Published on April 1st, 2016 | by Dean Love0
KeyHunter, Birmingham – The Double Crossing and The Red Curse
KeyHunter was one of the first escape room sites to open outside of London, and being in Birmingham made it pretty convenient to get to for me, so we signed up to do two of their rooms (the two harder ones, according to their website). I’m breaking format here and covering them in a single review as, frankly, they weren’t interesting enough to merit individual write-ups.
Both rooms were fairly small, single room affairs. We flew through the first room for about 30 minutes, then got stumped on what turned out to be the last puzzle for about ten more. We had a similar experience in the second room, except we spent about 20 minutes solving things, then 20 minutes stuck on a single puzzle, as we hadn’t noticed something written on the side of a shelving unit or something similar. Once we did, we again finished quickly. Hints are delivered by walkie-talkie: we never actually took any hints, but I remember this as the walkies kept picking up cross talk from the other group doing rooms at the same time.
Now, I can forgive the rooms for having about half the content of other rooms I’ve played, because they were half the price of the average London room. What I can’t forgive is how dull and uninspired they were. There are stories behind all the rooms. Stories you can find on the KeyHunter website. And nowhere else. Certainly not in the briefing we were given, or in any materials in the rooms themselves. The rooms themselves were sparsely decorated, and didn’t look like anything other than a room with a bunch of puzzles in. All reports since suggest that they’ve not exactly been taken care of over the few years since we played either.
And yet despite that, with the low-ish price and the novelty value, back in 2014 I was still recommending friends try it: “they’re not as good as the London rooms but…”. But now there are two other venues in Birmingham that are reportedly far better (and that we hope to review soon) so it’s impossible to recommend any more.
Result – we beat both rooms with far too much time to spare
Date played: 5 April 2014
Team: Dean, Katherine, Jess, Jim, Jamie
Summary: When it was the only escape room location in the Midlands, it was worth doing for the novelty, now there are better options, avoid