French Quarter House of Curiosities

7.8 Overall
Room Quality
Puzzle Design
Fun Factor
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French Quarter House of Curiosities

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Clue Carre is located in the Central Business District “CBD” section of New Orleans. Like most downtown locations, parking can be hit or miss, though there was available street parking and a couple of lots nearby. It’s easy to find on foot or by mass transit, and the glass facade stands out from the other buildings on the street.

The entrance area was spacious and clean, with ample seating and tons of standard fare games and puzzles to occupy you while you wait for your room. The lobby games could use a little more direction, and the entrance hallway to the rooms and bathrooms could benefit from some more decoration to increase the immersion, but the overall pre-room and funny intro video were solid. Their large wall map was very impressive, showing where players have come from around the world to play, and indicative of the mix of out-of-town tourists and business travelers that come to visit there.

There wasn’t much of a lead-in to the room them until you got inside, then a quick overview to layout the task ahead. Giving the room a theme of “curiosities” created a lot of leeway on the types of objects and puzzles you could find inside. Indeed, there was a really good variety of escape room standard fare challenges, though nothing really groundbreaking. Avid players will find most of the puzzles familiar (to a point where you can anticipate the next moves before you get to them). First-timers will benefit from the puzzle diversity, so bigger groups should have an easier time finding tasks that different people can work on. Some tasks clearly benefited from teamwork (though could be successfully done solo), and there was a moderate amount of space to move around, making it ideal for a medium size group, or a small group of experienced players. The mix of linear and parallel challenges was also ideal for groups.

The quality of the items was good, and most of the presentation was in fine shape, despite getting a lot of use. To compensate from what we imagine can be a rowdy New Orleans crowd at times, a lot of the items were glued down, which seemed a little out of place given the room theme, as compared to sealing off with display cases. Some of technology didn’t seem fully appropriate either to the theme, and was mostly 1st-2nd generation. The overall set design was good but with room for improvement, but certainly nothing that detracted from the experience.

The room was a lot of fun. The “curiosities” approach led to some amusing puzzles, and the pacing of clues was appropriate. The level of difficulty (they advertise a 40% success rate) would satisfy a range of experience and group sizes, and could work equally for business groups, friends, and families with kids.

Final Verdict:


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