: New: Palace Games: The Attraction

Today I helped play the The Attraction escape room experience at Palace Games. It was awesome and fun. As usual with escape rooms, there's not much you can say specifically about them, lest spoilers. As usual at Palace Games, the games designers are good at working with high-tech sensors and servos; this gives them a lot of freedom to design interesting room interactions.

I only played one escape room today. Compared to the rest of my team, that was small potatoes. This afternoon/evening, Rich Bragg is playing The Attraction as his 1000th escape room. To make that happen, he had to play a few rooms today before The Attraction; to make that happen, he organized 22 people playing six San Francisco escape rooms and one escape tour over the course of the day. That's pretty impressive, but remember that Rich was part of the world record Escape Room team that played 22 rooms in 24 hours in Moscow. So organizing a mere six rooms… well, that's still a lot. But I guess that's the sort of logistic feat you have to regularly pull off if you want to play 1000 escape rooms. Of the folks I played The Attraction with today, I was the only one so dainty to stop at one activity.

My team (Deb, Jan, Jesse, Jessen, and me) was the second "shift" of Braggians to play The Attraction. The first "shift" got a 45 minute late start. (maybe because the Escape Tour took longer than expected? Though I have a hard time believing that these folks would take more time than the Escape Tour's regular tourist patrons… Maybe tourists tend to ragequit early? I'm not sure I followed what was happening.) The excellent Palace Games people knew that everyone playing The Attraction today was a Braggian, so they could just keep shoving everyone's time back for that room instead of telling the first "shift" that they wouldn't have time to finish. Thus, our team also got a late start.

We helped nudge The Attraction back towards being on-schedule: we solved it faster than any other team ever. That sounds very impressive, doesn't it? It sounds less impressive once you know that The Attraction had only been open for a day and a half: we were the fifth team to play ever. Sadly, thanks to our late start, Deb had to leave partway through: she was catching a flight to Denver to play a bunch of escape rooms there the next day.

Among the 22 folks running around today were the members world record 24 hour escape room team— but I dunno how many games those folks played today, maybe not so many. Dan Egnor had helped design The Attraction, so he couldn't play that. I bet Amanda Harris had already played all the San Francisco rooms; I ?think? she already played her 1000th room a while back. I haven't met Amanda, but she sounds pretty amazing. Ana played a bunch today, and so did Rich; I don't think they ended up playing any games together, though.

I got to hear some 24 hour escape room world record rumors. Apparently, there's a team from Belgium* that broke the 22-rooms record. But they have yet to hear from the Guiness World Record people if the evidence they sent in is acceptable. Instead of sending-in-evidence-and-hoping, you can ask the Guiness folks to send out observers to watch you—but that costs tens of thousands of dollars. So this Belgium team has probably broken the record, but we have to wait for some Guiness people to… I don't even know what they have to do. View many many hours of escape room footage, thusly getting spoiled on every escape room in Antwerp or something?

Anyhow, I had a fun time at the The Attraction; it was fun to hang out with some local puzzle nerds for the first time since the pandemic; it was exciting to be associated with Rich's 1000th room day. Yay!

*From Belgium? From somewhere else, but they solved in Belgium for 24 hours? Uhm, now I forget what I heard.

Tags: puzzle scene