ESCAPE ROOM REVIEW – THE QUICK AND DIRTY
Play if… you have any vices whatsoever, or loved the movie “7even”
Avoid if… you are a church-going, God-fearing person.
Laurel House of Horror:
Address: 935 Fairlawn Ave, Laurel, MD 20707 (click address for Google Map)
Contact and Website: 240-278-4545
The Room – 7 Deadly Sins: RETIRED
Description (from the company website): “Seven Deadly Sins” is the most unique, and easily the most challenging escape room experience we’ve ever created. In five and a half “ancient” and elaborate rooms, you and a group will be tested to your absolute limits to overcome intricate puzzles, time-sensitive obstacles, and a difficult environment. More intense than our original rooms, all of your senses will be tested to escape the seven sins.
You enter through Pride (the first room) – will you leave with Pride, or be Envious of the ones that escape?
Difficulty (1-10): not listed
Time Limit: 45 minutes
Cost: $25 per person
Party Size: Up to 8.
Staging Area: It’s in an old movie theater that is supposedly haunted, so pretty damn creepy.
Metro Access/Parking: Not metro accessible at all. The theater is in a strip mall so there is plenty of parking.
This is the video we took before we entered the room:
This is the video we took just after we completed the room:
Description of the room: You walk into a circular room with a table in the center, at TV on the wall, and 7 doors (including the one you walked in through).
Understanding of the Mission: Solve the puzzles to figure out how to get out with your Pride intact.
Did We Escape: Yes
Time Remaining: Exactly 11 minutes.
Our Suggested Party Size: At least 6 (1 for each door)
Did the room challenge the entire team? Yes
Members of our team (other than the ERG): Eric, Eric, Alphonzo, Mark, Katheryn
Worth the time and money? hell,yes
Where to Eat/Drink Before/After: No idea, other than the Five Guys nearby. (There’s a Chuck E. Cheese next door, if you’re into that sort of thing. And like terrible pizza. And annoying, bratty kids… and creepy animatronic mice)
|JASON SAYS:||MIKE SAYS:|
|Overall Expectation (Summary)|
|I went into this room expecting to go straight to whatever the door for Wrath was (obviously). Having just completed Escape the Movies (revision 3) we were riding a bit of a high (well, I was at least) and I was expecting to escape with my pride intact (see what I did there?).
I got to the Wrath door and found it locked. SONOFABITCH! They knew exactly how to push my buttons…
As for the room itself, now that I know what it was, I can’t imagine what else it could have been. (Granted, I really haven’t given it much thought until now.) It’s like, once you’ve seen a movie with a certain lead actor, it’s hard to picture someone else doing it better (there are rare exceptions to this, of course). But you get my drift.
|So, this was our second room of the day, and we were pretty excited to do this one because it only had a 25% escape rate, which – of course – appealed to the pride of the Escape Room Guys.
The premise of this room sounded pretty awesome. Back in the day and a long, long time ago, I was raised a good Catholic boy, but fell prey over the years to the 7 Deadlies (sorry, Mom) and thus fell from grace, and became the slightly evil person I am today. However, all that catechism did take root somewhere in the depths of my brain, and I loved the idea of having to explore, nah – do I say “indulge” – the 7 Deadly Sins in order to beat the room, and even better was that we had to enter and exit through Pride (the toughest sin to beat… especially for the Escape Room Guys).
One… One Deadly Sin… HAHAHA… Two, Two Deadly Sins…. HAHAHA. Just count them! Seven, Seven, Seven, Seven, SEVEN!! (Oops! Wrong video, but it kinda does relate to Lust – come on… now you’re really intrigued as to what’s behind the link, aren’t ya?).
Yup, this was a good room.
|I don’t remember there being much (or anything) in way of a story here… That’s not to say the room wasn’t worth it, but just that there was nothing behind it. I just feel bad having to give this a 0. It’s the first one I’ve given.
|We really didn’t get a story behind the room other than what was on the website (why were we here, what was the premise and purpose of the room and solving the sins?). I’m a bit more lenient and will give a 5 based on the pretty interesting website description.
|Go into the room through the Pride door and find a way to exit through the same door. Find out how to enter all other doors/sins and get the needed items to figure out how to reopen the Pride door to leave.
|Enter through Pride, and solve the mysteries of the sins and find your way back out… through Pride. Because, ya know, you’re a badass if you can tackle the 7 deadly sins and walk away unscathed. Since you had to solve each sin, I consider that multiple mission parameters, so I’ll rate this a bit higher than I would have.
|Puzzle Diversity (Rating)|
|This room starts out REALLY slow with only 2 things to do at first. Once you find out how to open the doors, it picks up a bit and you can split up. I didn’t get a chance to check *all* the sins/rooms, but what I did find were locks, mazes, more locks, a few puzzles, and some things that were so obvious they make you think you’re doing something wrong. I actually like those because it makes me second guess myself and then I’m like, no, stupid, you were already right.
|We had to find a way to get into each of the sins’ rooms. This, in itself, was a challenge because there is a twist on the puzzle that made us have to do it about 4 times before we got the right answer. Once you solve a few items, then you are able to make your way into each of the rooms that have different puzzles and clues based on which sin you’re in.
