- July 2017
- Ottawa, ON
- 60 minutes
- 2-6 players
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- What People Say
Too many escape rooms heavily rely on suspension of disbelief to sell the idea that you can walk through a door and suddenly you’re trapped in someone’s bedroom or basement. Few companies will have a room where reaching someone’s bedroom means you must first walk past the yard, enter the front door, and go down the hall.
The super neat thing about Lockdown Ottawa is that they are one of those few companies. They’ve managed to completely avert that problem in their rooms. There is a really nuanced creativity to the way their rooms unfold: before you reach your hotel room, you’re led to the elevator; and before you enter the “TOTALLY-NOT-SUSPICIOUS” government facility you’re led to the “NO-ALARM-HERE” decontamination chamber.
Lockdown’s signage and parking was easy to find and right by the entrance. Other things like lockers and seating were comfortable albeit standard. The dark hallways were a bit cramped, especially if two groups were to ever pass by at the same time, but the lobby was filled with cute puzzles, props, and games to pass the time. The introduction video combined with the costumed game master really adds a nice touch to the entire pre-room experience. (Our group did agree the pregame for The Visitors was definitely the more exciting and well-conceived experience of the two rooms we reviewed.)
Our team was pretty split on the room quality of The Visitors, and without spoiling too much of its creepy goodness, a commendable effort was put into the design and build, but the quality wasn’t as consistent throughout the room as we would’ve hoped. There was also a bit of wear-and-tear on a few of the decor pieces lying around the room, which is unfortunate because clearly a lot of effort was put in. A few years ago, the quality of The Visitors would be considered amazing, but with the fast-paced growth of the escape room industry it currently stands at fairly decent. To be fair, some parts of the room are amazing! Quite a lot of depth was added to the decor and puzzles for the majority of The Visitors. The room quality in these areas really enhanced the experience for some of us. Others thought the quality of the finale (coupled with a bit of confusion with the storyline) was lack-luster and drew them out of the immersive experience. We did agree however, that the pacing and advancement of The Visitors was very nicely done. The tone of the game is constantly shifting, which can be very exciting for first-time escapees.
The puzzles had an impressively large amount of variation. It’s a room where you have to use all your senses and flex all your creative, logical, and critical thinking skills to be able to beat it. As always, our team’s weakness is searching. We hilariously stumbled, fumbled, and got held up by the easiest of puzzles because we searched everywhere except right in front of us. Sigh. Puzzles are probably The Visitor’s strongest point, and it’s almost like they have an increase in difficulty as the game progresses.
All in all The Visitors is a room that is highly recommended to a team that is new (or new-ish) to escape rooms. The puzzles start off easy and progressively get harder (but not impossibly hard). The room also progresses in terms of its environment so that new players can really get a full, fleshed-out escape room experience. And best of all? It’s pretty easy on the wallet (in terms of escape rooms at least). The Visitors is the perfect reason to pull your friends out to Lockdown and give escape rooms a go!