After a bit of a hassle with our actual passes (which was resolved after trying to reach the event organizers through every social media outlet) we made it into Hyrule! I’ve heard a lot about this game, both in its notoriety as well in what people were expecting it to be. If I had not done the Locked Library before this experience, I may have been expecting something else entirely. The gameplay is more adventure quest than escape. Everyone has a table they do their puzzles at and they venture to other areas of the expanse that’s been decorated to look like Zelda places accordingly. Using ‘Ocarina of Time’ as their game base (as well intro and ending videos and other promotional material) the areas were related to areas from the that specific game, most notably a Temple of Time. Staff members of the event were at each location dressed and acting accordingly as best they could. There’s a lot of logistical puzzles to solve in paper form, and you’d have to present your answers to the correct location or it’d reveal what you have to do at each location. Being a selected location for a traveling event like this, you’d figure everyone that did sign up for it (and pay the cost) would be a fairly avid Zelda fan, so all the little nods and elements were great to see. All the puzzles were on Zelda theme and was just an overall fun time (despite the rough morning we had). Now, given that it was held in a private event room, there’s not too much they could do for “immersion” considering it’s only a 2-day event and has several groups of 6-man teams all on the go at the same time. There were over a dozen different tables of teams all on the go, and while there was some bottle-necking, it wasn’t as extensive as the Library event. Of all the teams, we were the 5th, and last, to successful finish the quest with only five minutes left to go!
Going into this Zelda escape experience, I wasn’t really sure what we would be going through but they really delivered a fun escape room. The price was pretty steep for an escape room but for this one-time event I was okay paying for it. The beginning of our day was pretty stressful and hectic (We somehow were the only team to not be emailed out of the entire group…) which really tainted our experience but once we got ahold of the customer service team they really came through and helped our group out. The upgrade was a nice touch to the higher tier and we all came home with commemorative coins! The setup of the experience was neat – going into the event I was thinking it would be more setup like a D&D adventure and everything would just be paper puzzles but they had booths around the room setup as separate zones on the map they gave you. Each booth had an actor who gave you clues & chests to help you progress in saving Hyrule. Reading the review about a similar event I was worried about the backlog of groups and essentially losing your time due to waiting was a huge concern for me but we never really ran into that problem. All in all it was a neat event to attend and in the end we saved Hyrule and got the Master Sword.
There was a surprising amount of physical puzzles (cutting a laminated sheet – which felt sooo wrong, poking a hole in a chest, throwing pots!) in addition to paper puzzles (drawing, ‘crosswords’). All in all, what we needed to save Hyrule was with us the whole time, and we received the Master Sword before time ran out!
- Heavily themed puzzles
- Lots of role playing
- Out of box thinking
- Problems in registration
- Can deter you if you're expecting an "escape room" experience