Good news for March 2016

"Good News for a change!" - adapted from Rick Warden, CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 licence

Here are a selection of stories that will hopefully put a smile on your face. Just think about the people involved and the smiles that must have been on their faces!

  • First to Puzzlair of Bristol, who are celebrating John’s proposal to Claire. May all their escapes be great ones!
  • It seems almost disrespectful to focus on more than a single couple’s big day, but more and more sites are hosting these happy occasions, and also sharing the good news is Escape of Glasgow. This time it was Annie who proposed, and thanked Nick and Kim at Escape on Twitter for their help. The Escape team went on to post further details of the happy event.
  • Not a proposal, but something that might happen somewhere down the line for some happy couples. To say more would be to spoil the surprise, so let The Great Escape Game of Sheffield tell the story. Perhaps there will be a nearer miss than two days being talked about by an exit game before long. (Lovely name, too!)
  • So this story is almost telling a story of the progression of a relationship. One happy step further down the line for some relationships is a fifth birthday party; for one here, we have to go to Locked In Edinburgh. The event they describe sounds wonderful here, whether celebrating a fifth birthday or a fifty-fifty birthday.
  • Perhaps your five-year-old will grow up and start their own business. Perhaps their business will win an award, as in this happy story as Can You Escape? of Edinburgh celebrate their victory in the Best-Performing Business (1-10) category at the Edinburgh Chamber of Commerce awards. Congratulations and here’s to many more!

Dates for your diary

weekly calendarThis site has got somewhat slack with updating its events calendar to the point where even linking to it in this article would feel wrong. Nevertheless, there are a few things worth looking ahead to already.

