I've never done an escape room before so I wasn't sure what to expect, but this turned out to be a great time. My group did the Mausoleum, which was based around the death of local horror writer HP Lovecraft's death, and the room's design was appropriately morbid.
The puzzles were challenging. The Mausoleum begins "outside" and there is a padlock to the Mausoleum. It took our group a while to get into the main room. I wasn't sure what to expect going in and thought that I would be able to notice everything in the relatively small room that was relevant, but a lot of the puzzles require you to really think outside the box.
There is a monitor that displays the countdown (you have an hour) and also provides you with hints if you need them. The hints were successful in helping us move along when we got stuck. The employee running the room also came in a couple of times to guide us when we were on the complete wrong track. Although receiving help was frustrating at times, it was definitely necessary. A couple of puzzles had solutions that never would have occurred to me had we not been given a hint.
I would highly recommend Escape Rhode Island to anybody looking to do an escape room. Although I can't compare it to other venues in the area (yet), it was definitely a positive first experience, even though my group actually failed to escape. The puzzles were clever, our guide clearly enjoyed his job, and it was a nice departure from a typical night of movies or bowling.
The spots on the weekend fill up quickly and do have to be booked in advance. Three of the four rooms are for a max of six people; a fourth room allows ten. I went with a group of five which was fine, although I think a group of three or four would have been more effective. However, more than one group can book the same time slot so long as it does not exceed the maximum capacity, so it's probably better to go with a group of five or six friends than risk getting paired with strangers you might not be compatible with.
Overall, Escape Rhode Island was a unique and fun experience. I will definitely be back to try out the other rooms, hopefully with more success.
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