Seeing double?

If you found this article useful then good news – I’ve now transferred all the information about UK/Irish duplicate rooms below (and more!) to the Exit Game lists. You’ll now find an icon next to any duplicate games with information about where they’re present around the country. Note that, as of yet, that doesn’t cover games that are unique on these islands but have copies overseas. 

Ever had the feeling of déja vu in an escape room? Chances are that it wasn’t because you’d already played the game but, if it was, you certainly wouldn’t be the only one. Slowly, cases are appearing where people sign up to play an escape room and then find out when they arrive that the story seems somewhat familiar and the puzzles are all too easy. It’s made particularly difficult for players who travel the world since they’re both more likely to encounter the same escape room franchised in two areas and also not recognise it as the same room because the localised version of the name is completely different.

With that in mind, this is an attempt to bring together all the current information about escape rooms that are duplicated in this country. Be warned: it will almost certainly not be correct at the time of writing with the odd room slipping through the net and, furthermore, by the time you get around to using the information, it’s perfectly possible that it will be even more out of date. It is at least a stake in the ground and as a community we can consider what the best route is to tracking these duplicate games.

Rooms repeated within the UK and Ireland

Obviously any brand with multiple venues is likely to have repeated rooms. Breakout Games in Aberdeen/Inverness, Breakout in Manchester/Liverpool/Cardiff, The Escape Room, Clue HQ, Escape Reality, the Panic Room, Escape Live and Escape all have games at multiple venues. Hopefully those should be pretty easy to spot for any escape room enthusiast.

You can add to that list Escape Rooms Belfast, Escape Rooms Derry and Escape Hour Edinburgh which might not be so obviously from the same stable. Similarly Escapism Chester, while not part of the same franchise group, has bought in its games from Escape, so you’ll see duplicate Area 51, Taken and Espionage across those sites.

The more interesting thing is where a room is repeated at a totally different company, possibly with an entirely generic name (Prison Break?) or even a different name. Here’s my list of known overlap:

  • TRAP games
    • The Tomb or Secret of the Tomb is a TRAP game licensed to Cambridge Escape Rooms and Escape Room Centre, Blackpool.
    • Egyptian from TRAP is available at both the Escape Room Centre, Blackpool and Lockhouse, Cambridge
  • NERD games
    • Helter Skelter is about to open in both Escape 60 in Kent and Incognito Escape Room in Dublin
    • The Baker Street Mystery is located in both Xscape Now in Telford and Lakes Escape in Workington
  • Mazebase games
    • Secret Agent can be played at No Exit in Bolton and Puzzlair in Bristol
    • The Poltergeist Room is available at No Exit in Bolton and Puzzlair in Bristol
    • The Tomb exists at both No Exit in Bolton and at Escape Rooms Cardiff
    • Finding Sherlock has made its ways to three venues: No Exit in Bolton, Escape Rooms Cardiff and Inside Out Escape in London
    • Lev Pasted is present on both sides of the country at Puzzlair in Bristol and Cryptic Escape in Norwich
    • John Monroe’s Detective Office is at Hint Hunt in London and was previously in Manchester’s Breakout
  • Others
    • ENIGMA at the Panic Room Harlow was previously at the Great Escape in Milton Keynes

Rooms repeated outside the UK/Ireland

As more of the enthusiast community head abroad, it becomes increasingly likely that you’ll find yourself in a room that is unique to the UK but you might encounter/have encountered elsewhere. Many of the rooms in the previously category also fit here – any Escape, The Escape Room, NERD design, TRAP or Mazebase rooms are likely to appear abroad, as well as any international company (e.g. Omescape and iLocked) but some less obvious occurrences:

  • No Exit Bolton’s games are all Mazebase designs
  • Most of Puzzlair’s games in Bristol are Mazebase
  • The Virus game in Manchester is based on a Mazebase design
  • Escape Rooms Cardiff’s games are all Mazebase designs
  • All of the Cambridge venue Lockhouse’s games are TRAP designs
  • All of Blackpool’s Escape Room Centre’s games are TRAP designs
  • KLB Escape room in Andover uses a NERD design for their game
  • Escape 60, with various locations opening in Kent, has bought in NERD designs for their games
  • Lakes Escape games are NERD designs
  • Cliffhanger Rooms in Cumbria have a couple of NERD games although their most recent game was designed in house.
  • Breakin Escapes in London are part of the Romanian company Breakout (name changed in the UK for obvious reasons) who sell their games to a variety of locations.
  • Escape Game Over in Derby offer games from the GAME OVER parent brand – but be aware that these game are sometimes sold without the GAME OVER brand.
  • Locked In North Wales bought their games in from Escape Room Franchise (aka Buy Escape Games)