  • The first leg of this year’s WPF Puzzle Grand Prix is in progress already, starting about half a day ago. You have until Monday evening, UK time, to identify a clear block of 90 minutes and earn as many points as possible by solving pencil-and-paper puzzles set by a team from India in the first leg of a metaphorical race around the puzzling world. Some of you may know that the puzzles are always very fine and the contest is reliably great fun; this year’s competition has an added twist to make it more accessible and help more people find their level of fun. More about that very soon, hopefully while the first leg is still in progress.
  • The Coney troupe of interactive theatre makers are holding a Scratch and Salon session at the Camden People’s Theatre from midday on Sunday. The “Scratch and Salon is an open event making play on the line between public space and corporate space, and exploring the ideas around the commons“. At midday, “A map will be unfurled of scratch adventures and other playful experiences to be discovered in the neighbourhood of CPT. You’ll need a mobile phone with credit to send text messages in order to play. From 3pm – We’ll reconvene in the Theatre and host a salon – first curated with provocations from speakers segueing into an open space discussion – on what it means to make play in this space, and the politics of public space and the commons“. Not immediately puzzly, but very likely to be relevant somehow; their shows always inspire interesting thoughts.
  • February 27th and 28th see the UK Open Puzzle and Sudoku Tournaments taking place at the Selsdon Park Hotel in Croydon; since the World Championships were held here a couple of years ago, this has surely become the spiritual home of competition puzzles in this country. The company is always excellent and it’s as close to the World Championship experience as you’re going to get.
  • Closer to the usual core of this site, Can You Escape? of Edinburgh are hosting a Disabled Access Day on Saturday 12th March. “Join us on Disabled Access Day between 10.30 and 12.00 to take a look around Operation Odyssey our space themed mission, giving you a chance to check if the room is suitable and have a go at some puzzles (not the ones in the room – that would be cheating!) ((…)) People taking part in Disabled Access Day can also get 30% off bookings on the day or bookings made on the day.” Clearly Can You Escape? takes accessibility seriously; see the entry in the FAQ, but also the site’s inclusion in Euan’s Guide for disabled access reviews. While it’s far from the only site to do so, Exit Games UK is not aware of anything quite like this Disabled Access Day before and this would appear to be an instant example of best practice, well worth consideration by sites up and down the country. If you want to see whether the site is right for you, e-mail Can You Escape? first because only a limited number of spaces are available.
  • April is set to be busy, busy, busy, though in a very good way. From 1st to 3rd April, Now Play This returns to the New Wing of Somerset House in London. It’s not clear what will be on the line-up this year as the open call is in progress; “This year we’re particularly keen on things with interesting controllers, games which deal with utopias, play in a city context, and work which encourages player creativity – but games outside these themes are also welcome.” The event is part of the larger London Games Festival, “running from 1 to 10 April 2016, the festival includes 15 official events across 10 different locations” – perhaps something exit game-related might be appropriate for the Festival Fringe?
  • The Canadian Caper will be running on April 9th at the Arts & Letters Club in Toronto. “A one-day only escape experience for up to 15 teams of six ((though it’s not immediately clear whether it’s 15 teams per show or 15 teams total over the three shows.)) This is very much an escape game. There will be puzzles to solve. Solving puzzles will allow you to progress through the space into new rooms where you will find new challenges and new puzzles. Ultimately your goal is to physically escape the space. Unlike a traditional escape game though there will also be actors that teams will need to interact with to gain information.” The first episode in the series was put on by a number of bloggers and their very talented friends; us UK types can just dream and be jealous, for it sounds hugely cool and it is delightful that the first episode is not just a one-off.
  • We don’t have it so bad in the UK, though; Saturday 16th April sees the Springtime Hunt in Shrewsbury organised by the Armchair Treasure Hunt Club. “Everyone is welcome to come along and compete, whether you are a member of the club or whether you just enjoy competing in treasure hunts. Gather for the hunt at 10am for an 11am start, and it’ll probably be about tea time when the treasure is unearthed. The £25 entry fee includes lunch as well as the hunt and its prizes. Go to the club’s website for more details of how to book your place.
  • Never enough, never enough; Up The Game happens two days later. “On the 18th of April Amsterdam will host the first international Escape Room & Real Life Gaming Conference.” Their speaker list is extremely exciting with speakers from several countries. While the early bird tickets have sold out, you can still buy Advance tickets at €100 each, plus a small booking fee, plus the Dutch version of VAT, which by the way has the charming acronym of BTW.
  • Last year, this site proposed an industry meeting at the forthcoming live The Crystal Maze attraction; while all 32 tickets have been sold (and there are already names at the top of the waiting list) it’s going to take place on Tuesday 26th April. Maybe something else interesting might be happening around that time too, you never know
  • And that’s not even referring to DASH 8, set to take place in cities around the world on Saturday 30th April!

What other events is this site missing?

More and more news

breaking-newsMore and more short news stories at the moment; sadly, they can’t all be longer pieces. Eyes down for a full house.

  • Episode four of Race to Escape was broadcast on Saturday night and has made its way to illicit video-sharing sites already. (There are only six episodes in this series, but so much difference from epsiode to episode; treasure them before they’re gone.) This episode is perhaps the most so of the series to date in a room that looks like it would be tremendous fun to have played. The aforementioned illicit video-sharing sites don’t make it easy – there are doubtless plenty of adverts (noisy pop-unders and the like, maybe worse) – but here’s this week’s link to a list of sites. Megavideoz was the starting-point used here once again.
  • Less than two and a half days to go in the Enigma Quests Kickstarter and less than two and a half hundred pounds required for the project to fund. It’s looking promising, but there’s always more that can be done and those early bird prices look attractive.
  • Edinburgh’s the place to be for exit game excitement while the Fringe is in progress. Locked In Edinburgh have done extremely well before their temporary hiatus starts tomorrow; while the intention was to hold a short run before the venue would be used for a Festival performance, it has proved so successful that it’s now taking bookings for a permanent run from the same address from Tuesday 8th September onwards. Excellent news! The game is set in a disused small animal hospital; unusually, it is a dog-friendly venue, so do bring your dogs along and see if they can sniff out the secrets.
  • The top five entries in the current version of TripAdvisor’s Fun and Games in Edinburgh chart, at time of writing, are all exit games. Great work all round and well worth celebrating!
  • Elsewhere in Edinburgh, comedian Alex Horne and team didn’t have to say “We Need Answers” as they demonstrated that they could answer yes at Can You Escape, and husband-and-wife global medal-winning judoka (? judokas? judokae? Judo superstars, anyhow) Euan Burton MBE and Gemma Gibbons both enjoyed tying Dr. Knox’s Enigma in knots.
  • The stars aren’t just coming out in Edinburgh; The Escape Room of Manchester’s recent Open Night included an appearance by two Hollyoaks actors – but no indication whether they escaped their game or not!
  • Clue HQ of Warrington have launched their fourth game, The Teleporter. In it, the anagrammatic Professor Errol Tepet was a recluse and came up with a number of different inventions during his life time. Not much is known about this device. Nobody knows how he came up with The Teleporter or even if it actually exists – some say it’s just a myth. It probably doesn’t work, but do you fancy a look around? If you’ve played any of their other games before, then you very probably do!
  • CNBC have some rather lovely Time Run clips in a piece on the genre; pity they’ve got a couple of names very slightly wrong, but you can’t have everything!

