🖱️ DISTRIBUTION ROUTE: Online, By Purchase, Start Play Anytime
🎧 PRODUCT TYPE: Online Puzzle, Google Form Based
► PREMISE & OBJECTIVES ◄
Official Premise (from Not An Escape Room): You’re in prison. Probably because you tried to rob a bank or something.. You heard from other inmates being transferred in that you’re entering the cell of a previous inmate, one who mysteriously disappeared one day without a trace. Did he escape? Probably. Can you? Let’s find out...
MORE GOOGLE FORM BASED FUN
"Breakout" is a follow up entry to "The Original Bundle" by Not An Escape Room. This website uses Google form web tool as the base for all its puzzle and escape games. You'll navigate the story with multiple choice radio buttons, drop down menus, and password input fields.
THE USUAL STAGE
We find ourselves in a prison in the company's fourth entry, one of the staples of the escape room world. A previous inmate has successfully escaped the very jail cell you're currently residing, and they have left behind clues to help you do the same. Will you also succeed?
And cue the clock!
Breakout (Credit: Not An Escape Room)
WHAT'S DIFFERENT THIS TIME
Within the first five minutes of clicking around my virtual jail cell, I noticed that this new game was much more image heavy than all the previous offerings. And every single image seemed to have carried significant clues, and not one red herring spotted.
To help you smoothly overcome all obstacles, I highly suggest right clicking on every image, and open the file in a new browser tab, so you can refer back to them swiftly with ease.
The game overall was also more structured and linear, in a way that made sense:
You first aim to free yourself from handcuffs, then the cell metal gate, and finally out the facility to sweet freedom. Because of this natural progression route, the story had many opportunities for more puzzle check points, and this game finally delivered the proper number of challenges I expect to see. (Previous efforts were lighter on actual puzzles contents.)
I happily congratulated the maker for a job well done, and expressed my sincere desire for him to continue upholding this new standard as the bar to reach or beat in future projects.
Look for this card in the game... You'll see :)
UNDENIABLE VIBE OF ESCAPE ROOM
Whereas "Enigma" strayed a bit far from what you typically envision from an escape game, "Breakout" pulled a 180 and followed some of the most classic formulas.
Similar to a physical gen 1 room, this game zoomed in on decoding secret messages and working out lock combos. The clues were scattered apart just the right amount to offer a good level of challenge, though with good note taking, one could easily group relevant clues together and solve the puzzles efficiently. I took roughly 30 minutes to finish the entire game.
Though the riddles this time were not as "edgy" (or abstract) as the ones found in "Enigma", I did find myself both enjoying and preferring Breakout's classic choices due to my ability to finish them without serious frustration or struggle. Is it possible that I found them more appealing partially due to my clinging dearly onto my comfort zone? Maybe. Who knows?
I can confirm, however, that these riddles were undoubtedly better written, logically speaking, and required no outside knowledge to complete. And that's always better in my book.
Hence, out of all the options in the web store, this would be my pick.
"Breakout" is my favorite room from this company thus far
MUSINGS & SUGGESTIONS
The latter end of your penitentiary escape involved some "decision at a crossroad" moments, and you could seemingly embark on several paths of possibly different fates.
However, in actuality, it doesn't quite matter what choices were made--you eventually have to backtrack and follow a pre-determined path to win the game.
And that got me thinking, what if your arbitrary decisions actually affect your outcome, and would sequentially unlock one of several possible scenarios, coupled with completely different puzzles? Wouldn't that be so neat?!
Instead of being a pseudo-choose-your-adventure story, actually be one! Numerous video game titles, and even some movies, feature multiple possible endings. Let's implement the same here. Not to mention, this would increase replay value.
I've actually done 4 total playthroughs for Not An Escape Room; this review post covers the company's fourth publication, "Breakout".
These freshly published online adventures are a new online endeavor founded by a young man named Kelsie. He created them as fun alternatives to the usual video chat quizzes for his friends, and now, for an even broader audience. He also enjoys performing magic as a hobby.
If you enjoy his work, also explore "The Original Bundle", a discounted package with three of his earlier creations: Crypt, Heist, and Enigma.
► DISCLAIMERS ◄
All official media are provided by or credited to respective contents owners, and are used with proper permission for the purpose of this post.