Labyrinth Escape Rooms: Mad Scientist [Review]

LabyrinthLocation: Labyrinth Escape Roooms, Parramatta (Sydney), NSW, Australia

Date completed:  Apr 2016 (2 players). Succeeded escaping!

Creativity: 8.5; Difficulty: 8.5; Atmosphere: 8; Fun: 8.5.

Requirements:

  • Fluent English
  • 2-6 players.

Mad Scientist has designed a elixir which can bring the dead back to life. The government is on his tracks and wants to claim the elixir for military purposes! We’ve been sent into the Scientist’s lab to retrieve this precious commodity before the government agents arrive in an hour. It would seem that we’re on the side of the Scientist and this led us to think ‘Government gets elixir, weaponised zombies. Mad Scientist gets it back, that’ll probably result in zombies too’. Either way…. Go team zombie!

Having had an excellent time in our previous play through of Labyrinth Escape Rooms’ Insane Asylum,  Pa and I had been planning to return for a while to try Mad Scientist. Luckily, we were able to do so recently and what a room!

The laboratory setting of Mad Scientist fused the horror and mad scientist genres to make to make a somewhat hair raising escape room. It starts tranquilly enough. A dark laboratory with the types of measuring equipment and glassware you expect to see. A desk…. Past this point, the latter half of the game truly amps up in the horror rating. 😀 The atmosphere is enhanced by good use of sound (with some great voice acting to boot) and it was very nice to see a well decorated room with items in excellent condition and good locks/props.

lab1Compared with Insane Asylum, the laboratory feels slightly smaller, however, it is still a very large escape room. Although the game progressed in a linear manner, there was enough space and sufficient amount of activities to keep a team of 3-4 busy and the start of the room would allow larger groups to tackle multiple tasks in parallel. Certainly, it was not an easy room either and was quite demanding playing with only two.

To find the elixir, players will need methodical search skills, and work with torches to navigate the dark;  a good mind for associating different clues; focus; and willingness to get in amongst it and participate. Activities which included the types of things you would do in high school chemistry blended well into the setting and the physical component is very prominent in the puzzles and tasks of the room.

One thing we really liked about the structure of this room is how the many puzzles and tasks were very layered and chained to achieve a good flow for most of the game. An activity requiring one type of logic/thinking would chain flawlessly to another requiring a different way of looking at things.

lab2The room also breaks up the pattern alternating some of these ‘puzzle chains’ with fairly straightforward tasks. Basically, Labyrinth have created an escape room which requires focus. I can’t stress this last point enough towards the end at the final activity, which is a test of focus and what is termed in the military as ‘tactical patience’. This ‘final boss’ acts as a funnel and only one to two people will be able to make any real contribution at any given time. Don’t rush this one. Take your time, plan things out and don’t get frustrated with your teammates. Let them think. I suspect larger groups with a good team dynamic should be able to see this one coming and react accordingly.

After 3 hints and 53 minutes, we got out of the Mad Scientists’ laboratory with the elixir. This was a tough one. Give it a go if you have the chance!

Out of the room

Service: Jeremy the gamemaster was spot on and asked us if we needed hints only when we were stuck. He monitored us very well and left us alone for most part to allow us to develop our own flow to the game. After the game, we bumped into the owners of Labyrinth Escape Rooms, Joan and Frank, and had a very  nice talk on escape rooms. As always, Labyrinth does extremely well with customer service and if our blog did scored this aspect, these guys would get 10 everytime.

Labyrinth has a simple but clean waiting room, with lockers for player’s belongings. After the game we were offered cold water.

Communication: You talk to the walls and they reply back. Simple as that.

Surroundings: Parramatta is a district a bit far from Sydney CBD and driving is probably the best way to get there. If you do, you will find many places to eat on the way.

In Labyrinth, we have also played Insane Asylum and Mexican Cartel.

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