For a long time now, I’ve been scouring the internet for every scrap of information I could find about escape rooms. It might be a mention of a new venue that’s opening, a new room at an existing venue or a mention in a local newspaper. It all started with trying to find all the escape rooms in London and very quickly escalated. I’ve been thinking for the last few weeks that I should share that more widely via a blog post, so when someone mentioned the idea on an enthusiasts’ group I thought it was time to take the plunge. This one’s a bit longer than most because it covers news from the last month or so, hopefully future ones will be a bit more bite size!
If there’s anything you think is missing from here or you have some news then let me know via email and I’ll add it in the next update.
Company news and rumours
- Mobile Rooms:
- Mobile escape game company Escape Game Events has opened and promises to come to your venue and put on a tailored experience.
- Puzzlement is another mobile escape game company which is presumably aimed at corporate clients – £700 for a full day which covers up to 30 people.
- Team Build offer another corporate escape room type challenge, this time suitable for 10-100 people.
- Breakout (of the Manchester, Liverpool and Cardiff franchises) have created an escape room on board a TUI cruise ship. No details provided other than it will incur an extra charge.
- Congratulations to Enigma Quests who just closed a second round of crowdfunding, this time for their new game Heist. Relatively restricted details at the moment, but the room will present a challenge to the full range of players, with you aiming to steal as much money as possible, so there’s no straight win or loss, but a more complex scenario depending on the number of puzzles you crack and clues you take.
- Hidden Rooms are opening a third room, but in a change from their existing two rooms, this one takes only 2-3 people. At £26-30 for 2-3 players this is far cheaper than your average London game and also boasts that it will be padlock free…
- Clockwork Dog is a new escape room company that’s opening up a popup in London. Their first game, Langstroth’s Last Riddle takes place in a vintage boutique, is open weekends and evenings and costs £52-100 for 2-5 people.
- Sad to say that Enter the Oubliette are closing in four weeks’ time. IMO one of the very best escape rooms in the country, so if you’ve not already been then I’d recommend making the time to get along to it before it shuts down. Note, that there’s a chance it will relocate, but given the difficulty of finding appropriate premises, I wouldn’t count on that happening.
- Amazeing Places is a maze centre that’s opening an escape game near Stonehaven (just South of Aberdeen). Their game, SPY, costs £40-60 for 2-6 people. It will be interesting to follow their success, because they’re aiming on opening 50 mazes long term…
- Escape Livingston opened about a week ago as the Escape team continue with their expansion plans. Two games to start with – Prison Breakout and Espionage – each taking 2-5 people and charging £48-66.
- Escape Rooms Scotland have announced plans to open a Dundee venue.
- The North
- Make Your Escape is due to open this Summer in Derby. Very little information so far, but a suggestion of two rooms longer term and the first room, entitled the Signal, will involve tracking down a distress signal coming from a bunker. Up to 6 players per room.
- Lock Down Escape has opened in Warrington. They’ve launched two games – Death Row and the Lost Soul and will be charging £40-96 for 2-6 people.
- A new company, No Exit, had plans to open an escape room in Bolton, but the planning permission was turned down.
- Enigma Rooms are a new company based in Doncaster. Their initial opening is with two rooms, Clueless Detective Agency and Ward 13. Games are priced at £40-72 and can hold 2-6 people.
- Escape are trying to open an escape room in Hull. The planning application indicates they’ll be aiming for four rooms but it will be subject to a change in use class to D2.
- Can You Escape have opened a venue in York. To start with they’re running just a single game, Operation Lone Eagle, which costs £40-70 for 2-5 people, but longer term they have room for up to four games to run in parallel.
- The Midlands
- UK Escape Games is a new venture in Melton Mowbray (just outside Leicester). The website shows three games – the Diamond Caper, the Nuclear Incident and the Murder Mystery, with the first two opening in May. Games are priced at £20 per person and rooms can hold 2-8.
- The South
- The Panic Room are aiming to open a new room in Harlow in July. Having exchanged tweets with the team in Gravesend, it sounds like the plan is to cycle the same games through the new location, starting with their original Panic Room game.
- 11th Hour Escapes is a new company opening up in Chippenham (East of Bristol). Their first game, the Exit Visa crisis is £20-80 for 2-6 people.
- The Hampshire Cultural Trust, that you may remember supported the Fareham popup escape room, A Curious Escape, have backed another escape room – this time in a museum. The Mystery of the Vanishing Queen runs from the start of the Summer holidays in July till the end of half term in October at the Milestones Museum.
- First hint of a new escape room in Cambridge – the website for Lock House has appeared, but mostly it consists of placeholders. Assuming the website is vaguely accurate then they look to be starting with two rooms – one Egyptian themed and the other trying to prevent Armageddon. If it goes ahead, I think that would bring three rooms to Cambridge.
- ExCLUEsive games has just opened in Newbury (out West of London). Their first, and so far only, room is The Captain’s Cabin. £45-68 per team, but see the Groupon offer below.
