GuReview - Beneath the Surface(Played for Discount/Voucher)

Toronto, CA

by Gureviewer: Snowpanther

Ease Of Booking :

Entrance Rating:

Lobby : Good design for lobby; feels like you’ve entered a completely new world. There are short comics around the lobby to entertain the escapers. There are 2 tables, enough to seat 2 small teams. There is a lot of space to move around. There is also a TV in the lobby, but it does not play anything other than the outbreak’s logo. I recommend that they use it to play their room’s trailer.

Hospitality : They provided hot water and tea bags for escapers to enjoy before and after their escape room experience. However, I wish they had some snacks there. They don’t sell any snacks or food but there are a fair amount of cafes, restaurants within walking distance around the area. I really like how they put riddles in the washroom, so you can warm up your brain before going into the room.

Time Keeping : Currently, they only offer one room at Outbreak escape room and I did not have to wait at all. We put all our belonging into the lockers. We started the game on time with no delays

Briefing Details : The briefing was partially done by the handsome and enthusiastic Gamemaster-- Lawrence and audio recording. The briefing went over the major safety rules in the escape room (or what they like to call “the void”.) There was no narration at the beginning of the story. The story is told as the game goes along, and has really interesting storylines. He played the audio recording inside the room, some of my teammates were distracted by the room while we listened to the recording. I suggest they can blindfold the escapers or play the audio record briefing before entering the room. I have to give credit to the room because the atmosphere and immersion were well done, and t was hard for me to focus on the recording as well. I was deeply drawn to the environment.

Operator Intro : Interesting

Operators :

As I mentioned before, the Gamemaster really did a great job on providing an immersive experience in the escape room. Good customer service and he is clearly experienced with customers. He is a friendly, knowledgeable, and outgoing individual and he talked to us about the escape room before and after the game and was fun to talk to. He knew a lot about board games and escape rooms. Absolutely a suitable gamemaster and one of the best gamemaster I've ever seen.

The Game :

Overall, the game is amazing and certainly enjoyable. The narration is surely the core of this room and links the different part of the room together. Without the narration, this room is like a painting without its colour. The flow, puzzle, lighting and sound effects all contributed well into building the storyline and emphasizing the effect of the narration. The narration is one part that majority of escape rooms usually ignore or put less effort in. The fact that Outbreak put effort and time into structuring the storyline really impressed me. This will definitely help Outbreak to stand out among other escape rooms.

The Venue :

The location is definitely hard to identify and needs a bigger sign to guide the escapers. Hopefully, they can change the sign a bit and make it easier for people to locate it.

Main Room - First Glance :

Nice & Neat!

The main room is dark with a bit of light. There were natural sound effects in the room which made the room very immersive and realistic. It helped maintain the mysterious and suspicious atmosphere. The room design and quality matched with the theme perfectly, and there is just not much to pick on. There were some red herrings in the room but not a big issue, they were only minor red herrings. I promise you will not waste more than 5 seconds on them because they are pretty obvious. The room is great for 5-6 players (4-5 for experienced escapers, 6-7 for new escapers) and the exit is always open in case of an emergency.

Flow :

Excellent flow - flawless and coherent

The flow is well paced, everything is in place. There are not many distractions or red herrings. The instructions and goal of the room were straightforward and not hard to understand. The narration of the room connected well with all the elements in the room, creating a spectacular and amusing adventure for the escapers.

Puzzles :

Some of them were great (matched promised level)

The puzzle fits well with the theme of the room. Puzzles got more challenging as the game progressed. However, the puzzles are not impossible and the difficulty is not too high. There aren’t any leaps of logic or twists. There are a good number of puzzles in the room to satisfy the puzzle lover. Puzzle mechanics can definitely be improved and some puzzles do require some pre-knowledge.(even though most people recognized it as common sense) Great use of technology and few puzzles required teamwork. Although the puzzles aren’t the strongest part of the game, they are still some well-designed puzzles and you can tell when you solve them.

Hints & Clues : They give you as many hints as you need. You asked for the hints using the Walky Talky that they give you.

Policy: Strict Policy

Hints & Clues Quality: Gamemaster will then enter the room and provide help. He gave my team helpful hints and no questions are not answer.( He paused the timer for my team)

Quality: Excellent (They have advanced the game, built-in escalation, no answer-disclosing)

Closure & Debrief :

Excellent (Catharsis)

Gamemaster continuously asked for comments and feedback for the room. It is shown that they really care about the response from escapers and advice to make their next game better The tea and water were a huge relief after an hour long game. Some of my teammates stayed behind and chatted with Gamemaster-- Lawrence, who is a fun guy to talk to. I can’t want for their second room to come out and try it again. This is one of my best escape experiences.

Venue Description: When I was looking around for the room with my team, I almost missed the sign. You have to walk through an alleyway to find the entrance. The location is definitely hard to identify and needs a bigger sign to guide the escapers. Hopefully, they can change the sign a bit and make it easier for people to locate it.

Public Transportation : Excellent

Bus or subways and then after that just few minutes walk

Parking : Street parking – some

Theme: Place and Time (1900-2000)

Narrative: Find the Missing Person


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