RussBuilds - "Endgame"
Updated: Dec 9, 2020
Photos provided by RussBuilds
Country: United Kingdom 🇬🇧
Type of Game: Live Stream Puzzles 💻
Genre: Strategy, War
Date Played: 9/26/2020
Difficulty (based on 2 players): 6.5/10
Size of Team: Unlimited (2-4 ppl)
Price: Free (Donation strongly recommended)
End Game was played over Zoom with a live host (Russ, the game designer). Prior to the game, you'll receive a Zoom link with a password protected PDF file. At the start of the game Russ gave us an intro of the back story. This was a cold war inspired tabletop escape game that centered around a game of chess. Our goal was to stop WWIII from happening and hopefully save the world! As we opened our secret dossier file, the game began...
The hint system was very unique and you might want to strategize on how you like to play the game. There were unlimited hints to be used but every time you used one, 0.5 points will be deducted. The final time would also account into the scoring system. Our suggestion would be to not to be stuck for too long and just ask hints to move on. If you finish quicker, the final score could play in your favor even if you ended up using hints.
This game did not have any searching that you will have to do. Everything you needed was in front of you on the table, The puzzles were all contained in the PDF and the only time need Russ was when you figured out a code to open up the locked up props or you needed a hint. We were hoping for a bit more interaction with the props since most of the time Russ just sat there but it was nice to have the hint system right then and there and with clear directions.
Although no outside knowledge or searching was needed outside of the game, we were confused by a puzzle (photo was a bit blurry) that we mistook a symbol for. It stumbled us for quite awhile but after figuring out the symbol, the game flow picked up from there. I guess there was a bit of advantage if you know Chess. Our other advice would be to be specific with what you like Russ to enter as codes and how you like him to do so. At one point we had the right code but were not specific with opening instructions and that also wasted time. And most importantly, if you thought you could play this game without pen and paper (since we were on the road and were not prepared), you're wrong. There was a good amount of decoding and calculations that would've been much easier to visualize with those tools.
This was a lot of fun for a game that was designed by an enthusiast at home. On top of that, Russ was able to create something enjoyable for everyone for free during this difficult times. If you want to see more of these creations, definitely consider donations so he'll be able to work on his next game soon. The booking for this game ends on Oct 10th, so you'll still have a few more days to experience it if you haven't tried it yet!
(If you do decide to try this experience, give us a shoutout or tag us on social media so we know you heard it from "ESCAPETHEROOMers"!)
Disclosure: We thank RussBuilds for comping our tickets for this game. Although a complimentary experience was generously provided, it does not impact our opinion on the review whatsoever.