I have been meaning to experience The Watcher for some time as I had heard really good things about it and with it winning the Best New Horror Escape Room award at this years ScareCON I was keen to see what all the fuss was about.
We booked as a two last minute as we saw they had late evening availability and we still managed to turn up quite early to our booking but luckily our host Lee was incredibly welcoming and so enthusiastic about both the escape room and scare attraction industry that we stood around talking and ended up going into our room a bit later than planned but luckily we were the last team of the night so it wasn’t too bad, plus the conversation was so good.
Warning: Potential spoilers ahead!
Before the room had started we were told the plot of the room:
“Social media fills the lives of the modern human-race; desperate for likes from friends and strangers alike. But what happens when people take for granted the simpler things in life?
Followers, fame, and fortune displeases “The Watcher”. Perhaps, a troubled childhood brought on this phychopathic rampage to those with a better life online. All that is known is this rampage has no signs of stopping, with more missing people reported nationwide.
After being kidnapped and blindfolded in what was a disused warehouse; things take a turn for the worst for you and your friends. “The Watcher” has struck again and demands your groups’ repentance. Will you be able to complete the trials that are set by “The Watcher”?
Remember, escaping is just the beginning…”
Our job was to get as many likes as we possibly could. We then had to decide which one of us was going to be blindfold and I got nominated so with blindfold on I was led to a seat, handcuffed and had a lock placed in my hand. My partner in crime was also handcuffed to a chair and then when Lee had left we listened to the Watcher and our game had begun.
Within a minute we had solved the lock in my hand and I was free from the chair and blindfold, though still handcuffed. We started to work together to try and free Tim from his chair. There was a couple of very clever puzzles to free him which I won’t spoil but we found the handcuff key and freed ourselves. Then came our first challenge. One of us was to go into a dark closet to earn some likes. I won’t spoil what happens here but I will say that you have to know who you are playing with or there will be repercussions.
As the game progressed we opened up more areas, all of which didn’t feel out of place and worked really well throughout the game. There is also some very well timed scares throughout the room that made us jump, although one of them was missing it’s main piece because it’s being repaired but it still made of us jump. The puzzles are what you would expect from a scary room. They aren’t stupid difficult but difficult enough that getting distracted by scares and other noises still allows you to solve it. I personally really enjoyed the big obvious puzzle in the second main room as it was both physical and mental and done in a way that felt right even if I did have to stop so we could try and earn a like we didn’t unlock and then forget what I was doing. All the puzzles and scares culminate into a finale which I won’t spoil but it was a really fun and theatrical ending and one that makes you slightly think about your choices. But how did we do?
We got all the likes and even made it onto the leaderboard with a time of 49 minutes dead! I can fully see why this escape room won the SCAR award. It’s scary, it’s fun, it has some great puzzles and just works so well all together to create a really great experience. I also want to say a massive thank you to Lee for being such an amazing host!
For more information about XScream escapes and all the rooms they offer you can visit the XScream Escapes website!