Struck Down Entertainment: The Mad Bomber

Will you solve the Mad Bomber’s puzzles in time? Will you save the city from nonsense-filled peril? Will you be able to deal with the Mad Bomber’s barrage of puns?

Rating: Challenging!
Completion Time:  60 minutes
Date Played: 8th October 2020
Party Size: 1.5
Recommended For: Anyone

So there’s two things to say about The Mad Bomber. First of all it is HILARIOUS. Second of all, I found it mind bogglingly challenging. Thirdly (okay I lied about there being only two things), it’s like nothing else I’ve ever played! A video escape room? Don’t mind if I do!

The concept of a ‘video escape room’ comes from the team at Struck Down Entertainment and I think is very unique in it’s category – at least, it’s the first I’ve played. Historically, Struck Down Entertainment specialised in ‘fun’ commercials, short films, music videos and the like. That experience in making video content fun really shows here – The Mad Bomber was nothing if not fun! I loved it!

You, a crack team of detectives, are hot on the case of a cartoonishly funny villain “Bombkers”. He’s everything you want from a supervillain – nefarious and nonsensical who will stop at nothing but to destroy the world. This is one such occasion – he has left a series of bombs poised and ready to explode in several highly populated areas (a zoo, a supermarket, a factory). It’s a good job you turned up when you did to defuse them!

Besides explosives, Bombkers is also loaded with puns and taunts. He might have designed each puzzle for you to solve but I reckon his real secret master plan was having a captive audience to listen to jokes about Napoleon Blown-Apart.

Once you’ve giggled your way through the intro videos, the structure of the game is as follows: Each page has a video (around 1 – 5 minutes long). Within each video is a puzzle and below each video a password box that will allow you to proceed. It sounds simple, right? WRONG. The puzzles started very very simple (I foolishly thought to myself “hah, I’ll be done in 15 minutes” and boy was I wrong) and they ramp up a little bit harder each time. By the end I was scratching my head and turning the laptop this way and that to try to figure out the solution.

The trick is to keep your cool. The video medium allows for a very tense countdown until the bomb explodes. Of course, you can pause the video whenever you want – but I like to think you really do only have a matter of minutes to solve each one before KABOOM. And yes, I KABOOM-ed several times. The city is definitely not safe in my clumsy hands!

I finished The Mad Bomber over two days. Day one, I had Player 2 to help. Day two I was on my own! As such, I’m considering this “completed with 1.5 player game” for myself but I’d DEFINITELY recommend getting a team of 3 or more together around a table. The puns are just too funny to laugh by yourself. Everything about this game screams ‘group of friends’. It’s fun, silly and light-hearted. Even the introduction email I received from the creator was on-brand and charming! It’s the little touches that make all the difference in the world.

The Mad Bomber can be purchased for $10 USD on Struck Down Entertainment’s website.

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