Updated: 7 days ago
Photos provided by The Conundrum Box
Company: The Conundrum Box
Country: USA 🇺🇸
Type of Game: Puzzles By Mail
Genre: Magic, Mystery
Date Played: 9/8/2020
Difficulty (based on 4 players): 7/10
Size of Team: Unlimited
Price: $44.99 or subscribe $29.99/Month, $86.99/3 month, $161.99/6 month, $299.99/12 month
It is the year 1922. The well known magician Professor Conundrum has vanished during one of his famous acts. Now, Lady Conundrum decided to reach out for your assistance to help her solve the greatest mystery of all time. Can you whittle through the puzzles and uncover his final secret?
The graphics on "The Conundrum Box" does a good job at luring us to wanting to open it right away. I was especially eager to open this one since magic is my kryptonite. The contents were very organized. There was an instruction letter, a plastic wand, a deck of cards, 4 sealed envelopes, a note, a small piece of paper and a mini poster.
The Game Play
The game came with a recommended Spotify playlist and theme inspired food and drink recipes (The "Icebox" cake looks quite yummy. I'll have to try it some day). We played with our friends Lisa & David from Room Escape Artists over Zoom. It actually worked out quite well given that we're able to work on different puzzles at the same time. There was a website portal where solutions were being entered. The website also contained an easy to use tiered leveled hint system. As we solve the puzzles, instructions would be given on when we were allowed to open up those sealed envelopes. It definitely had an escape room vibe where we felt like we're opening virtual locks and going through different rooms/scenes. Each time we unlocked a "scene" on the website, we were presented with either a narrative story (some felt a bit long) or a video. It was quite exciting to be able to see real magic acts incorporated in a box game.
One thing that felt a bit different from real escape rooms was the fact of having to utilize items multiple times (although the instructions clearly stated that we would need to). As we opened the envelopes, it was quite difficult to search through the various clue papers (as they started to pile up as we opened more envelopes) as we weren't sure if we could mix them up or mark them as used. You should definitely have a large working space for this game. There was a magic puzzle that we were still confused about even with the hint provided. Perhaps the sleight of hand was done too well on the video. One of our favorite puzzles was a multi-step puzzle where we had to recreate a virtual space through the puzzle elements. It felt like we were building our own set design from scratch. One of the clue paper felt a bit skewed for one of the puzzles so it made it harder for us to come up with the solution. The search element was also quite relatable to a physical escape room. The use of illusions in certain puzzles were cleverly incorporated into the magic theme.
Although most of the story write up were fictional, certain characters in the game like Houdini, Kellar, and Thurston were actual famous magicians during the 1920s. The mixture of these factual information and the real magic performances really enhanced the narrative component of the game. We also enjoyed the utilization of the wand, magic related puzzle clues and the card deck. It was also nice to experience the various puzzle difficulty levels throughout the game. Some took us minutes and some we just had to use a hint. If you love magic and have a curious mind, this is the box for you. Who said this was going to be easy? I mean it was the last hidden secret by Professor Conundrum after all.
(If you do decide to try this game, please remember to let them know that you heard it from"ESCAPETHEROOMers"!)
Disclosure: We thank The Conundrum Box for providing us with a sample of their game. Although a complimentary experience was generously provided, it does not impact our opinion on the review whatsoever.