More Heist-y Goodness
Vincent Hahn just barely escaped, but Intel has noticed some suspicious activity in Hong Kong. According to reports, Hahn is dealing with artifacts related to the Silk Road. Your mission is to go there, find Hahn, and capture him before he can get away.
Spoiler Alert for The Escape Game’s (TEG) Vol. 1 – Chasing Hahn: The Heist – Vol. 2 picks up where Vol. 1 left off, with a new intelligence report pointing to the potential whereabouts of the target, Vincent Hahn, following his narrow escape in the finale of the first. (But I guess not too much of a spoiler since it’s mentioned right there on TEG’s website…).
The two Heist games that are available for purchase at the time of writing can be purchased for $10 each, or bundled together to save a little at $17 for the two. Naturally, knowing how good TEG’s live avatar experience, The Ruins was, we decided that we would buy the bundle. We played the games back to back, but we’re weird like that. However, because the games flowed from one to the other with a connecting narrative, it was almost as though we were playing one big game.
While it’s not necessary to have played Chasing Hahn prior to The Silk Road, I’m not sure why you’d skip it. And if you have indeed played the first volume of TEG’s digital game, the game platform and slick interface will be quite familiar to you, as it is exactly the same as the first game. But The Silk Road differs from Chasing Hahn in that there are no documents to download outside of the game environment this time. That’s not to say, however, that everything you need will be located within the game – the internet is wide open to you, and a bit of research may go a long way.
The puzzles were nicely broken up throughout the game by little video “calls” to drive the narrative forward, and the narrative was a much more driving force than it was throughout Chasing Hahn, giving this game a much more “realistic” feel. The Silk Road was relatively linear in structure, with one puzzle unlocking information for the next. We often found that a great deal of information would be available to wade through at once, giving opportunities to investigate different things, making it feel somewhat less linear.
As with Chasing Hahn, we played The Silk Road from two separate computers. TEG’s website specifically says that only one person can be logged into the portal, and if you’re going to play with a team in separate locations, you will need to screen share using the platform of your choice. Somehow we managed to fluke the system by using the same username and password to log into the platform at the same time from two different devices, and it seemed to work well, as we could both see everything easily, while not crowding around a single 13” screen. If you’re playing in different locations, it would definitely be worth trying this, but if all else fails, screen share will work, and thanks to the nature of some puzzles, even with screen share, team members will still be able to investigate things for themselves to some degree.
The Silk Road presented a nice array of puzzles, incorporating a wide variety of skills, including observation, decoding, internet sleuthing, and more. While there was a great deal of information to be unlocked throughout gameplay, The Silk Road didn’t actually have many puzzles. Instead, many of the tasks were more complex, multistep puzzles with several layers. Most of the difficulty in the puzzles came from wading through the information presented and then figuring out what to do with it. Once we did, the tasks themselves were logical and quite pleasing. There were a few times that we did struggle with a puzzle, either finding it too ambiguous or impossible to make sense of, but in both instances, it was actually down to a failure to notice something on our part and not a problem with the task itself.
TEG’s digital games provide one of the most thorough and comprehensive hint systems I have seen. Yes, there is a giant button on the screen reading “HINT?”, which removes some of the immersion, but if you need a hint, they are always available, and it’s easy to locate the section for which you need help and avoid spoilers for other sections. Not only that, but the hints are broken down and delivered in a granular manner so players can gauge just how much help is required.
Of the two digital games currently available from The Escape Game, we felt that The Silk Road was the stronger, but only just, and we’re looking forward to the eventual release of Vol. 3. Whether you’re an experienced escapee, or looking to dip your toes into the world of online escaping for the first time, you won’t go wrong with the Heist series.
- Desktop or laptop computer (does not support mobile devices)
- Stable internet connection
- Notepad for taking notes
|Value for Money|
Team: 2 players
Time Taken: 36 minutes