If The Curious Elevator of Mr. Hincks was a book, The Curious Stairs of Mr. Hincks would be its prequel novella.
Completion Time: 1 hour
Date Played: 28th August 2020
Party Size: 2
Bluefish Games … I think we can all agree they’re one of the most loved game making couples in the world! Which is why it it’s just so exciting when they make something new! Anna and Ace are back at it again with a wonderful prequel to The Curious Elevator of Mr. Hincks: The Curious Stairs of Mr. Hincks (shortened hereafter as The Curious Stairs). It’s a shorter sweet introduction to the world of Hincksyland – bright, colourful and absolutely charming.
The ‘story’ begins with you, the player, ascending a series of stairs. Just like The Curious Elevator, you must enter a password at each locked door in order to advance. As you go you’ll be solving curious films, interrogating pizza menus, playing with cards, and most excitingly – assembling brown boxes. Why we ascend the stairs, I’m not completely sure. To appease the wonderful overlord Mr Hincks? Perhaps. To prove we are the best and make it into the Hincks Hall of Fame? More likely.
In any case, as you’re not on a timer there’s really no pressure. Nor does the game take itself too seriously. It’s just good fun, all found. A little bit silly and there’s an equal mix of puzzles at all difficulty levels!
I’ve said before, and I’ll say it again: A lot of the charm of Bluefish Games’ is the quality of materials. Once again I was blown away by how brilliant everything looked and felt. It’s the kind of game you pack away really, really carefully (why yes maybe I have a special folder I put my very favourite escape games into! Doesn’t everyone?), and just such a joy to assemble all over again.
Completing this game actually took us a few sittings. I think I averaged out to 1hr complete time, but it’s definitely harder than The Curious Elevator. One of the main reasons for this is that the puzzles are not one straightforward puzzle – but a puzzle, within a puzzle, within a puzzle. You solve one part, to give you a clue to solve the second part, then the third. With a drink in hand on the Fridayest of Friday nights, we did take several breaks between each level. I think if you’re like us, that’s the best way to play. Snacks, drinks, and pauses to reset the brain cogs.
In particular, besides the assembling – we particularly enjoyed the video game level! It’s very hard to choose a favourite part of a play at home game that is so refreshing and unique in every way, but the video game one was something so different and surprising it was a joy to play (and also a frustration to get wrong several times before we did finally nail it!). Although, Player 2 says his favourite part of the game was the Movie Posters level – so there’s definitely something in this for everyone!
Overall, such an enjoyable and charming game I’d recommend to absolutely anyone and everyone. Give it a go yourself and I’m sure you’ll be pleasantly surprised!
The Curious Stairs of Mr. Hincks can be purchased for $17 on Bluefish Game‘s website.
Mairi is the editor-in-chief of The Escape Roomer and writes about news, and reviews covering London and UK south.