So I revisited Escape Games and Mr. Escape.
You can see my the previous reviews of these establishments here: https://escapistto.wordpress.com/2014/08/25/mr-escape/ and https://escapistto.wordpress.com/2014/09/01/escape-games/
At Mr. Escape, I did the Stringer Requiem room. First of all, the language component unfortunately was similar to my first experience at Mr. Escape. There are some things that weren’t written very clearly, but luckily (or not depending on how you look at it), the room was less thematic, and had the more bog standard puzzles-in-a-room-setup.
The site’s description of Stringer Requiem is strange. After going through the whole room, I think the theme is loosely a metaphysical escape from hell/limbo/purgatory. The puzzles were sufficiently varied, although my partner and I blew through the entire game very quickly. We got to the last puzzle, when the audio component broke down. ARGH! I hate when technological aspects break down. I will commend them for having an interesting last puzzle though. We spent maybe 35 minutes on it. Despite knowing the trick to it, we didn’t have the skillset to properly solve it.
At Escape Games, I visited the Mayan Curse and the CounterOps rooms. Everything I wrote previously still applies. The rooms are beautiful, and the Mayan Curse room is particularly thematic.
What really impressed me on the trip is the overall room puzzle design in both rooms. The Mayan Curse room is built fantastically as a beginner room. The puzzles aren’t very difficult, and there are still enough of them to give the room some meat. Beyond that, the nature of the puzzles are such that players won’t be excessively stuck or frustrated in solving them.
Counterops! That was a doozy. This is probably one of the hardest rooms I’ve done to date. Again, I was impressed with the overall room design. They made good use of the large space (holy crap, a second floor!). They had puzzles that rewarded more intelligent approaches, which is not an easy design feat. Escape Games has easily retained its position as my #1 recommendation by a large margin.