News round-up

News round-up1) Exciting news from Can You Escape? of Edinburgh; they’ll be launching their first outdoor game in time for the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. “…we need agents to defeat the evil Nick Knock, after a disastrous appearance at the Fringe last year that saw him heckled off stage, he is back to seek his revenge and ensure no one else gets the limelight. How you may ask? Well Mr Knock has planted an Electro Magnetic Pulse device somewhere in Edinburgh which will cut the power to the city and prevent all future performances. #WTFringe?” The location originally planned to open in time for last year’s Edinburgh Fringe; hopefully the Fringe will boost all four thriving locations in the city.

2) Also delighted to see Time Run of London Tweet that Jonathan Ross, no less, played their game recently. The lad Ross is known as a board gamer and a video gamer (remember his references to Sonic the Hedgehog on They Think It’s All Over years ago? …Just this site?) so it’s logical that he’d be interested in playing live action games as well. Looking forward, hopefully, to a photo being posted. Best celeb spot yet… unless you know otherwise?

3) This site started to discuss a potential industry meetup at the forthcoming The Crystal Maze Live attraction in a recent post, and perhaps there’s the interest. So far, nine sites and six individual players have expressed interest. This is probably only worth doing if we can get to 32 definite takers, not just people who have expressed an interest, so there is more room. All welcome. If you’re interested in starting your own room and want to pick lots of brains at once then this would be a particularly good opportunity.

4) Bother’s Bar are tracking the crowdfunding for The Crystal Maze Live and recently had an amusing twist on a poll about whether it would meet its £500,000 funding target or not. Poll responses were 79% yes and 21% no. It’s already reached about 75% of the target, courtesy of very strong days two, three and four, and – perhaps due to the sums involved? – has been a slightly slower burner of a crowdfunding campaign than most. £500,000 is a target, not a limit; how far can they go? Will there be stretch goals?

5) In more general puzzle news, some links that this site enjoyed:

  • this BBC report upon a marriage proposal hidden within The Times cryptic crossword;
  • the latest monthly Puzzlebomb (.pdf) features a mashup of the two most recent mainstream maths puzzle sensations – Cheryl’s birthday and Hannah’s sweets – and offers quite a challenge; and
  • a review of DASH 7 as it was played in Denver, from a team with a fantastic name that this site called out at the time.

6) Great to see another blogger still from the greater Toronto area, now making six; when an area gets up to forty-plus-to-sixtyish different sites, perhaps six blogs is about right. When there are so many reviewers out there, perhaps the logical next step would be a review aggregator – a sort of metacritic for exit games? TripAdvisor performs this to some extent, but a review aggregator which compares opinions of not just many players but of many players all of whom have broad experiences in the field would be a powerful tool – and one, perhaps, that need not be restricted to one area.

Late April news

"Daily News" newspaperSo April has 30 days, making the first ten “early”, the second ten “mid-” and the last ten “late”. Seem reasonable enough? Here are some more news stories that have cropped up over recent days.

