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June 22, 2017 / Jett

Escape Room: The Game Impressions

For the past few years, escape rooms as a social activity have really taken off. Personally, I’ve gone a few times myself, though I’ve only escaped in time once. While the experience of puzzle solving with friends is great, it’s also quite expensive when you account for the admission costs of everyone involved.

Escape Room: The Game aims to capture the thrills of that experience as a cheaper tabletop board game. Do you have what it takes to escape these scenarios in time?


The game contains four one-hour scenarios to play through. Each scenario has three parts, requiring players to solve each in order before moving to the next one. You validate your answers through the nifty chrono decoder that comes in the box. This plastic unit contains four key slots, which you’ll place your answer keys into. Get it right and it will chime, signalling you to move onto the next phase. Otherwise, you get a buzzer noise, prompting you to try again while removing a minute from the clock.

It’s a neat solution for validating answers and managing the clock. There are only a few quirks I see with the device. One, and the likelihood of this is extremely rare, but if you get the answer for the first scenario wrong, but it’s the correct answer for the first phase of the second scenario, you could mix up the machine into thinking you’re playing the second scenario. The other is more of a long-term concern. There are already expansions available that work with this device, but how many scenarios can this device run before it runs out, requiring players to buy a new decoder?

Each of the puzzles are fairly well thought out and provided a good challenge. There were one or two moments that were frustrating, but with teamwork we were able to make it through. One neat aspect of the game is that it gives you hints at certain times of the game. If you get stuck, they could be helpful, though we usually blazed past where the hints were, making them useless to us after a certain point.

It’s worth noting that once you beat the game, there’s not much incentive to play it again. You’ll know the answers and can breeze through it the second time around. However, if you did want to give the game to a friend, you can. There are a few pieces you’ll need to write on or fold, but the game gives you instructions on how to reprint them.

Our group has completed Prison Break and Virus and are having a good time. Looking forward to finishing the final two scenarios at a later date. We may not get the scale that comes with solving puzzles that take up an entire room, but Escape Room: The Game certainly works the same brain muscles. Viewed as a board game, it may not have the replay value to justify its cost. Viewed as an alternative to the price of going to an escape room and it’s a great deal.

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