Monday, 28 January 2019

Mission Sydney - Unstoppable Review

Hi all

The second room that my team ever did in Australia was Vampire Castle at Mission Sydney, which we tried back in November 2014.  I enjoyed Vampire Castle, which was my first experience of a high tech escape room.  I also really enjoyed Dr M at Mission Sydney, which we did a little while later.  My team also enjoyed The Lost Mine at Mission Sydney, which we did about a year ago at the time of writing this review.

This time we were invited back by the owners to check out their brand new room, Unstoppable.  A year ago to the day, we had tried their The Lost Mine room.  I know the date because it was my birthday.  Now, a year later, again on my birthday, we checked out Unstoppable.  

We were our usual 4 team of players.  Unstoppable was out 106th room in Australian and our 76th room in Sydney. Here's the summary of Unstoppable from their website:

You are special forces code-name Skyfall from the Australia National Security Agency. There is a secret mission for you:
A terrorist has placed bombs containing a mutated virus on a train departing from Sydney. With limited clues, you must find the train and defuse the bombs as soon as possible.
The bombs are in place, and the train is about to leave. You must act quickly to prevent a tragedy.

Here’s what I thought:
  • spoiler alert - it was a frikkin' awesome room;
  • the theming was SO well done.  So many details were really well considered and well designed;
  • I have always enjoyed Mission Sydney rooms – they own the “high tech” corner of the escape room market in Sydney (and always have).  Although I have really enjoyed all of their other rooms, I found that at times, whilst really cool, some of the high tech elements didn’t always completely suit the theme;
  • I am truly delighted report that his is not the case with Unstoppable at all.  Even though Unstoppable is completely full of high tech puzzles and design elements, they all support the storyline and make sense in the space;
  • it feels to me like Mission Sydney has really appreciated the importance of a strong back story with this room – in many ways I think elements are more subtle and more natural than its earlier rooms.  The storyline is really strong and the puzzles completely work for that storyline;
  • the game flow is also really well-considered.  I really enjoy clever puzzle design – this includes individual puzzles of course, but also elements between multiple puzzles and spaces that work together.  They had built-in fail safes in the room design, that were very cleverly-designed.  It’s obviously really difficult to go into any details here, but suffice it to say that I was very impressed with this aspect of Unstoppable;
  • the quality of the props and theming in this room was unbelievably strong.  Unstoppable does not feel like you are in a commercial building in George Street.  They have spent a lot of time (and no doubt a lot of money) in building this room and it shows;
  • there were several puzzles that were of a type that we have not seen before.  After 100+ rooms, this is becoming a rare thing indeed;
  • they utilise walkie-talkies in their rooms.  Although not as good as the voice of God system that is quickly becoming the industry standard, it worked well;
  • this room is family friendly – there are no dark rooms or scary elements.  I would suggest children over about 8 years old would be fine if supervised.
After escaping from Unstoppable (which from memory we did in about 60 mins of the allowed 80 mins, we were lucky enough to speak with the owner and room designer (who I remembered from Vampire Castle 4 years earlier).  It was really cool to have the opportunity to discuss puzzle elements and room design with an experienced owner/designer.  We all congratulated him on such a wonderful room.

For those of you who have been to Mission Sydney before, you know that they are the kings of high tech – much of their advertising refers to items like “padlock free”, as a point of difference.  Now imagine you have a room that is completely high tech, but with the tech woven into a great storyline with theming and props that rank up there with some of the best rooms in Australia.  That is Unstoppable.

As always, the best measure of a great room was whether my team enjoyed it.  Well, we very much did – in fact, I was raving about this room over dinner to my team for an hour afterwards ;-)

******NOTE that Mission Sydney currently has 2 different locations.  Unstoppable is at their new George Street premises*******

Where:                   Suite 502, 724 George Street, Sydney 

Duration:                80 minutes

Themes:                 5 themes

Cost:                       $45pp (but we played at the invitation of the owners)

Overall Rating:        High tech with brilliant theming and execution

More details: 

1 comment:

  1. Great review! I love their rooms too, so glad to know this of a great standard.