Dimensis: Deep Space [Review]

dimensisLocation: Deep Space, Brunswick (Melbourne), VIC, Australia

Date completed: January 2018 (4 players). We survived!

Creativity: 9.5; Difficulty: 7.5; Atmosphere: 10; Fun: 9.5.

Requirements:

  • 2-4 players (we recommend 4)
  • 70 minute room
  • Fluent English
  • Acute senses
  • Full mobility

As advertised in the Dimensis website, when players venture into Deep Space, they may find themselves having to deal with inexplicable spaceship malfunctions, a friendly onboard AI, and trying to survive while something else makes its way onto the ship. Earlier this year, four of us ventured on board the Ishtar VII to explore a new star system.

One of our players had already tried the game before and indicated that there were several endings for Deep Space. Intrigued by this, I wondered whether we would be able to get the ‘perfect’ ending. Instead, what we found was that this game operates within nuanced moral grey zones and that there were no real ‘right’ choices, only consequences which determined our chances of survival. Houston, we had so many problems!

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Trapt: Biohazard [Review]

TraptLocation: Trapt, Melbourne CBD, VIC, Australia

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

Creativity: 5; Difficulty: 6.5; Atmosphere: 5.5; Fun: 6.5.

Requirements:

  • 2-6 players
  • Fluent English
  • 45 minute room

Most escape room enthusiasts have probably already noticed that mixing a secret laboratory with a biohazardous experiment doesn’t end well most times. In Biohazard, something went wrong in a high-security government laboratory and the scientists have not been heard from in days. To make things “easier”, you don’t know what they were researching or who they are.

The only information you’ve been given is that your specialist retrieval team must enter the facility and search for the scientists. If there are any survivors, retrieve them and exit as quick as possible. The mission lasts 45 minutes, and after that the military will destroy the facility for safety reasons – and everything inside, including your team.

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Trapt: Wonderland [Review]

TraptLocation: Trapt, Melbourne CBD, VIC, Australia

Date completed: October 2017 (2 players). Succeeded escaping!

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

Requirements:

  • Very fluent / Native English
  • Full mobility
  • 45 minute room

When we had our most recent opportunity to visit Melbourne, Trapspringer and I went to play Wonderland at Trapt. Although it is not new, the game still receives very good comments.  Wonderland, as the name suggests, is inspired in the adventures of ‘Alice in Wonderland’ and ‘Through the Looking Glass’, some of the world’s greatest references in fantasy and nonsense genres. There is hardly a media without a version of Alice’s adventures: movies, plays, songs, videogames. It was just a matter of time for escape rooms to have their go, as the story itself is rich in brain-teasers and games.

“Have you guessed the riddle yet?” – “No, I give it up, what’s the answer?” – “I haven’t the slightest idea”.  This conversation between Alice and the Mad Hatter, in chapter 7 of the book, could very much be escape room chat!

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PAX Australia 2017 Panel: Behind the Hidden Door

22179978_127486074575081_5900641369381559922_oLocation: PAX Australia 2017, Melbourne Convention Centre, VIC
When: 28 October 2017
Panel: Jesse and Chris (Riddle Room), Matt (Enigma Room), Rohan (Cubescape), Josh (Mystery Rooms), Pa! (where else?)

I can’t believe its been a full year since we last headed to Melbourne to cover the escape room panel for PAX Australia! Time has passed (too) quickly and many escape rooms have been played. Pa was fortunate enough to be invited this time around to sit Behind the Hidden Door and fly the flag for our blog at this year’s panel. Attending PAX as a panelist? Achievement unlocked.

With so much development in the Australian escape room industry through 2017, it was hard to nail down any single topic to cover. Matt from Enigma Room came up with an ingenious idea to spur discussion this year – the audience would submit their questions by paper plane. They weren’t given much warning this would happen and those who managed to land their question into a box got first dibs at being presented to the panel.

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The Mystery Rooms: Chapter 3 – The Last Stand [Review]

mystery-headerlogoLocation: The Mystery Rooms, Fitzroy (Melbourne), VIC, Australia

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

Creativity: 10Difficulty: 9; Atmosphere: 8.5; Fun: 8.5.

Requirements:

  • Fluent English
  • 4-6 players
  • One player not colour blind

The search for the talisman of Courage is the background story for Mystery Room’s Chapter 3 – The Last Stand, in continuation of the adventures of Chapter 1 and Chapter 2. This room is based on a real character of Australian history: the bushranger Ned Kelly, famous for battling local authorities in an improvised suit of armour. (For readers not from Australia, bushrangers were outlaws of the outback in the 19th century). As mentioned in the company’s website, “whether viewed as a hero or villain, opinion is united that few would have had the courage to walk in his footsteps, fighting for his beliefs all the way towards his ultimate and perhaps inevitable demise.”

The talisman players must find is a green scarf awarded to Ned Kelly when he was 11 years old for saving a younger lad from drowning. This memento would be worn by Ned Kelly during his last stand at Glenrowan, Victoria, in 1880 and it is just prior to this event that players will find themselves transported to. The portal to the past remains open for one hour in which the talisman of Courage must be found!

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The Mystery Rooms: Chapter 2 – The Medieval Quest [Review]

mystery-headerlogoLocation: The Mystery Rooms, Fitzroy (Melbourne), VIC, Australia

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

Creativity: 10Difficulty: 7.5 to 8.5; Atmosphere: 8; Fun: 9.

Requirements:

  • Fluent English
  • 4-6 players
  • One player not colour blind

In the second part of Mystery Room’s adventure to restore the separation between the real world and fantasy world, players are invited to join the Knights of the Round Table and discover what happened to the legendary sword, Excalibur. Chapter 2 – The Medieval Quest is a huge game set in Camelot,  and players must use Merlin’s magic to help King Arthur and recover Excalibur, a talisman for Strength.

Although it is called Chapter 2, Medieval Quest was the first game we played at Mystery Rooms. The three first chapters can be played in any order and the numbers are more of an indicative of “era” (older history first) and difficulty (easiest first). We ventured through Avalon with a couple of friends who were facing an escape room for the first time, and the four of us had a blast until the last thrilling seconds!

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The Mystery Rooms: Chapter 1 – The Lost Tomb [Review]

mystery-headerlogoLocation: The Mystery Rooms, Fitzroy (Melbourne), VIC, Australia

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

Creativity: 10Difficulty: 8; Atmosphere: 9; Fun: 9.5.

Requirements:

  • Basic English
  • 4-6 players
  • Acute senses
  • Full mobility

The borders between the Fantasy World and the Real World are crumbling. To restore them and avoid an invasion by ill-intended magical creatures, a secret organization called GRIMM recruited you and your friends too look for the talismans of Strength, Knowledge and Courage and restore the separation between realms.

This is the story behind all Mystery Rooms games, in Melbourne. Chapter 1 – The Lost Tomb is the adventure to recover the Book of Dead, talisman for Knowledge, lost in the Ancient Egypt eras ago. Players are sent back to Cleopatra’s time, and the first thing they will notice is that the desert has a lot of sand. According to our GM, Mystery Rooms used seven tons of sand to build this room. We recommend exploring it barefoot!

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