Escape Newmarket – The Archealogist’s Discovery
Escape Newmarket is located on Main St. Newmarket. We made the trek there out of pure curiousity (and with nothing else better to do). We were greeted by Gamemaster Nick who told us something really surprising, Escape Newmarket would only be open for 3 months. The reason was Gamemasters Nick and Chris are both students (Western and Ryerson respectively) who received a business grant, loved escape rooms and decided to start their own for kicks. We came in with low expectations but the results surprised us.
*Sidenote: This game was played on their opening week, so there may be significant changes.
Creativity and Design (aka its Fancy level): – Was it inventive ? Did it fit the theme?
Score : 5.0 of 5.0
Their first attempt at a room had great props that even rivaled places like Captive. The room was well decorated and the room shows polish (although I would worry about wear and tear over time). As the game progresses it strays away from the theme slightly but overall it was well done.
Bells and Whistles: Was it just lockboxes throughout the Room?
Score: 3.5 of 5.0
The room doesn’t contain any real tech, so Markham/Scarborough tech lovers would find themselves longing for more. However they were creative with their puzzles which was good to see (again more in the lines of Captive). We didn’t experience any technical problems, but we did have one reset problem.
Intuitive (aka Frustration Level): Was it solvable? or Did you have to be inside the creators mind to solve it?
Score: 3.5 of 5.0
The some of the puzzles provided enough direction and were straight-forward enough. There were some cases of too-much-info-not-enough-direction, where my wife and I were rolling through 4 digit codes on either side of the room. There was one particular puzzle which if you followed ‘normal’ convention you wouldn’t have been able to solve a puzzle. For this puzzle you would need to use ‘literal’ convention instead, which is hard to explain without spoilers. We would say the difficulty definitely ramps up by the end of the room, but if you bring a solid team of 4 (5-6 might be a bit cramped) you should be able to escape.
The hint system is your standard walkie talkie hints, which we had no issues with.
Staff Support/Price : Were they friendly? Were they helpful? What was the Damage?
Gamemasters Chris and Nick were great to talk to. Nick explained that they have been to a few places in London and Toronto (one of which we all cringed at the mention of the name). Again as we mentioned, Escape Newmarket is only open for 3 months while they are back for their summer break.
The price is $20 / person with a $3 discount if you LIKE them on Facebook. Which for the area and experience was reasonable.
Overall: Escape Newmarket was definitely a surprise to us. Great props and fun puzzles (minus a few opening week bumps and scrapes). We think that in their short 3 months of business, they still have time to polish off their rooms and end on a high note.
For more information check out:
188 Main Street, Newmarket,
Ontario, L3Y 3Z2