Escape Reality in Cardiff is a fully immersive live escape game experience where players must solve a series of challenging puzzles to escape before time runs out. We were invited down to try out one of the games for ourselves.
None of our team had ever done anything like this so it was a first for us all! All I knew was that you get locked into a room and have to solve clues in order to escape. I was a bit apprehensive as to how it works and if the clues would be too hard and we wouldn’t understand any of it.
The room we had been invited to try was called ‘Misery’ and inspired by the Stephen King novel and film. Only one member of our team had seen the film – but I don’t think this hindered the experience at all. Before you go into the room the staff tell you a tale, setting the scene of the room. This sets you up ready to make your escape.
I won’t give any spoilers to the game as you will need to go experience it for yourself.
The room itself is well decorated and filed with little extras that add to the story, including some spooky surprises. To complete the escape you have to fully immerse yourself in the game and look out for hidden clues. You have to battle against the timer to solve puzzles to escape the room. The clues and puzzles are made up of lock combinations, physical puzzles and keypads – each one very different from the next.
Escape Reality has a really clever hint system for when you get stuck. When you enter the room you are given an iPad with your countdown timer on, this also doubles up as a QR reader. Around the room, as you come to each puzzle there is a numbered code that you can scan for a hint or solution (you pay for this by adding onto your overall time). There was one puzzle in particular that we couldn’t figure out without the help of the hint. I was worried that the iPad would just give us the solution and ruin the fun of the task…but this wasn’t the case. the iPad gave an extra hint to the puzzle, simplifying the task without giving the straight answer. We still had to work for it!
Misery was a fun and challenging room and everyone had their own MVP moment. All the clues and puzzles involve you thinking in different ways. Out of the 4 of us playing we all excelled in different tasks. Whilst some puzzles were incredibly difficult, there was always one of us who worked out the answer (and if you get really stuck the helpful staff are always on hand).
The Escape Reality venue in Cardiff also has on-site bar, which is great for a post-escape victory drink! We had a fantastic time and it was so nice to do something that little bit different. The room makes you work together and it would be great for a team bonding exercise….or if you really want to test your relationship, a great date night idea!
I can’t wait to go back and try out more of the rooms…in fact we have already booked in for our return!