Gord had so much fun…
You’re breaking the law as dangerous convicts! Cooperate to solve puzzles and make a break for it! Sweet, sweet freedom is within your grasp!
You’ve been caught, tried and convicted! During the transport to a maximum security prison, the secure vehicle taking you is involved in an accident. The vehicle is immobile, and a bit of a mess, but this is the perfect opportunity to stage a breakout! The police’s response time is 60 minutes; can you shorten your life sentence?
For our final room of the day, we found ourselves back at The Panic Room’s Gravesham Market location, but this time outside, in a prison van. Unlike real prisoners, we weren’t shackled inside our cells, though that would have added an extra element! Locked inside separate cells, excellent communication skills were required to escape. I was out of my cell swiftly, thanks to some help from Gord, and thought I was really on a roll. Unfortunately for Gord, I didn’t observe my surroundings properly, and he was left locked in his cell while I set about escaping.
I managed to unlock all of the cells, apart from Gord’s, in about ten minutes. Had we been in a larger group, I think Gord may have been freed a bit more quickly, but with just me, there was a lot to take in, and I missed the puzzles that would lead me to being able to release my husband (I could feel the marital stress building with each minute he was still trapped.)
Luckily, the timely intervention of our helpful GM saved me from my impending divorce, and Gord was free! We quickly solved the last few remaining puzzles (after I took a few minutes to walk through what I had done prior to his release) and we made a break for freedom with 18:23 seconds left before the cops arrived!
Puzzles were generally quite standard for an escape room, with a good mix of finding things and solving puzzles for padlock/keypad combinations. The one exception to this really stumped me, and I did require a clue to help me finally free Gord. In hindsight, everything I needed to solve it was right in front of me, I just couldn’t see it.
Being in a prison van in itself was a unique experience, being the law abiding citizen that I am. There were documents throughout the van, indicating what each person had been convicted of, but apart from one page, there wasn’t actually any information within these that was useful to an escape, and these were more of a red herring.
As we’ve found with all of our hosts at The Panic Room, they were attentive and helpful, and quick to point out when I was being a numpty.
Gord and I have mixed views on this room. I quite liked it, but then I solved most of the puzzles. Gord was bored, and fidgety from being locked in his cell for the more than half of our time in the van. The space itself is rather tight once you’re out of your cells, but game play isn’t linear, so you can split up and work on things simultaneously until you start to reach the final puzzles, and despite the tight space, I think, based on our experience, it would be ideal for a team of three or four, rather than two. I actually think I could have solved everything I needed to and just left Gord to be collected by the police.
**Due to renovations at Gravesham Market, Prison van is due to close 28 April 2019.** It’s a shame, and I do hope The Panic Room are able to find another location, as this was certainly one of the more unique escape experiences.
Team: 2 people (18:23 remaining)
Address: 23a St Georges Centre, Princes Street, Gravesend, DA11 0TB