REMOTE: Wiseminds Escape Rooms - "Operation Web Worm"
Updated: Feb 3
Photos provided by Wiseminds Escape Rooms
Company: Wiseminds Escape Rooms
Game: Operation Web Worm
Country: United Kingdom 🇬🇧
Type of Game: Remote Escape Room 🗣
Date Played: 1/21/2021
Difficulty (based on 4 players): 6.5/10
Size of Team: Unlimited (6-8 Players Suggested; Ages 11+)
Time: 60 Minutes
Price: £10/ pp
Mikeal Blolomhurst, a master in technology, created a virus called Web Worm. This could destroy the entire world's economy if we let it leak onto the world wide web. One of our agents has infiltrated his apartment but he only has 60 minutes before Mikeal returns. Will you be able to help him stop this culprit?
🆃🅷🅴 🅶🅰🅼🅴 🅿🅻🅰🆈
You will be guided through this mission by a live avatar. The avatar will mostly just act out your commands and will not respond to you vocally. There were two occasions where he did read the notes he found in the room. You'll only be able to see his hands throughout the game play. This actually created a sense of "secret agent" vibe.
The entire game space was focused on a corner of a room. Most of the clues and props were situated on or near a desk. If you've done YouEscape before, it's very similar to that concept but with a bit more exploration space and prop usage.
There was no inventory portal used for this game. We've suggested to the owner that it would be beneficial to add one as there were items that required reading and closer looks. At times we did experience some blurriness caused by the internet connection so having those clear images will definitely help.
The game master was really great at explaining the game rules and telling the backstory. We liked that she informed us a key or code will only be used once. This bought back memories of playing a real escape room. You can ask for unlimited hints but each hint will reduce 3 minutes from your total escape time. Here comes a bonus tip from us: although a key/code is to be used only once but an item may be used more than once!
There were a lot of fun puzzles in this game, Since there's not much room to explore, the game was heavily dependent on puzzles. Some were quite easy to spot where as others needed some team collaboration.
Since the puzzles were non-linear (you might find things way earlier that you won't be able to use until later on in the game), it would be great to have an inventory system to accompany the game. This way the team can divide and conquer and compile clues just like in a real escape room. For the time being, we used our phones and took still shots of certain clues (which we deleted right away after the game) and still had a great time and a smooth game flow.
Since the owner of the company came from an educational background, we definitely felt a good amount of academics type of puzzles in this game. There were a good mixture of logic, spatial, color, and Math puzzles. The final surprise with a "personal touch" was a lovely way to conclude the game. We ended up completing the game with 22 minutes and 41 seconds left without using any clues. Go team!
Having looked at the Wiseminds website, I went in expecting an overtly educational game with lots of math exercises (they are London based, so "maths" exercises—that 's' gets lost somewhere in the middle of the Atlantic). Instead, what I got instead was a classic escape room experience.
The gameplay style of Operation Webworm is that quintessential series of locked boxes with various clues you must identify and translate to give you each padlock combination. The game has enough elements to explore without feeling overwhelmed. The puzzles are satisfying, consistent, and at the right degree of difficulty for easy online solving. Everything is thought through and made with care. (I had a minor issue hearing the one audio puzzle, but ask anyone who plays with me, I'm rubbish at audio clues.) All of the puzzles are contained in one corner of an office or apartment (desk, bulletin board, and coat rack), with an anonymous silent gloved avatar interacting with the physical elements on your behalf.
For me, this virtual escape room triggered a bit of nostalgia for archetypal escape rooms I've played. Experienced escape room junkies might crave a more immersive story line or more polished production level, but Operation Webworm is ideal for anyone looking for an introduction to the escape room genre.
(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 Wiseminds Escape Rooms for comping our tickets for this game. Although a complimentary experience was generously provided, it does not impact our opinion on the review whatsoever.