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REMOTE: Agent November - "Mind Heist"


Video/ Photos provided by Agent November

Company: Agent November

Game: Mind Heist

Country: United Kingdom 🇬🇧

Language: English

Type of Game: Remote Escape Room 🗣

Genre: Action, Espionage

Date Played: 6/14/2021

Difficulty (based on 5 players): 6/10

Size of Team: Up to 10 players

Time: 60 Minutes

Price: £14/pp, £11/pp for NHS workers, Children under 12/£12


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If you've played Virtual X-caper before, this is the prequel. The criminal mastermind Marty Orri is in need to get his hands on an important artifact that's vital to his "Project Pandora". Currently, a rouge agent, Dee Seet has this object secured in a box at his home. You have 60 minutes before Marty will get there. Can you convince Dee to choose the right side?

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Agent November always surprises us with their novelty and creativity and this time was no different. In most of our remote escape room experiences, we would meet our avatar over Zoom and they would basically listen to our commands and do what we say. In "Mind Heist", we were LITERALLY in the rogue agent's mind. Rather than just following orders, we had to think of ways to gain his trust. Our agent Dee (a.k.a. Nathan) did a fantastic job portraying the character. He was quick with his comebacks and witty with the hilarious puns.


Throughout the game play, we had to make various moral choices that led us down different pathways. We enjoyed having the options of inputting our own anonymous votes and anxiously waiting for the final results (majority rules). Once the votes are in, Dee will then follow that path and the puzzles and storyline will completely change from that point onwards. Since this game could potentially have 6 various outcomes, it's completely replayable. You'll receive a code at the end of the game to use for rebooking so you can inform the next agent ahead of time that you'll like to play the other sets of the puzzles.


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Being that the game was staged in just a small room, we weren't sure how it was going to fulfill an entire hour for a group of enthusiasts, but we were so wrong. There were a ton of unexpected surprises that we're able to discover. As enthusiasts that played hundreds of games by now, we usually can predict how certain puzzles should be solved. What I love about the puzzle design for this game was that none of the puzzles were what we have anticipated. The props used were so simple but the creator was able to utilize them in ways that we haven't seen used before. The only thing we would love to see some improvement on is if certain puzzle images could be clearer on camera (perhaps by sending us images through an online inventory).


While solving the puzzles, we're also able to discover information and facts about the characters. This allowed us to piece together the storyline and ultimately make our decisions. We've done this for tabletop experiences before but it's rare to see an online game be able to implement this concept in merely 60 minutes. Our group eventually decided to follow the righteous path and successfully return the artifact to the authorities. If you want to be more challenged with the puzzles, give the dark side a try!


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Agent November did a great job with creating this virtual world that sucked us out of our reality right away when the game started. We were convinced that we're inside Dee's head from beginning to end. This game was such an amazing experience due to the following factors: entertaining GM, intriguing storyline, amusing puzzles and unique ways to engage player participation.


If you're not satisfied with their online experiences and you so happen to be in the UK then you're in luck! They also provide actor-led, real world, outdoor missions as a part of this "Project Pandora" universe. Definitely check out their missions Robyn Yew, Major X Ploe-Shun and real world indoor mission Murder Mr. E,

 




This experience starts with a briefing website with a video and some documents. It's worth reading these as there's a lot to take in. The videos at the bottom of the page are password protected, you will be able to use these later in the game so you can see the details more clearly. We met our host who went through everything again before we started. The concept of what you need to do takes a bit of getting used to at the start, as there are a lot of characters, storyline and instructions, and there were a few pauses while our host set things up.


The basic premise is that you are dropped into the "mind" of a museum's ex head-of-security who has a vital piece of an artefact that you must locate. A small bit of scene-setting plays out before you take control of this new chap (who seems familiar!) and then he's yours to look around the room, interact with objects and so on. The room is clearly the host's flat, and some items are covered with cloths to hide them away. This felt a little awkward, if there was an option to have a full room dedicated to the game I think it would be an improvement.


There are plenty of items to be explored. The camerawork was a little shaky at times but the host very receptive to looking at what you want and describing them. Some objects seem to have no function but will come into play later on. We even found a bonus achievement (from another game we believe lol!).


The avatar is very witty, and chatty, and you will get the most out of this game if you stoke the character's ego and play along with the storyline as much as possible. The puns and gags throughout made us chuckle. One in particular as the only Brit in the group made me laugh, and had to explain to the others afterwards.


There is some very clever use of video - watching them via the camera on his computer wasn't optimal but you can rewatch them on your own screen once you have the password. This is vital as one in particular contains a lot of clues. I think it would be an improvement if when a video needs to be watched, you are just given the password and all watch it yourselves, it would save time. There are also some very clever uses of objects in the room so don't be afraid to explore every item, and even if not useful now it may be later.


The puzzles are great, and nicely difficult, and if you're struggling the host will give you a some help. Some polls that you can interact with had just been added to the game - this didn't really add anything hugely to the game and I think it was a bit much for the host to handle, so maybe simple is better!


Despite being a little rough around the edges, and a bit stilted at times, this game is so charming and so clever, that I highly recommend it as I had a lot of fun playing. The host was such a lovely chap - and it was one of the hottest days of the year so far when we played and he did a sterling job considering he had to do costume changes and operate everything himself. We chatted afterwards and he is a really lovely guy. Treat yourselves to some crime-fighting, puzzle-solving, immersive fun with Agent November - I definitely have their physical rooms on my list to go do when I can!







I heard many rave reviews regarding Agent November's first game - Virtual Xcaper, but sadly, I did not get the chance to play. When I heard their second game, Mind Heist, is out, I jumped at the opportunity to experience it.


Mind Heist was held over zoom, where you control a game master in searching for clues. I like how they make it into a story (which I won't spoil), like why would a group of people be controlling someone's actions virtually. It makes everything part of a whole story and it was immersive. Besides Zoom itself, there is a website that contains videos and information, some that requires passwords, which you have to solve from the game master remotely before keying it in to get more clues.


Every part of the experience was part of the story - from the point you start, till the point you end. It was hilarious hearing/watching our game master act in character as we told him what to do.


The puzzles in this were excellent. This is by far the best use of a remote escape room. There were puzzles which I have never seen before and fits perfectly in a remote setting. For future players out there, just a tip, don't think of it as a game, just try asking the game master to do what you think he needs to, it is that unreal :D. There are a lot, and I mean really a lot, of puzzles in this game. You may have seen in movies that some characters lock their door with 3 different locks - this is exactly what you will see here. When you think that only one locked box is left, you are so wrong. That locked box itself can consist of 3 different puzzles!


Just note that you might be confused as not all locks will be opened. We heard from the game master that this room is 'replayable' in a way, as you will need to make decisions throughout the game and each decision will result in a different path.


I love that the whole story is tied in with Virtual Xcaper and it seems like there is more story to tell! Highly recommended game if you like humour from a great host, also highly recommended for players who like puzzles! This game makes me want to gather a group to play Virtual Xcaper now!

(If you do decide to try this game, give us a shoutout or tag us on social media so we know you heard it from "ESCAPETHEROOMers"!)


Disclosure: We thank Agent November for comping our tickets for this game. Although a complimentary experience was generously provided, it does not impact our opinion on the review whatsoever.


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