Hello fellow adventurers! Welcome back to the Arcadian: the premier blog about all things for Calgary escape rooms! Today we are focusing on one of the KEY components of adventure rooms. Without them, puzzles wouldn’t be the same and the experience wouldn’t be much of a challenge… An escape room just isn’t an escape room without locks! There are a few different locks that are the most prevalent in locked rooms, but not all of them are your boring everyday key locks. In this article, you’ll get to know four special types of locks and how you can unlock your full escape room potential.

escape rooms Calgary - locks the key to challenging escape rooms

Combination Locks

Combination locks might seem common enough, but they go beyond your typical locker-room dial. Combination locks always have some kind of spinning component that requires you to line up the pieces in the correct order. These locks are the most versatile, and can be customized by your escape room designers to show all sorts of symbols and messages! Numbers, letters, drawn symbols, dots – it’s all on the table for combination locks, and up to you to figure out the right combo. The biggest piece of advice for solving this sort of lock is to look for a puzzle that contains the same number of components as there are pieces on the lock. For example, if you have a 5 letter lock, scour the room for a puzzle that contains 5 riddles or 5 words. Remember to give the lock a good tug when you think you have the winning answer, and rock the rest of the trapped room!

escape rooms Calgary - locks the key to challenging escape rooms - directional lock

Directional Locks

Directional locks are another common lock, guaranteed to be found in nearly every Calgary escape room. These locks often give players the most trouble, as they can be finicky at best and easily jammed at worst. These types of locks move in the four cardinal directions and can have up to a whopping 20 different moves in the final combination! The most common combination lock headscratchers are usually solved with maps, mazes, travel directions, and lines. Given how frustrating directional locks can be, it’s key to make sure your lock operator is keeping a calm and focused head (and hands) to make sure the lock is properly reset and the central button is slid all the way over each time. And – as any locked room gamerunner will tell you – remember to double click to reset!

escape rooms Calgary - locks the key to challenging escape rooms - magnet lock

Magnetic locks

Magnetic locks are like the cooler older brother to common key locks – all they require, like a key in the lock, is a magnet to be placed on another magnet or piece of metal. Usually it’s not just that simple though – both magnetic sides of the puzzles might be embedded into any object, furniture, or part of the wall, sometimes making these puzzles closer to scavenger hunts. Magnetic locks can’t always be instantly identified like other kinds of locks, so don’t be surprised if a puzzle asks you to touch two objects together or place something against a particular spot in the wall – that’s a hallmark of a magnet lock! These types of locks can be finicky as well, so be sure to be patient in adjusting your placement of magnetic objects to make sure things click the right way.

escape rooms Calgary - locks the key to challenging escape rooms - punch lock

Punchlocks

Finally, this type of lock can be pretty rare in some Calgary escape rooms, but is a lock that can quickly become a favorite if you’re the type of person who hates having to put info into locks in a precise order. With punchlocks, pressing down the buttons in any order is fine! Punchlocks can have between 6-10 different buttons on the face of the lock, and once the correct ones are pressed down, you flip a switch on the bottom and presto! These types of locks lend themselves naturally to interesting visual and grid based puzzles, so get your creative thinking teammate on the punchlock tasks looking for a connection.

 

Are you a lock aficionado yet? The way you and your team tackle locks can make or break your escape room experience, as your progression of the adventure room can really depend on you cracking locks. Don’t be afraid to call for your trapped room gamemaster if you suspect a lock might be jammed – it can happen to anyone in any escape room! Now, it’s time for you to find an awesome escape room in Calgary to show off your new tips and tricks for even the trickiest and jammiest of locks. Best of luck!

Arcadia Adventures Escape Room is Calgary’s premier escape room experience. Our real-life Calgary escape room is an excellent way to have fun, solve puzzles, and improve your team-building skills. Our rooms can host parties, small groups, families, couples, and is great as a team-building activity for Calgary businesses. Book your spot at our one of our Calgary escape rooms online or by contacting us on 587-356-0440.

Hello fellow adventurers! Welcome back to the Arcadian: the premier blog about all things for Calgary escape rooms! Today, we’re diving into three different types of puzzles you’ll likely encounter in escape rooms, and helpful tips on how to tackle them with style.

Logic Puzzles

Logic puzzles are all about untangling confusing clues to figure out what order the answers are supposed to be in. There’s not a lot of room for guesswork here if you want to complete your escape room quickly – logic puzzles hinge on having each component in an exact order or placement. But, these puzzles don’t have to be daunting! The key to solving a logic puzzle lies in the “keystone” clues within the set of information you are given – that is, the clues that stand alone. A classic example of a keystone in a logic puzzle may be to say that a certain object, say a flag, goes into the second position. Another clue may then say that another object goes to the right of the flag. Thanks to the keystone clue about the flag, we are now able to work from there to solve the rest! Don’t be overwhelmed by all of the information – seek out those nifty keystone clues first!

escape rooms Calgary - Three Common Escape Room Puzzles You Need to Know!

Pattern Puzzles

If logic puzzles are a bit too left-brain for your liking, you might enjoy seeking out the pattern puzzles in your adventure room! These puzzles sometimes require an open mind and keen eye to seek out potential patterns, as these puzzles can come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Numbers, letters, colors, shapes, or even positions on the wall or shelves – nothing is off limits! Repetition can be a key component to figuring out pattern puzzles, as well as simply noticing the opposite – what doesn’t repeat, or what sticks out like a sore thumb in the group of clues?

