iEscaped

iEscaped is located just one block North of Finch station.  Ran by a group of friends who decided they wanted to build their own escape rooms.  We visited their superhero room at first and we were invited back by the iEscaped team to try out Abandoned

If you’re familiar with the North York area, you’ll know that they have quite a bit of competition in the area.  So where does iEscape standout?

Rooms: 4
Reviewed rooms:  Superhero, Abandoned, Space, Defuse, Viva La Vegas

Creativity and Design (aka its Fancy level): – Was it inventive ? Did it fit the theme?
Score : 3.5 of 5.0

Abandoned simulates that bleak apocalyptic vibe.  The guys at iEscaped didn’t go the dollar store route and did spend money on the props.  They have some dated furniture which all fit that theme (worn down and old-er) and some interesting add-ons.

The Superhero room was (as the story goes) a comic book scribe’s office, which contains all the necessary and fun things you would expect to see, even some photo frames that contain some back issues of ASM (Amazing Spiderman for you non comic nerds).  For myself I would have liked to see even more things! (but that’s because i’m one of those comic/superhero nerds)

Space was a very different theme.  It combines the typical black room elements with a space shuttle in a corner of the room.  It had nice little touches that split the theme of the bleakness of the situation of being stranded, with the ‘potential hope’ of finding your way home.  Hard to talk more about it without spoilers, but overall our favourite room in iEscaped.

Viva la Vegas has some interesting elements (but annoying lighting) and Defuse was an interesting take on the bomb-type escape.

Bells and Whistles: Was it just lockboxes throughout the Room?
Score: 3.5 of 5.0

The Superhero room, although a fun theme, did contain alot of lockboxes and the same with Abandoned (although Abandoned did a better job at hiding them).  Abandoned redeems itself with 3 things i’m surprised I haven’t seen in other places.  The only non-spoiler one I can reveal is that they use a microphone/speaker system to communicate between the two rooms.  Its such a simple fix, but other complexes take the shortcut of walkie talkies, (which are prone to battery loss, and taking time away from the game).

After discussing with the gamemaster it seems they even took out (some fun) elements in order to simplify the game, which i completely respect, so I look forward to seeing the changes to Abandoned.

Space kept it simple and had still some interesting small tech bits.  Of course it doesn’t measure up to the tech heavy places, but there is tech in places you would expect to be.

Viva Las Vegas and Defuse were more fun on the tech department but not on the higher end compared to some of the big guys in the city.

Intuitive (aka Frustration Level):  Was it solvable? or Did you have to be inside the creators mind to solve it?
Score: 4.0 of 5.0

The puzzles in Abandoned were solvable, and very well thought out.  We did feel that there were too many puzzles for 45 minutes, but even as we were walking through the room, the gamemaster took notes on potential changes.  Of all the puzzles in the room, only one puzzle felt “heavy”, yet this room recommends at least 6 people (we came in with 5).  After walking through each puzzle with the gamemaster it seems they have made alot of changes from the original Abandoned since their opening.

I won’t lie, we struggled a bit with Superhero.  Some of the puzzles made sense in a retrospective but standing there there were a bit complicated for the sunday-night-brain.

Space was very straightforward and by far their easiest room.  Good logical flow and good fun puzzles.  We were also told by the gamemaster that they have a kid-friendly alternative if requested (also with the Superhero room).

Viva las Vegas and Defuse, were slightly harder and we required hints to get us through.

Staff Support/Price : Were they friendly? Were they helpful? What was the Damage?
Score: 5.0 of 5.0

The staff is friendly and very receptive of feedback.  As I mentioned they invited us again to review Abandoned and their Gamemaster seemed very grateful for the feedback.  (Similarly with Superhero that first night).

Their current price is $18/person weekends (With Like and Checkin on Facebook, $13/Person weekdays).  Its mid-range for the area.

Overall:  The guys at iEscaped have been tweaking and refining their games, and I believe that Abandoned is a a real gem to be found.  Walking in there i’m reminded of Prison Breaker, a good group of guys, and fun puzzles that just need a bit of spit and polish.  They definitely have the resources and people to do it, so we know that the next time we go in for their other two rooms the experience will only get better.

For more information check out:

http://www.iescaped.com/
5927 Yonge Street, Suite 205
Toronto, ON M2M 3V7
416-519-8096

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