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In-Depth Escape Room Reviews

Review: Serial Killer’s Lair

RATING: 1 Key          RESULT: Loss          REMAINING: X:XX

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.  Jigsaw does not like flattery. And neither do his lawyers.

Story

Greetings and welcome.
I trust you are all wondering where you are. I’ll tell you where you might be. You might be in the room that you die in. Two hours from now, the doors of this lair will open. Unfortunately, you only have one hour to escape The Serial Killer’s Lair.

This room is located deep within the bowels of the Mansion’s basement. You and your friends will be thrust into a “Jigsaw-like” serial killer lair. Here, you will be watched and tormented by an unknown stalker. Experience a series of traps set by the killer. Solve his riddles and pass his tests to unlock your freedom. Otherwise, he will catch up to you in an hour. Do you have what it takes to survive?

The clock starts ticking as soon as the players are sent down the stairs of this Saw knock-off.  Why are they willingly walking into the lair?  Are they lost?  Are they being mind controlled? There are so many unanswered questions.

An unknown character alerts you that you have thirty minutes to diffuse a bomb.  Panic sets in as you thought you had sixty minutes to either live or die.  Can the bomb be diffused in time?  Or does it even matter? Perhaps there’s another way out.

The Serial Killer’s Lair blatantly tries to copy Saw.  However, it is more like a made-for-TV version.  The already weak narrative never progresses.  In fact, it often feels like it takes two steps back for every step forward.

Scenic

Serial Killer’s Lair starts with walking down a flight of stairs.  There are a bunch monitors guarded by a chain-link fence.  Some of them have countdown timers and others display video feeds from cameras placed around the lair.

There is a labyrinth of hallways and connected passages, and some of them are closed off with locked gates.  There is a kitchen covered in blood and a bunch of knives laying out on the counters.  This is not where you would want to prepare a meal.

There are many items scattered on shelves such as doll heads, books, and candles.  There is a suspicious container in the corner with an LED display and many tubes and wires hanging from it – it appears to be a bomb.

Mannequin characters stand around the maze of hallways.  Many of them have their foam parts exposed, and there is the famous pig-head holding an ax from the Saw franchise in one corner.

Puzzles

There is zero flow to the Serial Killer’s Lair.  Much of the searching and scavenging turns up empty handed.  There isn’t a clear objective or indication of where to start.

Periodically, the TV monitors will flash, and the voice of a mysterious character will give you a hint or sometimes just taunt you.  However, the hints are as cryptic as everything else in the room.

The player eventually triggers a bomb to countdown from thirty minutes.  It creates a sense of urgency because it alludes to you meeting your demise much earlier than expected.  However, it happens to only be a decoy. It’s infuriating to spend time on a puzzle that does not even need to be solved.

Hidden deep in the room, the player comes across what seems to be another relevant puzzle.  Only, the solution happens to go to a lock that had already been opened.  It’s worth noting that some of the lock’s digits were completely rubbed off, which caused some guess work.

A phone rings, and the killer tells you yet another cryptic clue.  Once you understand the meaning, it will cause a true hatred towards the game designer.  A key happens to be embedded in a place that you would NEVER find on your own.

After much searching, the player will FINALLY come across another item that looks like a puzzle, but the serial killer is a known trickster.  Again, the puzzle required a little bit of guessing, and we were truly surprised when one of our guesses actually opened a safe.

Our first glimmer of happiness quickly turned into displeasure and anger as we opened the box stowed away in the safe.  The grand finale of The Serial Killer’s Lair included searching for a single item out of roughly one hundred similar items.  It is a twisted version of “Where’s Waldo?”.

Overall

The Serial Killer’s Lair is a bad haunted house with some puzzles sprinkled on top – if you can even consider them puzzles.  The room is a maze of many hallways with no flow.

The props are not well maintained.  Foam is falling out of the walls and mannequin characters.  Several digits on locks are worn to the point of looking blank.

Escape rooms are often considered a tourist attraction.  Mystere Escape Rooms tries to take advantage of this by charging MORE for non-Louisiana residents.  If that’s not a red flag, I don’t know what is.  The premium price is completely out of line with the non-premium experience.

 


Venue Details

Venue: Mystere Escape Rooms

Location: New Orleans, Lousiana

Number of Games: 5

GAME SPECIFIC INFORMATION:

Duration: 60 minutes

Capacity: 12 people

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

Cost: $39.95 per person for out of state/ $29.95 for Louisiana resident

 

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