Escape Room Live Georgetown – Titanic (Review)

Location: Washington DC

Players: 2-8 (We Recommend 4-6)

Price: $28 per person

Time to Escape: 45 minutes

There was enough room for Jack on that door.

Theme:

As passengers on the Titanic, you’ve prepared for a trip of luxury and decadence aboard the world’s biggest and most unsinkable cruise-liner! However, midway through the trip, you feel a jolt, and when you look out your window, it seems the water is rising at an alarming rate! You’ve only a limited amount of time before you’re trapped in your stateroom, but the doors are locked and the emergency exits are malfunctioning. You’ll need to solve your predicament soon, or you’ll go down with the ship!

First Impressions:

After an amazing time in the Ghostbusters room, we had very high hopes for Titanic. Located in the same area, and decorated on the outside just as well, the experience seemed promising. After being assured that this would be an equal challenge to Ghostbusters, we were ready to escape!

High Points:

One early puzzle was fun to figure out, and required some interesting perspective and physical manipulation. Interactions in the room were mostly technical, and only required a few traditional locks and keys. Feedback when solving a puzzle was clear and consistent. While the room was competent, and worked reasonably well, it was banal.

Low Points:

Entering the room was not quite as exciting here, as the room itself felt much more sparse. Decorations and lighting was competently done, but were implemented in a way that didn’t give us the sense of excitement that Ghostbusters or Poeanormal Activity delivered. The room itself didn’t really feel like much of a stateroom, and was relatively empty overall, withlater parts of the game feeling as though they did not expand or add much to the experience. Multiple puzzles were exact repeats of others we had previously experienced, some even in DC, and the experience as a whole felt uninspired. Other puzzles that were original to the room weren’t very satisfying to solve, and in some cases, didn’t make much sense as part of the room. Do not touch stickers were more copious in this room than others at Escape Room Live, and that combined with several worn down props made the room feel less cohesive and well maintained.

Verdict:

Titanic, as an experience, feels overly plain. It is a fairly well decorated room, with some interesting technology, but nothing that we haven’t seen done before, and better. We left this one feeling overall underwhelmed with the experience, which was a downer after the amazing Ghostbusters room. Beginners will more than likely feel lost in the overall difficulty, while Enthusiasts will be unimpressed with the lack of variety. It’s not a bad room, generally, but it’s average at best, and there are much more impressive rooms in DC, one of which is mere feet away! I feel like the room would be a good first attempt elsewhere, but for the high budget nature and prestige of Escape Room Live, it doesn’t measure up. You can book your time on the HMS Titanic here!

5/10 (Mediocre)

Escape Room Live Georgetown – Ghostbusters (Review)

Location: Washington DC

Players: 2-8 (We Recommend 4-6)

Price: $28 per person

Time to Escape: 45 minutes

Who ya gonna call?

Theme:

New York is under a supernatural attack, and the Ghostbusters phone is ringing off the hook, but they’re nowhere to be found! It’s up to you and the rest of the Ghostbusters new B-team to trap the spirits terrorizing the city and put them back into the containment unit before it’s too late!

First Impressions:

Escape Room Live Georgetown boasts an amazing lobby, with comfortable places to relax while waiting to begin your game, as well as a full bar and space that can be rented for parties. The artwork on the walls is a hilarious series of classic portraits redone with animals, my favorite being this Otter portrait!

The rooms themselves are under the lobby, and are housed in an excellently designed area with each exterior matching the theme inside. Ghostbusters being one of my favorite series, we had very high expectations.

High Points:

Ghostbusters did not disappoint. The theming of the room was on point, and the easter eggs peppered throughout were great callbacks to the original movies. The ghosts you catch and ghostbusting tools you interact with are true to the film and will be a great treat for fans. While a lot of Ghostbusters themeing is woven throughout the puzzles, no knowledge of the films is required, which is perfect. Our game master for this room was more than excellent, and provided engaging commentary as we progress through the room. Interactions throughout were unique and engaging, and the non linear nature of most of the room allowed our larger group to all stay busy puzzling. Ghostbusters is also a great challenge, and provides original brainteasers over a wide range of puzzle types. The room was so immersive, that even though we were only in for less than a half hour, we felt as though our experience was much longer! When we were told our (record breaking!) time, we could not believe it. We were left wanting more, but in a good way!

Low Points:

One particular puzzle had obviously been experiencing technical difficulties previous to our game, but the fix was handled well and in an immersive manner.

Verdict:

Ghostbusters is a fully immersive experience, and delivers an amazing time! Every inch of the room is excellently done, and the puzzling experience is the top for Washington DC. Beginners may want to experience a few rooms before attempting this one, as it was definitely a more difficult challenge, but enthusiasts will love the full package that Ghostbusters delivers! Book your time calming the mass hysteria here!

10/10 (Sublime)

Escape Room Live Alexandria – Poeanormal Activity (Review)

Location: Alexandria, VA

Players: 2-10 (We recommend 4-6)

Price: $28 per person

Time to Escape: 45 Minutes

Nevermore!

Theme:

Edgar Allen Poe’s study has been opened up recently, as rumors of a secret manuscript have taken the nation by storm! Discovery Channel’s Destination America is the first on the scene, ready to seek out this lost tale, but unfortunately, one of the two reporters hitting the scene first have gone missing.  You are a paranormal investigation team hired by Destination America to seek out this manuscript, and discover what happened to the missing crew member! Act fast, though, as the lingering spirits have grown restless…

First Impressions:

Boasting a comfortable lobby, Escape Room Live Alexandria makes quite the first impression, that carries into the room itself, as no cost has been spared to bring Poe’s chambers to life! Hollywood style sets and lighting heighten the spooky vibe, and gets your blood pumping for an exciting escape! We’ve seen great sets before, though, and they’re nothing without great puzzling, so how did that go?

High Points:

Along with the set, there were several technological interactions to help you get immersed in the story, and are well hidden, adding to the supernatural aura of the room. You are separated into two groups at the beginning, and locked away from each other by a door in the middle, demanding teamwork in a puzzle-centric way. The final few steps through the room are a fantastic climax, and many of the puzzles along the way hearken back to the literature of Poe, which was fun for the Poe aficionados among us.

Low Points:

Unfortunately, with a large amount of tech, can come technical difficulties. We experienced only one, but it caused several cascading problems. In fact, due to the malfunction, we took a hint after minutes of aimless wandering, which informed us we needed to do the thing we had already tried twice and written off. To add insult to injury, we were denied the ability to get on the leaderboard because of it! We don’t usually try for best times, but the fact we would have made it without this “hint” made our quick victory feel a bit hollow. The experience went by entirely too quickly for the money, and we escaped in around half that time, even with this being one of the hardest rooms Escape Room Live has to offer. While the technical puzzles were impressive, there wasn’t a whole lot we hadn’t seen before in other rooms, and many of the fun looking props and set pieces did not play into the solving of the room at all. A couple parts of the room seemed to be leftover puzzles that were scrapped, but left in as red herrings, which was disappointing. Our customer service experience was just alright, as our GM was there to greet us when we escaped, but then quickly disappeared soon thereafter, leading us to wonder if we were going to take a picture, and with whom.

Verdict:

While the set of Poeanormal Activity impresses, the game overall is lacking in depth of puzzling. Newcomers will enjoy this room much more than enthusiasts, since they will probably speed through the room. I had a good time, however, but feel that the technical and customer service snafus dulled what could’ve been a more engaging experience. Sign up to investigate the Poeanormal Activity here!

6/10 (Alright)