Full list of duplicate games in UK/Ireland

If you want the full list of games available at multiple sites (including companies with venues in multiple cities) then read on:

  • Lock & Key (2 locations – 1 open): Breakout Games Aberdeen, Breakout Games Inverness
  • Black and White (2 locations – 1 open): Breakout Games Aberdeen, Breakout Games Inverness
  • Frankenstein (2 locations – 1 open): Breakout Games Aberdeen, Breakout Games InvernessPrison Break (4 locations – 4 open): The Escape Room Barrow, The Escape Room Manchester, The Escape Room Stoke, The Escape Room Preston
  • Room 13 (2 locations – 2 open): The Escape Room Barrow, The Escape Room Manchester
  • Major Plott’s Revenge (3 locations – 1 open): Escape Rooms Belfast, Escape Rooms Derry, Escape Hour
  • Dr Wilson’s Office (2 locations – 2 open): Escape Live Birmingham, Escape Live Essex
  • Room 13 (2 locations – 2 open): Escape Live Birmingham, Escape Live Essex
  • Bunker 38 (7 locations – 7 open): Clue HQ Birmingham, Clue HQ Brentwood, Clue HQ Glasgow, Clue HQ Leicester, Clue HQ Sunderland, Clue HQ Swindon, Clue HQ Warrington
  • Cell Block C (4 locations – 4 open): Clue HQ Birmingham, Clue HQ Glasgow, Clue HQ Leicester, Clue HQ Manchester
  • AI9 (2 locations – 2 open): Clue HQ Birmingham, Clue HQ Leicester
  • Detonation (4 locations – 4 open): Clue HQ Blackpool, Clue HQ Brentwood, Clue HQ Coventry, Clue HQ Manchester
  • Quarantined (2 locations – 2 open): Clue HQ Blackpool, Clue HQ Leicester
  • Taken (7 locations – 5 open): Escape Blackpool, Escapism Chester, Escape Edinburgh, Escape Hull, Escape Newcastle, Escape Stoke, Escape Peterborough
  • Da Vinci (8 locations – 7 open): Escape Blackpool, Escape Doncaster, Escape Edinburgh, Escape London, Escape Newcastle, Escape Stoke, Escape Clonakilty, Escape Dublin
  • Contagion (4 locations – 4 open): Escape Blackpool, Escape Haymarket, Escape Glasgow, Escape Hull
  • Egyptian (2 locations – 1 open): Escape Room Centre, Lock House
  • Secret of the Tomb (2 locations – 2 open): Escape Room Centre, Cambridge Escape Rooms
  • Secret Agent (2 locations – 2 open): No Exit, Puzzlair – Barton Rd
  • The Poltergeist Room (2 locations – 2 open): No Exit, Puzzlair – Barton Rd
  • The Tomb (2 locations – 2 open): No Exit, Escape Rooms Cardiff
  • Finding Sherlock (3 locations – 3 open): No Exit, Escape Rooms Cardiff, Inside Out Escape
  • Dungeon of Doom (3 locations – 3 open): Clue HQ Brentwood, Clue HQ Coventry, Clue HQ Warrington
  • Lady Chastity’s Reserve (3 locations – 3 open): Handmade Mysteries Brighton, Handmade Mysteries – South, Handmade Mysteries – East
  • John Monroe (3 locations – 2 open): Puzzlair – Midland Rd, HintHunt, Breakout Manchester – High St
  • Lev Pasted (2 locations – 2 open): Puzzlair – Midland Rd, Cryptic Escape
  • Timelock (2 locations – 2 open): Locked in a Room Bristol, Locked in a Room London
  • Invisibility Gene (2 locations – 2 open): Locked in a Room Bristol, Locked in a Room London
  • Classified (3 locations – 2 open): Breakout Cardiff, Breakout Liverpool, Breakout Manchester – Great Northern
  • Sabotage (3 locations – 3 open): Breakout Cardiff, Breakout Liverpool, Breakout Manchester – Town Hall
  • Cursed Carnival (3 locations – 3 open): Breakout Cardiff, Breakout Chester, Breakout Liverpool
  • Disturbed (2 locations – 2 open): Breakout Cardiff, Breakout Chester
