Real life escape rooms. They are all over Europe. It’s like being inside a computer adventure game, but with a lot more adrenaline.
In Budapest, Paris, Vienna, there are hundreds of these rooms. If you were to open tripadvisor asking about what to do in a city, these rooms are at the very top of the list. In Paris, they are rated ahead of the Eiffel tower.
Backpackers, business people, romantic couples, or even families with kids — they all pay to be locked inside a room full of riddles, mysteries and padlocks. By gradually connecting the dots, your goal is to make progress and exit the room in 60 minutes. It is best when played in teams of 2–5 people.
Stockholm hasn’t had any of these rooms until now. The first Room Escape has been opened in the city centre, you can find more info on their website, here.
What do you do inside these rooms?
If you’ve ever played any kind of adventure game on a computer, like Monkey Island, or Myst, it is the same principle. The difference being — it is real life and you only have 60 minutes to solve the mystery. The last riddle is usually the one that opens the entrance door and weeee, you’re out. But do not think it’s easy.
The room is packed with hidden objects and artifacts. Every one of them is a lead that helps you find the next lead, and so on. By analyzing drawings, text riddles, or merging objects, you can find a code that opens a lock on a chest, or a key to a drawer.
You’re probably going to get stuck at some point, but don’t worry — there are cameras inside the room, and a game-master is carefully watching you and your friends. You can ask for hints by pressing the hint button, but only once in every ten minutes. The hint arrives in a form of pictures inside the mailbox by the door. By examining those hints, you realize what to do next.
“It’s the same kind of adrenaline as in extreme sports, but the feeling is different — you have to use your brain” — says Lena, a 33-year old teacher from Solna.
The first escape room in Stockholm is brought to Sweden by Nina Melkus and her husband Bob, who are part of the Roomescape network which already operates rooms in Vienna, Belgrade, Novi Sad, Zagreb and soon Los Angles (in November).
“This is completely different from everything you’ve ever done in your life. It’s great for team building, but more important — it’s a new chapter in the definition of fun,” — says Nina, entrepreneur and a mother of two.
In their Stockholm HQ, there are actually two rooms to choose from. You can save the world from a nuclear catastrophe or rob a bank.
The first room is a bunker from the Cold War era. A secret agent has started the nuclear weapons countdown and a small team of secret agents (you and your friends) have one hour to prevent the end of the world.
The team starts with a single clue: a coded message left in a typewriter by a secret agent.
With 60 minutes ticking down on the large electronic wall clock, you must unravel dozens of codes, clues and leads to discover the keys that can stop the blast.
This has become a popular team-building event for businesses — in contrast to the computer version of these games which was a purely solo affair. Players have to use logic, teamwork and only if they cooperate in every possible way will they beat the room.
“Here, you are nothing without a team,’’ Nina said.
Roomescape Stockholm is located in Olof Palmes gata 23 and it will welcome the first players on 10th of October. One game for five people costs 200 SEK per person. The games should be booked through the company’s website.