[N/A] DR VON E. SCAPE - Containment Escape Games
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This is Escape Mattster's game No. 26.
Venue: Containment Escape Games
Address: 936 W Foothill Blvd, Claremont, CA 91711
Game: [Closed] Dr Von E. Scape
Here is a carbon copy of my Yelp review, posted originally on 07/07/2018:
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DR VON E. SCAPE // Grade: A
"...Holy mother of God! Orgasmic-ly good!"
Containment recently released its 2nd room "Dr Von E. Scape" , and after paying the doctor a visit tonight, I'd have to say, it was one big step up from the already decent "The Cabin" (see previous review).
Per official website, Dr Scape, the #1 miracle physician, has come out of hiding after years of inactivity, because one of you, YES, YOU, is a special case to him. You seize this opportunity of a lifetime for a valuable consult, but what really awaits beyond the office door? Also per site, this game has a minimum age requirement of 13 (aka more mature theme), and tight spaces are required. (Well, you know what that means! Spooooooky!)
While all my suspicions regarding the direction of the plot and the physical feats we'd have to perform were validated during game play, what pleasantly surprised me was the excellent execution of the aforementioned. It frankly blew me out of the water. Containment didn't just improve upon their past effort for this sophomore product; it undoubtedly aced it.
Much like Cabin, the scenic for Dr was decent, and got the job done. While it may not be comparable to, say, 60Out, the owners of Containment worked with what they got with much effectiveness, and immersion was aptly achieved. The attention to details was conspicuous and much appreciated. The actual space and layout was tight (but still comfortable), and playing with more than 4 players (max capacity) would feel cramped. My group had 4 players total tonight, and it was an enjoyable and intimate experience.
The puzzles were intentionally harder than Cabin's and it showed. I was not able to crack open locks instantly like I am used to. There was a good 5-minute long of head scratching before anything started to take off. I loved the variety of challenges presented, though tbh, not all of them related to the central plot super-organically... which I know, it's hard to achieve. Some riddles were definitely more doctor-y, some were more science-y, & some were more backstory-y. They did all essentially come together in a big picture.
But! All puzzles across the board were extremely fun to do. A good handful of them followed "escape room logic", though they were convoluted enough to give players a satisfying challenge. (Due to the difficulty, I recommend 2 players for only expert enthusiasts. Otherwise, 3-4 brain-powers would come in handy.)
Worth a mention: Some puzzles even employed gadgets and techs that you may not come across every day in your escape room games. So, get ready for your "wow!" moments. As written above, some riddles were science-infused, so to speak, and that's always a welcoming treat for geeks and nerds, like me. This game, so far, had tickled me in all the right ways ;)
What pushed me to really, really love this game was the element of personalization. Only 2 other rooms I'd played in the past took the extra effort to create a forever-lasting moment by tailoring a certain "item" specific to the current gaming participants. And I was so so glad to see Containment/Dr to join this list. How this played out in this particular game though, was so deliciously implemented, you'll really just have to play it to experience it. It was one of my LOL moments, and totally worth my admission price.
What also impressed me was that the current and future room offerings are actually inter-connected. While each could be played on its own, there is an overarching theme that glues them together. While not critical to game play, it was a nice touch, almost like an Easter egg for returning customers.
We successfully escaped a horrible fate (well, kinda, for most of us anyway) under the time limit, with about 8 minutes to spare. We did request 4-5 hints from the unlimited hint feature, with clues broadcasted via a hand-free audio system. While not immersive, the system was convenient and easy to use.
Finally, (as if I didn't have enough positive things to say about Containment already), I felt such warm welcome from the owners (Kyle/Nicolette) at my second visit. Nic even recalled the Pokemon shirt that I wore in my previous game. Being able to foster strong customer relationship, Containment would definitely continue to flourish.
"Dr Von E. Scape" was part mystery, part terror, and a whole lot of awesomeness. Kyle told me he wanted a natural progression, in terms of difficulty and sophistication, to his escape room products. And you know what? So far, so so so good.
P.S. The 3rd room, a carnival themed game, will be coming in a yet to be determined future. I don't want to give away any spoiler, but from the sound of it, Containment will eventually have a roster of games of varying difficulty, aimed for different age groups, and featuring eclectic themes. This seriously has all the markings of a healthy, striving growth and maturation for an escape room business. Really, kudos.