#Tweetingit – 5 friends, one locked room. The prize for escaping, a bottle of aphrodisiac wine – what could go wrong?
Escape rooms are a big thing at the moment, I’ve seen them in myriad different themes: Nuclear holocaust, Zombie survival, Fallout-esq communist invasion, but the main thrust remains the same, get some friends, lock yourself in a room, solve some clues by the time the clock runs out and win….or don’t….and lose. Lady Chastity’s offers a new slant on this well-worn formula. Proudly announcing itself as “Crystal Maze on Crystal Meth” (which I initially thought was a heart breaking headline about Richard O’Brien) up to five people are offered the chance to hunt for the last bottle of Lady Chastity’s famous aphrodisiac wine, by locking themselves in a room and solving clues.
You might be asking yourself “how is this any different from any other escape room, and further more can’t I get the same experience with a cheap bottle of plonk and my bedroom wardrobe?” And the answer seems to be in the set dressing; the main escape room theme stay the same but Lady Chastity’s might offer you a genuinely unique storyline to go with it. After all we’ve all seen a million dystopian films, survived numerous nuclear winters, fought off hordes of zombies and battled the red peril into submission, but I’m willing to go out on a limb and say not many of us have invited up to four close friends to go on a timed Easter egg hunt for a potent aphrodisiac (I know some of you will have, but I’m not here to judge).
Let’s go through the potential reservations you might have: puzzles are by their very nature frustrating, and nothing ruins your fun like frustration. As a person with a notoriously short fuse (I still hold that Red Faction is the best video game ever because you could circumvent the puzzles by blowing holes in the wall with a rocket launcher and when trying to open a jar, I have been known to smash it while angrily doing the “knock the lid on the work surface” trick) I wonder if Lady Chastity’s will be able to hit that fine line between puzzling and utterly irritating. Or perhaps you’re ambivalent about having a host in the room with you – on the one hand they could be a marvellous companion who buoys you up and gives you helpful clues, or they could become a significant distraction as you try to solve the riddles – perhaps that’s the whole point? On a personal note I’m also a little concerned about how drinking a generous amount of supposedly aphrodisiac wine, coupled with the thrill of winning, will change my relationship with the four friends I invited…
I guess once again the proof will be in the pudding (if we can find the pudding before the clock runs out) I myself am thoroughly looking forward to it and have started training by hiding bottles of wine around my flat and then giving it the mandatory fifteen minutes before someone of my age forgets everything they’ve done for the last four hours. It may not be making me a better escape artist but it does make cleaning the flat more rewarding.
Review date – 12 March at People’s Park Tavern
Running from now until 31st December
Venues – South London – The Four Thieves, East London – People’s Park Tavern, Brighton – Black Lion Pub