Powerhouse Museum: The International Exhibition of Sherlock Holmes [Review]

SherlockLocation: Powerhouse Museum, Sydney CBD,  SydneyAustralia

Date completed:  August 2017.

Creativity: 6.5; Difficulty: 3.5; Atmosphere: 8.5; Fun: 7

Requirements:

  • Fluent English
  • Adult: $27; Concession: $25; Child (4–16): $16

I’ve always liked visiting Sydney’s Powerhouse Museum since I was a kid. With it’s enormous displays on all manner of transport, space travel and other technology, I was never bored. Over the last decade, the museum has had a number of interesting exhibitions which cater to my geeky side: Star Wars, Harry Potter…  and now, The International Exhibition of Sherlock Holmes. 

Admittedly, interest in the Great Detective was always a thing with Pá but I’ve come to appreciate Arthur Conan Doyle’s creation through the last few years if for no other reason than the mysteries being set in one of my favourite settings – Victorian England. This exhibition takes visitors back 200 years to the era of the Industrial Revolution, rampant crime and incredible developments in science through an interactive adventure. Time to put on a quaint accent, a hat and a carry a walking stick.

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Woodbury Escape Rooms: The Curse of Kidd Island [Review]

woodburyescaperooms_logo-inverseLocation: Woodbury Escape Rooms, South Melbourne, VIC, Australia

Date completed: June 2017 (4 players). Succeeded escaping!

Creativity: 8; Difficulty: 7.5; Atmosphere: 7.5; Fun: 8.5.

Requirements:

  • Fluent English
  • 2-6 players (we recommend 3-4)
  • Acute senses
  • One player not colour blind

Straight after performing as abandoned toys in Little Playful Things, we put on our metaphorical fedora hats to venture into ancient ruins and defy The Curse of Kidd Island. As intrepid tomb raiders explorers working for Omicron Industries, we were hired to find and steal retrieve the Eye of Venus, a supernatural artifact which seems to be tied to the Four Horsemen of Apocalypse.

What we were not told is that the team before us disappeared in mysterious conditions. Once we entered the dark cave, we notice the mission would demand some MacGyver-ish skills…

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Ultimate Roomscape: The Lost Scepter of Tutankhamun [Review]

Location: Ultimate Roomscape, Malaga, Perth, WA, Australia

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Date completed:  January 2017 (3 players). Succeeded escaping!

Creativity: 7.5; Difficulty: 7; Atmosphere: 8; Fun: 8

Requirements:

  • Intermediate English
  • 3-8 players

When an archaeologist brings to light strong evidence that the scepter from Tutankhamun actually exists, you and your team of fellow explorers decide its time to venture inside the famous pharaoh’s tomb and look for the artifact.

However, you soon realise that there was a reason for all the legends of curses and magic surrounding Tutankhamun’s rest place. There is something mysterious in the air, and every new clue will bring answers to the questions buried for thousands of years. Differently from games which define the minimum number of players for business cost reasons, The Lost Scepter of Tutankhamun really requires at least 3 people to be solved. This room can please families looking for a fun time together, beginners and experienced players alike.

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Jetpack Theatre: Art Heist [Review]

jetpackLocation: ‘Wade Galleries’, Dulwich Hill, Sydney , NSW, Australia

Date completed:  July 2017 (4 players). Failed as thieves!

Creativity: 8; Difficulty: varies; Atmosphere: 9; Fun: 8.

Requirements:

  • Fluent English
  • 1-4 players

After our successful foray as bank thieves in Small Time Criminalswe thought we had it covered when we were assigned the job of conducting an Art Heist to retrieve a painting named The Fat Dragon from Wade Galleries. This job turned out harder than expected and hilarious antics and theatrics ensued.

At first glance, the job seemed simple enough. We had 15 minutes to case Wayne Galleries, determine its security layout and then have 45 minutes to steal the mark. After coming up with a relatively simple and straightforward plan, we executed it only to find that the security systems were better than we thought. Huh. No plans survive first contact. We adapted, but we did not overcome.

