Escape Team released their app based escape room game recently. Described as: Escape Team is a digital-physical escape game: solve puzzles using pen and paper, racing against a merciless countdown in the digital world. The puzzles vary in difficulty and some require cutting or other changing of the printouts. Like in a physical escape room, you will find yourself eager to beat the clock and frustrated by a puzzle.
There are currently six mission available, including two free missions. Your task (should you choose to accept it) is to help the authorities protect the public against a formidable foe. The missions’ PDF files are all freely accessible from the game’s website. The app is also free and available for both Apple and Android devices. Inside the app are the missions. After the free training and mission 1, the other ones are 99 cents (US). The app provides the audio story of the game, the code input & checker as well as clues. The clues are timed so you have to wait for each one. You can play without using clues as they are displayed on a separate screen.
I originally played the game myself during its beta test phase. Once it was officially released I played the other released missions. These missions I played with one other adult. The game does not have a listed age range. I would say that it would be good for young adults and adults. There is no sensitive content, but the puzzles would probably be tough for kids. The game with the paper and app could easily be played with a mix of children and adults though.
Puzzles (no spoilers)
The game’s puzzles definitely sucked us in. Like in most escape room experiences, there were some that one person solved and others that we really had to work together on (and use some clues). In playing all six missions we did see some puzzle idea repetition. Puzzles must be solved on the app one at a time in their designated order, though most puzzles are not connected. The gam’s directions, found in the training mission’s PDF, instruct you to print out all pages single sided and spread them out in front of your team. You can work on the phases all together or do a divide and conquer approach. Codes for each phase can only be entered into the app in order though.
The app is very stable and well designed. the code systems is very intuitive. The audio for the story is clear and the story flow makes sense. Unfortunately, one of my biggest issues with the game is that the puzzles really do not have any connection with the story. You are told why you need to solve it but they do not match the scenario. I wish the game was called a puzzle game instead of escape room. I think that term gave me expectations that are very tough to meet in an app & paper game.
- Challenging puzzles
- Inexpensive games with free black & white printables
- Nice app interface
- Unique mix of digital and paper game
- Story and puzzles do not connect well
- Puzzle type repetition
- Want more missions
I do recommend that you give this game a try. Please let me know what you think in the comments.
Check out Escape Team