Escape Reality – The Revenants

Escape Reality – The Revenants
Location:  Preston
Game Date:  05/06/2021
Team: Amy, Ste, Niamh, Ella & Connor
Duration: 60 Minutes

“Antique tales warn of blood drinking spirits residing in a castle close to the village where you and your friend have decided to go on holiday. They are called the revenants: those that have returned from the dead. It is not easy to believe that corpses of the dead can rise from their graves and wander the town, disrupting and destroying the lives of those in it until they are drawn back to their tombs. You decide to visit the castle one night and see how real these tales are. After a short time inside, you realize that maybe there is some truth to those myths…but it may already be too late for you. Find your way out from the castle, if you can.”

Ugh, It always pains me to write a bad review, and I always do try to give impartial reviews and to see the positive side… but sometimes there are those rooms where to pull positives out would be an unfair and unfaithful representation of the game we played at the time.

With that being said, The revenants was a very run down room. When before the game you get a warning from the host that one of the puzzles is notoriously dodgy and may not work properly, so call them into the room when you have the answer… you know it’s not starting off on the right foot.

The room was shabby, with peeling pictures and props in a general state of disarray. There was an attempt at theming, with a few bits of furniture about and some general props, but all in all the room was very empty and stark. There wasn’t much immersion. Puzzles were printed on metal, and whilst these were robust they didn’t fit the theme of the room.

Lighting was dim, and awkward and this hampered our game play. The space was fairly big, and all 5 of us knocked about quite comfortably in the space.

This room could be nice with a lick of paint, some love and care.

Game Play:
A fairly linear game, that had a selection of puzzles. We were hindered at the very start when the first puzzle was not even switched on… so going forward from that our trust in the room had been shaken, and there was no guarantee that the remainder of the room had been reset correctly (spoiler… It wasn’t)
The puzzles weren’t terrible in their logic, but they weren’t great either… we found ourselves exhausting all possible avenues before resorting to clues for a lot of the puzzles. There were a fair few logic leaps in the game.
At the point when we had battled our way to the fateful puzzle which breaks if you look at it funny… we called our host in, he verified we had the correct answers and we did what was needed… and it didn’t open. Eventually our host just went into the other room and opened the door as we had completed everything else in the game to that point. Honestly this was dealt with OK, but our host was completely impartial and nonchalant about it. (he did give us and extra 5-10 minutes time)
Signposting within the game was ropey, at best. With massive chunks of information being left out, and clues being on tattered props that we couldn’t see due to the tedious lighting in the room… therefore leaving us unequipped to make those all important connections.
Flow was sticky, to say the least and we found ourselves pottering round the room with no direction or cohesion… we managed to skip a puzzle entirely. I don’t know if it was a flaw in game design or a red herring but there was a definite “board” for that puzzle and we didn’t need it (and one team member spent AGES on it)
Either way, by a combination of several mis-sets & broken puzzles we ended up missing out by 2 puzzles. I feel had the game being in its correct working order we would have been successful… as we were 2 padlocks away from escaping.

Clue System:
Clues are delivered via an iPad… you clue yourself and are only allowed iPad clues once every 10 minutes. Ultimately this increases frustration as you don’t know when the best time is to ask for a clue (and honestly, some of the clues were no help at all, and told us what we already knew!)
There is an option to call the host in for a clue, but as they are running several games at once then their attention may be elsewhere.

Game Host:
Our game host was polite enough, but had no enthusiasm for our game. He was clearly run off his feet (managing 2 escape room groups and a massive laser quest game at the same time) but to let this obviously trickle down to his customer service is just… not good. He delivered a decent briefing however, and explained everything concisely and clearly.

Covid19 Safety:
We were not required to wear masks in the game, I’m sure there was hand sanitizer about the building, but not within the game itself.

Did we escape?
No, we failed.

Website: https://www.escapereality.com/
2 Players £44
3 Players £60
4 Players £72
5 Players £85
6 Players £96

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