Eskape Whitby – The Night Watchman
The Team: TDM, Mr Carrot
These are dark times on the docks, poverty and disease are rife, thieves lurk in the shadows, but a greater threat than crime or pestilence is filling the residents of Whitby with dread. A spate of disappearances have led you to a warehouse containing a dark secret… perhaps the night watchman might provide some insight.
The venue is situated a short distance from the town itself in an old workhouse which has been converted into a business centre, which means that unlike the town centre, it’s not too hard to get a parking spot.
Inside, the reception/briefing area is up one flight of stairs and features a TV screen and comfy sofa. This is where we were welcomed by the friendly and very enthusiastic staff, who gave us the usual briefing and played the room’s intro video for us.
The room itself is quite dimly lit, and as the story takes place at Whitby’s docks, it’s themed accordingly with crates, netting and other such quayside paraphernalia. We were given a lantern style torch for anything we needed a bit of extra light for, but thankfully we only really needed it a couple of times for some of the smaller objects and writing.
The flow of the room is quite linear, and the story unfolds through a series of letters written by the titular character, which also contain puzzles to move you forwards to the next step.
The majority of the puzzles were quite simple and low tech, but were used very effectively and fitted with the theme of the room well, but there was some cleverly hidden tech used more towards the end of the room which made for a nice surprise as by that point we weren’t really expecting it.
On the whole we thought it was a great room which made use of it’s real life geographical location, which is always something I think of as a nice extra touch if it fits the story well, and in this case it did.
As always we needed quite a few clues, (which were notes slipped under the door) and finally escaped with seconds to spare. Speaking of which, one thing to note was that there was no countdown clock in the room, which while it’s good for the theming and immersion, I think I’d prefer to break the illusion slightly for the sake of having one (with an old style analogue face of course). Always good to know exactly when you should start to panic!