Recorder team tries to escape from new Hornchurch escape rooms game
PUBLISHED: 16:57 16 December 2016 | UPDATED: 16:57 16 December 2016
What would you do if you were trapped in an ancient Egyptian tomb? Or framed by a notorious serial killer and need to escape a maximum security prison?
Myself and the Recorder team found ourselves facing these exact dilemmas as we tried and tested the new game venue Room Lockdown Escape Rooms, North Street, Hornchurch, after its launch last month.
Locked in one of their themed rooms, you have 60 minutes to find your way out by searching for hidden clues, solving puzzles and working together as a team to get out of there before the timer runs out.
Owner George Georgio, 42, of Romford, said: “This is an alternative fun night out to your usual visits to bars and clubs.
“There isn’t anything like Room Lockdown in the area, if you want to get something like this, you usually have to go into central London but now people have it right on their doorstep.”
After going on holiday to America earlier this year where George and his family got to try a few escape rooms for themselves, they caught the gaming bug and decided to set up their own version.
It was then 10 months later that Room Lockdown Escape Rooms was born.
For our first experience of a locked room, we had to take on Prison Break.
With our team split into two groups in neighbouring cells and reporter Matt Clemenson in handcuffs, we had to figure out how to open the cell gates so we could get to the laundry room.
Seeing as we only had four-and-a-half team members thanks to Matt being restrained, we spent a majority of the time working out how to free him, discovering keys and piping them through a hole in the wall on a string.
Eventually when we did get out after being reminded that we shouldn’t take ceiling tiles down to find clues for health and safety reasons, we made it to the laundry room but with very little time to spare, we failed to make it to the end.
George said: “Prison Break is pretty difficult and very few people have escaped so would like more to come and give it a go!”
In an attempt to try and redeem ourselves, we ventured into the next room - Escape the curse of King Anum.
It’s 1906 and a team of archaeologists start the excavation of King Anum deep within the pyramids of Egypt but while doing so, an evil curse is released killing them all.
Rumour has it that the team were in search of a rare stone believed to be locked in the tomb with King Anum but once again in a race against time, players need to find it as quickly as possible to be in with the chance of escaping.
After the time-consuming first attempt, we organised ourselves and searched the room filled with Egyptian antiques, puzzles and secret codes until we worked out what we needed to do.
It wasn’t long before we discovered the jewel and with pure excitement, ran out of the tomb and straight for victory on the other side of the door.
“It’s something a little different because you don’t just need to escape, you need to find the jewel”, George said.
“We wanted to do a room with a twist and I think from what I’ve heard it’s going down pretty well.”
But there is much more in store for Room Lockdown Escape Rooms with three more games in the pipeline next year involving a possessed doll, zombies and an “extreme room”.
George said: “My advice for anyone who wants to take a room on is to not rush too much and think logically about it.
“Some of the clues are really easy but it’s just about not over analysing and that’s where you can mess up.
“We want this to be something that everyone of all ages can enjoy.”