A new game has been available for some time in Romania for thrill-seekers.
A new game has also been available for some time in Romania for thrill-seekers: the room escape game in which players must escape from rooms which seemingly have no exits within a given amount of time. The game can be played by groups of two to five players who have to look for clues to help them escape the panic room. Although such games have been around for a long time abroad, they were first introduced in Romania a year ago. Tibor Balogh, the manager of an entertainment facility in Romania called The Panic Room told us how he got the idea:
Tibor Balogh: “I got the idea after I saw a similar game in Hungary. It had another theme and was different in many ways because everything happened in a horror house with 10 rooms. I’ve heard of such a game being played in Singapore, where tens or even hundreds of people are locked in a huge warehouse from where they had to break free. Based on these two examples, I started to build my own Panic Room games, which combine the horror element with the idea of escape, with players looking for clues to find a way out.”
For the time being, the action takes place only in one room from where players have to escape, but the game will be expanded to include three or four rooms. Here is Tibor Balogh with details about the game:
Tibor Balogh: “Some strange things happen, although everything seems normal in the beginning. The room has a Mona Lisa painting that looks odd, but other things may appear normal, like the furniture. Looking closer, however, you find some hidden drawers or other clues that can get you out of the room. Two to five people can take part in the game and they are given an hour to look for clues and break out. There are situations in which a person needs to do something and the other person something else in order to solve the clue and escape.”
To make sure the players are safe, the games are under constant infrared camera surveillance, as the room is frequently in darkness. There are cases when players don’t manage to escape, mostly because they don’t communicate with each other. The Panic Room is a group game and communication is very important:
Tibor Balogh: “It may depend on the number of players. Usually, if there are two people involved, what we refer to as panic dating, players often get closer and you can see better communication. This can only happen with a larger number of players. Sometimes players form smaller groups and communicate among themselves and tell each other secrets. The idea is for the entire group to function as a group of two. We noticed an interesting difference: players who are 15 or 16 years old don’t overanalyse things, while adults think too much.”
Often, if they cannot get away at their first attempt or if they had too much difficulty in doing it, players come around for a second session, and then the getaway is much faster. You may ask yourselves by now what the target audience for these games is:
Tibor Balogh: “Our target includes open minded people who want to try something new and exclusive, who want to have a unique experience. Age is no concern, but the people who have played this so far are probably people interested in self-development, which is the whole point of the game if you manage to get away. People should start off on the idea that for an hour you can have a complete break with reality, have fun, experience something new, and probably learn something new as well. We think all the time that when you manage to do something unconventionally, you develop something that helps you not only in that room, but for the rest of your life. These games are definitely something new, a unique experience which has to be tried at some point in one’s life.”
Maybe you should try your hand at a Panic Room too. People discover new things about themselves there, and you can find out how well you communicate with others. In addition, you are sure to have at least one hour of complete escape from your day-to-day routine.