London Escaped Vampire Slayer escape room – Review

First of all I want to make it clear that this was my very first time in an escape room ever, so this review is based solely on that one experience rather than a comparison to other escape rooms of other styles.

London Escaped have a couple of different rooms to experience such as the Da Vinci and The Prisoner, but I went with a lovely group of escape room veterans via Love London Pop Ups to give their new Vampire Slayer game a try.

So, as someone who hasn’t been to an escape room before I was literally going in blind with absolutely no clue of what to expect. I knew there would be clues and puzzles to work out and obviously you are under a time pressure to ‘escape’. We were a group of 7 people and for this game they advise between 2-8 people but it can accommodate up to 10 people if necessary and it lasts for 60 minutes. We were there for a 4pm start and at that point in the reception area it wasn’t busy and it was great for a novice like me to get a sneak peek into some of the other rooms.

At the start we are given some props and a walkie talkie, told the general story and advised to think outside the box!

When we went in I took a moment to just step back and observe the more experienced players in action while one of our group read out what was written on our scroll ( this is the general lowdown on the story and prompts to guide you into thinking about what needs attempting first etc).

Obviously I don’t want to give any spoilers away for anyone thinking of doing it, however, I will say that at times this particular room was a little confusing with some things not making any sense. At these points I stepped back and let the more experienced players take the lead so I could at least try and learn something to take forward into other escape games in the future. We did in fact ask for clarification on 2 separate occasions in order to go forward with the game. All of this at no point dampened my novice escape room spirits as I was also getting swept up with watching how people worked out clues and took leading roles in projecting the game forward………………..this in itself is a bit of an eye opening crash course into how others see things that either you don’t, or how they see and think differently and can therefore keep the game going successfully.

So, for me I was very thankful I had this merry band of escape room veterans that helped us actually ‘escape’ the Vampire Slayer room in 54 minutes *insert proud face and don’t mention the fact they did all the work!

After exiting and chatting about the game I was told by a few in the group that this particular room was probably not the best one for a novice to pop her escape room cherry in!

Did it put me off?……………………………..not for a second. I enjoyed it all as an overall experience and it definitely, in my case, got this 49 year old’s grey matter working overtime.

Would I do another escape room?………………………ABSOLUTELY. This has given me a thirst to definitely do more.

So I would love to know if you have you been to London Escaped?

What room did you try?

Also,if you do go, let me know if you escaped or were turned to dust for the rest of eternity!

 

** this experience was gifted for review purposes. These views are just my honest opinion of my experience there on that particular day**

**Prices start from around £30 per person and games can be booked online……but check out their offers available on the website before booking – they have a school holiday offer advertised on there at the moment**

Review- Buck Buck Games – The Hunt for the Smoking Caterpillar

I was recently invited to attend the new immersive theatre game, The Hunt for the Smoking Caterpillar, by Buck Buck Games in their residency at The Owl and the Hitchhiker pub on Holloway Road, London.

I’ve never really attended anything immersive theatre related, or escape room related before so I literally had no idea what I was walking into, but the Buck Buck Games website describe it as ‘ Our event games and characters combine escape rooms, immersive theatre and murder mystery with fun fuelled challenges’ so I thought I would take my husband along for unique evening out!

The pub itself is a complete hidden treasure in, it’s quirkiness is apparent as soon as you walk in ( it has hairdryers all hanging from the ceiling above the bar!). It has a table tennis table around the back of the bar and there were a group of people playing card games at one of the tables and a couple in one of the booth seating areas playing monopoly……….so not your typical pub in any sense. They have a great menu ( our plan was to eat before we played but unfortunately the traffic was not on our side that evening and we didn’t have enough time) including an extensive vegan selection, and although we didn’t get the chance to eat, the food that was coming out of the kitchen looked very good.

Anyway, on to the games. As we arrived and got a drink we could see more groups turning up and congregating at the bottom of the stairs were the games were advertised.

