Solving puzzles, cracking codes and picking locks to get out of a room in under an hour are the basics of an escape room game.
Instead of going to an office complex or a repurposed warehouse, Salli Renz and Jacob Renz bring the Escape Room to you.
The Spring Grove mother-son team launched Eureka! Escape Games on October 1st.
“We’re just getting out [COVID-19]and people are staying home more than going out,” Salli said.
They wanted a business idea where they could take the party to the customers, rather than the other way around, she said.
It was Jacob’s general enjoyment of escape rooms that made the idea work, Salli said.
“The idea grew out of that and escalated from there. With a portable escape game, we’ve reached another level,” she said.
So how does a portable escape room that isn’t actually a room work?
The Renzes worked with an escape room design company that built three portable units for them. The games are about the size of a large office copier and can sit on a coffee table or dining table.
Each game features the escape room pieces that people expect, including solving clues to open the next part of the game, Jacob said.
Each game has 14 different puzzles to solve in order to beat the game, he said.
“They are a gaming unit. They are sizeable entities with hidden drawers, codes and puzzles and video technology inside. It’s similar to the high-tech escape rooms you go to,” Jacob said.
The units are small, compact and mobile.
“It’s a game you play, and the elements are similar to traditional escape rooms,” Salli said.
Jacob is the game master – he goes to a remote location, sets up the game and explains to the players how to play the game in a box.
Like a regular escape room, Jacob can give hints from a distance and help players “not get stuck in a puzzle for too long,” he said.
Right now they have three different setups, Salli said: The Jungle, Deadly Hallows and Bomb Disposal. She wants to add a fairytale game in the future.
Groups can book the service online, and Jacob is taking the game to where people gather, Salli said.
The games are challenging and have some more mature themes, Salli said. They recommend players to be in junior high or older.
Visit www.eurekaescapegames.com for more information.