Break In: Alcatraz

8.4 Overall
Component Quality
Puzzle Design
Game Experience
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Break In: Alcatraz

  • Played October 2020

  • 60-90 minutes
  • 1-6 players
  • $19.99 USD
  • Great for families

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Certainly you’ve heard the tales of Alcatraz, the unescapable stronghold that sits just off the coast of San Francisco. Many have attempted this daring escape, all have failed. I mean how hard can it really be? Once you get past the impenetrable cells, you only have to contend with heavily patrolled perimeters, sharks and if those things don’t kill you, the freezing cold water certainly will. On second thought, sounds crazy right?! I mean, the only thing crazier would be someone trying to break in to Alcatraz… Wait what?

You heard correctly, breaking in to the impenetrable fortress is precisely your goal in Break In: Alcatraz! Certainly an interesting concept for an escape game but as it stands, it is one that the developers execute quite well! The game components are absolutely top notch. In fact, our team really could not find a single thing wrong with any of them. Everything that you need to complete the game is found within the box. In fact, as you progress throughout the game, you are actually peeling back the layers of the box itself to reveal a diorama of the famed prison. This unique aspect paired with the solid illustrations and art work made the game itself both visually and tactilely appealing.

On to the immersion of the game! The game does a great job of setting the story up in an intriguing way and builds upon that the entire time. You are given just enough information and story throughout to advance the game along at a solid pace, but too little to stay satisfied which is great as it encourages you to keep going. The puzzles are all thematically correct and really incorporate the story. That being said there is a lot of reading to do throughout so we would recommend playing this game over a single sitting so nothing is missed or forgotten.

Puzzles! What to say about the puzzles. Well… this certainly was an area that left our team somewhat divided. On one hand, there is a great variety of puzzles found within the game, all of which are well themed perfectly and authentic to the source. On the other hand, there were quite a few we found to be a bit puzzling (pun intended) at times which led to some frustrations. One of our team members found the game incredibly hard to get started as there was a slight learning curve but once they figured it out, the game became far more enjoyable. Another aspect of the puzzles that was a source of frustration for our team was that we did rely on quite a few hints to solve the puzzles. Thankfully, the game has an absolutely AMAZING hint system that really breaks down each puzzle with a step by step process to help you solve it.

Last but not least, was Break In: Alcatraz fun? For the most part, yes it was. The puzzles felt somewhat broken at times and as stated, one of our team members had a really hard time getting into it but once they did, it was enjoyable for all. Would we recommend it? Yes we would. Almost unanimously we agreed that Break In: Alcatraz is overall an excellent game that we would recommend to anyone interested in playing and learning about the history of the famed prison. In fact, if you are successful in your attempt, you might rewrite some of that history yourself.

Final Verdict:


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