Bmag’s editorial team got their detective hats on this week to help crack the case of a mysterious murder, in the all-new Escape Hunt challenge.
Located in West End, Escape Hunt is Brisbane’s newest tourist attraction, literally giving you the chance to be a detective for one hour.
The game involves being locked in a room where a crime has been committed with the aim of gathering clues, cracking codes and solving puzzles in order to solve the mystery and escape the room before time runs out.
There are three different adventures to choose from, all with an exciting story and mystery behind them, and as we found out, they’re very hard to crack.
We were asked to be detectives in Brisbane’s horrific Barber Shop Murder and this is how it played out.
We walked down the hall to our mystery room, passing doors and doors, each with crazy adventures behind them. We were feeling a little nervous, but more pumped than ever.
“We can do this, guys! Teamwork!” yelled our Editor, Rohan.
We got to our mystery room, where our guide took us through the scenario:
We were “famous London detectives on the last legs of our world tour, when we are summoned to assist in solving a murder at a local Brisbane Barber Shop. The victim is the local counsellor who was about to make significant reforms to develop the local area – threatening the longevity of the Barber’s business. There are a number of suspects that were present at the time of the murder and all have different motives. There are enough clues within the store to solve this crime. However, there is 60 minutes before this story breaks to the press and the local police need a culprit.”
My adrenaline kicked in. Suddenly I felt the urge to kick the door down and roll into the room guns blazing.
After what seemed like a lifetime of suspense, we opened the door and slowly walked in. The door slammed behind us and a clock appeared on a TV on the wall. My mind flashed back to the first time I’d seen the movie, Saw. I gulped.
We were locked in a small dark room, and the clock began counting down.
The room was filled with clues, locks and puzzles. We got straight into it, looking in things, behind things, under things, trying to find something that made sense.
The other two found some files and began reading them in the dark. Meanwhile, I was searching the area for perps to rough up. I was in full character.
I could hear the other detectives complaining. “It’s hard to read” and “it’s so dark”. Not wanting them to suffer anymore, I turned the light on. “What? I didn’t know there was a light! Why didn’t you turn that on earlier?” one of them said. “I didn’t want to ruin the ambience,” I replied.
The first clue was probably the easiest for us, although it did take some time to figure out. To get to the second set of clues we had to crack a code, which would unlock a box on the wall.
We looked up at the time; we had wasted 20 minutes or so trying to figure it this out. We tried every combination, and it seemed like nothing would work. But finally we put two and two together and cracked it!
Then the second and third clues came along, leading us into secrets rooms. These clues were the most difficult — some even involved maths. MATHS, you guys.
I remember staring down at the numbers, thinking, “Well, it’s over, we’re all going to die in here.” It was horrible. At that point, I really needed coffee.
Luckily, Editor Rohan sprung into action, working out the difficult sums in his head! He was incredible; it must have been the adrenaline rushing through his veins.
Every so often, though, he would reach down to his pocket for his phone to calculate the sums. There was a sadness in his eyes when he remembered each time he reached for it that his phone was confiscated at the door before he came in.
The next clue was harder. We didn’t want to admit it, but we needed help.
The rooms are monitored by security cameras, so every so often clues would appear on the TV screen (when your guide thinks you might need a little help).
In our case, we needed clues every five minutes or so, otherwise we would have been stuck in that room all night and consequently been forced to talk to each other. None of us wanted that.
I dubbed myself “The Runner”. Every ten seconds or so I would run out to look at the TV screen check the time and check for new clues. I thought I was doing the team a great favour and I felt really needed, but my teammates thought I was going crazy.
In the game you’re also allowed to call on your guide (through a phone on the wall) for help, when you need it. They guide you on the right track, without giving you any answers.
We just couldn’t get our heads around the last clue and we only had three minutes left! We all thought it was over. “I’m done, I’m done,” Rohan said.
Suddenly, a boost of energy came over us, we sprinted for the finish line cracking the codes and retrieving the key to get out! Rohan fumbled with the key and lock, and in the heat of the moment I yelled at him to hurry up… yep, I yelled at my boss. Gulp.
We finished with 30 seconds on the clock. We all sighed in relief, looked at each other and laughed. The ordeal was finally over, and we were out!
Escape Hunt was an incredible experience, and yes, we did bond in a way. We all loved it!
Try it out!
Escape Hunt is located at 77 Russell St, West End. For more information visit www.escapehunt.com.au