London

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AIM Escape (London): Patient Zero 2150

This was a fun game with a variety of challenges and a fantastic set, but I can’t help but feel that it fell short of its potential. This could be a fantastic mission if they smooth out some of the puzzles and enhance the finale – fingers crossed they manage that.

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AIM Escape (London): Psychopath's Den

A room with real potential, but with too many rough edges. Issues with audio and lighting greatly affected our enjoyment and the finale lost some of its potential impact. A solid set of challenges, including some real crowd-pleasers, at the core of the game suggest that it could definitely do well with the right tweaking.

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Aftermath the Game (London): On the Brink

A fun, pleasantly chaotic game with a real sense of investigation and an interesting overarching storyline. The logic felt a little shaky at times, and the puzzle content could have been better but it was impressive that they’d managed to squeeze an eight-player game into little more than a suitcase.

- Overall rating:
Escape Plan (London): The Battle for Britain

A game that I thoroughly enjoyed playing. It may lack some of the high-end decoration of some London venues, but it more than makes up for that with consistent theming, a striking centrepiece, plentiful puzzles and a tension-filled finale that will keep even the most experienced team stressed till the very end.

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City Mazes (London): The Lost Cabin

This game had some promise but was let down by the lack of attention to detail and a use of tech that took more away from the game than it added. Remove the tech and tighten up some of the solutions, and I think you may get a solid game. However, as it is, I’d head elsewhere in London where there are plenty of better games.

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City Mazes (London): Bamboozled

A game that delivers an acceptable quality on all fronts while never really managing to do well on any of them. It isn’t a game that you’re going to travel across the city for but, if you do head along, I don’t think you’ll hate it either.

Lamplighters

Every year, I find a couple of things that look interesting at the Vaults and head down to try them out. This time round, one of those experiences was Lamplighters, which appeared to be some sort of immersive gaming theatre event. Add to that a friend vouching for the central (and only) actor as being
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A Door in a Wall (London): Dead Drop

Back to their best: Dead Drop is A Door in a Wall’s usual combination of great performance, fun puzzles, a convoluted mystery and a smattering of outrageous puns. I highly recommend.

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The Vault Festival 2018 (London): The Lifeboat

I enjoyed this game with its fun puzzles and sense of urgency. Yes, it was cramped; and yes, some of the props weren’t perfect; but there was much to enjoy. The big disappointment was the lack of finale with the game just fizzling out.