Escapists for Extra Life 2020

Hi all!

I’m taking a quick review break to introduce/re-introduce you to my Extra Life donation drive for the Duke Children’s Hospital, a Children’s Miracle Network hospital. For the past 8 years, I’ve run this drive in order to bring folks together for a few days of gaming at our own mini tabletop convention, and we’ve always had great success raising funds for the sick kids in our community. This year is somewhat different however, among other things, COVID-19 has made it so we cannot have such a gathering, and so this year I’ll be doing the traditional 24-hour gaming drive. It’ll be more difficult to raise money since we aren’t having a big event to invite folks to, but I know with your help, we can still have a great showing and ensure that kids at the Duke Children’s Hospital get the care they need and deserve!

Here’s some of my favorite Extra Life photos from past years. Man, remember gathering with friends? That was the best.

Anytime between now and the end of the year, you can donate to my Extra Life drive here. All donations are 100% tax deductible, and all proceeds go towards helping the kids, rather than “administrative costs.” You can read up on the services provided by Duke Children’s Hospital here, as well as see a breakdown of how they will use your donation to pursue their mission of ensuring no child is left without healthcare. I greatly appreciate any support you can give to advance this worthy cause!

While I cannot give the gift of tabletop gaming this year, I can promise that on November 7th, 2020, I will join with thousands of other gamers to game for 24 hours, (a completely insane thing to do, believe me, I’ve done it twice before,) and stream my gameplay live on Twitch. If you donate between now and the donation drive, please make sure to put your name and ensure the donation is not anonymous, and I’ll give you a shout out in a future post!

Thanks again, and I appreciate your help!


Live Room Review Break for COVID-19

Hi Everyone!

We haven’t been able to visit many escape rooms in the past couple months, and we are starting to run out of content to share! We have some live rooms to review, but at the moment, we aren’t sure if posting those right now is super helpful, especially since you can’t visit, so we don’t want them to become ineffectual. Every business we’ve visited has at least one review live at the moment, so unless folks feel strongly about it, we’re going to hold off posting those for now.

In the mean time, we are starting to get a nice back log of at home games to share, and we are working on getting those reviews sorted. We’ll continue posting those one Wednesdays, and as we gather a fair amount of reviews for those sorts of games, we’ll post a couple a week or more at the usual times. Hopefully we can get back to the regular schedule for in person games once places start to go live again!

In the mean time, New England Room Escapes has teamed up to bring you a huge puzzle hunt with some great prizes! Check that out here!

Also, check out my favorite online escape rooms of all time here! Neutral’s escape games are logical, relaxing, and a good challenge for fans old and new!

Thanks, and stay safe!

At Home Games I’ve Loved Before Part II – Recommendations for Sheltering in Place

Hi All!

I’m continuing this short series of at home recommendations, this week looking into some of my favorite retail at home escape games. As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to wear on, we’re definitely missing getting out for escape room marathons, (and getting out in general,) but these are some great substitutes until we can get back in the swing of things!

At Home Escape Games:

There are some really great at home games available from your friendly local games store that simulate the experience of an escape room pretty well. Here are a few of our favorites!

Thames and Kosmos:

Adventure Games: Monochrome Inc. – We haven’t gotten our full review of the new Adventure Games line from Thames and Kosmos, the masterminds behind the wonderfully creative Exit: the Game series, but if you’re looking for a heavily story based game based on the point and click adventure games that saw their golden age in the 90s, this is the game for you! Full of great surprises and fun inventory based puzzling, this one is a blast! The run time is also fairly long, taking us a good four hours or so to finish completely.

Exit: The Game: The Sinister Mansion – I love spooky, and I love Exit: The Game. These escape games in a box are always deviously clever, with so many creative and varied puzzles, and The Sinister Mansion is definitely one of my favorites, as it is part of a longer, ongoing meta story. Luckily, you can start anywhere with these, and the out of the box interactions are sure the keep players on their toes!

Exit: The Game: Dead Man on the Orient Express – This is currently Exit’s game to beat. A perfect mix of storytelling, mystery solving, and well integrated puzzles, this game evolves the standard formula of Exit and takes it to new heights! I’d caution against playing this one first, however, as it’s a doozy, even for established puzzlers, but if you like Exit’s other offerings, you’ll adore this one.

You can read all of our Exit: The Game reviews here!



Unlock! The Adventures of Oz – Another game we never quite got around to reviewing due to a massive backlog in 2018, The Adventures of Oz is an amazingly fun, yet enormously challenging Unlock escape! One of the most compelling games Space Cowboys has put out to date, it innovated the basic formula in non-frustrating ways, and brings the world of Oz to life in a way that will give any puzzle enthusiast a run for their money!

Unlock! The Tonipal’s Treasure – My favorite of the bunch, because pirates, but also because great puzzles! The Tonipal’s Treasure is a challenging Unlock! game that delivers some awesome twists and beautifully constructed puzzle threads. The final meta puzzle was a delight, and there was even a secret bonus game tied to this adventure! Though the ultimate prize has long since been claimed, it is still playable online.

Unlock! A Noside Story – Doctor Noside is a fantastic cartoon villain, and his exploits over the course of Squeak and Sausage and A Noside Story are fun to foil. Easily some of the best at home escape romps, the cartoon logic is fun to wrap your head around, and the challenge is set to a manageable level, ensuring this one is fun for the whole family!

Our archive of Unlock! reviews are here!


