Escape Room Rumours – 31 October 2016

Happy Hallowe'en

Happy Hallowe’en and welcome to your (approximately) weekly dose of UK and Irish escape game rumours. This site is always on the look out for any new games or venues that are opening, references in the media or anything else that might be of interest to the readers, so please do send an email if you spot anything of interest.

On to the news

  • East Midlands:
    • First prize for my favourite company name in the last few weeks goes to Room with a Clue, a new escape game opening in Northampton. At barely a couple of miles off the M1 perhaps a perfect break on a long journey between the north and south of England… They mention three rooms as being in the pipeline – The King’s Quest, Down the Rabbit Hole and The Great Escape.
    • Escapologic already offer a massive five rooms to the people of Nottingham which, according to some of the enthusiasts who’ve visited, come with a great reputation. This week they’re adding Curio to that list. If you want to find out more, you can watch the trailer here.
    • Leicester had an escape game way back in 2013 but after its closure the city was devoid of rooms to be locked in until earlier this year. Since then they’ve been growing from strength to strength with Bolt Out joining the fold this week. Their first room is The Abandoned Office with a second room currently listed as opening later this year.
  • London:
    • Handmade Mysteries are running a competition to win tickets to one of their games in either Brighton or London.
    • To be honest, I’m really not clear on whether End Game is an escape room or not but it certainly purports to have escape room elements. Longer term they plan to run a permanent game but for now they’ve set up a popup facility in Shoreditch for Hallowe’en which involves laser tag, puzzles and immersive theatre.  If you’re interested get in quickly – it closes later this week!
    • Very first mention of a new escape room venue in the south of London, just south of Bermondsey. There’s very little information on the website but the name, Modern Fables, certainly suggests they’ll do more than throw a few locks and puzzles in a room.
    • Time Run‘s new game, Celestial Chain, got a mention in the local press.
  • North East England:
    • Cluedini have launched a Kickstarter project for their venue in Yarm. They’re 20% of the way to their total and are offering an escape room level at only £40 – cheaper than plenty of Groupons.
    • Teesside is obviously the place to be with Teesside Escape Rooms appearing on the interwebs. Located in Middlesborough, their first room is called Jail Break with a second, the Fear Room, mentioned as coming soon on their website.
  • North West England:
    • Code to Exit closed their room “The Test” last week. That’s particularly interesting because their original room is still open – apparently the local population weren’t keen on the more obviously puzzly nature of their second game in spite of its “no locks” tagline. Something to think about for escape room owners everywhere – enthusiasts might like harder puzzles but will that put off the general populous?
  • Wales
    • According to their booking page Mystery Room Merthyr opens this week with two games: the Olympus Room and The Witch’s Cottage.
  • South East England
    • Clue Cracker‘s Hallowe’en room, Escape From Quarantine, closes this week. After a great reception for their first game, Jail Break, it seems likely they’ll open a new game before long. Details when I get them!
    • Another week, another game in Canterbury. This week Escape Kent add Kidnapped to their lineup. In fact, they only launched last week with Dame Kelly Holmes (Olympic gold medallist in 800m/1500m in 2004 amongst many, many other achievements) doing the honours. You can read more about it in this article by Kent Online.
    • See the London section for details on a competition to win tickets to Handmade Mysteries in Brighton
  • South West England
  • West Midlands
    • Sutton Coldfield, a town in the Birmingham area, will be welcoming Escape Time to its centre. No word yet on what rooms they’ll be opening.
    • Escape Live, who are due to open in Coventry later this year, got a mention in the local paper.
  • Yorkshire and the Humber
    • Cryptology Rooms already have a good reputation in Nottingham, so it’s great to see they’re expanding. Their new venue in Barnsley is due to open in December with SS Cypher followed by First Contact opening next year.
    • The Great Escape, who are opening a new venue in Leeds, were covered in an article in the Yorkshire Evening Post.

That’s all folks

That’s all I’m aware of. If any of the above is incorrect or if you’re aware of other news, discounts or competitions, then let me know via email or in the comments below and I’ll include updates in the next edition.

Thanks for reading!

2 Comments

  1. I am curious to know the reasons for rooms closing. I understand the obvious ones being owner moves/retires/dies/becomes ill or lease on property expires but are there other reasons why seemingly good escape rooms are closing?

    Reply
    • I guess there’s a split here between rooms closing and venues closing.

      Venues: I’m not privy to all the details but I’ve heard of (or rumour of): problems with planning authorities, owners moving away, lease expiring, insufficient bookings.

      Rooms: I believe these are basically due to a lack of popularity. That falls into two camps: gradually diminishing popularity because the target audience have played. At some point opening a new room generates a greater boost in profit than it costs to create the new room. The other reason is because the room wasn’t well received – I believe in the Code to Exit case mentioned above, people weren’t as interested in playing the Test because it was somewhat intimidating (I guess they weren’t getting as many word of mouth recommendations). Presumably the owners feel a new room with a different theme will draw more people.

      Reply

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