Many congratulations to Can You Escape? of Edinburgh for winning the Scotland’s Favourite Family Day Out award at the fourth annual Scottish Entertainment & Hospitality Awards on Sunday. (The site’s founder writes about the day.) The masses may have voted them into the final shortlist of five, but it was a visit from the judging panel that propelled them into first place overall! The site has recently launched its second game, Operation Odyssey; looking forward to reading reviews.

Exciting developments at Breakout Liverpool, who have announced their new fourth room: Wanted. The site explains: Wanted is a wild west themed room. Your quest in the room is to escape but you have two choices and ways to escape. Which side will you take, will you save the day as a cowboy or an Indian? Depending on your choice you will face different tasks and puzzles to complete. Which path will you take? Their sister site, Breakout Manchester, already have experience of running a pair of Classified games against each other head-to-head; it’s not clear whether this will have similarities or not. It’s available to book from Friday 15th May.

ESCAP3D of Belfast have a LivingSocial deal available, permitting teams of three to eight players. The vouchers can be used until September 10, 2015, and are available to new ESCAP3D customers only. Terms and conditions, including usual LivingSocial terms and conditions, apply.

Clue HQ Blackpool have also announced an opening date of May 25th for their upcoming second game, Quarantined, with the first 20 groups to book using the special code getting to play for just £50 each, regardless of group size. “With the growing threat of a radiation leak due to the increase in nuclear power, the government seek a solution to radiation poisoning within humans. Deep within a high security facility, a group of scientists work to develop a vaccine to ensure immunity, but to run tests they need subjects. You regain consciousness to find yourself quarantined within the facility. You don’t know how you got here. You don’t know who got you here. Then the screams start. Just when you think your situation cannot get any worse – it does.” Teams of three to six can play; during this game, each team member will be handcuffed, blindfolded, in pitch black darkness and locked in one of three small rooms – so, quite possibly, alone. Not a game for the claustrophobic or those aged under 15.

Lastly, Time Run of London launches its three-and-a-bit-month run on Thursday 23rd April, and already most of the tickets for the first week are gone – and if you want to play in the evening, you’ll need to look rather further down the line. It’s disturbingly easy to develop a slightly untoward crush on the Luna Fox character and even more so on the actress depicting her in the video.

Early April news

Rolled-up newspaper

A quick round-up of a few news stories:

The BBC quote Netmums as suggesting that On average, parents spend £135 on their child’s party, with one-in-six parents admitting to splashing out over £300. A few sites emphasise their suitability for parties, at least for older children; The Room of Glasgow have a room designed to be played by 10-16-year-olds (and 10-16 of them!) and The Gr8 Escape of Belfast have a number of party packages available. Definitely a route well worth considering.

This site was excited to see Can You Escape? of Edinburgh make a Pitch to Rich as part of Virgin Media Business’ so-entitled competition. The site launches its second, Operation Odyssey, room on Thursday, and even other local sites’ owners are looking forward to getting to play it. Can You Escape?‘s pitch seems to have got off to a popular start; this site wishes it well – and any other sites pitching for the funding, of course.

The Escape Game Addicts team played six exit games in a single day on Tuesday, escaping all of them, and made a must-read post about their epic day. To the best of this site’s knowledge, that’s an all-comers record for the UK – unless you know otherwise – though Daniel Hill of Escape played eight in a day in Budapest once. (Doubt that would have taken 110 miles of driving, mind you…)

Many congratulations to Enigma Escape of London, whose Kickstarter campaign finished up 112% funded, the first UK campaign to reach its goal. Follow its founders’ Twitter accounts at @sam_the_enigma and @hon_the_enigma to learn the behind-the-scenes story as the site gets built and under way.

Finally, this weekend sees the fourth round of the Puzzle Grand Prix series organised by the World Puzzle Federation – and this round has puzzles from Dutch authors. Take a look at the instruction booklet and if it’s for you, you have until Monday night to carve out a 90-minute window in which to answer puzzles to score yourself as many points as you can.

