There are more than 2,000 escape rooms across the country, with hundreds available here in Los Angeles. One of the most popular homes for escape rooms, Escape Room L.A., opens one of their most ambitious projects to date this weekend: Atlantis.
Escape room designer John Hennessy said that the idea for this room has been brewing for a long time.
“I’ve been obsessed with Atlantis since I was a little kid,” Hennessy said.
This is the sixth room that he’s created. He’s also the founder and director of Escape Room L.A. The room took a year to develop, from conception to opening it to the public.
We went to a media preview and tried out the new game. The story begins with an eccentric professor who, like Hennessy, is obsessed with Atlantis. The professor has discovered how to open a portal to Atlantis, with your mission involving a search for the mysterious MacGuffin of the Poseidon Crystal.
You start inside the professor’s office, solving clues to activate his machine and open up the portal. The professor gifts your group with the ability to breathe underwater through a special hand stamp (just go with us here) and four Atlantean pendants.
Note: whenever you start out with an item in an escape room, you’re always going to need to use that item somewhere else. A door opens, and you’re whisked away to Atlantis.
Continuing to create original experiences is one of Hennessy’s biggest challenges.
“It gets way harder,” Hennessy said, “because you start getting lazy, and you’re like, ‘Oh, well I did this before, so maybe we could just change things around…'”
But Hennessy said he didn’t want to do that. While he admits the puzzles are similar to other puzzles he’s designed before, he wanted to make sure there was a new spin on everything.