Outside the room
Well, this is embarrassing. As you may have read in the last escape room post (on Museum Warehouse) we’d had a lot of fun and finished quite quickly. On escaping, our host said that since we’d got out so quickly, there was enough time for us to sneak into Grandpa’s Last Will before the next booking would show up. Cue the three of us trying to act casual like we were easy either way. Eventually one of us caved and admitted yes, and so it was that we ended up playing a second consecutive game at Lock’d. A few hours earlier I’d been thinking I was slightly embarrassed at going to my second game in a week, and now I was about to enter my second in an hour… Yes, we had officially signed up as escape room junkies.
Between the games we got more of a chance to chat to the host and his business partner about Lock’d, so I quizzed them on their plans for new rooms, where it appears they’ll be opening up the third game in the next week or so! Longer term they’ve got plans to open several more and seemed confident that the London escape business is far from saturated. Given my new status as escapist junkie, I’m not sure whether that’s a good or a bad thing.
Grandpa’s died, and he’s left us his multi-million estate. Unfortunately we don’t know where his will is, so we’ve (presumably) broken into his house and we’ve got one hour in his study before the police show up and we’re arrested for trespassing.
Inside the room
Every escape game you play has a 60 minute countdown. Usually that’s entirely made up for the purposes of the game, but in this case we were well aware that having squeezed into this slot, there would probably be someone raring to go in if we took the full sixty minutes, and while that didn’t really matter, in my head it really upped the stakes. The last thing I wanted was to be holding up other enthusiastic players! That wouldn’t have been too bad, except for the fact that they don’t provide clocks in either of their rooms, and I hadn’t checked my watch, so I had no idea how long we had left. I don’t really like the lack of clocks – part of me thinks it really adds to the tension, but the other part of me is a control freak, and frankly, that part calls the shots…
The room itself is more or less how I’d imagine a grandpa’s study to look. In all honesty, I suspect that it’s a relatively easy theme to decorate, but they’d done a good job of it nonetheless, and there were lots of little details that added to the experience – like old letters with cursive writing that spoke of a bygone era of penmanship.
While this room is billed as the easier of the two, I think the puzzle standard is more or less the same. All the puzzles were solvable without clues, and none were very difficult. There were some good mechanics along the way – probably slightly less high tech stuff than the other room, but it would have been difficult to retain the theme and add in anything high tech, so I can’t really fault them there.
Again, there were a lot of codes or keys – so if that’s going to frustrate you then think twice before coming – but there were only a couple of times that it wasn’t obvious where they should be used. The general puzzle structure was also similar – with a group of puzzles being presented to you that when solved gave you the tools to crack a final puzzle, which then gave you some new puzzles to work on. Having said that, the puzzles were entirely different, and doing the first room didn’t make me feel like I had any advantage in the second.
I did feel that the room lacked a Wow puzzle. Perhaps I’m being overly picky (definitely if you believe my team mates!), but I like to have something in the room that I want to tell all my friends about. This had good puzzles throughout, but nothing that reached that bar. It was a lot of fun though, and whether it was the adrenaline of this being a squeezed in game, the rapport I had with my team mates, or one particular puzzle that made a team mate laugh out loud, I had an immense amount of fun playing this game.
It took us 35 minute or so to escape, and pleasingly there was no one in the waiting room when we got out. We needed one hint; frustratingly it was for something that I’d spotted as being incongruous, but had mentally disregarded. Tip for escape enthusiasts: if something doesn’t look quite right, then it’s probably a clue. Tip for all players: even if it does look right, it’s probably a clue 🙂
Another solid escape room. The two games we played firmly cemented Lock’d as an escape room outfit that I’ll go back to with anticipation. I think this is probably the right game for beginners, not because it’s easier than the other room, but because the preliminary puzzles are more mainstream (and more abundant!), so more accessible. I absolutely recommend it for experienced gamers – grab a couple of friends and come and check it out!
Ahem, this was our second game in a row, so I’ve already covered our eating choice elsewhere… Afterwards we headed on to the St James pub, which in spite of being described on Google Maps as a “hip, traditional pub”, let us in on a Friday night to spend an hour talking about the rooms. A nice place, which seems to specialise in pies and craft beer – perhaps the options for eating in Bermondsey aren’t so bad after all!
Detailed Room Ratings