ESCAPE ROOM REVIEW – THE QUICK AND DIRTY
Play if… you get off on ghost stories.
Avoid if… the little girls from “The Shining” scare the crap out of you.
Room Escape DC:
Address: 3949A University Drive, Fairfax, VA 22030 (click address for Google Map)
The Room – Molly’s Horror Room:
Description (from the company website): Molly loved songs, and dolls, and teddy bears just like any other girl. Then two years ago, little Molly disappeared…
Her room looks exactly as she left it, untouched (by the living). Lately, Molly’s parents have noticed strange and frightful disturbances. First, only bumps in the night. Now, Molly’s parents fear for their lives. They keep Molly’s room locked tight, to keep-in whatever (or whoever) is haunting them.
You and your team are from the Department of Paranormal Investigations, and you’ve been invited to investigate Molly’s room. Unfortunately, you, too, will have to be locked-in. Will you uncover the secret of missing Molly? You’ll have to rely on wit, courage, and the clues you find hidden throughout Molly’s room. This cold-case will be hard to crack, and night-lights won’t keep these ghosts at bay. Can you handle the horror?
Difficulty (1-10): 3 of 3
Time Limit: 60 minutes
Cost: $27 + tax per person, but use ERG15 to take 15% off your price on games booked between Mondays through Thursdays.
Party Size: 2-8
Staging Area: Decently sized lobby with plenty of seating and a sign-in station. Two separate restrooms located off the main lobby. Also has vending machines.
Metro Access/Parking: Parking garage around the corner and next door, but no metro.
Description of the room: A little girl’s bedroom complete with creepy dolls and age-appropriate artwork. It doesn’t look like it’s been touched for awhile.
Understanding of the Mission: Find out what happened to Molly before time runs out and you become part of the ghost story.
Did We Escape: Or course
Time Remaining: Just over 5 minutes. *gasp*
Our Suggested Party Size: 6-8
Did the room challenge the entire team? Yes
Members of our team (other than the ERG): Eric, Tara, Steph, Mark, Katheryn
Worth the time and money? Yes
Where to Eat/Drink Before/After:
- The Green Turtle – sports bar w/ standard bar food. There was karaoke going on the night we were there.
- The Wine House – stop in for a glass of wine and dessert.
|JASON SAYS:||MIKE SAYS:|
|Overall Expectation (Summary)|
|I was hoping for something pretty spooky, but got more a suspenseful thrill than a horror vibe. We didn’t know until we got there that we were the first group to enter (and subsequently escape) this room.||We had done Dr. Panic’s Asylum the week earlier, and the GM told us that two new rooms were opening at that location that next Friday.
So, of course we had to book both rooms and be one of the first groups to go through them (and solve them!). Molly’s Horror Room was the first one we did that evening (followed by The Hospital of the Black Death). I believe that we were the first group to do Molly’s Horror Room, so for a brief period of time that room had a 100% success rate LOL
The room was pretty cool and used some virtual reality tech.
|The video talked about a little girl gone missing and the cold case around it. We were onsite to investigate some ‘paranormal activity’ that happens at night as the ‘rents were getting scared with Halloween coming up. Sufficiently messed up, if you ask me (and really, you came here to read this, so yes, you asked me).
|We were a team of paranormal investigators who were hired to figure out what happened to Molly, a little girl who had gone missing and the case has gone cold. So, it’s now Halloween and we have to bust ass to figure out the mystery before we become part of the ghost story.
Again, I like the video briefing at this location because it really gives a great, comprehensive backstory to provide the details that enhances the whole experience.
|Find objects in the room to do something else to find out where she is. I can’t say more without spoiling it.
|Enter Molly’s bedroom and investigate the room and find out what happened to the poor girl… or is she really that innocent??!
Not scored as high because we really only had one objective.
|Puzzle Diversity (Rating)|
|Puzzles in this room were mostly new to us. There was one straight up lock, one coded one, then the rest were unique. I’ve never seen any of them before (obviously) or since. And when I say unique, I mean unique. Don’t expect to see these in any other room not only because they are specific to the room, but because they are awesome. Can’t wait to see what else this location uses in new rooms.
|Damn, after doing as many rooms as we’ve done, it’s hard to surprise us with something we’ve not seen before, and we were surprised multiple times by the unique clues in this room.
