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Review: Birthday Party Theme

RATING: 0 Keys          RESULT: Loss          REMAINING: X:XX

This is kind of like a kid’s birthday party. You don’t really want to go, and there’s really nothing for you to do there, but the kid’s having a really good time, so… you’re kind of just… there. This is the escape room version of that feeling. Also this time around, even the kid’s not having a good time.


The story continues to just throw me for a loop.

So you are a clone, and it’s your birthday… yay!

Your objective is to solve puzzles or be put through a bunch of tests to see if you are worthy of existing (or something like that)?

I’m still not sure.

It honestly didn’t make sense to me then, and still doesn’t. I can’t decide if a birthday party for a clone is some amazingly creative idea or just an excuse to throw a birthday party because the props would be cheap?

All of the creativity lies within the name, “Birthday Party Theme,” which really sets the tone for the entire experience. There was nothing in the room that said cloning facility and only a single picture hinting at a birthday party. There was no real storyline; just a lot of confusion, and even more padlocks.


It’s very difficult to describe the scenery.

When the story is said to be a facility where clones are being made, I imagine some sort of a high-tech lab.

Oh yea, it’s my birthday!

So, now I’m thinking balloons, presents and MUSIC. Most parties have music.

This party did not. This party had sadness and blue walls.

There were a couple of tables, a few posters and about 20 boxes. The boxes were painted and I’m assuming that they were birthday presents only because it would match the theme, however, there was no gift wrapping or bows anywhere to be found.

The posters on the wall look like the artwork of a kindergarten class and had little to do with the clone birthday theme. There’s a random tube in the room…(so that’s a thing).

And here’s a sad fact for you, there are no actual balloons for your birthday party. Boo hoo!


When I think puzzles, I think patterns and pieces that will eventually lead to a solution or bigger picture. There were no intuitive or logical puzzles.

The design of the game lacks puzzles, but has an assortment of convoluted “”birthday”” “”party”” activities….(all eight quotations were necessary).

No direction, no flow of game, just a bunch of random boxes and random objects so figure out what they mean.

Each activity helped unlock one of the many boxes to reveal an armful of wooden balls. This game should have been called, “If You Like Wooden Balls, Then Guess What, You’re in Luck, Because We Have 100 of Them.”

After your first 30 balls, you realize that you are getting nowhere and fast. Your effort is for nothing.

The activities were only meant to frustrate you so that you eventually spend more money, to spend more time, to be frustrated. There wasn’t a single enjoyable puzzle. They lacked imagination, and even more-so, they lacked any effort in their design.


This was not a fun experience.

There were many times I felt frustrated as a player and an escape room enthusiast.

The lack of effort, creativity and imagination was insulting.

Having nothing but locked box after locked box, each with literally identical content as your surprise within makes it abundantly clear that this is a “party” that you are not meant to enjoy.

Before the hour was finished, I was angry and felt cheated.

My favorite part of this experience was probably also unfortunately the worst part of it; watching a mom and daughter play their first game. They were great players, but unfortunately, they played a game that was thrown together and requires what felt like much longer than 60 minutes to play.

I now know what to expect when given the option to pay for more time. A game with no real direction, no story, no scenic and “puzzles” that are nonsensical and designed for you to have to buy more time in order to solve. The words “cheap cash grab” are too kind for this venue. Bottom line, if you want more money than add it to the ticket price, but once the timer starts, let me play the game and let me have fun!

Oh, and happy birthday.

Venue Details

Venue:  Escape Key

Location: Orlando, Florida

Number of Games: 2


Duration: 60 minutes

Capacity: 8 people

Group Type: Public  / You may be paired with strangers.

Cost: This venue has permanently closed.

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