One becomes two

Jupiter symbolThis all-purpose symbol for cheating at Sudoku is used here to represent the concept of one becoming two. A third-century alchemist once wrote “Naughty, naughty, ve One becomes two, two becomes three, and out of the third comes the one as the fourth“. Let’s hope that exit games up and down the land can perform their own alchemy as their one room is joined by a second, so that players who came and enjoyed a site’s first room have a reason to visit a second time.

Lost and Escape of Newcastle have opened their second room, The Lost Treasure. It’s a big game, at 75 minutes in duration, designed for teams of 3-7 players and the charge is £25 per person. The Ruby Heart, one of the treasures in national museum, is stolen by Mr. Evil. You, the secret agent, are asked to bring it back tonight. Can you complete the mission? The web site suggests that an unusual degree of physical agility will be required, so especially if you have a parkour or capoiera fan who fancied themselves one of (specifically) Ocean’s Twelve then this may be the one for you. Additionally, on their Facebook page, the site announced that there’s 20% off until the 15th of April.

The Great Escape Game of Sheffield opened their second room a week or so ago – and, with it, refreshed their web site. The Great Escape Game run 45-minute missions; their second room, Homicide, is their first six-player room, and especially cheap with a full complement of six; play before 5pm on a Weekday and a team of six is charged just £12.42/player (including the 3½% booking fee). Like the Saw series? You’ll love this! You and your team of federal secret agents have had an anonymous call from what you suspect to be a serial killer. There has been strange on goings for a while and the suspect has been leaving pieces of puzzle at every crime scene as a taunt. It is now your mission to put an end to all of this and save Sheffield; however when you arrive at this particular crime scene address something peculiar happens…

Lock’d of south-east London have unlock’d their second room, Museum Warehouse. One key harder (4/5 rather than 3/5) than their first room, this 60-minute 3-5-player game suggests Somebody is going to take out of the country five unique masterpieces from City Museum Warehouse. You have to find way into the warehouse, find all the objects and discreetly get out during one hour. This hints at five sequences of puzzles to solve during your team’s hour. Teams of three pay £77 flat rate, teams of four £88 and teams of five £99.

GR8escape York have similarly gone from a self-assessed difficulty level of 3/5 for their first room to 4/5 for their second. Teams of two to six can play their New York Room where the team, seeking to earn a detective’s role within the NYPD, search a possible crime scene. The local police department have found the apartment of master diamond thief Bugsy Bronxton who is believed to have stolen the famous Manhattan Star Diamond. The NYPD have been given a search warrant to look for the stolen diamond. ((…)) You will need to work with your rookie partners to search everywhere in the apartment. There will be clues and hints but you will need to work out how they fit together to succeed ((… and …)) find that missing diamond within 60 minutes. The room is so new that its top ten leaderboard only shows nine teams having completed it successfully, but even the fastest teams will get quite a full hour for their money. Teams of 2-3 pay £48, teams of 4 pay £58 and teams of 5-6 pay £68.

There are also rooms where opening dates have been announced and booking is open prior to their launch. Escape Quest of Macclesfield’s second room, from April 1st, will be Amazon Escape. You and your team of intrepid explorers have entered the Amazon rainforest in search of unchartered areas of land. Inadvertently you have crossed into territory occupied by the Keeyhidi tribe, some of the last remaining cannibals left in the world today; you are immediately captured and thrown into the cage you now find yourselves in. The tribe have a very special celebration planned when one of their men will marry a girl from the neighbouring Yohfindy tribe, giving you and your team an opportunity to escape. The ceremony starts with a visit to the Yohfindy village to collect the girl. It’s a 30 minute walk away, so I’d estimate that you have an hour to make your escape. It’s a game for teams of three to six, charging £57, £72, £80 or £90 depending on the size of the team. The site has been very effective at trickling information about their game out on social media; the world knows that there are tonnes of sand in the room, hinting at a relatively physcial game, and a unique ten-foot waterfall. Even if the flow there may be relatively low, the stereotypical image of colonial explorers points at pith helmets and some sort of headgear might just be a good idea.

