Friday, June 19, 2015

Review: Breakout Kidnapped Edition

My best friend and I attended the new sensation Breakout. It’s a cleverly designed interactive game in which you are locked in a room and are given one hour to solve the clues and ‘breakout’ to win the game. It’s a bit difficult to review this game because I want to be sensitive to those who have not attempted the game. I don’t want to provide spoilers and give anything away.

My friend Julie had also wanted to attend however when we made our online purchases Ashley and I were able to buy the tickets but then it showed that game as being closed. (A maximum of eight people per room are allowed.) That was a real bummer. When Ashley and I arrived it was evening. We had the 8pm ‘game’. The parking lot consisted of a smaller building with some other bigger ones around it. I was a bit surprised our game would take place in the smaller office space building. On the outside I wasn’t impressed. There was only a few signs outside but nothing to really add to the intrigue of what would be coming up for the gamers.

Upon entering the building, you see a decent sized sitting area with a small desk and computer area. The man at the desk, fresh out of his teen years it looked, was amusing, exciting to listen to, and quite enjoyable. He was very knowledgable and explained things easily. He definitely knew the speech and still added some entertainment in the atmosphere. We had to sign a waiver on a small tablet. I was kind of disappointed to learn you could only do each game once but at the same time I also understand...but I think for those who don’t succeed and ‘breakout’ it should be something you can attempt again. (In my opinion.)


One real downer for both Ashley and I was when we learned it would just be the two of us. Julie could have come after all. They really didn’t say a whole lot about that and continued to be energetic and happy.

We were introduced to our game host, and in my own terminology, a dungeon master. LOL I remember his name well because it’s the name of my protagonist in my fantasy series. Meliek led us to a door and stopped us. He explained a few things. Information about how we get out, what is considered a success and a failure, as well as the important fact that we would be allowed three free clues during the game. Anything after that would dock minutes off our game.  Our ‘dungeon master’ informed us that he would be able to see and hear us from where he was. This made me feel nervous, having someone watching us but honestly, once the game began, Ashley and I almost completely forgot that nervousness. ’Then he went on to tell us how we would be blindfolded before entering. Now at this point, my stomach began to get butterflies. I knew this beforehand but being at the door and preparing to enter is a new sensation. Meliek explained we would also be handcuffed and that we could take off our blindfolds as soon as he left and the short television intro ended.

After Meliek was gone and the intro was over Ashley and I took off our blindfolds. We were both handcuffed to a metal bed inside a dimly-lit room. It was just the two in the game. The television had a timer on it and every thirty minutes made a doomed kind of musical sound to remind us that time was running out. I’ll be honest, it took us a little over ten minutes to break out of the handcuffs and it definitely set us back. I’ll just add this note: it definitely shouldn’t have taken us that long. We actually had to finally use a clue because of how much time it took. (Shame-face).

Once that was over the other mysteries and clues commenced. I was pleased to see they utilized ALL of the space in the room. Without giving anything away, I will say the story clues were somewhat confusing. Yes, they are meant to be a bit confusing but I would go so far as to say some of the props were useless, I guess meant to ‘agitate’ the kidnapped gamer and to throw us off a bit. One particular prop, was more confusing and in my opinion was what caused the most trouble of our assignment in the game.

Meliek was very helpful during the game, perhaps because it was just the two of us. We did not succeed in breaking out and I personally feel that one prop was the cause of some of our failure. I do believe however that if we had more participants we could have solved the game and broke free from our room. Two people made it harder and I know without a doubt, had we had our friend in there we would have surely succeeded. I feel that the kidnapped game needs at least three minds with the given time frame of sixty minutes.

When the time ran out and Meliek opened the door he did inform us that we’d been very close, even two or three clues away from solving the game and breaking out. We got our pictures taken displaying that we’d been ‘so close’ and that we had failed to ‘breakout’.

Ashley and I laughed all the way home. It was a great game and we did have loads of fun. It was very, very hot however in the room and we immediately stopped at a gas station for refreshments. I suggest you bring something to drink for the ride home, that’s for sure.

I am sad that we can’t attempt the game again but understand that the game is literally the same thing so we would likely solved it in a matter of minutes. It would be beneficial for the company to have perhaps more than one version of each game. This way they would have repeat business. Of course, we will return to play the other games. That’s a certainty.

Breakout: Kidnapped Edition Rating:
8/10


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