The Mad Rapper • Scenario Escape Room • Escape Room Review
Scenario Escape Room (Based In Brea, CA, USA)
◣ GAME'S SPECS
🕹️ In Person Experience » Escape Room
💪 Rated as challenging by company.
⏲️ 60 minutes duration limit.
🔢 Accommodating 2-10 players, private booking.
💬 Hints provided at players' request, displayed on a monitor screen.
🛒 If you BOOK GAME due to this blog, please give EscapeMattster.com a shout out! ;)
◣ MATTSTER'S TAKE
💪 Difficulty: For Matt's team of 3, quite challenging, 7/10. There's a lot to take in and do in 60 minutes; 3 didn't cut it.
🔢 Ideal Team Size: 4-5. As mentioned, having power of number is good. Music background may help with 1 puzzle.
🤷♂️ Best Fit For: Due to violence, gangs, and other hip hop related reference, recommended for mature teens and up.
🍵 Boils Down To: An audition escape room that slowly descends into the darker side of hip hop industry and associated cultures and lifestyles. Still, the game never takes itself too seriously, maintaining a fun, lighthearted vibe throughout.
🙂 Overall Rating: In general, there's not enough decent music related escape game for me to recommend, so "The Mad Rapper" rises to the occasion as a more than adequate option for being something unique and different from the rest.
A MYSTERIOUS ARTIST KNOWN AS "THE MAD RAPPER" HAS TAKEN THE MUSIC INDUSTRY BY STORM. THE MASKED MUSICIAN HAS BECOME THE BIGGEST SENSATION IN THE GAME AND IS HOLDING AUDITIONS TO JOIN HIS SQUAD. YOU AND YOUR CREW ARRIVE AT HIS STUDIO TO AUDITION AND SOON DISCOVER THE DIRE CONSEQUENCES OF DEALING WITH THE MAD RAPPER. YOU HAVE 60 MINUTES TO PASS YOUR AUDITION AND UNCOVER THE MYSTERY BEHIND THE MAN IN THE MASK. GOOD LUCK AND REMEMBER, THERE'S A PRICE TO PAY FOR FORTUNE AND FAME.
This game play took place before pandemic announcement in the United States (before March 2020). This review reflects previous business standards & practice at the time. Your experience may follow new health & safety guidelines where and when applicable. Please contact business venue for operating hours, booking info, and other further inquiries.
The following is adapted from a Yelp review I've previously published.
The Quick Blurb
"The Mad Rapper" has a few spots open in his squad. Audition to join him in a hip hop music infused journey that features classic escape room puzzles, fun hands-on physical missions, and original soundtrack produced by none other the the owner himself! Prior music knowledge not necessary to apply, but a mad flow may get you far.
The More Detailed Read
So this is the underground music escape room that's been generating all the buzz since its opening. Well then, does Scenario live up to its hype? Does this escape game bring a strong enough... uh... game?
Oh gosh, I apologize. I am so bad at hip hop puns. But get ready for a handful more.
But first, let's divert your attention from my bad jokes to Eric, the owner. Eric, nice guy, loves music, hip hop to be exact. He writes, produces, and raps. He is familiar with the hip hop scene, its representation, and its underlying culture. He also loves escape rooms. So he took one part music passion, one part puzzle fun, mix 'em up, and out came "The Mad Rapper".
The Mad Rapper, the latest industry sensation, is now hosting auditions--do you qualify to join his squad?
The influence of hip hop and (mild spoiler) its association of gang culture is deeply woven into this game, and I myself would describe Rapper as a more condensed and more PG-13 version of the highly revered "Stash House" in K-town. Whereas the makers of Stash House explicitly warns its audience of its mature contents, Rapper, for the most part, is suitable for players as young as high school students. Middle school youngsters... iffy; sit this one out.
A mission veiled as purely a musical job interview, hopeful prospects will realize there's a price to join the Rapper's squad. And though there's an ongoing narrative that advances the plot, this isn't a heavily story driven escape room. My one related critique is when transitioning from one part of the game to the next, segue is lacking, and thus, the story's pacing and flow seems choppy. HOWEVER, as the business name implies (and explained by Eric), these parts are analogous to scenarios, or scenes, within a movie. And like real life movies, scene to scene progression sometimes involve sudden shift in location, mood, or tone. In short, just go with it!
And indeed, much of the charm of Rapper derives from the range of puzzles you gotta solve and its overall feel-good vibe. If you strip away its gangster, excuse me, gangsta theme, at its core the game is actually extremely children friendly. There are several hands-on moments that are unexpectedly physical, and one particular skill based mission is easily the highlight of the night. Also, bringing your coordination A-game is highly recommended.
Other puzzles aptly incorporated elements of hip hop music, and as mentioned, urban and street cultures. A music audition in name, but a classic escape room at heart, most riddles encountered will be familiar in format to enthusiasts. So even if you're not a fan of the music genre, or even music in general (ummm, what, who doesn't like music), fret not: this is still most definitely primarily a puzzle forward entertainment. In fact, as opposed to the more task based, or "immersion focused" new rooms flooding into LA, it's pleasing to see Scenario sticks to the basics and gives us some solid brainteasers, in a large variety no less.
Those with music instrument background may have a clear advantage in one puzzle. Mad lyricist skills don't hurt either.
Room is rated as "challenging" at its official site... eh. I'd give it a 7 on the difficulty scale. I don't think Eric meant for this to be dauntingly hard--just the right amount of hurdle to make you feel accomplished, and I am sure the staff can even cater to beginners for a satisfying experience. In other words, everyone, novice or expert, will have a good time.
Visually, Rapper is decent and above average; expect graffiti galore. Audibly, this is technically a unique to Scenario experience. Keep your ears open for the business's own original soundtrack, 100% crafted for this room and this room only by the owner. To be able to fuse his passions and talents from two seemingly non-overlapping categories into one fluid product, this is one of the main reasons why this venue has been able to garner the fanfare and respect, including mine, that it well deserves.
Grab a couple of friends (group of 4 to 5 is ideal), drive to Brea, and go audition.
To be honest, as of today, Scenario is quite well known within the SoCal escape room community. So yo, Mad Rapper... Not so underground anymore, are you?
P.S. A special shout out to EscapeTheRoomers for the invite. Always a pleasant memory.
⤻ Full disclosure: Complimentary game access was generously provided for review purposes.
⤻ All media credited to and provided by contents owners. No copyright infringement intended.
⤻ Speed code for on-site search: SERRapper