Featuring the never-ending tales of One Thousand and One Nights.
- Website: Escape Hour
Address: 3016 19 St NE #200, Calgary, AB T2E 6Y9
- Private Booking: Yes
- Price: $24.99 per person
- Duration: 60 minutes
- Linearity: Mixed
- Group size: #medium
- Player Level: #competent
- Premise: “You are under the curse of the evil genie Asmodeus who has imprisoned you in his magic lamp. You must identify which ten of the Tales of the Thousand and One Nights are the genie’s favorites to break the curse and escape the lamp.“
I think Ben does a pretty good job below of explaining why service was top-notch.
We did this room really late (we did The Lost Jewel of Zanzibar earlier in the evening) – we finished at around 12:30am. After we left, I realized that I had left my phone behind! We quickly called to ask if my phone was still there, and if I could pick it up tomorrow, but they said that if I wanted to, they would stay behind so that I could get it.
By the time we got back, it was around 1am and they were waiting in the parking lot to give my phone back. I was super impressed – this was definitely above and beyond anything I ever expected.
Writing these reviews, I’m beginning to realize that Escape Hour’s puzzles are designed to have a non-linear progression. Their main target includes corporate people looking for team-building opportunities, so I could see how they like a divide-and-conquer approach. Consequently, this allows for a high number and variety in puzzles, as the rooms are designed to have everyone doing something simultaneously.
My favorite thing about the puzzle design is how you are instantly rewarded for solving each puzzle. You not only get rewarded by getting cards, but you also get one step closer to accomplishing your mission.
Escape Hour’s rooms are always packed with a large variety of very solid puzzles! In this room, they were all quite intuitive – they do a good job of providing you with with enough information to connect parts of a puzzle together.
This room was also a treat for the senses – you’ll be using more of them than usual here!
I felt like I was in one of Daenerys’s tents in the middle of the desert. The room looked very pretty and sophisticated, mainly due to the monochromatic color scheme. Kerk, our game master, mentioned that the idea behind the room design is you’re supposed to be inside a genie’s lamp. For the most part, they succeeded.
I mentioned in Zanzibar that I really like their ceilings. It’s an extra little step that helps you feel like you’re really in the world that room is trying to create.
If I had to choose one word to describe this room, it would be “exotic” and I think “mystical” would come in close second.
I loved how whimsical this room was combined with the grounding in Middle Eastern culture. Definitely one of the more unique themes I’ve seen.
The hint system for Escape Hour involves your game master watching and listening to your every move. They provide clues from a screen sporadically throughout the hour, both solicited and unsolicited. There is always a risk that this becomes intrusive, even annoying, so the game master has to really gauge what the players’ needs are. It’s like a delicate dance of not stepping on the players’ toes.
In our experience, Kerk did a terrific job of moving us along the room but still letting us think for ourselves. I also appreciated how the hints were still embedded in the storyline, so that we felt like we were still in a genie’s lamp trying to accomplish our mission, rather than solving puzzles in an escape room.
In addition to being a gorgeous-looking room that takes you away to the genie’s lamp, I found the hint system to work quite well again. The hints displayed on the TV from our game master were not intrusive at all, which kept us in game-mode for the full time we were in the room.
The theme was top-notch. I loved how the theme and the puzzles were an inseparable marriage in this room–with each puzzle you solve, you immediately get rewarded with a piece of story that you’re trying to collect within your objective. The execution was simple, straightforward, and elegant.
For this room, you had to find the genie’s 10 favourite stories from 1001 nights. Doesn’t that already sound super unique? Each of the puzzles you solve in this room are related to one of the 10 stories! Since I’m all about stories, this room was the one that I wanted to try the most at Escape Hour.
#platinum – This room exquisitely incorporated the puzzles with the theme. It doesn’t hurt that it’s decorated beautifully either. I think there’s something here for everyone in your group.
#platinum – It’s not the most puzzle-intensive room ever, but for those looking for a complete experience, this is a fantastic choice!
- Completed: September 3, 2016
- Escaped? Yes (2 people)
- Our Time: 0:44 (/1:00)
- # of hints used: 3+