Location: Your Home via the Magic of the Internet!
Players: We recommend 1-2 players
Price: £25.00 (About $32.75 USD at the time of writing.)
Classic Monsters Return!
From the Pebble Escape Rooms website:
Enjoy our classic Gothic Horror Escape Bundle as you Escape from Castle Dracula, Defeat Mr Hyde and create your own monster with Dr Frankenstein. Puzzles and brainteasers await you in this triple game bundle.
This Gothic online escape room bundle is available now! You can play at home, solo or with a group of friends over video chats such as Zoom or Microsoft Teams. This game works best on a laptop or tablet but it can also be played on a mobile phone.
I always enjoy a good point and click adventure, as the genre has been a favorite since I was a kid in the 90s. Pebble Escape’s Gothic Horror bundle seemed to be right up my alley, with adventures inspired by Frankenstein, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, and Dracula! We tried all three out one weekend, and were impressed by the 90s adventure game aesthetic!
Pebble Escape has created these games to appeal to families and puzzlers looking for an introductory experience, and I think they are perfect for this target audience. The puzzles are simpler, introducing young puzzlers to some basic code breaking and solving, while serving up some puzzle hunt style meta puzzles that are accessible to novice solvers. The presentation is intuitive, and reminds me of late 90s early 00s adventure games, like Dark Fall or The Crystal Key, which brought back some nostalgic feelings. Interactive areas are responsive, and some of the more intricate puzzles have intuitive machines to play around with. The sense of place exuded by the artfully constructed backgrounds is excellent, and we enjoyed spotting the buried clues integrated into these scenes. In scenes that are dependent on searching for hidden objects, an optional magnifying glass is included, which is greatly appreciated. The games are strictly linear, but do have important clues woven through each scene, and players will need to carefully search each area for items they’ll need to ultimately overcome the final puzzles. The difficulty curve is gentle, but does ramp nicely towards more complex solves as players work through each scene, and the finales presented some interesting mechanics to ensure they remain engaging. Puzzles within each game are varied in order to ensure there’s several different puzzling concepts to explore, and I think families will have a great time working through them together!
One thing that would really help bolster the experience would be the addition of a soundtrack and perhaps sound effects when interacting with items. The immersion falls strangely flat when the game remains silent at all times. Even the addition of a suggested Spotify playlist could help players get more immersed within the world of the games. Enthusiasts aren’t quite the target audience, though if they’re looking for a game to play with their kids or family that is new to puzzling, this one will serve as a great introduction. Between the games, there are a few puzzles that repeat, which is alright overall, but the bundle does feel somewhat repetitive at times if played back to back.
Pebble Escape Games has created a fantastic little bundle of escape adventures for families with their Gothic Horror Bundle, which will introduce basic puzzling concepts and villains from classic literature in an accessible, spooky but not scary way! I definitely recommend this to enthusiasts who want to share their puzzling obsession with their children, as well as less experienced folks who are looking for a family focused adventure. Work through the puzzles and escape the monsters here!
Full Disclosure: Pebble Escape Rooms provided our team with a complementary game.