Finders Seekers: Mexico City

7.8 Overall
Component Quality
Puzzle Design
Game Experience
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Finders Seekers: Mexico City

  • Played April 2020

  • 3-5 hours
  • 1-3 players
  • Varying Subscription Rates ($20-$25/game)

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Finders Seekers is an in-home, mystery and puzzle game series for those who enjoy escape rooms. You won’t find these games currently sold in stores, but you can purchase them through a monthly subscription on the Finders Seekers website. Once you’ve subscribed, a new game box will be shipped to your front door each month. And here’s where the fun begins… All of the Finders Seekers game boxes are identical in design and bear a slight resemblance to an attaché briefcase. Once you’ve acquired several boxes you won’t be able to tell them apart… that is until you open the box. Each game box takes place in a different time period and location around the world. Most times it’s a recognizable current or past city, but in some cases it’s a whole country. The game components, and to a certain degree how the game is played, also varies from location to location. Typically you’ll receive a collection of puzzles, props, gadgets, and all kinds of assorted goodies… never really knowing what’s inside the box until you open it and discover your mission. Finders Seekers: Mexico City was one of the first seven locations we received from the good people at Finders Seekers, and having already played a few of the other games in the series, we were eager to hop right into this one! Once again a start page provided us with a little bit of information about our mission, the country we’re in (Mexico), the game’s difficulty level, and expected game duration. For this mission, Mexico City’s difficulty rating was 3 out of 5 and the projected game length was 3-5 hours… by far the longest of all the Finders Seekers locations we’ve played yet!

As already mentioned each Finders Seekers box comes with a different amount and variety of items inside their boxes depending on the mission location you’re playing. For Mexico City, there were more paper based puzzles than we’d seen before, but at the same time there was also a good variety of little props and interesting items to look at and touch. The quality of the paper and props was impressive (as usual), but in comparison to their other games we felt Mexico City was relying a bit more on paper based items than usual… Still well above average compared to most in-home escape based games however, so we’re off to a great start!

The puzzles in Mexico City left us feeling a little bit mixed in our impressions. On the one hand, this game DEFINITELY kept us busy and thinking for a solid four hours (which was within the 3-5 hours projected game time), while at the same time it made us feel pretty worn out by the end of the game. And it’s not from the puzzles being incredibly difficult or complex, although some were quite challenging. It’s that there’s a lot of time consumption in completing the puzzles, so you need to remember that if you’re playing this game you’ll need a LOT of patience and determination. In some ways, this game is the exact opposite of Finders Seekers: Chicago. The puzzles in the Chicago box provide a fast paced game with fairly easy to solve puzzles and a few ‘’Aha!’’ moments… and then bam! The game is done in 1-2 hours, which left us wanting more. In Mexico City however, the puzzles are longer, more systematic, and require a lot of ‘grinding’ your way to the answer. They’re not bad puzzles, but again they’re slower in pace, and are more suited for people who want to get their money’s worth through the amount of time spent on figuring out puzzles. Having said all of this, you can pretty much imagine then that our members had one of two general reactions… There were some ERA members who preferred Mexico City’s set of puzzles because of its linear puzzle path, plus the deep thinking and methodical work required to find the correct answers. Whereas other ERA members preferred the open, non-linear puzzles inside the Chicago box with their quick paced discoveries and ‘’Aha!’’ moments. One thing we all agreed on however was how impressive it is that the Finders Seekers team was able create two very different styled games, while using the same number of puzzles and game concept in both boxes! Kudos to how they continue to amaze us! Mexico City’s box also contained a lot of word based puzzles which again may appeal to some people more than others, so be mindful this mission is a bit less suited for several people to play together and would be ideal for a smaller group of 1-3 players. Prior knowledge of Mexican culture is also a huge asset here, but isn’t necessary by any means.

The immersive aspects of Mexico City are just as impressive (and wanting in certain areas) as most of the other locations we’ve played so far. All of the Finders Seekers games do a great job of bringing you into an authentic understanding of the culture, history, and geography of whichever location you’re completing your mission. Although we only knew a little bit about Mexican culture in advance of this game, we felt as if the game gave us a good introductory course in what it’s like to live, work, and visit North America’s largest city. By the end of the game we honestly felt transported to a different part of the world which is about all one could ask for in an immersive experience while sitting around a table in your own home. The props, puzzles, and background story definitely tied in well to the overall game which once again showed the dedication level of the Finders Seekers team to ‘getting it right’ in how they portray each location within the series. Still needing a bit more work however is the need for some music, background sound, or even sound effects that can help take the game to the next level in immersion. Like most of the other Finders Seekers games in the series, the story attached to Mexico City is on the weaker side and isn’t developed throughout the game. By the time we were near the end, we’d completely forgotten what the purpose of our mission even was until we looked back at the game components and start page to remind ourselves… This isn’t so much a critique as it is probably the ‘achilles heel’ of the Finders Seekers design team (every game designer and/or team has areas in which they shine, and areas in which they could use a bit more help). Given the impressive quality of the puzzles and components within their games however, we’re pretty certain most people won’t mind the absence and suspense of a strong story component. Again personal preferences do play a part in this however.

So what can we say about Finders Seekers: Mexico City? Well, it’s a long, methodical, paper-and-word-based challenge unlike most other games in the series, that’s for sure! It has an impressive amount of background research and educational components that will immerse you in Mexican culture, and there’s even a neat little ‘treat’ for completing the game which we enjoyed. At the same time we can safely tell you Mexico City will probably polarize the opinions of those who’ve played other Finders Seekers missions. Some of our members ranked this game as high as their 3rd favourite, whereas others ranked it closer to the bottom. One thing’s for sure however, this game continues to show the broad range and creative abilities of the Finders Seekers team in how they manage to make different style games from the same game box concept… over and over again. It’s no secret that with each individual game we’ve played, we’ve become even bigger fans of the Finders Seekers series and we can’t wait to review some more locations for you.

We want to hear your thoughts! Be sure to comment in the section below or send us a message via ERA’s email, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, or Twitter… As always, happy escaping!

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