Trapped escape rooms barely need an introduction: they have enjoyed great success across the world since 2007, and the number of rooms has exceeded 5000! Escape rooms can be found ubiquitously throughout Europe, Asia and the US. Although they vary greatly in themes and styles, as well as their target audiences, they all share some similar elements.

Basically, an escape room is a confined space where a team of players is locked. They have approximately an hour to unlock the puzzles and open the door to escape the room (hence the name). These puzzles come in different shapes and forms, but, on the whole, they can be broken into several distinctive groups.

If you are new to trapped escape rooms, you might want to familiarise yourself with what’s expecting you once the door shuts close behind you and the game begins.

All types of puzzles can be categorized into a number of groups. Do not let the theme of the escape room to distract you: once you understand what kind of puzzle you’re facing, you will know how to approach it. It is important, because your team will be working against time, and not a minute should be wasted on trying the wrong solutions!

Puzzles That Require Physical Effort

This type of puzzles does not require any strength or agility; although, as the name suggests, it does imply some physical interaction with certain objects such as locks, knots and so on. Usually these take quite some time to solve, as they may require a lot of attempts.

Finger puzzles, fake locks and all sorts of knots fall into this category.

Puzzles That Involve Numbers

You don’t need to major in math to solve these numerical puzzles, but knowing your way around some basic arithmetic will definitely help. Sudoku and code-breaking puzzles (the latter may include letters and other signs as well as numbers) are good examples of this type of puzzles.

You may want to practice your skills in solving numeric puzzles online here and here. They provide correct answers with detailed explanation to help you master this type of questions.

Visual Puzzles

This is one of the most popular types of riddles and brainteasers in a trapped escape room! A quick eye is your best asset in solving such puzzles. It also involves quite a lot of teamwork, as players are required to reconnoitre the game space paying close attention to detail and share their findings in order to solve it.

Clues may be hidden everywhere: look for maps, pictures, repeating patterns or colour schemes that can lead you to important objects or clues and, eventually, to your escape!

A hint: look for something that does not belong in a room or, on the contrary, something that is missing. Scratch everything that can be scratched, move everything that can be moved, rearrange what can be rearranged, in other words, do not leave a stone unturned!

Theme-specific puzzles

These may be the easiest or the trickiest ones depending on your acquaintance with a subject. That is why it is important to choose the trapped escape room wisely so you don’t get frustrated over your lack of competence. Remember, some highly specific tasks can be extremely challenging, so do your homework before the door shuts close!

Combination Puzzles

This type of puzzles combines any of those mentioned above and suggests a step-by-step solution. These are the highlights of the game that make it yet more challenging and require a lot of mental effort to solve.

You Cracked That Puzzle – What’s Next?

Remember that cooperation and teamwork are the key skills required to ace the game. Always share your findings with the rest of the team (yelling out loud is a better strategy than whispering!) to make sure they are aware that this particular puzzle has been solved and received all the information they need to proceed with other quests

Keep the clues and relevant information in order. Separate used objects from unused ones; always keep all the keys and parts in place lest you need to go back and solve it again. If you’re allowed to make notes, do it!

Use your mental prowess and avoid using blunt force: it is your mind that should be at work, not your muscles. Don’t ruin the room (it won’t help you escape anyway).

And, what’s most important, don’t be afraid to lose and just enjoy the experience! After all, it’s just a game. Have fun!

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