A live demonstration of what lust is, guest starring a dead, skinned Thing ▪ Evil Genius Escape Rooms
COMPANY: Evil Genius Escape Rooms
ADDRESS: 2525 W Washington Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90018
GAME: Chapter 3: The Morgue
PREMISE: It is hard to escape the feeling of finality when standing in a place where bodies get prepared for their eternal rest. All of your decisions have lead you to this point, yet it hardly feels like you had a choice. You were destined to be here. You enter the morgue, which has obviously been abandoned for some time. Ivy crawls along the walls, the pipes drip, leaves and dead bugs litter the floor. And that smell. You wait in the dark knowing that there is something, or maybe someone, out there. Your final test...
Here is a carbon copy of my Yelp review, posted originally on 12/22/2018:
It's hard to believe 2 of LA's best, most top-notched rooms are within walking distance to each other. Literally minutes of walking distance away from Hatch Escape's "Lab Rat" lives none other than Evil Genius himself. So much overflowing brilliance in this otherwise unassuming neighborhood.
Currently 3 episodic experience are available at EG, and having already completed Ch 1 and 2 months ago, our team of 4 (plot protagonists, if you will) has returned to reprise our previous roles from "Occam's Apartment" and "Norcross Art Gallery" (see my "Previous Reviews"), ready to take on the Evil Genius himself once more.
Ch 3 "The Morgue" ran in the similar vein as its predecessors. The style, vibe, and flavor of game play, design, and look felt strangely familiar, except bigger, badder, and better, if that made any sense at all. (Here, I'd like to interject a compliment to the creators behind the game, on just how far they'd come since the beginning. As an escape room fanatic, I witnessed the wonderful development and maturation this saga had come to grow into. I was blown away.)
Everything meshed together so well, it's hard for me to even compose this review systematically. What excellent aspect should I cover first? Immersion? Visuals? The innovative game format? There's just so much to give praise to.
After waivers etc, we were thrown back into the universe of Evil Genius much like our last encounter. The game started before even the timer began ticking down. Here on out, you, (mild spoiler) as both Occam's old buddy, and your ally's only hope for survival, would be led to the titular morgue and holy sh*t--you'd meet none other than Mr Evil Genius himself.
Tbh, I expected the morgue to be a somewhat dark and creepy chapter as its name implied, but what's in store for us was almost a 180-degree opposite. Yes, it's still retained that signature ominous overtone, but Mr EG himself had another vision to challenge us... (Was he and J Kramer friends that used to hang out at D&B?) In his twisted world of murder and bloodshed, you can't help--giggling--at this unexpected turn.
Not only was the theme a unique twist of its own, so was the time limit policy! (Leave it to the guys who championed a 2-hour, back-to-back game to break the mold again!) Per website, Ch 3 is classified as a 75-minute gaming experience. But no no no, that ain't what you're getting by default. If you want that full serving of clock time, (mild spoiler) be prepared to do some side quests!
These "optional/bonus" quests were almost certainly mandatory if you want to finish the room in time, though the enjoyment derived from these "mini games" was your true prize. They're very much integral, & often times showstoppers, to the overall morgue performance.
Puzzles wise, Ch 3 continued to feed me more of what I really enjoy as an escape room enthusiast, which were solid, actual puzzles--the kind that truthfully required you to think, ponder, & breakthrough mentally. (As opposed to task based involvements, which seem to be 60Out's new direction and vision.) Though a lot more tech components & multimedia were involved, at the heart of this game, it's still a classic escape room experience, only improved, bolstered, & polished by the latest gadgets.
There were some puzzles that were more straightforward, and then there were ones, while not too out-of-the-box difficult, made use of your body elements & senses that I truly hadn't once seen being featured before. Finally, a game that broke my ground of using that elusive 5th sense that I never ever imagined actually being implemented in an escape game! (All puzzles were aptly themed, too!)
Finally, what complemented so well all this aforementioned goodness was, of course, the set. If I'm correct, the owners do not outsource any engineer or artistry help. Everything you see in the morgue is indeed DIY from scratch. While playing, I was constantly amazed in the back of my mind, at how some of the contraptions turned out. Not only did they look PERFECT (morgue-legit!), there were so many secrets to unlock, then subsequently to be floored by flawless execution, & in some cases, sheer surprises.
Btw: (Almost) no jump scare, though claustrophobic elements were very certainly present. SUPER COOL hint system.
Those who complete this room would come to realize the ambiguous future of this intriguing series, and be caught in the webs of the EG universe even more tightly than ever before. 100% immersion accomplishment status earned.
Though it may take a long time from now, I *desperately* look forward to future games and continuation of the story. You know how you finish a season of your favorite show on Netflix, and the next is nowhere in sight? That's exactly the feeling, & precisely how good this company has elevated itself. And for that, I salute you, dear friend, Mr EG.