December 17, 2017

Mindtrap: Gold Rush & Conspiracy (Temecula, CA)

Gold Rush & Conspiracy
Written by Matt Neal: A weekend trip out of town for us almost always means exploring escape rooms outside our normal playground. On this trip, it meant a drive to explore what San Diego had to offer. San Diego has some great rooms to play, but can be overshadowed by the quality and quantity of experiences to be found in Los Angeles and Orange County.

As we hopped in the car to leave San Diego, that feeling persisted. We had a great time but we weren’t satiated by what we had seen. Our drive home took us through the small town of Temecula, known mainly for their wineries. On several occasions, I have been given recommendations for MindTrap in Temecula but have always been hesitant to make the trip to try it out. In my experience, rooms in small towns, isolated from a competitive market, are great for small towns. The market doesn’t support a lot of investment and the customers don’t have much experience with escape rooms, so you see a lot of no/low-tech rooms, common puzzle types, and nothing but lock boxes.  These rooms can still be wonderful, especially for beginners. It’s the format that initially got many of us hooked on escape rooms. Competition in dense markets, however, has pushed the boundaries as to what an escape room can be, leaving these rooms in the dust. So, on a long drive, passing through a small town, I was fully expecting to find a room great for a small town. MindTrap did not deliver on that expectation.

December 13, 2017

Escape Games NYC: Outer Space (New York City, New York)

Escape Games NYC (New York City)

The Outer Space room at Escape Games NYC was a blast! From start to finish, it was an enjoyable experience that has surpassed the dozen or so escape rooms I've done. The plot has you, the crew of the spaceship, stuck in a situation where the ship has started to malfunction and you must regain control of the situation or else you'll be stuck in outer space forever. Though it doesn't state it on the website's description of the room, there are references to the movie Alien throughout the entire room that made it more fun if you've seen the movie, but not essential to know if you haven't.