No! This is NOT a torture parenting technique for naughty kids. It is actually a super fun, family-bonding exercise to be locked in a room with your kids. I will tell you why in the post.
For the past decades, we have celebrated our kids birthdays with parties by the pool, outside in the garden, at indoor play areas and popular kids’ landmarks like the Port of Lost Wonder, Wild Wild Wet and Adventure Cove Sentosa. We have had parties in the morning, in the afternoon, even at night (check out our Ninja Gangnam-Style party)! We have had laser tag parties, sleepover parties and digital gaming parties.
This year, we decided to surprise my tweenage son with something more challenging — a Real Life Break Out Escape Game with us!
The popularity of these Escape games in Singapore have resulted in a booming number of Escape Game venues (see the list below). Some of the themes offered by the venues are violent and may be too creepy or eerie for the impressionable young ones.
As first-timers, we chose Break Out Singapore as the themes seem “friendlier”. Break Out Singapore offered three themes of varying difficulties: Forever Young (4.5*), The Scientist (4*) and Magician’s Secret (5*).
We booked our tickets online for The Scientist as this is my son’s current ambition.
The kids had no idea where we were going until we arrived. They were super excited when they found out!
Break Out Singapore is located at 31B Kreta Ayer Road, directly opposite the Kreta Ayer Community Centre. There are parking spots along the road as well as a small open-air parking across the road.
Look out for the sign (picture below left where the kids were posing) and climb to the second level.
As we had booked in advance, all we had to do was make the payment and then we were led to an area where there were three black doors leading to the Escape rooms.
There is a strict NO video cameras or phones allowed inside the rooms policy to protect the authenticity of the game! There is a locker area to keep all your belongings while you are inside the rooms. You take off your shoes as the rooms are carpeted. You may choose to wear socks at your own discretion.
Not knowing what to expect, the three locked doors seem forbidding! I was a little concern about being claustrophobic in the room.
As this was our first experience, we were orientated to the game rules, as well as the “help” button in case we need extra hints (which we snobbishly did not think we needed) — how naive of us!
Then, the door closed, the timer started (60 minutes) and we were left in our Escape Room. Alone. Locked in!
How hard could it be to escape from this room?
Actually, not as easy as Hubby and I had initially thought. After searching the entire room for about 15 minutes, we decided to press the “HELP” button for our first clue. That sort of got the ball rolling for us. And it would not be the last time we seek the button for help.
I really like the Escape Room as a family bonding exercise. You are locked in a room together and you have to work as a collective team to advance towards your escape plan. The clues for this room was a balanced deception. They were not as transparent as to make it easy for you, but not so difficult that it is beyond your ability to solve the puzzle.
Pulling our wits and resources together, we were able to escape the room in the hour allocated to us (with some very helpful hints from “the button”). *wink*
This is a great activity to introduce to the tweens (age 9 and above) because it engages their deduction and critical thinking skills. This is not a static game. You have to communicate with your team mates and there is a lot of kinetic movements as you search through the room(s) — spoiler alert: there are hidden doors to secret room / compartments. An added bonus is that you can guide your kids / siblings to work together as a team.
So, what was the verdict from the birthday boy?
“It was fun but challenging. I will definitely want to try the other escape rooms. This time, I’ll bring my friends!” ~ Krysh, 11 years old.
Final advice: Wear comfortable clothing you can crawl around in and an attitude of fun!
Other Escape Rooms you may want to try:
3) Lock Down
4) Escape Hunt
I will be compiling a comparison of these venues by next week, so do return to this site to check it out.
You may also like our Birthday Parties @ Build-a-Bear, Wild Wild Wet, Universal Studios or Adventure Cove OR DIY birthday parties at home – Ninja Gangnam Style, Royal Princesses, Slumber Parties or 20 Great Birthday Party Ideas.
If you like this post, do connect with me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram or share with me in the comments below your experiences with Escape Rooms or other fun family bonding activities to do with our kids.