Watch out for the War-Poodle!
Bond has Q-Branch, Jack Bauer has CTU, Inspector Gadget has Penny & Brain. Agent Venture has… you.
Agent Venture stands outside the HQ of B.A.D. Corp, ready to expose their many crimes. But they can’t succeed alone. You and your friends must help them infiltrate the HQ, navigate the labyrinth corridors, hack doors, distract guards, bluff past nosey receptionists, and more.
Can you and your friends pull together to save the day and expose the crimes of an evil corporation?
Every Secret Agent needs a world class support team, and this time, that’s you.
*Worth noting: We’ve classed this as Live Avatar but it is an audio-led experience*
The Adventure is REAL is known for their “Immersive Board Game Experiences,” which blend elements from D&D, board games, Live Action Role Play, and even Secret Cinema-style immersive theatre to create an interactive choose-your-own adventure game. We’ve not had a chance to play personally, but have only heard good things. But now, the Adventure is ONLINE, in the form of Agent Venture.
When we first stumbled upon Agent Venture, we didn’t really know what to expect. Would it be like a Live-Avatar game? Or would it be closer to the many of the heist-themed online “escape” games that have cropped up in recent weeks, but with a narrator? The truth is, it’s unlike anything we’ve played before, but we were willing to give it a try, if we could pin down a few more people for a team.
Assembling an escape room dream team turned out to be surprisingly easy, and we were joined by Amy, from Brit of an Escape Habit, and James and Charlie, from Deadlocked Escape Rooms. With our roles chosen according to our strengths, we gathered on Zoom at the appointed hour, and met Agent Venture.
Recently Gord wrote a piece entitled “What are Online Escape Rooms?”. After playing Agent Venture, I think we may need to add another category, as this doesn’t really fit in with any other games we have previously played. First, the game is audio led. Yes, you will have packets of information to go through, and in some cases, physically interact with, but our intrepid Agent Venture is only outfitted with a communicator, not a video feed, so you aren’t able to see what he sees as he navigates through the building. Imagine a scene from a Mission: Impossible film (any one will do) – Tom Cruise needs to break into the vault, and Ving Rhames has the ability to bypass the code, but Simon Pegg has the information on how, and they all need to communicate that information to each other effectively – and you’ll have a good idea of how the game operates.
Second, Agent Venture plays exactly like one of the ‘Choose Your Own Adventure’ novels that I loved as a child. With multiple paths you could direct Agent Venture down in his quest to expose B.A.D. Corp, there are seemingly infinite possibilities for how the heist could go. Will you pretend to be a visitor here for a meeting, and bluff your way past the secretary? Do you set an alarm off elsewhere to distract security and evacuate the building? Will you sneak in through back doors and ventilation shafts and hope that nothing untoward happens? Or perhaps you will choose something else entirely, but each choice you make directly impacts your game, and coupled with the frantic pace and rapid plot twists, the game became incredibly immersive; much more so than most Live Avatar escape games with a video feed.
We’re an escape room review blog, so I would be remiss in my duties if I didn’t talk about puzzles, but in all honesty, there weren’t that many; it just wasn’t that type of game. Each member of the team has a specific role, and hopefully you’ve chosen those roles according to the strengths of your teammates. As the Hacker, I was responsible for cracking the codes to trigger alarms, open doors, etc., which meant I dealt with more traditional puzzles than the rest of the team. (TAiR wasn’t lying when they said that if you like logical reasoning challenges and Sudoku you will do well as the Hacker.) Now obviously, I couldn’t see what everyone else could, but the rest of the “puzzles” were more challenges based on teamwork, and communicating the information in front of you to the rest of the team so that you can pick your path. Even my role as Hacker incorporated that, as the team needed to know what I had the ability to hack.
Gord as the Navigator was presented with floor plans, and the task of finding the best route, sometimes through a bit of a maze. Charlie, our Communicator, was tasked with bluffing her way past guards and more, but she needed not only the information in front of her, but also information from the Researcher, James, to do so successfully. As the Researcher, James not only had intel for the Communicator, but also important information for the Navigator, to help select the route, and of course, critical details for the Hacker, so I didn’t trip the wrong alarms, or worse. Amy, our Coordinator, got to see everything; a second pair of eyes is always handy, and she was able to help hack, comb through research, or pick up Gord’s slack when he zoned out momentarily.
Between Jason, our Dispatch Controller, and of course, Agent Venture, our boots on the ground, we always had the information we needed to help Agent Venture complete his mission. I won’t go into too much detail, as I don’t want to spoil anything, but take my word for it – Jason and the entire cast of characters we came across were absolutely brilliant.
Agent Venture is a completely different type of experience, and with a lack of “puzzles”, and multiple paths you could take to meet your end goal, there isn’t really a need for clues as there would be in a traditional escape game. The Hacker’s pack comes complete with a guide on how to hack, which was sufficient enough for me, but if your Hacker can’t crack a code, there may be another way through. Agent Venture himself, is also an essential part of your team. He can advise you, but he is a highly trained agent and could potentially fight his way through, but I would avoid that if you can.
An immersive, audio-led, choose your own adventure, high-stakes heist, Agent Venture isn’t truly an online escape room; in fact it’s so much more. If you’re looking for something different to do, look no further, and book your adventure now.
- Number of players: 4-5
- Price: £10 – £14 per person (Special half price offer, valid at time of publishing)
- Devices: Laptop, PC, tablet (best on laptop/PC, with split screen)
- Platform: Zoom, + Google Sheets for Hacker
- Time Zone: GMT/BST (London, UK Time)
|Value for Money|
Team: 5 players
Time Taken: 58:00
*Disclaimer: we weren’t charged for this experience, but this has not influenced our review.