Not much was revealed what TimePoint had planned when Escape2gether hosted a limited time room for them. Aside from “A Sonic Escape Room”, we didn’t know much but figured it’d be more audio and sound heavy for the focus of the puzzles. This is true, but unlike the Locked Library event (where the theme and location were based in a library) I was pretty uncertain as to why we were doing the room theme-wise or what the room was trying to be. The room was hosted in their Psychiatric Hospital room, and redecorated a bit. I say “redecorated” but it was fairly plain inside aside from a few items that looked left over from the psych room and just moved around and repurposed. The puzzles, individually, stand out with how heavily audio/sound driven they are and some unique from any place we’ve done. The puzzles, as a whole, were really clustered and lacked a general direction for where to go and what to do for the majority of the room. We didn’t know where to begin, or even where to go, as we were given no objective. A lot of our time was spent on things that didn’t come into play until later on in the game but all did something that you would think would lead you somewhere in progression. A bit of a time killer in one of the rooms involving a magnet and a big tube. For what was available, it was fairly linear in progression and even with only four of us in the room (which was the minimum, as a puzzle required a person in one of each of four positions to form a final solution) it felt like at certain points a couple of us were always just standing and watching while someone else did something. In the end, we only ended up getting maybe halfway through the room until our time expired based on what our Game Master told us.
The concept for Timepoint Ensemble’s Sonic Escape Room is pretty unique on paper and immediately got us excited to try it. The room was hosted at Escape2Gether in their psychiatric ward room. When you first enter the room, you watch a short little video about the backstory. It felt like this was just really a prepping stage as there were zero sound puzzles in this room. My complaints about this room were you had very little direction on what to do and what order to do it in. We had a few puzzles we spent way too long trying to solve but had the wrong pieces to do it correctly or having just random sticky notes that really don’t direct you on what they are for. Another puzzle required using a magnet to retrieve a key through an extremely thick plastic pipe. For me this is a massive no-no for escape rooms unless you have the confidence it will work 100% of the time and not cause additional frustration for the players. It’s a massive time sink. Going into the room knowing this was a 3-4 day event I wasn’t expecting much in term of decorations. It’s hard to really judge on immersion as the theme was muddled. Some of it really didn’t make sense in the room and may have just been there to throw the players off, or it just was Escape2Gether limiting on what they can and can’t do in the space. They did have a few really neat puzzles one of them was a spliced song which would give you the directions for a lock, this meant you needed four or more players to do this room. Another one was using water and matching the sounds to a pre-recorded tape to get the correct numerical number to unlock another puzzle. Granted it was frustrating to get to the point where we could use the precisely filled beakers. It felt like we progressed pretty well in the room but once the time was up we found out we only did about half of the puzzles and still had a ways to go to escape.
When I heard about this room it immediately sounded like an interesting concept, a temporary room made by a music group with (almost) all auditory puzzles. It was hosted by Escape2gether, but run by a group called Timepoint Ensemble. We first entered an initial ‘staging’ room where a video played. I’m assuming the video is supposed to convey the theme of the room, however it was never really quite clear why we were locked in a room, who we were trying to escape from, or what would happen if we didn’t escape before time ran out. Once we got into the next room, all the of the puzzles other than one physical ‘puzzle’ were based on sound. There were ones where we had to use a digital tuner to find out the notes to decode a sheet, one that we had to fill glass vases to replicate a series of notes to figure out a numerical code, and one that used morse code. Some of these worked out better than others. Digital tuners are very sensitive, I mean, they need to be, but if you’re trying to use one and someone else in the room is talking or moving things around it can throw it off. All of the puzzles were also very linear, so while we like to try and split up and work on different things at the same time, it didn’t always work out that way for us. Knowing that the room was only going to be around for the weekend I was curious as to what level of ‘production’ there would be. The props for the rooms all seem to be borrowed from Escape2gether and they seemed to have recycled a lot of the psych ward props. Because of that, it had a ‘spooky’ vibe even though there was no clear theme. Ultimately we ran out of time and didn’t make it out. We thought we had made decent progress, but it turned out we only made it about half way. Overall I was pleasantly surprised, and really enjoyed the room.
- Unique styled puzzles
- Under decorated
- Lack of direction