ESCAPE ROOM REVIEW – THE QUICK AND DIRTY
Play if…you enjoy an English breakfast or quaint village eateries.
Avoid if… you don’t like to sit down on the job.
Enter the Enigma:
Address: 3540 N. Academy Blvd, Colorado Springs, CO 80917 (click address for Google Map)
Contact and Website: 719-309-6862
The Room – A Spot of Tea: An Iris Trenton Memoir:
Description (from the company website): After the worldwide publicity from your impressive capture of the famed thief, Iris Trenton, you needed a vacation.
While strolling the streets of London you happen across a little hole in the wall cafe/tea room that intrigues you. Taking a seat you are admiring the decor when you here that familiar voice…..
“Greetings Detective….Welcome to Siri’s”. Iris Trenton stands before you dressed as a waitress. At this moment you receive a phone call from Scotland Yard informing you that Iris has broken out of prison and that all signs point to her being in London to steal the Crown Jewels. Obviously, this was a trap.
Can you best the master criminal again or will she prove your first encounter inside The Attic was pure luck?
For a more detailed story, go to Enter the Enigma’s Facebook page.
Difficulty (1-10): You’ll have the option of Medium or Hard when you enter, but it’s listed as “Very Hard 8/10”
Time Limit: 60 minutes
Identifier: R2 (this room is a true sequel to The Attic)
Party Size: 2-6
Staging Area: Small lobby area with lockers and a water cooler. With Covid-19, this actually works since you won’t have to sit around and wait for people (unless they’re in your party).
Metro Access/Parking: This is a sort of strip mall, so plenty of parking.
This is the video we took before we entered the room:
This is the video we took just after we completed the room:
Never took one. I will dish on it in the review itself.
Note: The ERG were given the opportunity to try out this room for free, with the understanding that we would continue to provide an honest review and follow the same process we’ve used on all of our other ratings.
Description of the room: The room is laid out as a small café, complete with dessert display case and tables/chairs.
Understanding of the Mission: describe our understanding of what we needed to do
Did We Escape: Yes, technically (see below)
Time Remaining: After discussing it with Don, we agreed upon a whole 1 SECOND REMAINING! (Read on for explanation.) Also, LEADERBOARD!
Our Suggested Party Size: 2-4; you can pull off 6, but it might be a bit crowded.
Did the room challenge the entire team? Yes
Members of our team (other than the ERG): Steph D
We didn’t take a picture; we were too busy discussing the room with the owners. But this is one we were sent to use.
Worth the time and money? Yes, especially if you’re a mental masochist.
Where to Eat/Drink Before/After: We ended up just heading home after, but there’s some good restaurants nearby.
|Overall Expectation (Summary)|
|I was pleasantly surprised to receive an Instagram message (@escapermguys) from Don at Enter the Enigma. It’s been a while since we had been there (almost 2 years to the day, actually) and he let us know that The Attic, and our first encounter with Iris Trenton, was officially retired. They were getting ready to open A Spot of Tea and wanted to have us come play it before opening. We were to be the first non-playtest group to go through it (woohoo!) and I remember Iris Trenton to be a tricky B from the other room, so I wondered how they were going to raise the bar they had set rather high from their original.
We scheduled it and we were off to the races (London, to be exact (I wish…)).
And just in case you’re wondering, Oolong is a type of tea. Hence the reference…
|One of the things we always talk about is how all too often the story is barely put together, added as an afterthought, or completely non-existent. I believe we talked about this after The Attic, and Don took this to heart. If you clicked the link above to the expanded story on their Facebook page, you’ll see what I mean. They specifically did this for escapers who are interested in the story, and I absolutely loved it.
The fact that this is a continuation of the story from The Attic makes it all the more better. That said, our lucky detective has taken some vacation time in London to get away from the spotlight of having caught Iris Trenton. Naturally, she’s escaped and already plotting her next heist… and you just happen to be in her way.
|Iris has managed to trap you in this little café that you just happened to stumble upon. What a coincidence! Or should that be “what a trap?”
Can you solve her puzzles in order to escape and nab her a second (and hopefully LAST) time, or will she elude you as she’s done countless other times to countless other detectives and make off with her next target?
|Puzzle Diversity (Rating)|
|This one is easier to describe than other reviews because I had only really seen one thing before and it STILL didn’t make sense until I solved it. Well, there was math, but it was unique to the setting at least. That said, there was some counting + observation, association, MATH (don’t worry, there’s paper and a calculator), a little bit of logic, and some good old fashioned wordplay. I think you’ll enjoy it.
There were just a few locks in the room, but considering the theme that was mostly to be expected; everything else was some sort of techno-magic. I was pleasantly surprised, based on my recollection of the previous iteration of this theme.
|Puzzle Complexity (Rating)|
|Let me be clear about one thing first. We asked for ‘medium’ difficulty and were extremely challenged by this room. We found out later that ‘medium’ and ‘hard’ were actually ‘hard’ and ‘harder’, so when we were told that we had the fastest time of any of the teams that had gone through thus far, we said we’d take it!
Anyway, like I said: hard. Honestly, I need to split the difficulty spread. I would say there were times the puzzles were 2-3 in difficulty and then there was times of 6/7-9+. (It’s just difficult for me to give a 10 for difficulty, but this room really pushed that.)
It’s funny, though, that upon reflecting on the room, and looking at the pictures I was allowed to take (that I can’t/won’t share), how simple it looks and how long it took us to really get moving. Even the math puzzle was tricky (and it was basic math!). Obviously it’s deliberately created to be that way, and it was well done. We did have one issue with one of the… larger puzzles, but it turns out that most people had up to this point and we helped them make it a little simpler after the room. (You’re welcome. :D) Even Rico was confused!
|From the moment you begin this room you’re constantly scrutinizing everything. I remember the room being linear but that’s mainly because there were only 2 of us. There is, however, enough difficulty to need differing kinds of thinkers as you progress.
Everything in the room would belong there if it were an actual café. (It might be a little quirky, but still.) Nothing was out of place, and more importantly, nothing reminded me I was in Colorado Springs as opposed to the street corner in London I was supposed to believe I was on. There was a steady stream of puzzles from start to finish, with them (mostly) getting trickier/more difficult as you progressed. I also can’t remember the last time I was in a café for a room, if ever. I’ve been in sinking ships, labs, morgues, asylums, but never a café…
|Let’s first reiterate one thing: this room was TOUGH! Now that that’s out of the way, it’s still a good room. The only thing missing was real cake… (Don, maybe offer slices of cake to go…?)|
|Game Master (Summary)|
|Don had met us before, and Steph and I had done The Attic by ourselves, so we kept the same idea (we’ll ask for help when needed) here and he obliged. Nothing crazy.|
|How Helpful Were Any Clues Given, if any (Summary)|
|Most of the help we needed was poking and prodding (except for Rico’s puzzle), but all the help we got was clear and concise.|
|RAGE Meter Score|
|I’m going to with a 2 here (annoyed) mainly because (1) I should have been able to figure out the starting puzzle much sooner than I did (I looked at the clue for it multiple times and just didn’t do the math) and (2) because some of the minutia just was lost on me. It was clear after the fact, but I’m annoyed with myself for missing it.
ESCAPE ROOM GUYS’ OVERALL SCORING 8.9/10
Final Thought: Having now done both rooms in this storyline, this one being almost 2 years to the date of our experience in The Attic, I’m glad I’ve gotten to see the how the rooms progress. I’ve still yet to do a non-Iris Trenton room here, but stay tuned for the review when it does. The level of detail is high and the effort to try and immerse you in the experience is visible. I encourage you to check out Enter the Enigma, as I did 2 years ago.