Sunday, 26 April 2020

Narrow Escape Rooms - The Inheritance review

Hey all


Firstly, I should apologise to Narrow Escape Rooms for taking so long to write up this review.  This year has been hectic and I’m sure I’m not the only one that has had their hands full with juggling work, home-schooling and life in general.

We went and checked out Narrow Escape Rooms’ second room, The Inheritance back on my birthday in January.  Every year I always try to leave a couple of rooms to do on my birthday that I have heard great things about and The Inheritance was at the top of our list. 

This was our second time to Narrow Escape Rooms – the first time having been a couple of weeks earlier with our kids where we checked out Launch.  You can read my separate review of Launch here.

This time we brought our usual team of 4 adults.  We again spent some time before The Inheritance chatting with Shelley and Craig and we also got to meet Kit, another owner.  I always love a family-owned and run escape room, particularly where the owners design their rooms themselves.

The Inheritance was our 135th room to date and our 87th room in (or around) Sydney.  Here is the room description, from their website:

You receive word that your Aunt May has passed away.
She was fun, loving and RICH!
She was your favourite Aunt & she wants YOU to inherit her FORTUNE!
But first you must find her will!

Here is what we thought:

·        this room was so very well-designed.  The flow is really nice and they have managed to include linear elements together with sections where players can break off in pairs (or solo) to complete puzzles.  I think The Inheritance is similar to Launch in that regard;
·        however, The Inheritance is significantly more challenging than Launch.  Whilst Launch is aimed more at newer players and families, The Inheritance is not as simple a room.  My team has been to many rooms to date and we found elements of The Inheritance quite challenging. The room has a 4/5 difficulty (according to their website), which I think is about right.  I don’t recall how quickly my team escaped from The Inheritance, but I recall feeling like we had plenty to do the whole time.  There are a lot of puzzles to get through in the 75 minutes allowed time;
·        there was a really nice mix of puzzles in The Inheritance.  As with Launch, we found some puzzles that we had not seen used before, which is always awesome.  There is a great mix of hunt and seek fun, together with some really unique and challenging puzzles.  There is again a nice mix of high tech and low tech puzzles;
·        there are no scary or dark sections of the room, so it is fine for younger players.  I would describe this room as being at the trickier end of the spectrum though, so if you’re new to escape rooms, I suggest warming up with their Launch room before tackling The Inheritance.  And don’t be deterred from trying The Inheritance if you are a new player – the owners are very experienced and can help guide you along with some nudges and hints when needed;
·        I don’t remember asking for hints during our experience (I don’t think we did?), but I recall from our time in Launch that Narrow Escape Rooms use the "voice of God" system for communication, which is the best system available;
·        the theming in The Inheritance is really nicely done.  All props and puzzles pieces are completely appropriate to the theme and are really well integrated.  There are few things better in an escape room than having a back story that makes sense (why are there puzzles there for players to solve in the first place?), and having puzzles that are designed from items that you would expect to find in the space.  Narrow Escape Rooms has again done this really well.  This really steps up the immersion of the room;
·        the back story to the room is well-considered and the strong storyline continues right throughout the experience; and
·         Shelley, Craig and Kit took us through all of the puzzles in the room after we finished and explained different aspects of the puzzles, how they came up with puzzles ideas, how they had adapted puzzles over time, what additional puzzles ideas they have, etc.  I really enjoy debriefing with game masters after a room and hearing about how they came up with puzzles or how their puzzles have evolved over time.

The Inheritance is a truly awesome room.  

As always, the true test of a great room is whether we had fun.  My team raved about The Inheritance for some time afterwards – not only was it a well-designed room that had us scratching our heads a several points to try and solve their very clever puzzles, we also had a heap of fun along the way. 

I also know from speaking with other experienced players who have tried The Inheritance that they absolutely loved it as well.  

It really is a fantastic room.  My team cannot wait to head back out to Narrow Escape when they open more rooms.

-Team Shah ;-)

Where:                    Suite 4, First Floor, 2 Castlereagh St, Penrith

Duration:                75 minutes

Themes:                 
2 themes 

Cost:                            Price:                     $45 each (4 players)

Overall Rating:      One of my favourite rooms to date – challenging and fun! 

More details:          http://narrowesc.com.au/

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