- The MacGuffin Project is a new escape room venture in Bournemouth that’s due to open this Summer. No details on this other than to point you at the video on their website, and to say that it’s clearly on the horror end of escape rooms.
- Another temporary escape room and another in Cambridge, sadly I found out about Cluescape: The Hunden Games too late to book tickets, but still worth telling people about. This game for 2-8 players lasts 50 minutes and is set in the University Library with a story around tracking down some lost wills.
- Peterborough looks set to get an escape room with the opening of Hour Escape. According to their website, their very close to locking up their first customers and have plans for three different games with Dr Paulitious’ Lab the first.
- Escape Live opened in Southend-on-Sea a couple of weeks ago, bringing with them the two existing games from the Birmingham operation, Dr Wilson’s Office and Room 13. The rooms hold 2-5 people and cost £40-70.
- Escape games have come to Western-super-Mare (just southwest of Bristol) with the arrival of Lock and Code Escape Rooms. Just a single room at the moment, the Last Victim, £20 per person and room for 2-6 people. Second room under development.
- Room Escape Southend seem to have only just opened their Zombie room, but already they’re planning the switch over to a new Asylum room. Similar set up – 12 player room, £15pp and an adversarial actor in the room.
- The Panic Room will be switching over their two existing games in July. New games, Urgency (45 minutes) and the Don (60 minutes), will run till September.
- Finally a kickstarter project surely doomed to failure: The Riddler’s Lair is an escape room venture in Aylesbury looking to raise £30k.
- Lifford, NI: Escape or Die opened in Lifford, Northern Ireland. Based in an old courthouse, their first game is called the Heist and you’re tasked with breaking into a newspaper office to steal some sensitive materials.
In the media
- What Britain Buys included a three minute segment on Escape Rooms, with Mary Portas playing at Escape Plan Ltd.
- The Financial Times ran an article on escape rooms (with data from yours truly!)
- The Donegal Daily had an article on “Escape or Die”, the new company opening in the town.
- The Warrington Guardian ran a piece on Lockdown Escape which is opening in the town.
- The Derby Telegraph reported on a new game in the centre called Make Your Escape.
- The Bournemouth Echo penned a story on new local escape room the Macguffin Project.
- Cambridge News wrote an article on the temporary escape room in the University Library.
- The Bolton News ran a story on an attempt to open a new escape room, No Exit, in the city centre. Unfortunately planning permission was denied.
- The Hull Daily Mail reported on a planning application by Escape for a new escape room in the city centre.
- The Southend Standard had a piece on Escape Live.
- The Manchester Evening News had an article on how an Altrincham solicitors firm is helping with the Escape Room expansion plans.
- Really Fun UK launched a podcast. Episode 2 covered Escape Quest’s Bad Clown, non-binary win conditions and walkie talkies (Full disclosure: I’m a guest).
- ExCLUEsive Games in Newbury. £44 for a team of 3-6 people.
- Hidden Rooms in London. £31-£58 for 3-5 people.
- Sherlock Unlock in London. £59 for up to 6 people.
- Escape Live in Southend-on-Sea. £35 for up to 5 people.
- Alien Escape in Southend-on-Sea. £15 per person or £55 for 4.
- Escape MK in Milton Keynes. £34-44 for 3-5 people.
- BreakFreeNI in Lisburn. £39 for up to 6 people.
- Escap3d in Belfast. £36 for up to 8 people.
- Devastate in Swansea. £45 for up to 5 people.
- City Mazes in Cardiff. £49 – £69 for 4 – 8 people.
- Clue HQ in Sunderland. £39 for up to 6 people.
- Clue HQ in Birmingham. £39 for up to 6 people (Bunker 38b only).
- Clue HQ in Warrington. £39 for up to 6 people (Bunker 38 only).
- Code to Exit in Altrincham. £20-40 for 2-4 people (Blueprint only).
- TrappedIn in Bury. £34 for up to 4 people.
- Escape in Blackpool. £22-£38 for 2-4 people (Taken only).
- Enter the Oubliette. 25% off booking (see end of article)
- Escape Game card valid at a number of rooms across the UK and costing $20.
- Room Escape Southend are offering the Terror Card – discounts on playing multiple of their rooms over the next year.
- Timeout and Disney have enlisted the help of clueQuest to help with “The House of Time and Wonder“. Tickets are already sold out, but it sounds like clueQuest are designing a mini escape room.
- Spotted a new London based escape room blog: Moral Core.
- Worried about the designers of the future? Well, this school has you covered. They’re organising a trip out to a Manchester escape room and then aiming to design their own room afterwards.
- Speaking of young escapers – here’s a post on a group of primary school children playing a teacher made escape game. Great stuff!
- Someone’s set up a dedicated escape-room-in-the-class-room consultancy called School Escape Rooms.
That’s all folks
That’s all I’m aware of. If any of the above is incorrect then let me know via email or in the comments below, or equally if you’re aware of other news, discounts or competitions, and I’ll include updates in the next edition.
Thanks for reading!