Escape Room in a Box: The Werewolf Experiment – The Werewolf Experiment is a great intro to at home escape games for newbies, and though it was really cute and fun to puzzle through for us, escape enthusiasts may find it a bit too easy for their liking. However, we had a great time, and absolutely think families and new players will love it!

At Home Games I’ve Loved Before – Recommendations for Sheltering in Place

Hi All!

In place of another review, I wanted to share some of my favorite at home experiences, and make a few recommendations should you be looking for something to do during the COVID-19 pandemic. I know I’m missing my escape room fix, but these are some great substitutes until we can get back in the swing of things! I’m starting with some of the best subscription boxes we’ve played, and intend to deliver some recommendations regarding other at home experiences in the coming days.

Subscription Boxes:

Our favorite Subscription boxes for a rainy day, (or sunny day, or any day really,) are The Deadbolt Mystery Society, Sleuth Kings, and The Conundrum Box. I’ve linked below a few reviews for their best games.



Always great for a excitingly themed whodunnit (or who has done this, if you prefer,) Deadbolt has put out some amazing mysteries. My favorite adventures so far have blended some incredible puzzling with entertaining deductions, injecting exciting narrative twists as we eliminate suspects and expose the killer.

The Cabin – The OG 10/10 Halloween slasher box. If it’s available, you need to play it.

Infected – This is another 10/10 that I felt really elevated the whole subscription. The closest thing to an escape room I’ve played at home, this game was an absolute joy to work through.

The Dark and Stormy Night – My current reigning favorite, and a delight for any Agatha Christie fan. I cannot recommend this mystery enough.

Join the Deadbolt Mystery Society or pick up standalone adventures here! Right now, you can get 30% off your first box with the Promo Code ESCAPE30! You can also see the rest of our Deadbolt Mystery Society reviews here!


Sleuth Kings:

Ever wanted to be a private detective, but just didn’t know where to start? Join Sullivan King as you assist him in solving the various and sundry exciting cases that come across his desk every month! Specializing in code-breaking, an overall light hearted tone, and great world building, we always look forward to seeing a new Sleuth Kings box hit our doorstep.

The Haunting – Sullivan’s newest client has bought a new home, but unfortunately, it may be haunted! Help solve the mystery of what’s going bump in the night, and try not to become a ghost yourself!

Blood P.I. – She plays a vampire detective on TV, and she’s your newest client. She’s also got a stalker who has bought into the whole vampire shtick a little to much. Slick and highly creative, this remains one of my favorite of the many quirky cases Sleuth Kings has to offer.

Sparky – If “Psychotic Killer in a Mascot Suit” isn’t an immediately engaging theme for you, we can’t be friends. This review, written by my lovely wife and escape partner in crime sums up this madcap experience beautifully.

You can purchase these and many other previous cases from the Sleuth King’s archives here, and if you’d like to subscribe to upcoming adventures, you can use the promo code ESCAPEADVENTURE to get $5 off your subscription here! You can also read the rest of our Sleuth Kings reviews here!


The Conundrum Box:

One of the newest subscription boxes we’ve had the pleasure of trying out, their most recent run of games has been fantastic! Delivering not only an Agatha Christie themed mystery, but a 1001 Arabian Nights tale, they’ve been on a roll with great puzzles and wonderful storytelling. I cannot wait for their newest box, The Emerald Isle, to hit or doorstep!

The Great Explorer’s Society and The Orient Express – Being someone who loves a good Agatha Christie novel, this box was an instant favorite for me! Full of fun twists and an exciting climax, this lead in to The Storyteller series really kicked it up a notch for The Conundrum Box as a whole.

The Storyteller Part 1 – Aladdin’s Lamp – After having my heart broken by Unlock’s terrible adaptation of the tales of Scheherazade, The Conundrum Box came to the rescue with this, the first of an amazing two part adventure! Containing some of their most clever puzzling to date, this remains my favorite box of theirs.

The Storyteller Part 2 – Scheherazade –  A worthy follow up to Aladdin’s Lamp, the second half of the Storyteller… er… story, contains another set of great puzzles, some twisty narrative, and great easter eggs and revelations for long time players!

You can subscribe to The Conundrum Box as well as order previous boxes here! Use our Promo Code ERA5OFF to recieve $5 off your first box!

Holiday Hiatus and Another Recommendation!

Happy Winter Solstice, Festivus, Christmas, New Years, and Holiday Season! We’ll be travelling during the upcoming couple weeks, so it’s time for another quick hiatus to close out the year. Escape Room Adventurer will return January 7th with new reviews.

In the mean time, if you took our recommendation during the Thanksgiving break, you might have finished the astounding Barrow Hill. If not, I highly recommend checking that game out; fans of adventure and immersive puzzling will surely love it. If you have played Barrow Hill, perhaps you’ll like another Adventure Game favorite of mine, also available from Shadow Tor and Darkling Room, The Lost Crown: A Ghost-Hunting Adventure. The Lost Crown is not only an incredible adventure game, filled with exploration, puzzles, and a complex supernatural mystery, but a work of stylistically brilliant art. Set in a mostly black and white world, Jonathan Boakes uses pops of color, excellent sound design, and photographically imaged backgrounds to truly transport the player into the town of Saxton. This independently produced game has provided me with many hours of entertainment, and I think puzzle enthusiasts will have a great time with it as well. It can be purchased DRM-free from the Shadow Tor Studios website here!