RATING: 0 Keys RESULT: Loss REMAINING: X:XX
Had I known that this would be my first experience as a free man, I promise you I would have never broken out of that jail cell.
I normally make it a policy to never copy text directly from one review to another, but NSB Escape Room somewhat forces an exception. I feel like we need to start at the beginning. Upon arrival, we’re greeted by the staff who presents the backstory to us – by means of reading a TWO FULL PAGE typed document.
It was neither compelling nor sensible.
The cliffnotes version from their website states, “You’ve already managed to escape your jail cell and you and your cellmates have just 60 minutes before the warden gets back from lunch to find his keys and escape for good… or it’s back to the cell you go… and this time for life!”
The owner told us this story personally. She shared with us how she was a missionary who had visited a foreign country, and that this game’s theme would draw heavily from what she learned there.
I do not mean to be rude by saying this, but simply make an observation based on what is before me: Apparently she didn’t learn very much, because there’s basically nothing in this room.
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There literally was not a single puzzle within the confines of this game that was clever. Nearly every step was completely devoid of intuitive logic. The puzzles made absolutely no sense.
And worse of all, they weren’t fun in the least bit.
I wish logic-leaping was a form of exercise. I’d be in damn good physical condition after playing Wardens Office.
And then there’s that little chestnut of this game intentionally having far more puzzles than can reasonably be solved within its 60 minute time frame, just to try to pressure guests to spend even more money to play even longer. Because you know – what I want to do after one of the worst escape game experiences I’ve ever had is pay by the minute to keep it going.
Wardens Office [SIC without apostrophe] is unquestionably one of the worst escape games we’ve ever seen. It’s not fun. It doesn’t make sense. And to top it off, walking into the room makes you feel as though the venue didn’t even try to produce a quality product. Yet somehow, with all of its negatives, its sister game Safe Cracker is even worse.
And as if this game wasn’t escape room hell enough on its own, the level of immersion was taken to a whole other level thanks to the venue’s lack of functioning air conditioning. In Florida.
Again, I really feel the need to simply quote directly from our first NSB Escape Room review, because I’m just not sure it can be summed up any more effectively:
The puzzles require no thought. Even less thought went into the scenic. In fact, it feels as though the venue could have a temporary lease and were not allowed to make changes to the room, because it’s hard to imagine this space looked any different before the game was installed.
As if that’s not bad enough – and it is – at the completion of the game we were given the option to continue playing, for a previously unmentioned additional fee of “just” $0.25 per person per minute. This tells me New Smyrna Beach Escape Room had no real intention of us completing the game, but instead designed it to be more tedious and time-consuming than one could reasonably complete in under the time limit.
We didn’t enjoy the game to begin with, so why would we ever even consider paying them more to continue playing it? This is nothing more than a cash-grab.
It may not be their intention, but it seems like they are here to just take money rather than provide a quality guest experience. And even if not their goal, perception is reality.
Venue: New Smyrna Beach Escape Room
Location: New Smyrna Beach, Florida
Number of Games: 6
GAME SPECIFIC INFORMATION:
Duration: 60 minutes
Capacity: 8 people
Group Type: Public / You may be paired with strangers.
Cost: $25 per person, plus additional $0.25 per person per minute in order to complete this game.
We thank New Smyrna Beach Escape Room for inviting us to review this game. Although complimentary admission was generously provided, that in no way impacts the opinion included within this review.