This post is a review of escape the room game: Lady Chastity's Reserve by Handmade Mysteries.
I will not be giving any spoilers, in order not to ruin the game for the ones, who would like to experiences it by themselves.
On 22 October, we played the game in a upper floor room at The Hope pub. We were 6 people, the maximum amount of players that can join each game.
Convenient location, very short walk from the tube station. It was cool to go to a pub for the game. The players are waited inside the pub, and after all players arrive, the game conductor comes and takes them upstairs. Later on, after finishing the game the players are able to celebrate their victory in the pub.
Room (Physical space and components):
The physical space is not large, but not too small either. There are 2 rooms and a small entrance hall.
Although the old building and the messy nature of the components match with the theme of the game, I was expecting a more professional production. I thought that they reflected the brand of the company though; the game components really seemed "handmade".
There were many irrelevant objects, which was one of the factors that made the puzzles difficult.
They cause a chaotic beginning, unless the players can guess the first riddle quickly. We couldn't. We touched and picked up every single object in the room for approximately 30 minutes, before crying for help from the game conductor.
The relevant game objects were not widely spread. The play area was too focused in one side of the room. I thought, they could have used the space and variety of objects they had better.
The game would be ideally experienced by 2-4 players. I believe the game is not designed suitable for 6 people to play simultaneously, since the play area is very focused, and there are detailed puzzles which need attention.
There were original and interactive puzzles which needed minimum 2 people to solve/open, forcing the players to work in teams.
One of the reasons which make this game more difficult then the other escape the room games that I have played is the chain puzzles. You figure out and achieve how to do one task, but then it creates another puzzle to solve.
Game conductor was in character and pretty dedicated. The introduction by the game conductor was well played, but it took too long. A more brief intro, in my opinion, would be a more pleasant start.
During the game, there was too much noise from the audio, which is probably there to make up the atmosphere, but it ends up tiring the players.
Even though I did not feel the theme within the puzzles much, it was reflected by the crazy voices, supposedly hinting the solutions, coming from the audio.
Since we were not able to figure out the first riddle/puzzle, the order of all the following puzzles got shuffled. We found some of the things (hints, objects, puzzles) that we shouldn't have too early in the game. When we figured out the first puzzle, already too much time had passed, so there was no order nor control after that. We rushed through rest of the game.
There were moving objects in the room, which contributed to the game's theme and atmosphere. It was definitely much more exiting than being in a room with all stable objects.
Working for an end prize is motivating. If you win the game, you find the wine. The wine is yours, and you can celebrate with it.
It was very close, we finished the game 2 seconds before the deadline!