Some great little puzzles here, and there were a lot of similar locking mechanisms (combo locks), but it definitely was diverse enough to keep everyone in the room occupied, even with different skill sets at doing the rooms. We had one recently-broken Escape Room Virgin (his first room was Escape the Movies – Revamped… the first one of the day), so we now consider him a novice, and he had a good time exploring the sins.
|Puzzle Complexity (Rating)|
|None of the puzzles that I found were terribly difficult. I am giving a +1, however, for the fact that some of them were…let’s just say well placed. Also, this score is a little lower than it should be because I didn’t get a chance to look at the stuff in 2 of the 6 rooms. So, take that as you will.
|Overall, there were only about two puzzles that really gave us any sort of challenge, but they were complex enough to keep everyone challenged due to the sheer number of puzzles and rooms to go through. By the time I got to a few of the rooms, they had already been solved, so that was a bit disappointing. Hint: use the system we did and keep the rooms open to each sin that has not been solved yet, and then close the door once you’ve accomplished what you needed to. This prevents people from losing time trying to solve puzzles already figured out. And, I’ll say again, like I did for another room, you may want to have a diverse team going in with you because all senses are in play when trying to solve the 7 deadly sins.
|This room was fun in the fact that it made you think (a little) but it also made you run around like a chicken with its head cut off. Granted, we had…7ish people for this room; we could probably have done it with 3.
Everything came together to figure out the final puzzle, but dammit, when I say SOMEONE KEEP AN EYE ON THE FUCKING TV, someone better KEEP AN EYE ON THE FUCKING TV.
|This is the first time we’ve seen a room set up this way, and it worked really, really well. It allowed everyone to separate and do their own thing, but was close enough quarters to call team members over if you were having any issues.
Let’s also just say that when you’re exploring the sins, you may need to spend some time on your (hands and) knees (giggity).
The rooms themselves, however, did have the puzzles and clues relate to each sin, so that was a really nice touch.
|This room was fun in that there was so much going on! After getting everything I needed out of my room, I ran around jumping through other rooms and helping people out. The final puzzle cool and really brought the room together.||I had a great time in this room, even though it wasn’t among the most complex ones we’ve done. I will say that we did get one puzzle solved by blind luck (Jason inadvertently solved something accidentally – I blame the ghost of the haunted theater).
It was a great room to do with a large team, but I think it would have been a bit more challenging with a smaller number so that we could have seen all the puzzles.
And how many other rooms are you told to watch TV for the duration of the experience… and that wasn’t even the Sloth room!
|Game Master (Summary)|
|He refused to give us his name, but he was wearing an old-timey carnival tux. I forget if he had the top hat with him, but one of the things I like about this location is that they are either following you around or are in the room with you. This room, he was in it with us the entire time. He was either ragging on us for overlooking something, telling us we were doing a good job, resetting parts of the room when we were done with them, or telling everyone that my idea to WATCH THE DAMN TV was a good one.||This is one of the few locations where we actually had the Game Master in the room with us, and he was a very interesting character… kinda like that evil genius in the old time cartoons.
He told us right out that we were flying through the room at an expedited pace and we shouldn’t have an issue beating it. That’s what you get when you have the Escape Room Guys (and Team Disturbed Friends) on the job… and that IS the pride talking.
|How Helpful Were Any Clues Given, if any (Summary)|
|I don’t recall asking for anything other than confirmation we were doing something right.||Somehow near the beginning I accidentally popped the lock for the final escape, which shocked the hell out of the Game Master. Being the good sports we are, we locked it back up and solved everything before getting back to it in the end.
We did ask once or twice after that if we were doing something right (a confirmation, not a clue) so as not to break anything.
|Anger Level Score||ERG (pronounced URG, as in “we should have known better”) Score|
|Quite the opposite here. I’m still not sure how I got that combo lock open. It was pure luck, but i did it. I keep talking about it because I just don’t freaking understand…
Rating: Fists – 0/5
|Didn’t feel stupid at all. So, this gets a rate
Rating: FacePalms – 0/5
ESCAPE ROOM GUYS’ OVERALL SCORING: 5.6/10
Final Thought: So, this room is our lowest-rated, but only because of some technicalities due to the story and mission rating scales. We suggest adding some backstory (as to why you’re suddenly in this room) and outlining the mission better because these two elements really bring people into the experience as soon as the timer starts. We did have fun in the room, and would recommend it for groups with mixed levels of experience… and for people who really, really love watching TV.