Room: The Cabin
Location: The Cipher Room, 640 King Street, Newtown
Cost: $42 per person for 3 players
Escaped: Yes, in our best-ever time!
Overall rating: 40/40
An atmospheric, creepy room with fantastic puzzles.
You’re a detective who’s been investigating a serial killer case. One day your team gets a promising lead about someone acting suspiciously. They have been visiting an abandoned old cabin and strange noises have been heard coming from it. You obtain a search warrant and you and your team go in to investigate.
What is inside the mysterious old cabin? Have you finally found the killer? Can you discover their identity?
Both rooms at Cipher Room had been high on my to-play list (and I’m also incredibly excited about their upcoming film noir themed room, too). Once I found out they were participating in Escape Week, with 20% of profits going to the Black Dog Institute, we booked ourselves in to play both their rooms in the same weekend.
I have to say I had very high expectations for the Cabin, and Cipher Room did not disappoint at all. It was one of the best escape room experiences I’ve had. The Cabin uses a walkie talkie hint system – your game master can hear you in the room, so you can just ask for hints, but they have to respond via walkie talkie. Given the theme of the room, using walkie talkies made a lot of sense. I found myself speaking into it to ask questions even when I knew I didn’t need to – but I’m sure I wasn’t the first person to do that!
After playing both rooms I had the opportunity to chat with Marise, one of the owners about how they set their rooms up and where they sourced all their props from. I really appreciated her willingness to answer all my questions! Marise and David put a lot of love into their rooms and it shows through with the end results.
The theming and atmosphere in this room was really next level. I really believed I was in a serial killer’s cabin and at one point I was so caught up in the whole thing that I refused to look at something and made one of my friends do it first. This room was creepy. When I say that, you have to bare in mind that I’m a complete wimp when it comes to horror and I loved it. I’d recommend it to anyone, although it’s not really a room to take your small children into, and I definitely got a little scared on more than one occasion. The Cabin is possibly the best themed room I’ve played and it’s a fully immersive experience. Every single detail just adds more to the experience and nothing is in the room without a reason.
Not only were a lot of the puzzles truly unique, but Marise and David, the owners of the Cipher Room create and build them all by hand (whenever possible). This gives them a lot of flexibility and allows them to really tailor make their puzzles to suit their rooms. Everything in this room suited the theme perfectly and there was a nice mixture of the more “traditional” types of puzzles that I’d seen before and new things that completely blew me away. If you play a lot of escape rooms you might find that The Cabin has a lot of familiar elements, which I think is one of the reasons we managed to escape in such good time. That being said, everything was put together in really original ways and there were some definite “wow” moments.
Part of my enjoyment of this room came from the fact that there were elements and puzzles which were a little familiar to me. The Cabin is set out in a logical way and we almost always knew what we had to do, which meant most of our time was spent solving puzzles rather than trying to figure out what to try next. That’s not to suggest that this room was a walk in the park – it was still very challenging and I think we lucked out with a few things along the way. All in all, I absolutely loved this room to the point where I’m sad I can’t play it again. The theming and the puzzles all came together to create an amazing, immersive escape room experience that was mostly enjoyable (with just a touch of terror thrown in at times as well).
I can’t speak highly enough about everyone at Cipher Room. Our game master was more than happy to talk us through the room after we’d finished and gave us all kinds of little details, and of course Marise being willing to chat with us also gave me a great insight into the way in which the room was created. Everyone who works at Cipher Room really loves what they do and that shines through. I can’t wait for their third room, the Marlowe Hotel to open so I can go back again!
Overall rating: 40/40
A creepy room that’s an absolute must-play.