Last night, we headed to MoviESCAPE’s third location to play a game dubbed as the largest escape room in the world in the press. The Star Wars themed “Escape the Cantina” is based at Bowlers Exhibition Centre in Trafford, utilising a cantina themed bar previously built for a convention, as an escape room.
“After the destruction of an Imperial Warship important cargo was left drifting through space. This cargo contained vital information and plans on the Imperial Army’s latest weapon. You have one hour to recover these plans before you are captured. Your only help is the grumpy Cantina bartender… but is he who he says he is?”
Whether or not this is the largest escape room in the world, I’m not sure, but you can see where the claim has come from. The space is massive! When you begin the game, only one half of the room is lit up and accessible – I thought at first this was because the other half was too big to use as an escape game, but before you know it, the whole room is ready to be searched. The room is beautifully built, and is very nicely themed, with plenty of aliens scattered around enjoying a drink.
The game was fairly linear, and required plenty of interaction with the grumpy barman. As part of the game, you’ll find gold tokens, which you have to trade in at the bar for items you crucially need for the game. There are also black tokens which you cash in for optional clues and hints. It’s not a very puzzle heavy game, which is probably for the best as you’ll want to spend a lot of time experiencing your surroundings. There’s a lot of searching involved though, and in a room of that size, it’s a real challenge!
Spending the whole game with a live actor in the room sounds like something that might not be enjoyable based on tastes, and after last week’s very poor experience with a ‘character’ in the room (click here for the whole story) we were slightly apprehensive, but we needn’t have worried. Our host Terry did a great job playing the grumpy bartender – a lot of laughs!
Host: Our host and grump bartender was Terry – he was very friendly and funny, and played a great role in the whole experience.
Clue System: Clues are bought with black chips found around the room, and are delivered by the cantina bartender, who also offered a bit of extra help if we were truly stuck and chipless.
Success? Yes, we escaped with just over 7 minutes remaining, having spent all of our clue chips.
Photos: One of the rules you have repeated to you many times in escape rooms is to not use your phone, but the Cantina is a bit different! We were told we could take as many photos as we wanted, as long as they didn’t include the game items. We’ve included some of our snaps below.