Coliseum Way, CH65 9HD
based on ratings from 22 users
combined with 5 pro reviews
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The Prices Are Criminal
I came with friends as a group of 6 to Escape from Alcatraz. The instructional video at the start of the game went on far too long and basically repeated everything our host told us. Speech in the next video introducing the story was too quiet to hear.
Escape your cell in Alcatraz before you’re taken to the electric chair.
Some of the puzzles and their solutions were far too tenuously linked: there was one in particular where I was just like…well how on earth would you know how to do [that] with [that]. None of them were particularly innovative, either. Our host, Claudia, was lively, invested in our experience and offered hints in the best way. Whenever we asked for one, questions like “Do you want to know what to do with X” or “Would you like a riddle?” were posed to us, so our team could choose how much or little assistance to receive.
Sure, Escape from Alcatraz is a solid (but generic-themed) break-out-of-jail escape room, but £25 per person- a price that doesn’t change whether your group is a 2 or a 6- is unjustifiable. Take a good luck at the discount page before paying, as there’s lots. We got money off with Blue Light Card, but it was still £21.25 per person.
I may be giving a harsh critique here, but my point is that, for a room priced at £150 per play, jaws should drop, and minds should be blown. While this didn’t happen, we still had a fun time.
I don't really like leaving bad reviews, but it has to be said.. This game was worst game we've every played and unfortunately was down to a combination of the hosting and mistakes.
The actual game play itself was very generic and the theming was fine, but we couldn't enjoy or remember much of the game play because of how badly the game was hosted.
Firstly the clues were given through a hatch in the initial room, and made it very awkward to come back for clues. On top of this, once we had progressed beyond the first room where the clues were given, this room was then locked whilst we were wondering around... We were given a clue and naturally headed towards where clues are given.. we headed back to find the door firmly locked... not understanding, or thinking we had accidently closed the door.. we pressed the green button to open.. once opened we found the host resetting the first room and was very aggressively initially. Straight away this has ruined the game and everything basically went down hill from here.
During the game, there is a typical wooden "electric chair" Randomly our host came in and sat a member of party in the electric chair - Now bare in mind that is peak pandemic and distance and masks were important. - They then fumbled and locked our party member in to the chair both hands and feet . Confused, we just thought this was part of the game and didn't question it. Once they had finished we asked what the point was.. and their reply was "Its just a bit of fun.. Everyone really enjoys it" - So this had nothing to do with the game at all and during the peak pandemic, our game was interrupted for no reason at all.
Amongst the numerous issues, a final nail in the coffin was a prop clearly not reset in the room. We searched numerous times in the container, and the host told us it should be in there. Eventually our host entered the room and couldn't find it either... then left... then told us to check the container again. Magically the prop was now there. As experienced players, we couldn't have the wool pulled over our eyes, and this was really unforgiveable.
Overall our game was completely ruined by our host and left a very sour taste in our mouth about returning to Houdini, which is sad as we'd heard amazing things about the brand.
A final note - Maybe some GDPR training is required as our address was recognised by our host and even suggested we could give them a lift home as they didn't live far. On top of everything we had experience made us feel physically sick.
Please avoid this centre at all costs and spend your money somewhere else more deserving.
The room was well built and had some clever puzzles in that fitted the theme. There were a couple of extremely sneaky ones that I can't imagine how we were meant to have just come across them.
Our gamesmaster was a fantastic actor and set the mood well at the start. However during the game his hints and help, when asked for, were really awful - so unhelpful that it felt like he was trying to frustrate us rather than help us. Really wished that rather than speaking in nonsensical riddles, he instead gave us simple and clear hints.
The main issue we had with the game was it was during a 30C heatwave and there's no real air circulation or ventilation in these basement rooms. It was so unbearably hot and sweaty that we struggled to stay focussed on the game - and at one point I gave up and just sat in front of one of the desk fans to cool off for a few minutes.
Despite these issues, we enjoyed the room much like the other excellent rooms at Houdinis for its ingenuity and theme.
Reviews by escape room review sites
- Houdini's Escape Room Experience Southampton: Escape From Alcatraz (Southampton)
- Houdini's Escape Room Experience Southampton: Escape From Alcatraz (Southampton) (closed)
- Houdini's Escape Room Experience Southampton: Escape From Alcatraz (remote livestream) (not on sale)
- Houdini's Escape Room Experience Gloucester: Escape From Alcatraz (Gloucester)
- Houdini's Escape Room Experience Thurrock: Escape From Alcatraz (Purfleet)
- Houdini's Escape Room Experience Nottingham: Escape From Alcatraz (Nottingham)
- Houdini's Escape Room Experience Kingston-upon-Thames: Escape From Alcatraz (Kingston upon Thames)