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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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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Next Level Escape: Ex Libris [Review]

NextLevelEscape-LogoLocation: Next Level Escape, Centre Point, Sydney , NSW, Australia

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

Creativity: 10Difficulty: 9; Atmosphere: 8.5; Fun: 9.5.

Requirements:

  • Fluent English
  • 2-10 players
  • Acute senses
  • 1 team member not colour blind

If you ever checked the About Us page, you will see that I describe myself as a bookworm. Before I became a puzzle-lover, little Pá was already a book lover, always with her eyes on some fantastic story. When we were invited by Next Level Escape to try their room, Ex Libris, I was immediately excited. A room about literature? In which you are trapped inside the book world? Why would I even want to escape from there? 😀

The risk of great expectations is that if they are not met, you can get really disappointed. That was not the case in Ex Libris, which was a beautiful, great escape room, with a myriad of tasks and puzzles of various types that fitted beautifully in its literary theme. Maybe people who are not so fond of literature may not feel as excited. But for me, who had Hercules, Frodo and Narizinho as some of my best childhood pals, it was a delightful experience.

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Social Escape: Baker Street Mystery  [Beta Test Review]

sociallogoLocation: Social Escape, Alexandria, Sydney , NSW, Australia

Date completed:  October 2016 (2 players). Failed… We were so close!

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

Requirements:

  • 2-6 players
  • 1 team member not colour blind
  • Fluent English

We were recently invited by Mark, the owner and gamemaster of Social Escape, to test out their hard level escape room in the Baker Street Mystery. After we warmed up our brains by playing Paris Escape, we took on the role of detectives who had one hour to solve a murder mystery and dismantle the notorious Baker Street Five – a high profile gang that has been terrorizing Victorian London. This room had a constant pace, witty riddles and clever puzzles which defeated us. But we were so close!

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Social Escape: Paris Escape [Beta Test Review]

sociallogoLocation: Social Escape, Alexandria, Sydney , NSW, Australia

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

Creativity: 7; Difficulty: 4; Atmosphere: 8; Fun: 8.5.

Requirements:

  • 1-4 players
  • 1 team member not colour blind
  • Basic English

People who follow this blog may have noticed we travel a lot. So when Mark from Social Escape invited us to test his rooms, I immediately got interested in both games, themed around Paris and London. In Paris Escape, we saw ourselves in a situation we would rather not experience: you are about to take a flight home and cannot remember where you placed your return tickets! If you do not find them in one hour, you will lose the flight!

Although the idea of being stuck in Paris would not exactly be horrible, Paris Escape was a very fun game! This beautiful room has an interesting proposal: to be suitable for beginners, kids as well as keeping the interest of more experienced players. This room can also be played with only a single player! In our opinion, Social Escape nailed it. If you want to introduce friends to the awesome hobby of escape rooms, this can be a very good start.

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ClockLocked: Cleopatra [Review]

clocklogoLocation: Clocklocked, Ultimo, Sydney , NSW, Australia

Date completed:  July 2016 (3 players). Succeeded escaping!

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

Requirements:

  • 3-7 players
  • One team member with full mobility
  • Intermediate English
  • 90 minute room

Cleopatra is the newest room in ClockLocked and also the biggest: it is a 90-minute room! What is Cleopatra about?  A long-time friend sends a package with a message to your team, saying he is in an excavation project in Egypt. He claims to have found an ancient treasure and is now being chased by smugglers. The treasure has been hidden and he has left notes for you to retrieve it.

Will you be quick enough to find the artifacts and your friend before the fiends find you? Be ready to grab a Fedora hat and a crack whip and start the treasure hunt!

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ClockLocked: Da Vinci [Review]

clocklogoLocation: ClockLocked, Ultimo, Sydney , NSW, Australia

Date completed:  July 2016 (3 players). Succeeded escaping!

Creativity: 6.5; Difficulty: 7; Atmosphere: 7; Fun: 7.5.

Requirements:

  • 2-6 players
  • Full mobility
  • Fluent English

ClockLocked opened in Sydney in 2014 and Da Vinci was among the first escape rooms in the city. A lot of other venues have opened and closed since over the last two years, however, that game remained. We finally had the opportunity to play it some weeks ago and quickly realised why it is lasting: Da Vinci ticks all the basic boxes. Puzzles were well-done, props worked, gamemaster were quick and attentive. We were very glad that it was not a dated game at all!

In Da Vinci, a cardinal grows suspicious of a fellow religious colleague and hired your team of detectives to find any secrets that may affect his relations with the Vatican. You have a one-hour window to enter his office and find the truth.

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