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Renate Cloake
United Kingdom
Worthing
West Sussex
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We played Escape the Room: Secret of Dr. Gravely's Retreat with 7 people and although I wouldn't recommend playing with such a large number (4 or 5 would probably be better) the puzzles felt like they were a bit more collaborative than in Secret of Stargazers Manor so we all were involved.

Again, the production quality is very good and the value for money (~£14) brilliant. Just like Escape the Room: Mystery at the Stargazer's Manor, there are clear instructions on the website for how to pack the game up again so another group can use it, though due to the nature of some of the pieces in this version I think you will get fewer plays before needing to buy a new copy than you would in Stargazers Manor.

Our group took 1 hour 9 minutes to complete it. We took only 45 minutes to complete Stargazers Manor, so you can see that there is added difficulty and scope in this game over the first in the series. We felt satisfied when we completed this game, whereas the 45 minutes of Stargazers Manor felt like a filler game.

Our one gripe with this game was that there were several similar puzzles to be solved in a row. Each was really only solvable by one person at a time, so we had to pass it around the table and watch whilst each person looked at it. It isn't much fun watching someone think, so the first time we were relived when we solved it and could move on to something else, only to find that it unlocked another similar puzzle. It wouldn't have taken much to change the scripting so that the similar individual puzzles were all revealed at once so that multiple people could be involved simultaneously, rather than have them revealed one at a time. I know that having them unlock sequentially added to the solve time, but I'm sure that it wouldn't have taken much to add in another small puzzle or some more plot exposition to compensate.

Generally, although I preferred the plot in Stargazers Manor, the rest of the game felt more fleshed out and the puzzles were more challenging. I look forward to future instalments in this series, but I hope they can work on the group interaction more so that they reduce the problem of the group being forced to watch individuals solve a puzzle.
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