Deadlocked: Houdini’s Workshop review
|The amazing Houdini’s marvellous collection of wonders that will leave you mesmerised. Take a visit to the lost testing room of Harry Houdini, Wexell’s former employee and head of ‘befuddlement’ (a job title retired with the late Houdini’s passing). You and your team are taken on a tour of the workshop and are given the opportunity to test yourself against the great man’s skill.|
|Difficulty level not stated|
|£14-20 per person depending on team size and age|
|Played by Jenny, Paul and Bharath|
|Escaped with 3 minutes remaining|
5/10Whilst the company added memorabilia around the room for Houdini, I never really understood why we were in this room trying to escape. There was no real brief before the game which was disappointing as most Deadlocked games in particular Merlin are so strong on theming. The room itself was simplistic with some good props, but I felt a lot more could have been done to link the theme i.e. music, smoke, more magic tricks etc.
5/10Although it’s relatively new, this is a traditional ‘first generation’ type of room with lots of padlocks and its theming towards the basic end of the scale. There aren’t many magic themed escape rooms so Houdini is a great idea, but the seemingly low budget meant it wasn’t able to reach its full potential. Plus the attention to detail was lacking in places, like with the CCTV cables and trunking which were plonked haphazardly on the walls and hanging off in places. It’s quite a small room but it’s been segregated in a clever way to maximise the space. It’s filled with things like playing cards, wooden stocks and posters. Clues are projected onto the ceiling which is novel, but there’s no sound notification when they appear so they’re easy to miss.
5/10There was a great start to this game, where we were all put in a Houdini type situation which we had to escape from. This added to the challenge but hindered us at times, particularly for me as I spent most of the game on my own! The puzzles were logical with various levels of difficulty, however most games ended up with the use of padlocks… a pet hate of ours! There was a unique way of getting clues in this room, however there was no sound when the clues came in so you could miss them! We also had an issue with one of the games as the tools provided were a little faded so it made it harder to read the solution.
5/10You start the game either cuffed up or locked in a box and you need to work together to get yourselves out of these predicaments. It’s a padlock heavy game so you’ll need to find lots of keys, numbers and words. Two of the games had issues which stumped us for quite a while. One involved colours which didn’t match up, possibly due to being faded. The other was a bit ambiguous as it had at least two possible answers. The rest of the puzzles were fair and logical, although one was a maths task which may prove too tricky for some. Plus there’s a few red herrings in the room. One was hidden in a locked area which made us think it would be needed and so ended up wasting some of our time.
6/10I did enjoy the game, however as I spent a lot of it on my own, I felt like I missed out on a lot of puzzles and the solution solving. With that said, I liked the idea and the way the game started. The area you are in is quite tight so I liked how Deadlocked used cool techniques to maximise the space. This game would be great for beginners and families. For me though, after doing so many rooms, nothing really wowed me with this room.
6/10I liked the magician theme and there were some good ideas in here. There are also some fun elements like crawling about in tight spaces. You are split up at the start, which inevitably means that some of you end up standing around doing nothing while you wait for the rest of your team to solve their puzzles which isn’t ideal. This room is better suited for escape room novices who would appreciate this more than enthusiasts would.
7/10As this room is outside of London, this was a great price at £19 each. The GM was friendly and offered us sweets while we waited to play. Whilst there was a lack of a story to the game, I liked the idea, the use of the space and the way the company created some of the challenges. Whilst this may not be for experienced gamers, I’m sure beginners will have a great time here!
7/10It has its flaws, but where it lacked a bit in the presentation, it made up for in the creativity. Plus it’s on the cheaper end of the pricing scale, and is cheaper still for children which is quite rare, so you can forgive some of its shortcomings. There’s complimentary chocolates on offer in the waiting room which is a nice touch. We also had a knowledgeable and friendly host who had done about as many escape rooms as we have!
Theming - 5/10
Puzzles - 5/10
Enjoyment - 6/10
Value - 7/10