August 14

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Escape Manor – The Darkness

Escape Manor is located on Queen St in Downtown Ottawa.  We did this room the morning after our back-to-back at Escape Manor.  Surpisingly Gamemaster Meaghen recognized us from the night before and mentioned to us that our 4 teammates dropped out (meaning it was just the 2 of us).  After a good night’s rest we were ready to tackle this room.  


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

The story starts that you have signed off your soul to your lawyer Lou Cifer  (get it?) and now you are breaking into his office to get it back.  The room looks like your standard tv lawyer/judge office.  Complete with a solid desk, bookshelves, and a fireplace (I almost wish it was my office).  As the story progresses there is a very sudden shift in the tone, and this room does it well.  Unlike our other reviews of Escape Manor rooms, the Darkness doesn’t use anything that is too far fetched (or perhaps it is and we’re just not as experienced in this type of theme).

Bells and Whistles: Was it just lockboxes throughout the Room?
Score:  4.0 of 5.0

There is a good mix of high and low tech in the room that are cleverly implemented.  There was one part that I thought might be a safety concern, but the design doesn’t allow for error (so they definitely get kudos for that).  They also get extra points for that song at the end (when we didn’t escape).

Intuitive (aka Frustration Level):  Did you have to be in the designers mind to escape?
Score:  3.5 of 5.0

Like Escape Manor’s other rooms there were some 4 digit codes and multiple 4 digit locks throughout the room (aka Too-much-info-and-not-enough-direction), however not as many as their other rooms.  The puzzles made sense (didn’t require any large logical leaps), and everything was spelt out clearly.  There was quite a bit of searching, especially for 2 people, so we had out work cut out for us.  I would recommend this room for at least 3 people.

The hint system is an interesting spin on a walkie-talkie hint.  The walkie talkie is actually hidden in the room, and you are required to find it in order to use your 1 hint (before it isn’t counted as a win.. in this case we were given 2 hints cause we were only 2 people).  This was easier to find than the Asylum, but I can see shorter people having an issue finding it (unless they change the location everytime).

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

Gamemaster Meaghen was friendly and even remembered we played back-to-back the night before.  Overall the staff at Escape Manor move like a well-oiled machine (much like some of the busier places in Toronto, De Code Adventures and Escape Games), but unfortunately we didn’t get any backstory from anyone.

The price is $21.00 / person and they run on a ticket system (which means that you can potentially play with randoms).  You definitely have to book at least a week in advance or be prepared to play at obscure hours.

Overall:
 The Darkness is another great room at Escape Manor and along with the Asylum we can understand why people keep booking these rooms.  A good mix of theme, ingenuity and puzzles make this game fun to play.

For more information check out:

http://www.escapemanor.com/
201 Queen Street – 4thFloor
Ottawa, ON

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