Looking a little further ahead still, Can You Escape of Edinburgh have announced that their second game will be Operation Odyssey. Their site reveals more: The International Space Station and its escape pod have been hit by an asteroid shower and they have both sustained serious damage. The bad news is that the escape pod is the only way home, there is a crew on board the ISS who are depending on you to get it fixed. Can you step up and be part of the elite Space Cadets Squad that must race against the clock to restore the escape pod. You and your team will have one hour to repair it to working order before the next asteroid shower strikes. It’s in your hands, Can You Escape? The game can be booked from April 16th; teams of two are charged £40, threesomes £55, foursomes £60, fivesomes £65 and sixsomes £70.

Looking furthest ahead, Escape Rooms Plymouth have only announced theme but not yet a date for their second room, Bizzarro Quest. This “quest to the pharcyde” invites your team of three to six to step into an intoxicating world of bizarreness. Can you make your way out in under 60 minutes? Can you make head or tale of up or down? This fun, crazy game will be sure to test your wits but bamboozle your senses as it does. The prices are £45 for three, £56 for four, £65 for five and £72 for six. Looking forward to reading some more specifics before long.

Fingers crossed that the alchemist of old is onto something and that as one has become two, two does go on to become three, then many more…

Late March news

"Top News" newspaperSome news stories today, some expanding sites tomorrow.

The most recent episode of the On Board Games podcast has Prof. Scott Nicholson discussing, among other things, the world of exit games and his recent white paper arising from his survey. It’s extremely clear that he’s found out so much that doesn’t fit into the confines of at least his first white paper and plenty more of it comes up in casual conversation. Well worth listening to.

The Kickstarter campaign for Enigma Escape (not to be confused with Enigma Escape Rooms of Colorado or Enigma Escapes, plural, of Winnpeg) is still in progress; as a Staff Pick, it has attracted more attention and is almost 40% funded with two weeks to go. The campaign has recently announced that one of the site’s principals will be livestreaming a webinar at 8:30pm tonight on “Raising Your Limited Life Standards“, with specific reference to the establishment of Enigma Escape.

Clue Finders of Liverpool recently earnt a mention as item number 44 of 50 fantastic family ideas for Easter, an article within the Event supplement of the Mail on Sunday. Exit games aren’t just for Easter, or for families with teenagers, but certainly it’s one of the many different good fits that exist. This site was delighted to read that the mention has attracted a lot of attention!

Can You Escape of Edinburgh recently earnt a place as one of the five finalists for the Scotland’s Favourite Family Day Out category of the Scottish Entertainment & Hospitality Awards for 2015! It’s up against well-established competition, but it was tough to get to the final five. Fingers crossed that this, too, attracts more attention as well.

Tomorrow’s post will concern a number of sites growing from one game to two, but here’s news of a site which has refreshed its single game: ESCAP3D of Belfast, one of the very earliest sites of them all, has a new room, Paulina’s Revenge. The site suggests the game now caters for parties of three two eight, and suggests you might usefully brush up on your basic chemistry knowledge. Sounds like a plan if you don’t want your trip to their room to end with a BOOM!

January 2015 Dealwatch: coupons and discounts to play exit games for less

"Special Price" stickerDealwatch is an occasional feature which, as the name suggests, looks out for special offers that exit games are promoting. The frequency of the feature depends more on the availability of deals than anything else. Some ground rules apply:

  • Do check voucher companies’ terms, conditions and guarantees and this site takes no responsibility for deals that fall through for whatever reason, which sadly has happened once;
  • Many of these deals only permit a limited number of vouchers to be purchased and then the deal will expire. It’s quite possible that deals may have expired between being published below and your attempt to use them;
  • This non-commercial site does not attract any commission for promoting these deals, or for you using them;
  • These deals are not exclusive in any manner.

As it happens, none of the discounts quoted this time do seem to rely on social buying services, but the principles apply nevertheless.

