Have you ever done a room escape and wonder what the people behind the cameras are thinking? I have especially when we’re stuck, frustrated and dropping a small profane word here and there. That curiosity led me to my small afternoon stint as a Room Escape employee. I have this fascination with immersing myself in situations that put me in others shoes like my time as a food truck employee. Having worked in the restaurant industry for many years, it allowed me to get a better perspective on what managers and servers go through. It really helps give me a better understanding when going in do do reviews. So I recently reached out to the owners of The Room to see if I could join them for an afternoon and see what it’s like to be a Room Escape employee for a day.
Here goes nothing.
Everything starts when people enter in the building. They sit in front of the wall seen above and wait for instructions. I didn’t do this part. I sat there in silence and let the owner handle the talking. Had I done it, it would have taken an extra thirty minutes.
Next order of business was to instruct others on how to use each of the locks. This is VERY important. If you don’t know how to use the locks, you’re in some serious trouble. My favorite lock to use in the room escapes is the directional lock seen in the lower right hand corner. I’m waiting for a room to use the Contra code for an extra 30 lives (or 30 minutes): UP, UP, DOWN, DOWN, LEFT, RIGHT, LEFT, RIGHT, B, A, START.
Once the instructional period is over, it’s time to sit in HQ and watch the fun go down. For the privacy of the participants and to keep the rooms somewhat of a secret, I’ve blurred the below pictures. While watching people participate, I could see and hear everything going on. It was fascinating to watch how people worked together. One group were coworkers and one group was a family. It kind of matched my experiences. With families (and friends), people can usually say whatever they want to each other. With coworkers, people usually have to hold back what they really want to say.
Watching it all was really interesting just to see how people interact with others. I’m no psychologists but it’d be a great way for them to study social interactions under certain situations.
In each room there was a buzzer. Once that sounded off, a green light would go off in HQ to notify us that they needed a clue. When it went off, we’d go into the room and quickly see how far they were in the room and what puzzles they solved. There was actually one room that went the whole entire hour without using a clue………..they fell really behind.
We had a timer for each room so we could keep track of how far along they were. I don’t think either of these groups were going to make the leaderboard.
After an hour passed, we had to start giving them more clues since The Room is 100% completion which means all groups will complete the room escape one way or another.
Finally once the groups completed the rooms, it was time for their group picture and they were off. What I noticed about working at a Room Escape is the patience level required. You have to remember, people work in different ways and see puzzles at varying perspectives. So what I may think is easy could be hard for the next person. That’s definitely something I’ve struggled with in my personal life. It was cool to see Matt, the owner, talk to the groups and handle their problems. So next time my parents call me and ask for help with how to do something like turn on the Nintendo Wii for the grandkids, I’ll be ready to answer with a big smile on my face.
It was an interesting experience working at the other end of the room escape scene and getting a small glimpse of what they go through everyday. After doing it, I definitely have more respect for the room escape owners who patiently sit there and await each group that tries to escape.
Definitely want to thank the owners at the Room for allowing me to come out and probably annoy them for an hour and throw a hundred questions their way.
On that note, we will also be giving away four room escapes throughout the month of December. You can choose from either The Room, Escapology, Wichita Room Escape or Puzzle Plex. That all begins this Sunday so be sure to follow our Facebook page for more info.
If you’re big into the room escape scene and want some more free cool stuff. Download the Wichita Area Room Escape Society (WARES) app on your phone. It’s a very cool mobile app that allows you to earn points when you do a room escape. You can then turn those points into swag. Download the app now on your device and find out more this Sunday on how to win a free room for you and your group.
To nominate your restaurant or event to be considered for a review, please e-mail us with your restaurant information. We are always open to suggestions.