Cultural experiences and funny musings by two twenty-somethings living abroad
A couple of days ago, I went with a few friends to a group challenge center called “Exit the room”. To anyone who doesn’t know what this sort of thing is, it’s like one of those “mental” Crystal Maze challenges where you have an hour to deal with riddles and clues and find a way to get out of the room you and your friends have been imprisoned in.
Unfortunately, because of rules and the documents we had to sign, I can’t really go into the specifics of what happens in the room, but we opted for a room called “The Madness”. Basically, the setting is the office of a psychotic doctor and if we didn’t solve the riddles in his office and escape within an hour, he would come back and do weird experiments on us “patients”. What we didn’t realise though is that we inadvertently chose the toughest room of offer to try and escape from, so it took a lot of time trying to figure what some of the clues meant, which were hidden in various locations, and working out codes for various locks and so on.
The room was really well designed with old little antiques dotted around the place as well as some very obvious clues and some more subtle clues. There were often objects like doctor’s equipment which looked like clues but actually weren’t, and often things that appeared like clues but would never seem clear as to how they actually played into the event, as well as clues which were very easy to overlook. Basically, you have to figure out what really is a clue and what is simply just a red herring and then using those clues to progress further when you finally have a riddle figured out.
One of the great things about this though is that you don’t actually need good German-language skills to be able to take part. Of course, whilst I speak German perfectly fine and attempted to solve the riddles and clues in German, in this particular challenge it was almost an advantage NOT being able to speak German, but I’m not going to be able to say how and why! Basically, if you’re looking into going to one of these events, don’t be put off by the fact that you might need to be able to speak the local language because you probably don’t need to.
Although we failed to escape the clutches of the doctor and had quite a few riddles still to solve, it was immensely fun and it is something I will definitely do again. In fact, I actually bought a voucher there entitling me to make another booking at half the price. It was challenging without being overly frustrating, as you are able to ask for hints a limited number of times, and the solutions ended up being fairly obvious when they were explained to you at the end, but the real key to success was teamwork and it was only if you were able to co-ordinate things as a group that you would be able to progress through the challenges.
So before the sunny weather comes when we can sit out in Biergardens again, why not give this a go if you are looking for something to do on a weekend? More and more cities are embracing this concept but the one in Munich is definitely worth trying out.
Now, I need to see a doctor about why my arm is turning green…