Escape rooms: a thrilling new form of entertainment


Math, logic, and riddles. These subjects are usually something people either find alluring or steer away from because of the challenging content and difficulty level. Now, these subjects are at the center of an evening out on the town, all at once.

Escape rooms are physical adventure games where a team of four or more must use numeric understanding while solving puzzles and riddles to get out of a room, all before the one hour timer goes off. As complicated and intricate as the premise is, the point is trusting one’s teammates and working collectively to solve the clues.

Though they were first launched in 2006, escape rooms didn’t start catching on until post-2010. First erected in Japan by Takao Kato, the idea spread like wildfire, expanding to Europe and eventually the US. Now, there are more than 50 rooms in Singapore, and hundreds here in the US. Several have sprung up in the Denver metropolitan area.

The rooms are incredibly popular, and Denver has experienced its own escape room boom—there’s no shortage of locations downtown and across the greater metro area. It’s a completely immersive and entertaining experience that strengthens team building and cognitive skills.

“It’s an entirely different thing from your normal evening out,” McKenzie Loving, manager of Epic Escape Game in Denver, said. “I think people like the thrill of it. Being locked in a room for an hour sets the pressure on.”

Every business has different rooms they offer, ranging from beginner to advanced, with varying themes. All rooms require the same skill set from participants, but advanced rooms become more difficult to solve.

Before teams are trapped inside, participants are typically supplied with walkie talkies, which they can use to ask for clues and hints. When inside, participants have to solve one clue in order to solve the next, until they finally solve the last clue to escape.

At Mission Escapes on Dartmouth, their Lunar room—the hardest out of the two—must be done in the dark. The room is clad with drawers and cabinets with locks, and opening one lock will help the team find another clue to solve. At the end, there is a hidden room behind a mirror with lasers, and the team must get to the other side of the room in order to push the buttons and open the door.

The puzzles are designed to be challenging even for adults, but children are welcome. Most escape rooms in Denver are roughly around $25 per person, but prices vary depending on the location.

“It’s a totally different experience from going out to the movies or bowling,” Loving said. “You’re actually working together as a team to solve puzzles, escape the room, with a different scenario each time.”

Do you want to play a game? If you’d like to book an escape room at Epic Escapes on Gilpin St., visit

Dilkush Khan
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