I LOVED 4 different puzzles in this room, and the sequence of solutions to figure out a next step of the mission was pretty freakin’ awesome.
|Puzzle Complexity (Rating)|
|Even the basic freaking locks were difficult. Not to the point where I’m going to give 5 fists later on, but because they actually involved thought. I particularly enjoyed the last 2 puzzles. No spoilers, though. 🙂
|There was a really good mix of clues here and it involved us backtracking to previous clues to get to the next step.
I will say that about 3/4 of the way through, we encountered a puzzle so challenging that it really made the experience for me, even though the GM said that he laughed a bit when he was monitoring us as we tried to figure out the solution (HEY… don’t knock our investigative methods… we ruled out the obvious first LOL).
Some parts of the room required a lot of thinking and it took the entire group to find the solution on two different puzzles. That definitely scores top marks.
|Everything in this room worked well together and literally flowed one thing to the next, but didn’t feel as if it was linear. We all were engaged about 90% of the time and at one point, the entire brain trust was literally standing in a circle working on a puzzle. I wish I had a picture of it…
That was probably the first time we collectively felt like idiots for doing specifically what we were doing in that room but simultaneously were so deep in thought we were basically ignoring the help freely flowing forth from the walkie-talkie. (Apologies for the alliteration.)
|The room was really well done. The props were creepy (just what you would expect to find in a little girl’s bedroom with bad nursery rhymes and references to “imaginary(?)” friends. I have 5 nephews so not all that much surprises me with kiddie stuff, but one part of this room was a little disturbing that has made me rethink wanting to have kids someday.
The VR came into play and we didn’t know what to make of it.
Two of the puzzles in this room were really challenging… so much so that it was all hands on deck.
There was also a point where we all literally jumped. Whether in surprise or to solve a puzzle… I’m not telling, so you’ll have to do the room to figure it out.
|There were one or two things that I was frustrated with and had to give up on myself, but those were things better suited for other eyes in the room. Overall, this was a great room and one I’d highly recommend for anyone looking for a challenge.||I enjoyed the experience immensely. It’s rare that we’re challenged so thoroughly and were a bit worried about completing the mission and escaping the room.|
|Game Master (Summary)|
|As we usually say about the gents at Room Escape, because they give us a video to watch on the background of the room, they are generally more ‘eye in the sky’ types and just monitor to make sure we’re not wasting time. Which is really neither bad nor good.||The GM was really good, and provided the clues when we were stuck. We did feel a bit dumb when he told us that he chuckled when he saw us trying to solve one of the clues (and that our method would have NEVER found the solution). However, we DID figure out the solution to that puzzle with some gentle prodding.
It was that other damn puzzle that almost made us fail the room.
|How Helpful Were Any Clues Given, if any (Summary)|
|We ended up having a mildly lengthy discussion (in Escape Room terms) with our GM for one of the puzzles, but he steered us in the right direction (what we were doing was blatantly wrong) and gave us an idea of where to turn. Literally.||Yes, the clue was absolutely necessary for our success.|
|Anger Level Score||ERG (pronounced URG, as in “we should have known better”) Score|
|Other than one of the locks and everyone just overlooking one very not obvious clue, I’d say this room was totally enjoyable for. It is not, however, one I’d recommend for a rookie.
Rating: 1/5 Fists
|Yeah, I felt stupid after talking with the GM after we solved the room once we realized what the solution was and how much time we spent on the one puzzle.
Rating: 🤦♂️🤦♂️🤦♂️ FacePalms – 3/5
ESCAPE ROOM GUYS’ OVERALL SCORING: 9.1/10
Final Thought: we were honored to be the first group to go through this room and to also be the first group to complete the mission. This is not a room for team that has a majority of newbies. Everyone on our team had done at least 2-3 rooms prior and we had one of the lowest “time remaining” scores out of the rooms we’ve completed. This one was really well done and has earned our top rating of “hard”.