An escape room is an innovative real-life, team-based game that necessitates cooperation and collaboration. Team members must discover clues, collectively problem solve, manipulate their surroundings and accomplish tasks in order to progress and accomplish a specific and common goal in a limited amount of time (usually 60 minutes).

You enter a room— it seems commonplace, ordinary. You notice things that are locked, or drawers/doors which don’t open. You search every nook and cranny and you find a few things that seem “interesting”. Maybe you find an hourglass, and you flip it over. When the sand clears, you notice a hidden message. It says “Hit song”. Someone else finds a similar hourglass, and does the same thing to reveal “by Survivor”. You both communicate to the entire team what you have found, and you put the two objects together. Another person, upon hearing what you found, exclaims: “here’s a Survivor CD of the single ‘Eye of the Tiger’!” Another team member notices a painting of a tiger and upon closely inspecting the tiger’s eye spots the number “231”. They communicate this to the entire group. Another team member says “here is a chest with a Tiger painted on it, and a 3 digit combination lock!”. The Team Leader says, “try putting ‘231’ into the lock!” The lock opens and you receive another mysterious clue. You “rinse and repeat” until you have accomplished the objective of the room.

Escaping the room is the objective of many escape rooms, but this is not always the case. You might have to repair your spaceship, or find evidence to exonerate your boss. You might have to save a captive from a dragon-guarded castle, or turn on a force-field to stay protected from dinosaurs who have escaped their cages. Whatever the objective, keep the theme in mind as you progress through the room. It might come in handy when trying to solve some of the room’s “problems”.

Many games allow team members to request hints if they “hit a wall” in the escape room. Most games require every member of the team to agree on whether to receive a hint or not. The Game Proctor will usually let your team know how the hint system works before the game. They will also let you know the rules of the game. Be sure to follow these rules as not to waste your own time, or be a danger to yourself, your team, or objects in the room.

SAGE! Escape Room’s number one rule: have Meaningful Fun or else!