If you’re reading this article, you’re likely about to play your first Escape Room. Don’t Panic! It’s fun, and your friends will be your teammates. So how do you make a good strategy that would be easily applicable in any type of room and any genre?
Let’s start with the main things – there will be puzzles and challenges that will require solving to proceed. The goal is to escape in 60 minutes, you’ll need to follow the story and puzzles; if you get stuck, you can just ask for clues (if your team decides to use them).
Where to start?!
The game starts – what to do first? Organization is crucial in this case – everyone needs to make sure they have understood the introduction and the goal and then work out how to move forward. Find the first task and get to work!
Start looking around the room and note different things you may need to unlock. Are there any key locks? Are there any combination padlocks? Are there other types of locks?
Usually, Escape Rooms will give you an easier puzzle to start with to get you going, so it’s important to work with what you discover first and try to solve the first one. Notice patterns, decipher riddles and find the answers, and you’ll go far!
Talk to your team! This is probably the most important point in this article. Talk out loud about where you are looking for clues and whether or not you’ve found something there. this way, the entire team will be on the same page and even help you with what you are working on.
The crucial mistake that some teams do, even veteran ones, is that they don’t talk to each other during the game and waste time by checking everything the other players have already checked – not because they don’t trust them, but because they just haven’t said anything. Nobody knows that this clue has been checked.
Talk to each other, even about the stupid things you find! Sometimes when people work under pressure, they ditch logic and throw it right out the window, and it’s not intentional, different people react differently under stress, and some just shut up and do the job. This is generally the right approach to problem-solving, but not when it comes to escape rooms.
Why? Because you’d be doing one thing, and your teammates would just be confused as to what you’re doing and how you’ve done it – which is important when playing escape room games, because sometimes the process of challenge and puzzle solving is important to the overall game – you might have done something or missed seeing something important that you’ll need later on in the game and because you haven’t said anything – you’ll have to throw extra game time for rediscovering it.
Give the muscles a day off
If it doesn’t open easily, it’s not meant to (yet). If you can’t open or move it with a pinky finger then you probably shouldn’t.
Should we get a clue?
Always, always, always ask your teammates whether or not you want a clue! Make sure you are all in agreement and that you actually need one, after all – you’re there to think AND to have fun!
The one & done rule
In general unless stated otherwise, once a key, code or item has been used it won’t be used again for the rest of the game. So if you unlock a padlock with a code, it definitely won’t unlock another so don’t waste time retrying what you have already used. Put the items to the side and work on the next puzzle.
Don’t stare at the clock
Watching time is wasting time, you only have 60 minutes after all, so make sure to use your time wisely. Keep track of time occasionally as you progress but don’t become obsessed.
Following these simple hints will insure your first game goes smoothly and impressively fast for new players, as well as your safe and fun time in this new endeavour!
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