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Maximum Escape Barcelona: The Dungeon – The Last Round [Review]

main_logo_bgLocation: Maximum Escape, Eixample, BarcelonaSpain

Date completed:  April 2017 (4 players). Succeeded escaping!

Creativity: 7.5; Difficulty: 7; Atmosphere: 9.5; Fun: 9

Requirements:

  • Intermediate English or Spanish (Castillian)
  • 2-4 players
  • Full mobility

While we were waiting for our game to start at Maximum Escape’s reception area, their promotional videos played on a screen. We were laughing at how epic and exaggerated the trailer to The Dungeon – The Last Round seemed to be: everything had a dramatic flair, similar to the images you see in this post. Once the game started, however, we bit our tongues: the place was super-epic and lived up to  the trailer! It was an amazing recreation of a medieval dungeon, with torture tools (safely locked to the walls), lots of wood, stone and narrow dark corridors to explore.

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We were impressed by everything about the setting, but there was little time to spare. In this game, players are prisoners bound to be beheaded at any moment. It is not about locks, puzzles or jigsaws. The Dungeon is a pure escape game: it is your instinct and your raw will to escape that will get you out of there, finding your way through the dungeon maze. Maybe you can get some help from those less fortunate than you…

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Lock-Clock: Aztec Treasure [Review]

lock-clockLocation: Lock-Clock, Gothic Quarter, BarcelonaSpain

Date completed:  April 2017 (5 players). Succeeded escaping!

Creativity: 8; Difficulty: 5.5; Atmosphere: 8.5; Fun: 8.5

Requirements:

  • No language required; hints in English or Spanish (Castilian)
  • 2-5 players

Yo-ho-ho, a pirate’s life for me! Yarr… Actually, no really. They would spend months in the sea pillaging and lacking vitamins, which is not all that appealing. But everyone has played pirates before, right? And their popularity has had a recent resurgence, reinforced in recent years with the Pirates of the Caribbean movie franchise and Black Sails tv series. A key part of this genre has been the treasures taken from the new world, shipped back to the Spanish crown in treasure fleets, which were some of the prime targets of pirates because they would transport tons of gold and silver from Latin America to Europe.

Lock-Clock used the historical background of Spanish navigation to create a very fun and family-friendly escape room, Aztec Treasure (Tesoro Azteca, in Castilian). You are the assistant team to Captain Pablo in a galleon loaded with gold. In an unfortunate night a storm hits and the ship is sinking! Your mission is to recover as much of the treasure as you can. If you will retrieve it for your boss or sell it to the pirates later, it’s your call… But find the gold coins, yaaarrrr!!!

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Realmz: Curse of the Mummy [Review]

realmz-logoLocation: Realmz Escape Game, Morley, Perth, WA, Australia

Date completed:  January 2017 (3 players). Succeeded escaping!

Creativity: 8.5; Difficulty: 7.5; Atmosphere: 9; Fun: 9

Requirements:

  • Fluent English
  • 45-minute room
  • 2-5 players

If you have ever been to a big amusement park, such as Universal Studios or Disney World, you have probably been to those rides full of animatronics, sounds, lights and things moving around you. Curse of the Mummy feels like that – as if you had just entered a movie set or one of those “Disney World-esque” places. It is beautiful. The attention to detail is amazing. It was so much fun! Do not be fooled by Realmz’s simple entrance door! Once you step into the tomb, you will probably be surprised by your surroundings.

Then you ask “ok, but what’s the deal?” The deal is that in ancient times, a particular pharaoh was not allowed to complete his transcendence to the other world after death. Those who manage to bring back honour to this pharaoh’s name and complete the trip into the afterlife “shall be granted wealth and power beyond their wildest imaginations”. Sounds good! However, those who fail must perish inside his eternal tomb. Not so good…

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