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Escape Rooms 101

If you’re new to escape rooms (also called mystery rooms or escape games), you should know that they are actually a worldwide phenomenon.  They’ve been around in major cities like San Francisco and Budapest for years and are now springing up like mad as people crave live action entertainment that doesn’t involve a screen. Yeah, even in places like Cape Cod!

Here’s what you need to know if you’re heading into a room for the first time:

First, the general concept. You’re in a room and you have 60 minutes to solve a series of puzzles, riddles and connecting clues, complete your mission and get out of the room.  Each mission revolves around a theme — some fun, some scary, some funny, some that even transport you back in time — you get it, something for everyone!

Is the room locked?

Nope! Fire codes tend to frown upon trapping people in a room, but you can totally pretend you are to heighten the experience!

Teammates?  So I have to bring friends?

At Riddle, games are geared for between 2 and 8 people, but different games have different numbers of players they can accommodate. Usually a team of 4 is the sweet spot, but you are welcome to play with more or less!

Is this good for a date?  Are escape rooms romantic?

What’s sexier than an adrenaline-rushed action game?  Plus, you can gauge his or her wit and see how graceful they are under pressure.  And if you ever stress over “what to talk about” on a date, we have you covered. As they say, the couple that escapes together, stays together! Or, errr, something like that.

Should I go with colleagues or friends?  

Depends on what kind of experience you’re after.  If it’s about rallying your work team, it’s an awesome corporate outing – way better than a company picnic.  If it’s about a night with friends doing something other than sitting on bar stools, your friends will think you’re a hero (although we highly recommend pulling up a bar stool at one of Mashpee Common’s fine dining establishments after you’re done)!

What are my chances of winning?

Success rates in escape rooms tend to vary, but if you stay focused on the tasks at hand and utilize the hints given by your game master, your chances of success will increase.  At Riddle, we have a variety of challenge levels and some have a higher solve rate than others.  Our Game Masters can guide you towards an appropriate game for your group.  But hey, keep your chin up if you don’t escape, there’s always next time!

I think I’m wicked smaaht, but what if my friends aren’t? Will they derail me?

All sorts of smarts come into play in an escape room.  There’s a misconception that escape rooms are about doing a lot of math. Not so.  It’s about searching, being inquisitive and thinking outside of the box. Explore every item in the room and question it – is that lamp really a lamp or does it contain something?  Puzzles are often less complicated than they seem on the surface.  Gamers often solve a puzzle and say “aha, so simple!” Bringing friends or colleagues whose brains tick in different ways is your best bet! Communication with your teammates is also critical for success.

What else should I know?

Besides remembering to use the bathroom before entering the room, you should also know that this will be one of the most memorable experiences you ever have if you immerse yourself!  This isn’t the time to be shy. Have an idea, shout it out!  Seriously, SHOUT it – it’s exhilarating!

Win or lose, the best part is the post-escape debriefing! Okay, debriefing sounds kind of corporate, but by debriefing we mean having a couple of cocktails; playing back all of the riddles and the “shoulda coulda wouldas” with your teammates; and talking about what an insanely cool experience you just had!

Have more questions? Shoot us an e-mail @ or check out our FAQ!

Published in Escape Rooms Upside Down News