RATING: 2 Key RESULT: Win REMAINING: 11:00
Well friends, we’ve been kidnapped and handcuffed yet again.
While on a flight, your plane is hijacked and you lose consciousness as the cabin depressurizes. Later you wake up and realize you’re trapped, handcuffed to your friends, in the hijacker’s headquarters. Can you lose your handcuffs, find out the details behind their hijacking and escape before time’s up?
This time we’ve managed to stay alive long enough to find ourselves in the plane hijackers lair. As the escape room trope goes, our hijackers have left “for just 60 minutes”, giving us ample time to figure out what the heck is going on and get out.
Unfortunately for us, nothing about escaping this criminal hideout is very exciting or memorable.
Hostage takes place in a single room where teams begin blindfolded and handcuffed to a bench. Once you are allowed to remove your blindfolds, you’ll notice that your nefarious captors devise their plans from a single desk, with a single lamp, and a whole lot of random photos of planes all over the wall.
Nothing seems particularly ominous except for some dim lighting, which you will need to ruin by flipping the normal light switch to complete a puzzle step.
There’s not really much else to say, because seriously, that’s it.
The story here doesn’t get much better the puzzle department. Most puzzles were of the usual 4-digit code variety, and only some involving plane tickets had anything to do with the story.
Hostage attempts to utilize some tech including a cheap cell phone (remember that puzzle that requires more light?), which was ultimately just frustrating rather than fun.
A large door in the corner of the room led our team to believe there would be a more interesting path to escape our fate, but we were sadly disappointed.
One thing to note is that the puzzles in this game are entirely linear, leaving most of the group with nothing to do.
If you’re looking for a (slightly below) average escape game experience, Breakout Games is perfect for you. Hostage is really just that: a just okay story with just okay puzzles, sold by the gimmick of being blindfolded and handcuffed.
We were hoping that it would be an improvement from one of the venues other games that we played directly before it, but only found more of the same.
The worst part is that this venue’s low prices and multiple locations across the US will attract new players, who will leave thinking “Is that what escape games are like?” Breakout Games is a large chain with a whopping 61 venues all over the country (as of this writing), mass producing a product that we simply cannot recommend.
Location: Jacksonville, Florida
Number of Games: 5
GAME SPECIFIC INFORMATION:
Duration: 60 minutes
Capacity: 7 people
Group Type: Public / You may be paired with strangers.
Cost: $24.99 per person
This review is for Breakout’s Jacksonville location. Scenic and show quality may vary from location to location, but puzzles are the same.