Red herrings in this quantity are definitely not ‘magical’*
Welcome to the school of witchcraft and wizardry where there has been some funny goings on. In a classroom full of tricks, puzzles, challenges and spells, you must solve them all to escape the grasps of the evil professor and graduate with a distinction!
This was our second room at Escape Peterborough and I really hoped the experience would be better than what we had just had in Espionage?
First impressions of this room were decent, they had spent a little bit of time on the decor, well they had raided the Harry Potter gift shop anyway.
Progressing through this room you can see that it is geared towards family and child groups, as you unlock things that are purely there for you to dress up in and offer nothing to the game, I’m totally fine with dress up items, but don’t lock them away so you think they’re something you need.
The final ‘puzzle’ is probably supposed to be a bit of excitement to end the room and make your escape, but due to (I assume) the GM not watching us we had to repeat it multiple times until she finally saw and pressed the button to end the game. A very anticlimactic ending.
The most frustrating thing about this game (other than the GM) was the amount of red herrings in the room, now I can tolerate one or two but this took it to a new level, and for me a red herring should not be something you unlock from solving something else. This was the case for a few things and when I asked the GM after the game she said, “yeah people waste a lot of time on those”, so they’re just in there to slow teams down.
After the game we told the GM that the batteries were nearly flat on one of the code entry systems, so much so that we had to re-enter the same code multiple times to get it to open. I’m not sure if this was actually fixed as the staff that day seemed to not be overly concerned with anything.
The puzzles in this room weren’t particularly hard, it’s just that a lot of them felt particularly disjointed and add this to the abundance of red herrings and it just became a bit frustrating.
One puzzle (the one we needed the clue on) was very poorly made and in hindsight it should have been obvious from how much it stuck out with everything else in the room. I even said to Liz that it was shoddy, not realising it was needed to solve something.
As I previously said this room has been stocked from the Harry Potter gift shop so it does look pretty decent in places. Unfortunately there is nothing magical about it and an over abundance of padlocks takes away any form of immersion.
Again this was another fail for Escape Peterborough, the gamesmaster and clue system really let them down. At one point we needed a clue and had to ask multiple times and wait for a few minutes to receive it, unfortunately when we got it she gave us a clue to what we didn’t ask for and had already done, so more time was spent waiting. This really did show the lack of attention we were getting in our rooms on that day and I can only assume they have one GM running multiple rooms.
If things were running smoothly this is probably an ok room, particularly for children or new players. But if you’re an enthusiast I think you’ll find this room rather lacking and one to avoid.
*Since writing this review Escape Peterborough has reached out to apologise for our experiences on this day. They stated the problems were due to staff shortages and not the levels they usually aspire to. They have invited us back to see their usual standards and try their other rooms. Watch this space…
Team: 2 players (escaped in 46:58)
Address: 23 Church Walk, Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, PE1 1SB