Your pulse races. You and your friends have found a jumble of colored-numbered cards, but what could they mean? You glance up at the clock to see it ticking down from 45 minutes… and you haven’t come any closer to finding your way out. Then one of your friends shouts “I’ve found something!” You rush over to discover a small set of books whose colors correspond to the cards… you quickly grab the cards and jot down letters on the corresponding pages and eventually end up with a message: “Trapped in a box”.
You think you might be emptying some boxes next as your eyes desperately scan the bookcase for possibilities as the seconds tick away…
They’re the physical puzzle games that are sweeping the nation, combining excitement, wit and teamwork… and they have taken hold in nearby Hochatown! Hochatown Escape Games welcomes you and your Beaver’s Bend Creative Escape vacation group to experience the thrill and challenge of live escape games.
Ever since Zork in the 1970s, reason and puzzle-based adventure games have become more and more widespread and popular. In 1988, the first true “escape the room” game appeared (the text-based “Behind Closed Doors” by John Wilson).
And then came “Crimson Room” by Toshimitsu Takagi of Japan in 2004. After that, escape games became ever-more popular with each online iteration.
In 2007, Takao Kato took the concept one step further and created the first real-life escape-the-room game, and the concept quickly spread across Japan where games were played in bars and clubs. Soon, the idea spread to other countries, and in 2013, the concept finally hit America’s Silicon Valley… and then spread across the country.
As a form of experimental entertainment, these rooms let people move away from their computers and become the main character in the games they’d only ever played online. These rooms may be puzzle-based, or they may be story based. But whichever format you find, you and up to nine of your friends can become the main players in a mystery to be solved. Play it right, and the door opens to fanfare. Play it wrong, and you’ll “become the victim” of the room.
Hochatown Escape Games offers two room scenarios: discover clues to diffuse a bomb in Bomb Squad, or go head-to-head with a potential killer in Cabin In The Woods. The cost for either of these challenges is $20 per person, and you can easily reserve your spot online at their website. Ages 5 and up.
Please note: reservations are available for 10 players per room-reservation time-slot. If your group does not fill all the slots, places remain available for others to fill the experience. Similarly, if only a few of you decide to participate, you can easily choose a partially-filled reservation time so that you’ll have additional help solving the room.