After years of wanting to try one, I finally went to an escape room for the first time today with my partner-in-crime (literally, according to the room’s backstory). Thanks to the combination of a great deal on Groupon, lots of positive reviews, and an intriguing theme, we chose Escape Room Studios in Wixom, MI.
Escape Room Studios Review
We arrived a few minutes early, as instructed. The owner greeted us and gave us a rule sheet to read. Although there were a lot of items on the sheet, it was all common sense stuff, so this was no big deal. Next, we picked our team name (Team T-Rex) and the two of us stepped inside a vintage Airstream Coach.
The first view of the elaborately staged interior made it clear that the owner put a lot of time, work, and money into creating an alternate reality for us to spend 60 minutes in. The number of props – including many antiques – was mind-boggling in the best way possible. As a result, it took us a few minutes to really get our footing, so to speak.
Fortunately, the awesome game master was on hand to give us clues when needed (you get a max of eight clues). She was very friendly and helpful, but she also let us do our own thing without interrupting us. Her laid-back yet still professional attitude helped set the tone for a very fun experience.
The entire set was filled with clues, including many you can’t see without some serious investigative work. I won’t reveal any details about what happens during the game, but I will say that it would have been easier if we’d been in a group of three. The escape room can hold up to six players at once. That seems like it would be a bit too crowded for my tastes, though.
Did We Beat the Escape Room?
Unfortunately, no. But we came really, really close. If we’d had about 15 more seconds, we would have made it out before the hour ended. All in all, we took this as a win since it was our first ever escape room and the owner made it clear this particular game was quite challenging.
Pros and Cons of Escape Room Studios in Wixom, MI
There are lots of pros about Escape Room Studios. We loved:
- The friendliness of the owner, game master, and other employees.
- The highly detailed set.
- The elaborate puzzles, which forced us to think outside-the-box and look at everything in the room a new way.
- The fun story line that cast us in the role of villains.
- The shared sense of accomplishment as we solved each puzzle.
- The cleanliness of the lobby, restroom, and the escape room.
- The great price from Groupon (the escape room is also definitely worth full price).
I only have one minor quibble, and it has nothing to do with the escape room experience itself.
- When we went online to schedule our escape room visit, we had to pay a processing fee and taxes on top of the Groupon we’d already purchased.
The escape room was worth the extra $7.86, but it was a bit frustrating that the Groupon didn’t cover the cost of everything. From a small business standpoint, though, I can understand why the owner has chosen to do this. After all, the Groupon effect is known for hurting small businesses, sometimes to the point of making them close down.
We left Escape Room Studios in Wixom, MI, excited to try another escape room. The price seemed well-worth it for the 60 minutes of entertainment. Be aware that solid teamwork skills, outside-the-box thinking, and a level-headed approach are all critical for a successful hour, regardless of whether you define success as winning or as simply having a great time.