What is in a rating? Lots of opinions, subjective thoughts, and several slices of macaroni and cheese loaf. Although ratings are always biased, they can give a snapshot surrounding key aspects of the room, so we wanted to share a little bit of what we think about when rating! Since we rate per room, the customer service, interactions (outside of maybe hint systems, etc.), are not part of ratings (We do that separately on Google!) We consider puzzle/logic, environment/ambiance, and FUN!
All ratings are an average of Matt and Mike’s take on the room, so all ratings come with the power of 2! Typically, our ratings are very similar, but if you see an odd rating like 2.8, 3.3, etc., it shows a difference in what we rated!
The room has some serious flaws to the degree that we wouldn’t recommend this game to enthusiasts or the general public. Major logical flaws, single-minded puzzles (too much sudoku, crossword puzzles, math, or as we like to put it “toilet puzzles” – because you can easily do these puzzles while on the toilet). The biggest factor in this range is that we likely had no fun, were frustrated, and often asking ourselves what was going on.
Most escape rooms likely fall somewhere in here. These are rooms we still would recommend to others. Themes may be standard, we may have encountered such things in other places, puzzles may have some leaps, but generally the puzzles make sense, the environment is decently put together, and we walked away feeling generally satisfied with our experience.
There’s something extra special in the sauce that pushes what we felt or thought in the room. A unique theme, clever puzzles, and a true feeling of “escaping” (from reality) for a little while. There may be a few considerations with puzzles, but overall, cohesion and immersion were at the forefront of the room and executed logically, and most importantly with fun in mind!
A sighting even more rare than Bigfoot or Nessie! Escape rooms that defy convention and do something special. When we stop just to look at the environment, finish a puzzle that not only makes sense, but incorporates itself into the theme, or uses all available resources to immerse and innovate (audio, video, objects, tech, etc.) then we know we have something that plays and operates on a new level. When we stop knowing we are in a room because we are busy smiling, being scared, or feeling something, we know that we’ve found something special!