After the adrenaline filled experience of The Happy Institute, we were happy to go straight into our next game, ready for a more relaxing, family friendly experience. The Panic Room have created a lovely homage to a classic, well-known movie, and knowing how good their rooms can be, we went in fully expecting a magical, joy-filled experience.
“It’s time for a magic-filled adventure like no other! Fly away on a whirlwind of excitement and visit the incredible land of Oz!
The Wonderful Wizard has gone on vacation and he’s left The Tinman, The Scarecrow and the Lion in charge of running the Emerald City. This isn’t as easy of a job as he makes it look however; they could use a bit of help!
Follow the yellow brick road, make your way into the Emerald City and step into the Wizard’s shoes! You’ll be sure to make some friends along the way, so work together to fix your hot air balloon before time runs out! Are you ready for the flight of a lifetime?”
The game starts outside the gates of the Emerald City, at the end of the yellow brick road. It’s a nice gardeny space that instantly sets the cheerful scene for the rest of the game. The set really does go up a level though once you’re through those gates. When you look at it in hindsight, Emerald City was actually just a small room, but when in there it didn’t feel like it. Instead, it felt like a spacious village square that was absolutely perfect for the game, and felt like a special, unique location to spend the rest of the hour in.
The gameplay was fun too, with some nice ideas that fitted well within the story. The game centred around finding a brain, a heart and courage, true to the original movie, and the journey to those parts included plenty of enjoyable moments.
Whilst it’s a very family-centred idea for a game, it won’t alienate adults. It’s far from being an easy game, and while there are a good number of puzzles children could enjoy, they’ll need adult help for many parts – it’s the perfect family game with a well balanced selection of ideas for all ages.
Overall, this is a decent game from The Panic Room that pays homage to a much-loved classic, and while it wasn’t one of the standouts for me during our trip to Gravesend, it’s one that is worth including in your plans – it won’t disappoint.
Host: Our host was Sarah “Lion” – she was absolutely perfect for the game. Very fun and stuck to her character, I can imagine her being a big hit with younger players.
Clue System: Clues were delivered via a screen in the room.
Success? Yes, we escaped in 49:50