Castle Crusaders - "Welcome to Jacobe Castle"
Updated: Feb 5
Videos/ Photos provided by Castle Crusaders
Company: Castle Crusaders
Game: Welcome to Jacobe Castle
Country: United Kingdom 🇬🇧
Type of Game: Audio/GM led Escape Game 👂
Date Played: 1/30/2021
Difficulty (based on 6 players): 4/10
Size of Team: 4-8 Players
Time: 60-80 Minutes (Approximately)
Price: Midweek price: £40/ 1-4 players, £70/ 5-8 players
Weekend Price: £55/ 1-4 players, £80/ 5-8 players
You're trapped in Jacobe Castle. The only way to freedom is to solve the puzzles with your teammates in an hours time (or a bit more depending on how nice you treat your host). Are you ready for the challenges?
🆃🅷🅴 🅶🅰🅼🅴 🅿🅻🅰🆈
A live host greeted us at the gate of Jacobe Castle (virtual background). The entire game is played by images and audio clues presented by the host. This is not your typical remote escape room and you're not in an actual escape room setting. You'll be "traveling" through 4 locations in the castle: Dungeon, Armory, The Bedrooms and Great Hall. Each location will have 4 puzzle categories: Active, Brain, Agility, and Secret. Your team will select a team leader at the beginning of the game. His/her job is to assign members to the challenges (they can also play of course). Some challenges are individual challenges where the teammates cannot assist the player. There were a few occasions where the team was allowed to assist the player. I would recommend signing in on different devices so each player can feel like they are playing on their own when it comes to individual challenges. However if you have only one device, two people can share a screen as well.
The challenges are timed to be around 1:30-2 minutes each. Once you've completed a challenge, you'll be rewarded with a letter. Once your team collects all 16 letters, you can all head to the draw bridge. This is where you will solve the last puzzle together. And if you got the right phrase, the castle door will magically open and everyone will regain their freedom.
The puzzles are not your typical escape room puzzles. Most of them will lean more towards trivia (whip out your karaoke skills!), riddles and memory type of games. You may encounter a bit of Math and word play as well. The puzzles were not designed to trap you as the goal of the game is to have fun. Our favorite "puzzle" was in the "Active" category where we cheered on one of teammates as he danced through various types of dances from different countries. Who knew a 6 feet guy had a little ballerina in him?
I was a bit nervous going into this game. I know the game design was inspired by "The Crystal Maze" show and I wasn't sure what to expect as the challenges were quite difficult in the actual show. It was awesome to be selected as team leader so I can kind of designate the "harder" categories (which I consider to be Brain or Agility) to the others. It's actually not the case though as in the "secret" category you will never know what you're going to get.
Our host Joe did an amazing job entertaining us. We felt like we're on a TV show. Although we failed at 3 challenges initially, Joe was able to provide us with 3 riddles at the end so we were able to collect all the letters and finally escape the draw bridge. In this game, everyone will end up as winners! We love the concept and it's great to try something new and different from our normal escape route. Currently all the 16 puzzles are the same so it's not something you can rebook but they are in development of a new game and we can't wait to return back to the castle!
Jess A. & Matt L.
We really liked:
- The chap playing Jackson Jacobe was a funny and welcoming host
- The transitions between live and video content were well done
- Great atmosphere from the moment we entered the call with the sound, graphics and the interaction from our host in the chat
- Cohesive narrative which we knew we were moving forward through – we know we had 16 puzzles to solve, we knew the aim is to get all of the letters and to get out of the castle – it’s nice to have clear objectives!
Things to consider:
- The tone erred towards being a family game but then some of the tasks would be much harder for young people
- Could tell the graphics were of a high quality, but that didn’t always come through in the streaming. This was particularly noticeable when the task involved differentiating between colours
- Already knowing the categories in each room took away a bit of anticipation. Even if there were 6 categories in total but you got a different combination of four in each room it would add enough of a change to keep us wondering “What’s going to happen next?”, and you also would have different people doing different kind of tasks (rather than having a Brain person, an Agility person, etc).
This experience can be considered more as a team building exercise rather than an escape experience. The challenge consists of several tasks and riddles, loosely tied to the overarching theme. For each, a team player is chosen to face the physical or mental challenge. The main focus was not the riddles, but the fun and "nonsense" spirit of things, therefore, choose your team to have the right mix of fun people. We, for example, are less open to those kinds of tasks, but it was fun to watch the other teammates enjoying the challenges. Luckily, we were chosen for challenges we are more comfortable with 😄.
The riddles are not difficult and are fitting for families and inexperienced players.
Most challenges are for a single player to complete, while the others watch (and, while not supposed to, try to hint the answers).On one hand, there is the pressure to succeed and not disappoint the rest of the group, but on the other hand, we expected the challenges to require greater cooperation between the team members. The host was very cool and did his best for the experience to be fun for all players.
Conclusion: Fun team building experience. Not very intellectually challenging.
(If you do decide to try this game, please remember to let them know that you heard it from"ESCAPETHEROOMers"!)
Disclosure: We thank Castle Crusaders for comping our tickets for this game. Although a complimentary experience was generously provided, it does not impact our opinion on the review whatsoever.