Gone are the days of sitting around in your pants, eating leftover pizza whilst trying desperately to unlock the next level in Tony Hawks Pro Skater, as we welcome the world of Escape Rooms in Sydney.
Designed to test your lateral-thinking, ingenuity, team-bonding skills and logic, the rooms are real-life gaming experiences, and even for non-gamers such as myself, they quickly become highly addictive as you race against the clock to escape and save the universe!
Having read about such rooms across London and New York, I was surprised to hear that there are in fact six here in Sydney, each with at least two different “games” to crack, ready to bamboozle you at every hurdle.
Think the Crystal Maze combined with the Crypton Factor. You have one hour to solve puzzles and riddles to move from one room to another (by unlocking codes, hidden keys and padlocks), all the while with really no idea exactly what you are looking for.
The idea is not to know anything in particular; you don’t need to be an expert of Ancient Greek, but more so, to touch and pick up everything, to smell things, to look for hidden clues, to communicate with your team-mates, in order to move quickly through the rooms before the time runs out and you fail your mission.
You are constantly monitored on CCTV and can be provided with subtle hints throughout via walky-talky (think Jim Carrey’s “The Riddler” character in Batman, so I just got even more confused!) with the idea that once you have completed the mission (or fail it like we did), you are then giving some feedback on why, as like in our case, you did not save the Universe because you spent too long on the first puzzle.
It is a great team exercise, extremely fun, frustrating and somewhat overwhelming with the initial question always “what exactly am I looking for?”, when entering the rooms. So get out there, go save the universe and fry your brains at the same time!
Find out more Escape Rooms at www.enigmaroom.com.au.
By Ash Leszczuk