I am having a mini family reunion next month and thought an escape room-type game might be a fun activity for us to do together. Since there a few different game systems around, I was hoping to get some recommendations on which one might fit my group the best.
Here is a brief description of my group
- 8 adults (30-40 year olds)
- 4 of us (myself, my wife, my brother, his wife) play games often (light/medium/heavy euro style games)
- 3 of the others are more party style gamers (resistance, codenames etc.)
- The last person is somewhere in the middle.
I've come across the following game systems
- Exit: the game
But I don't know much about them yet.
I know some of the games don't support up to 8, so I might get 2 games and split into groups of 4.
I don't have a preference yet (the reason for this post ), and I don't mind the one-use or multi-use scenarios. I just want something that can support 4-8 people at a time, where everyone can hopefully be equally involved.
Thanks in advance for any suggestions
Not exactly what you're looking for (maybe) but just throwing this out there: Check out Time Stories?
Escape Room: The Game
It has much more the physical presence for a group, including keys and a timer device. Some of the items may prompt crowding to look over, but I have run multiple runs of the Jail Break(Scenario 1) for groups of 4 successfully. (Not at the same time)
I was not impressed by Deckscape to be a group activity.
The Unlock series has a couple of free demos which you could PnP. It's not too hard to print it and cut it out without seeing the card faces (spoilers). Unfortunately, I didn't realise I was running low on colour toner, and so when we came to actually play, the poor print quality spoiled it a bit.
Most of the tabletop escape rooms I've done have been in groups of two or three. I've done all of the Exits and Unlocks and the first Deckscape. Here is how I would rank them:
Exit: The Pharaoh's Tomb (best and also the hardest)
Exit: The Abandoned Cabin
Exit: The Secret Lab
Unlock: The Formula
Unlock: Squeek & Sausage
Deckscape: Test Time
Unlock: The Island of Dr. Goorse
The Exit series is fantastic. Unlock is okay, but occasionally frustrating. Interestingly, The Island of Dr. Goorse is a big-group scenario for Unlock, so it might work for you. However, if you do this one, I would recommend one tweak. (I didn't use the tweak, which is why I rank it so low.) It's not a spoiler to say that you start off in two groups. My recommendation is to
Spoiler (click to reveal)
ignore the communication barrier that doesn't allow players to look at the other team's cards. In the scenario, early on, you're allowed to describe them to the other team, but we found this to be nigh impossible. Possibly with eight players you'll be able to do this by having one person on each team entirely devoted to telling the other team what you have? It didn't work for our group of five.
My game group had fun with:
Escape the Room: Mystery at the Stargazer's Manor
It was fairly easy for our experienced puzzlers, but you could definitely ramp up the pressure by knocking about 30 minutes off the time limit.
Also in the same series,
Escape the Room: Secret of Dr. Gravely's Retreat
I have not tried this one, so I don't know how it compares.