Don’t just look for the patterns; understand what they’re trying to tell you. Is it a combination for a number lock or a secret sequence for a punch lock? Maybe it’s a visual guide leading you on a wild goose chase with a directional lock. Thinking spatially and pictorially can be your secret weapon against patterns in escape rooms!

Codebreaker Puzzles

Codebreaking puzzles can look like a time-sinking nightmare in an escape room. Finding a seemingly nonsensical message or series of symbols can sometimes be more daunting than inspiring. But, the first step to tackling these headscratchers is to solve a code breaking puzzle is to find the key or legend. Look for matching symbols or letters around the room, or for a grid showing correlations between two different components.

Next, figure out what you’re aiming for with your solution. Does it look like the code’s answer will provide you with a series of numbers? A word or a sentence? Is it more symbols that you will need to use elsewhere in a puzzle? Figuring out where you’re going to before you start traveling is important, and to be efficient in an escape room is no different!

escape rooms Calgary - Three Common Escape Room Puzzles You Need to Know!

Once the key has been located, figuring out the most commonly used symbols can be a strong start, especially if the codebreaking is around words. Focusing on solving letters like e, a, s, or t can speed up your escape room time. If the code breaking is around solving for numbers or symbols, tackle them in order!

Locked rooms can offer an endless array of challenging puzzles beyond these three puzzle types, and you can even apply these tips and tricks here to a lot of other puzzle types! Embrace every puzzle in an adventure room with an open mind and creative thinking. The most important thing to remember when solving an escape room, however, is making sure to communicate and work together as a team – that’s how real puzzle solving happens. The next step is to find an awesome Calgary escape room to put your new skills to the test! Happy puzzle solving!

Arcadia Adventures Escape Room is Calgary’s premier escape room experience. Our real-life Calgary escape room is an excellent way to have fun, solve puzzles, and improve your team-building skills. Our rooms can host parties, small groups, families, couples, and is great as a team-building activity for Calgary businesses. Book your spot at our one of our Calgary escape rooms online or by contacting us on 587-356-0440.

Hello fellow adventurers! Welcome back to the Arcadian: the premier blog about all things for Calgary escape rooms! Today, let’s talk about lighting and how they impact someone playing a puzzle room!

Have you wondered why video games of today look so much better than those of the early 2000s? In fact, many games with basic modelling, textures and even animations age exceptionally well due to the effective usage of lighting.

Lighting and Game Design

In the early days of game design, lighting was flat, as if everything took place in a well lit office building. As game engines improved, alongside the hardware that ran them, so did the lighting that was available to a developer. Light was baked into scenes to add realism. Volumetric lighting allowed light to bounce of surfaces and let environments look even better. Ray tracing allowed for rays of light to be simulated individually, resulting in incredible life like scenes afforded by modern day engines such as Unreal Engine 5.

Dynamic Lighting from Unreal Engine 5 Tech Demo

In the same manner of video games, the lighting in real life as plays a huge role in setting the mood of a location. Be it the sterile clean environment of a hospital. The cozy, warm atmosphere of a restaurant. Or the boldness of nightclub settings. The correct lighting can set the stage for an environment more-so than the design of the environment itself.

Puzzle Rooms and Lighting

All this can be be applied when it comes to the design of an escape room. While puzzle gameplay and set design is important, the correct lighting will do wonders in elevating a player’s immersion and wonderment while they are inside a locked room.

Take for example the setting of zombie research lab. Typical design will blackout the room completely; relying just on flashlights and the players imagination to set the mood. But with the addition of a few choice lighting details, immersion can be greatly increased. A locked booth with a dirty window in the corner will invoke curiosity but little else, until opening the door becomes the next objective. But if a flickering bulb is placed inside, all of a sudden the player feels anxiety, noticing it in the corner of their eye and wondering if a shadow will appear at some point. The addition of light source has aided in the thematic design and immersion of room.

escape rooms Calgary - lighting
Lighting the entrance to a Zombie Facility

In another example, a dungeon themed escape room can be difficult to light, especially if it is not designed to be scary. While copious amounts of candles can do the trick, having a ‘full moon’ shine through a window high up gives the room a fairy tale enchantment and puts the player at ease that this is not intended to be a ‘scary dungeon’ but a ‘magical dungeon’. It would be difficult to achieve the same thing if the room was pitch black.

Immersing Players in your Locked Room

If lighting was ignored but everything else about the design was kept the same it’s clear that we would not achieve nearly the same level of immersion. Good lighting sets the stage and implies mood. It doesn’t draw attention to itself but instead does it’s job without the player even noticing its effect. All you need to do is provide the foundation and the player’s mind will fill in the rest for you. When we design our escape room in Calgary, we incorporate a lighting pass to ensure the mood is correctly set for the player.

Puzzle rooms are a unique media format, in that one is not watching afar as in a movie, or partaking in a set sequence like a theme park ride. Instead players place themselves in the location and move though the escape room at their own pace. To achieve similar results in immersion, one must effectively use lighting to invoke the correct emotion to match the theme of the room. When designing your next adventure room, be sure to spend sometime understanding the subtleties of light and you will be surprised at how much it can elevate a room.

Arcadia Adventures Escape Room is Calgary’s premier escape room experience. Our real-life Calgary escape room is an excellent way to have fun, solve puzzles, and improve your team-building skills. Our rooms can host parties, small groups, families, couples, and is great as a team-building activity for Calgary businesses. Book your spot at our one of our Calgary escape rooms online or by contacting us on 587-356-0440.