Mystery Cube of Wimbledon is the most recent new location to open; as is often the case, a location is most likely to offer discounts as, and just after, it opens. Booking using the code Mystery Cube will offer a 50% reduction for teams playing between 24th January, the presumptive opening date, and 7th February. The regular price is also one that might be more likely to be found in the provinces than in London at large.

Another recent opening took place at The Great Escape Game of Sheffield, and they too posted an opening offer to their Facebook page. As described on a linked story at TicketArena, a £20 discount is available for a limited time (though no clear limit is specified, but why wait?) for teams booking using the code GR8TA20.

One more recent opening still happened at The Escape Room of Manchester, who also have a limited-time opening offer with no deadline specified. The site has a total of five different rooms, some that will take teams of sizes two to five, and others that will take teams of up to six. You can get a 20% discount by booking using the code ESCAPE20; another one to take advantage of sooner rather than later.

Lastly, one site that’s not quite such a recent opening is Can You Escape of Edinburgh, though they have already climbed to number seven in the TripAdvisor attractions charts for the city, a list with three sites all now in the top nine. A recent Facebook announcement suggests that student teams who book a slot on a Thursday using the STU-295-ZMV code receive a 20% discount; “just make sure your team bring their student cards”. Facebook suggests this Thursday discount will be running until mid-February; perhaps it’ll last longer, perhaps not – best not wait to find out the hard way!

((Edited to add:)) Another deal that came a day too late but is far too good to ignore: Room Escape Adventures of London have released a Wowcher for their Trapped In A Room With A Zombie show, reducing the price of one of the twelve tickets for each show from £28 plus booking fee to just £14. More about this exciting development soon, hopefully! This deal will only be able until the end of Friday night; vouchers booked in this way can be used until the end of April.

As ever, if you know of other coupons, deals, vouchers or competitions, please send them through. If your site has a offer not listed above, please assume incompetence rather than ill-intent; get in touch and this site will happily spread the good news. (Alternatively, if you would prefer that this site does not list your coupon, or if the details of the offer are mangled, that’s fine too; again, please get in touch.)

Exit games in the news

Newspaper graphicSome longer posts, some shorter ones. Here’s a quick round-up of recent mass media stories about exit games.

  • Can You Escape of Edinburgh have a preview in the Edinburgh Reporter, which reveals three interesting things that this site did not previously know: a leaderboard of fastest escape times is at least implied, the venue has plans to double in capacity from one room to two early in 2015 and the business has received funding and support from Business Gateway Edinburgh. Might other potential (and even existing?) operators around the UK and Ireland be able to get assistance from their local business incubators? It’s something well worth considering.
  • Logiclock of Nottingham have a story in the Nottingham Post about their background and opening. The site also has fifty half-price tickets available as an opening discount for teams who are willing to dig through the web site and find the unusually-coloured digits. If you’re good enough to play and win their pirate-themed game, finding this code should be a snap.
  • It didn’t raise mass media interest, but it did raise a smile; Puzzlair of Bristol recently had their youngest player ever, a 10-week-old baby. By implication, this baby did manage to break out in time… inside their nappy.
  • Not a UK story, but really interesting: Escape Games of Toronto were profiled in Canada’s largest newspaper’s “Business Club”. The site has five rooms, with three more coming soon, and a large lobby where you can borrow board games to play on-site before or after your escape mission. (A good match, though it must help that Canada is so large that rents might not be nearly so much of an issue as they are in the UK.) The site is recommended by Toronto Room Escapes, a rare honour, though the Escape Games Review, er, review is also well worth reading.

    It’s particularly interesting in that it discusses what a really high-end site has to do to survive in an extremely crowded market, far more crowded locally than any in the UK, even that of London. This site is much more bullish about exit games’ future than the proprietor is, though perhaps Toronto and Budapest over time might go to show what market saturation might look like. The article is extremely interesting for its view behind the scenes and also for the free consultancy provided by a number of the best local business brains, which might yet prove food for thought, subject to local adaptation, for site owners closer to home.