it’s definitely more fun to keep the game going without interruption or your bladder niggling you for attention.
Can anyone solve an escape room?
Escape rooms are designed to be played by teams of your friends, family or even co-workers. Because everyone brings a different set of problem solving abilities, this makes escape rooms ideal for pretty much everyone to play.
There are also different levels of difficulty available. Whether you’re a hard-core brainiac looking for an intense cerebral challenge, or you’re just after a bit of fun, you’ll find an escape room that gives you the level of gameplay you’re after.
The escape rooms at Mindshift cater for all ages and abilities, including a wheel-chair friendly escape room, and rooms suitable for ages 7 upward.
How many people can play?
Most in-person escape rooms are designed for smaller teams of around 2-6 people. This gives you enough space to move around comfortably while you search for clues.
Some games allow for much larger groups and team play. You won’t necessarily all be playing in the same room, but different challenges and formats can be set to ensure a fun, cohesive gameplay experience.
What should I do to prepare to play an escape room game?
Aside from the pre-game bathroom break we mentioned earlier, there’s not much more you need to do to prepare for your escape room adventure except arrive ready to have some fun.
No special clothing is required. You can dress for comfort or you can really embrace the adventure and dress according to the theme of your room. While photography is not permitted in the rooms, it can make the story more exciting and there’s always the chance for photo ops before and after the game.
Our top 5 tricks to solving an escape room
Each escape room is different, but they will all contain a number of puzzles and clues for you to solve in order to escape. Not sure where to start? Here are our top tips:
- Start with a thorough investigation of your room.
To cover the most ground, break up your team into smaller groups to search each section. If you find something you think could be a clue, let the whole team know. Sometimes a clue contains more than one part, so team work is important!
- Be organised.
If possible, put clues or objects you’ve not found a use for in one area, and those you’ve already used in another. Or group objects by theme. It makes it easier to find what you need when you reach the right stage of the game, and ensures you don’t waste precious time.
- Get everyone involved!
Different people in your team will approach challenges in different ways. One person might be great at recognising patterns, but not so good at math-based problems, so if a team member is struggling with a clue, switch things around with someone else. Communication and collaboration is key to escaping your room.
- Don’t force things.
If you can’t get a door, drawer or object open, then either it’s supposed to be locked, or you haven’t yet solved the right clue to open it. Stop. Rethink your approach and see if there is another puzzle you still need to solve.
- Ask for help if you get stuck.
The idea of playing an escape room is to have fun! Which is why you can ask for extra clues or hints if you’re stuck and really don’t know how to progress.
How were escape rooms invented?
It might surprise you to know that escape rooms have only been around since 2004 and the first escape room was a video game created by Toshimitsu Takagi. It wasn’t long before a Japanese company decided a real-life escape room would be even more fun and, in 2007, the first live-action escape rooms were launched.
Today there are more than 40 escape room businesses across Australia, offering hundreds of different themes from family fun to super-scary thrills.
Ready to escape boredom and find adventure?
Of course you are!!
An escape room is a fun, unique way to celebrate a special occasion, build team rapport, or just enjoy the company of family and friends any ol’ time.
Discover new and exciting worlds with Mindshift Escape Rooms. Book your adventure today!