  • Jungala (5 locations – 4 open): Escape Reality Cardiff, Escape Reality Coventry, Escape Reality Glasgow, Escape Reality Leeds, Escape Reality Leicester
  • Enigmista (3 locations – 3 open): Escape Reality Cardiff, Escape Reality Glasgow, Escape Reality Leicester
  • Alcatraz (5 locations – 4 open): Escape Reality Cardiff, Escape Reality Coventry, Escape Reality Glasgow, Escape Reality Leeds, Escape Reality Leicester
  • Misery (2 locations – 2 open): Escape Reality Cardiff, Escape Reality Glasgow
  • The Heist (2 locations – 1 open): Escape Reality Cardiff, Escape Reality Coventry
  • Area 51 (5 locations – 5 open): Escapism Chester, Escape Doncaster, Escape Haymarket, Escape London, Escape Stoke
  • Espionage (3 locations – 3 open): Escapism Chester, Escape Livingston, Escape Dublin
  • Vacancy (2 locations – 2 open): Breakout Chester, Breakout Manchester – High St
  • Most Wanted (2 locations – 2 open): Breakout Chester, Breakout Manchester – High St
  • Identify (2 locations – 2 open): Breakout Chester, Breakout Manchester – High St
  • Sacrifice (2 locations – 2 open): Clue HQ Coventry, Clue HQ Warrington
  • Murder in Whitechapel (2 locations – 1 open): Escape Reality Coventry, Escape Reality Glasgow
  • The Diamond Heist (2 locations – 1 open): Escape Rooms Derry, Escape Hour
  • Escape Casino (3 locations – 3 open): Escape Haymarket, Escape Hull, Escape London
  • Helter Skelter (2 locations – 1 open): Escape 60, Incognito Escape Room
  • EMCU Trials (3 locations – 2 open): Escape Glasgow, Escape Hull, Escape Stoke
  • Blueprint (3 locations – 3 open): Tick Tock Unlock Glasgow, Tick Tock Unlock Leeds, Tick Tock Unlock Liverpool
  • The Hatch (3 locations – 3 open): Tick Tock Unlock Glasgow, Tick Tock Unlock Leeds, Tick Tock Unlock Manchester
  • The Panic Room (3 locations – 2 open): The Panic Room Gravesend 1, The Panic Room Gravesend 2, The Panic Room Harlow
  • The Witch House (2 locations – 1 open): The Panic Room Gravesend 1, The Panic Room Harlow
  • ENIGMA (2 locations – 1 open): The Panic Room Harlow, A Great Escape
  • 221B Baker Street (2 locations – 2 open): Escape Hull, Escape Peterborough
  • Outbreak (2 locations – 1 open): Secrets Beneath Jersey, Secrets Beneath Portsmouth
  • The Betrayal of Cluetankhamun (3 locations – 2 open): Clue HQ Leicester, Clue HQ Swindon, Clue HQ Warrington
  • The Vault (3 locations – 3 open): Clue HQ Leicester, Clue HQ Sunderland, Clue HQ Warrington
  • Teleporter (2 locations – 2 open): Clue HQ Leicester, Clue HQ Warrington
  • The Crystal Maze (2 locations – 1 open): The Crystal Maze, The Crystal Maze Manchester
  • The Mummy (2 locations – 2 open): The Escape Room Manchester, The Escape Room Preston
  • Spy Mission: Knight Order (2 locations – 2 open): The Escape Room Stoke, The Escape Room Preston
  • Da Vinci (2 locations – 2 open): WeEscape, WeEscape Dublin
  • Taken (2 locations – 2 open): WeEscape, WeEscape Dublin

3 Comments

  1. Puzzlair Bristol also have John Monroe’s Office.
    Fairly sure the new games at Escape Rooms London are bought in from somewhere (given the translation issues and partial use of an app with a bunch of other features not being used) but no idea where from.

    Reply
  2. Hi. Locked In A Room has a 3rd venue at Milton Keynes with both Invisibility Gene & Timelock rooms.
    The new room (Parallax) will open in MK in the next few weeks, with Bristol & London to follow in 2018)

    Reply

Leave a Comment.