Escape Hunt: The Treasure of the Aztecs review
|Can you decipher ancient Aztec clues to find Montezuma’s lost treasure? A team of archaeologists at the Mexico City Museum have uncovered a treasure trove of ancient texts and on close inspection, it looks like they point the way to Emperor Montezuma’s legendary lost treasure. But the texts won’t give up their secrets easily, only the greatest minds of our age stand a chance at unravelling them… The race is on to crack the texts and make the find of the century. Will you discover a gold hoard beyond your wildest imagination?|
|Difficulty level not stated|
|£15 per team|
|Play at home (based in UK)|
|Played by Daiman, Paul and Bharath|
|Completed in around 60 minutes|
6/10The graphics look nice but this is a purely paper-based game so conventional theming is pretty much absent. There is a tiny bit of interaction outside of the PDF file and I only wish there were more moments like that!
7/10You’re given a professionally designed 24-page PDF document that contains 18 pages of puzzles, some of which need printing and cutting out. The PDF and puzzles are themed around your mission to find some lost Aztec treasure. As well as the PDF, you also need to use Facebook Messenger to contact a museum professor to give him your findings and seek help, if required. Responses are automated and come back instantly. This worked flawlessly, although it will annoy those who don’t have a Facebook account. With just a document and a themed Facebook profile, Escape Hunt have created a pretty simple package which works well, but doesn’t go the extra mile.
5/10This game has two distinct halves, you cannot progress until the first section has been completed and the delineation was clear in not just theming but quality of puzzles. The opening half really didn’t work for me, the clueing seemed a bit off and there wasn’t a great deal of satisfaction when things were solved. After we played, we reviewed the game’s hints as the experience didn’t have a cohesive feel and it turns out that we solved several items in an unintended manner. All this said, the back half of the game was leaps and bounds better, with decent clueing and clear logic. Although, please, no more cutting out activities!
6/10The puzzles are split into two completely different packs. The first contains codices that you need to decipher to reveal a location on a map that also needs piecing together. The second has you inspecting old keepsakes to help you hunt down an individual. I preferred the second pack as the puzzles flowed well and all made logical sense. I had gripes with the first pack though, from the colours used in one puzzle, to the mixed orientation used in another, to the fact we were able to stumble upon a couple of answers due to the way it was designed.
5/10I really struggled with the first half of this one. It wasn’t rewarding and everything felt vague. This took the wind out of my sails and although I derived a lot more fun from the second section, my enthusiasm had been sapped.
6/10After a slow start, the second half of the game redeemed itself with some rewarding puzzling. But the issues with the first half bogged us down and reduced my enjoyment levels. I’d also have preferred it if this was designed so that it didn’t need to be printed out as that creates faff, as well as reducing the available audience to those who both own a printer and who can meet up physically.
5/10At £15, I feel like this is far too expensive for the experience. I appreciate that a lot of work would have gone into the design of the game but the puzzle elements were severely lacking in the first half. I also think that the price is high when there’s the expectation on the player to print and prepare the materials when you can buy play at home boxes and books for similar amounts. Had this offered more features such as video or online interaction, the asking price would be more acceptable.
5/10Although The Treasure of the Aztecs is a decent play at home puzzle game from a respected escape room franchise, £15 seems steep for what is basically an 18-page PDF document that you have to print out at your own expense, keeping you entertained for around one hour. Compare that to say a book which is tangible and keeps you occupied for longer and the price just doesn’t match up.
Theming - 6.33/10
Puzzles - 5.67/10
Enjoyment - 6/10
Value - 5.33/10