Recently I celebrated my 38th birthday and my 17th wedding anniversary (2 days apart) so my husband and I celebrated by doing an escape room! We live in Los Angeles, so there are a variety around. (I highly recommend the 60out locations if you live around here.)
So anyway, we were browsing the different options–we wanted medium difficulty, not horror, etc.–and we found one based on Jules Verne’s Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea. Having recently participated in an anthology commemorating the book, I had to do it.
And it was really cool! Very steampunk aesthetic. We started in a small dark room–really dark–and eventually felt around and found flashlights (lanterns?) in a cabinet. With the flashlights we were able to see to fix the piping and repressurize the rest of the “ship.” There were several other tasks–cranks to turn, valves to get to certain numbers, electrical cables to rewire.
Once we did those the door opened to Captain Nemo’s study. We had to find his journal, then pass a series of tests to open the engine room and activate the life boat. There were knicknacks to align in a certain order. We had to use a list of completed books in his journal to rearrange the books in his personal library.
Then there was a map of the world to figure out, a piano (pianoforte?) to play, and a few other puzzles I can’t even remember. The final engine room had a periscope which showed the giant squid! That part was a little hokey, but it was still really fun. One person had to figure out depth and distance while another person physically loaded torpedos and adjusted power and angle. After three “shots” the squid was defeated and the lifeboat was activated.
We needed a few hints from our minder, but she did a good job of only helping us if it was clear that we’d completely not seen a key detail. Or once when we thought we actually broke something and were embarrassed and trying to fix it, lol
Anyway, it was a fun outing and such a clever use of theme! I wish more of these companies would make literary based escape rooms–such a great idea!!
In other book news, I am working furiously on From London with Loyalty and it is taking shape.