Published June 27th, 2017 @ 11:32 pm EDT by Paul

REVIEW: The Collector by Lockbusters Escape Game (Orlando, FL)

3/5 Claws

Challenge: 5
Awe: 6
Care: 8
Theme: 6
Team: 6
Signature Color: RED


“Everybody likes this room but me!  Oh well, I got to play with a great team of new friends.  The Collector is your basic gross-dark-murder-eyeballs-and-rusty-nails type room.  A horrible maniac got ahold of your friend Kevin and you have to get in there and save him.  There are some inventive things, but for a venue that prides itself on immersive environments (and offers an absolutely sensational pirate-themed experience) I kinda thought a lot of this was on the less inventive side of “typical”.  They acknowledge that unlike their other rooms, this one involves a lot of first-gen stuff like number-padlocks [Editor: as a deliberate design decision in keeping with the room’s theme].  But even so, solutions have no resonance with the setting, the story, or even the activity you go through to find the clues.  It’s all really arbitrary.  Yes, there are some cool surprises, but given the enormous talents of the team that made this room, I’m deeply puzzled as to why it’s all so flat.  I know Lockbusters could come up with a more interesting take on the genre than this.  We won in about twenty-nine minutes, with a team of seven.  On the art direction side, the corpses and other materials are well-made, even artful, and one prop–a Bible altered in a particular way–still kind of haunts me, and is worth seeing just on it’s on (I’m a sucker for concept art.) PLEASE NOTE: Everyone else on my team loved this room, so take my review with a grain of salt. ”


“I’m not sure if my problems with The Collector are because of the room itself or if it only seems lack-luster in comparison to Lockbusters’ Pirate Adventure.  But in any event, the fact that I even have to consider the effect that doing another room at the same venue would have doesn’t really bode well.  The challenges seem oddly disconnected, often resulting in reveals that, while surprising, aren’t particularly fulfilling.

The challenges seem oddly disconnected, often resulting in reveals that, while surprising, aren’t particularly fulfilling.  One memorable result of putting a severed body part back in just the right place resulted in a light powering on on the opposite side of the room; while not necessarily a bad thing, there was no reason a player would suspect that as the result of playing with body parts.  In fact, I watched in amusement as each member of the team eventually circled back to the placed body part and became confused when removing it caused the lights to go out; the effect seemed to leave everyone saying ‘huh, that’s weird.’

A personal pet-peeve of mine is rooms like this one in which players are provided with a black light device and must continue to use it repeatedly to solve various puzzles.  The reason why this bothers me is that the trick quickly becomes old hat; the solution to just about every puzzle suddenly hinges upon shining the black light on just the right objects and leaves most of the puzzles feeling very similar to one another.  There were still a few neat physical challenges to be completed without the black light, but not nearly enough to disprove my point.

Sadly, our team consisted of a total of 7 players and, while the timing worked out for everyone to join in the fun at the last minute schedule wise, I really think there wasn’t enough for all of us to do without players inevitably standing around feeling useless and waiting for their turn to be able to contribute.  I suspect groups of 4 or 5 players would have had an easier time keeping everyone engaged.

That said, I was impressed with the amount of care that the staff took in trying to accommodate last minute reservations.  After noticing that we qualified for a promotion after the fact, the staff adjusted our pricing and offered us a refund before we were even aware of their promotion!  While The Collector is a perfectly fine room, I’m more curious to see what Orlando’s latest venue comes up with next.”

8326 International Drive
Orlando, FL 32819

(407) 930-0822

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