Overall review: Captivate Escape Rooms

If I were to sum up Captivate Escape Rooms in a single word, it would be “friendly”. The staff are pleasant. The booking process isn’t demanding (now that they’ve thankfully moved away from their reliance on Sistic). Most importantly, the rooms are the most forgiving ones I’ve ever played, from the gentle hand-holding via over-cluing, to the generous 75 minutes that you’re given for each room, and which you won’t even come close to using up.

Some escape rooms make you feel like you’re in a thrilling battle of wits with the game designers. At Captivate Escape Rooms, in contrast, the game designers really, really want you to win.

But maybe kindness has its place. These rooms would be great for beginners or groups with kids, for instance. And the surfeit of clues certainly makes a change from rooms which require torturous leaps of logic.

Furthermore, though the rooms are friendly, they’re not necessarily boring. The puzzles may be simple, but they’re fairly original, providing a breath of fresh air in a market saturated with familiar puzzle types and structures — and making them worthwhile even for veterans. There are also some clever or trickier puzzles mixed in with the rest, and some variance in room difficulty; experienced groups might find Elixir more to their taste than Kellar’s Magic Emporium, for instance. Cirque, their latest addition, should also prove more satisfying for experienced teams.

It also helps that the rooms contain fun little surprises. There isn’t much “high-tech” stuff of the sort that escape room players here might be familiar with, but there are still enough gadgets and physical aspects to help make up for the reliance on code-locks.

So yes, Captivate rooms are forgiving. But that aside, they’re also simply fun.

RECOMMENDED for beginners. WORTH A VISIT for veterans who don’t mind having fun rather than facing a challenge.

Staff: Friendly, helpful, pretty chill. The place doesn’t feel like one of those soulless money-making operations, which is nice.

Hints: Unlimited hints. Just wave at a security camera and one of the staff will enter to help you out. If you find this immersion-breaking, well — you can probably get by without hints anyway.

Will your group be combined with strangers? No.

Rooms tried: 6 out of 6

Recommended team size: 2 to 4. A good escape room company for two-player teams.


Specific room reviews

Labyrinth: Dead Men Walking
Zero Hour
Black Out
Kellar’s Magic Emporium
Elixir
Cirque


Captivate Escape Rooms
http://www.captivateescaperooms.com/

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