We were met by one of the characters who came down and rounded us up and gave us our little bag of ‘golds’ and the rules to play by. Then we were taken upstairs where we met the Baron who explained loosely what we had to do ( get as many ‘golds’ as we could by solving the clues as well as bartering and bribing others), he warned us to watch out for the ‘serpent’ and when we heard the horn being blown we had to ‘drop to the deck’ to escape the serpent and if we didn’t or we were too slow we would have to forfeit some of our collected golds. Believe me this is no easy feat when you use a walking stick like me, but there was no way I was getting caught out……………..and either I was a bloody fast mover, or they took pity on me, but I didn’t get caught out! My competitive nature must have kicked in at that point.

Now, what I don’t want to do is give anything away that would be considered a spoiler so I didn’t take any pictures inside the rooms. What I can tell you though that this immersive game is completely BONKERS BUT BRILLIANT! Bonkers as in the characters were fabulous at spinning the story and getting you to fully immerse yourself in what was going on, however mad it was………….and it was completely mad. There was about 20 of us in the group we were in and some of them were brilliant at getting involved ( I’m looking at you lot in the dunces hats that evening). This, I can imagine, only makes the game much more fun for all involved. My husband was sooooooo far out of his comfort zone at the start ( not having done anything like this before) but once we got started on the clues and what was going on he was fully into it and we had such a laugh between us. Do not be afraid to barter with or blackmail the other people there, it can make all the difference to what you find out and what alliances can be made – that’s all I’m going to say.

I can happily say that in our game we did in fact find the smoking caterpillar and I did receive my Certificate of Cooperation!

If I tell you anything else I think it would spoil it though so I’m going to leave it there. We loved it. It was a new experience for us and we were so glad we were invited along to review it. Honestly, if you are looking for something different and completely bonkers to do then I cannot recommend this enough. Get a big group of you along for a great night out or just go as a couple like we did, either way leave any sense of normality at the door, let yourself just enjoy the madness going on around you and I guarantee you’ll have great fun.

If you get a chance to go early to have some food in the pub first, or stay after to enjoy a few drinks in a great friendly atmosphere afterwards, it’s worth the trip.

These were some of the characters there that evening ( although I’m sure these must change depending on when you go obviously), these guys were amazing at getting everyone involved and into the story………….they work bloody hard too as it must be difficult to keep very enthusiastic participants on track in order to finish in time and yet still stay fully in character! ( the game lasts around an hour and a drink is included once you are taking up to the room). Word of warning it gets very hot up there with all of the participants in the rooms together and we did attend on the hottest day on record! The good news is the actual pub downstairs is gloriously air conditioned and believe me you will want a drink and a cool down when you come out.

This is me and my husband with the ‘mad hatter’ style character- she was our meet and greet at the start and played a great part throughout

 

This was Polly the Barons daughter………this guy was brilliant and completely bonkers!

 

This is the Baron, don’t be fooled by the smile – he takes no prisoners………..in fact at the start when he ushered everyone to the front I was too nervous to go- so I stayed at the back and drunk my gin!

 

So, have you been to anything like this before? I’d love to know what you think………..and if you do go to The Hunt for the Smoking Caterpillar let me know how you got on!

So, what’s next for Mrs B?

I’ve certainly been asking myself that for a while now. I’m a mum of 2 boys but they are now 20 and 17 (almost18), finding their own independence, as one is at uni and the other is at 6th form and also working a part time job. I have been married for 24 years and my hubby is a shift worker so that means I now spend the majority of my time alone! Due to my illness and chronic pain I’m no longer able to work a conventional job (I was a driving instructor), but I’m lucky that blogging and running social media accounts can be done in pj’s even on a bad day if necessary.

Yet when the boys where younger my life was busy (illness or not) with after school clubs, kids parties, meeting up with friends in the holidays etc, and although I am still officially a taxi service, a cook and a bank, my life is much more subdued. That in itself gives you time…………………..LOTS of time! Time to ponder and think about your own role in life. Yes I am still a wife and a mum but I am also ME. So, with 48 looming very quickly (and my hubby turning 50 last year!) I am starting to think about my time. How do I want to spend my time now my kids are off doing their own thing most of the time? Read more