Room Name: Backstage at the Magic Show
Business: Escape Haus
Date of Visit: July 29, 2018
Number of Players: 2-6
Our Group Size: 6
Official Description: You just started your dream job as a magician’s assistant. Tonight is his big show and he’s depending on you to set up the stage. As you enter the Prop Room, the door slams shut…and locks behind you. The show starts in an hour. Your dream job is on the line. The crowd is taking their seats. Will you find your way out in time?
Difficulty (official): None stated
Difficulty (experience): Easy-Medium
Time to Escape: 51:27
Review: My birthday rolled around again, and this time we found ourselves at Escape Haus! I was looking forward to this experience and hoping that we would find a room that was more entertaining than their Library of Secrets.
The room was decorated as we have come to expect from an Escape Haus game: many thematic accouterments around the room and room-appropriate wall hangings sold this as a prop room , though it lacked the detail we’ve come to love in some of the larger chain establishments we’ve escaped recently. We loved the giant trunk and the ‘saw the lady in half’ box made a great centerpiece. The handmade pieces in the room were the more striking elements. However, there was a lot of red herring decor, particularly on one side of the room.
There were a couple of moments of clever puzzle solving that we all enjoyed and we were happy to find several unique key locks in this room instead of more modern Master Locks across all of the puzzles (though, as with all Escape Haus rooms, there were a few). This proved to be the game’s high point as we encountered novel locks and an unusual one that we had not seen before. There was a slightly obtuse puzzle that frustrated us for quite some time and we stumbled across the answer, but chose to confirm it with our Game Master to prevent a lock that might timeout from impeding us any further. The puzzle wasn’t impossible, but our excitement at its completion may have been more relief than delight.
This room, as with many at this location, suffers from a ‘wall of locked boxes syndrome’, however this wasn’t as extensive as the wall of boxes in Egyptian Mysteries. We still would have preferred the locked boxes to be placed around the room instead of bunched together in one section. We really enjoyed a blacklight puzzle in this room, but when talking about the room afterwards, couldn’t really think of a puzzle that stood out as being really creative. Certain puzzles upped their difficulty by not being friendly to anyone with poor vision. There was also some outside knowledge required (which can be somewhat controversial in escape room communities).
While we had a great time going through the room, I don’t count this one as a standout. We were missing a magical element in our magic room that we very desperately wanted to see. This room could be easily rethemed without changing many of its puzzles and this is likely the room’s biggest downfall. This may be a great room for someone’s first escape room experience, or to introduce new players to the hobby, but Egyptian Mysteries remains my top recommendation for Escape Haus rooms.
We do want to give a shout out to our Game Master, who remained quiet and unobtrusive until we asked for her help!
Hints Used: One for an actual hint, one for clarification on a lock.
Clue Quality : Variable. We found one to be particularly clever, some were more direct, and a couple of others were just muddy.
Puzzle Creativity: A lot of escape room staples here; creativity was more focused on the unusual locks.
Rating: 2.75 / 5.
Fear Factor: None.
Things to note: Several puzzles in this room would be difficult to individuals with poor vision.