Escape Entertainment: Bank Heist | Review

In this adventure, we ask you to rob the crown jewels from the bank. We have hacked their security cameras, providing you a small window of opportunity. Find the clues and solves the puzzles to get one step closer to breaking into the vault! 60 minutes…the clock is ticking.

Completion Time: 39 minutes
Date Played: 7th August 2021
Party Size: 2
Recommended For: For a fun and (relatively) inexpensive escape room in Central London!

“Hey! At least rainy days are perfect for escape rooms”, I say as Escape Entertainment buzzes Bianca and myself through the door, absolutely soaked to the skin by the uncharacteristically rainy weather!

We found ourselves at Escape Entertainment after seeking out a relatively inexpensive escape room the two of us could play to add a little jazz to the fact we’d a stack of boxed games to trade. After a quick Google, Escape Entertainment popped up as a Central London company situated just a short walk from my apartment – how on earth it had flown under my radar for long is a mystery! It’s tucked down the old Victorian alleys surrounding bank and now occupies the building Escape Hunt’s London branch once was.

The Best Escape Room for Team Building

Escape Entertainment is best equipped for corporate team-building days… And yeah! It makes sense. There are in fact 6 identical “Bank Heist” rooms in the building, allowing for up to 36 players to simultaneously go head to head. On the rainy Saturday morning we’d chosen, the site was deserted.

On the one hand, the two enormous lobbies felt eerily empty but on the other hand we had plenty of time to chat to our GM… Oh, and plenty of time taking 16 photos on the selfie machine. Nice.

I’m mentioning the games master so early in this review as honestly, he made it. Absolutely full of life, enthusiastic to be there, and a hardcore escape room fan who we chatted to for a very long time after about the various experiences in and around London. A bad GM will rarely be mentioned in our reviews (unless there’s some kind of endemic issue there). A good GM on the other hand? I’m going to shout his praises from the roof!

Photo (c) Escape Entertainment

Your Mission: Rob the Bank

Bank Heist may just be one of the most over-used themes of escape room out there. Escape Entertainment doesn’t reinvent the wheel, but what they lack in ‘wow this is totally new’ they make up for in ‘yeah this was a fun interpretation’.

Hidden deep within the vault of this particular bank are the crown jewels and you’re part of a criminal syndicate whose goal is to steal them! Because… Why not?

What follows is a fairly non-linear, three room experience starting in the security guard’s office, into the main bank, and finally into the high security vaults. For two players this felt like the sweet spot with us both feeling busy and engaged with every part of the game – but I think the slightly non-linear nature of the experience means that there’s something for everyone. If you can get a bigger team together, you may as well give it a go.

The room isn’t the most impressive set design I’ve ever seen, but I suppose it comes with the territory or needing to rapidly spin out 6 identical versions of the same space. Never once did I actually feel like I was inside a high security vault, but I’m happy to suspend disbelief for a game that kept me so occupied with other aspects, such as the puzzles, for so long. Sure, the ceilings were pretty ‘office-y’ but who has time to look at ceilings when you’re cracking open vault doors, eh?

How Difficult is Bank Heist?

Bank Heist, as mentioned, is definitely geared towards the corporate audience, meaning it’s on the slightly easier side. Our team of two completed it at 39 minutes on the clock. Towards the start we got very hung up on one of the earlier puzzles, but once that was out of the way we were on a roll. Players will need to move seamlessly between the three rooms to rapidly solve each puzzle the game throws at them.

Beyond our early hiccup (which we solved in a very unconventional way), the rest of the game felt seamless, even solving a puzzle or two later in the game tat most teams tend to brute force.

Players can expect a large quantity of keys – which fit very well within the room – and some other more delightful logical puzzles. Early in the game you’re also given a calculator, so if you’re planning on taking on Bank Heist player beware – there’s maths involved! I was also impressed to see a pressure plate puzzle and some fun uses of magnets.

Overall, it was a well rounded room in terms of difficulty. No puzzle too insurmountable and no task too great for our little team!

The Verdict

Actually I was really pleasantly surprised by my whole Escape Entertainment experience. I’d gone in with fairly low expectations, after reading a couple of ‘meh’ reviews online, I figured what the heck let’s give it a try. It’s so close and I’ve nothing to lose. Instead I came out with a huge smile on my face, vowing to return and try their other room (for 7 players!) as soon as possible. Bank Heist is fun! Plain and simple.

On completing Bank Heist, we were greeted with not only medals but also a mug each! Double score!!

But in all seriousness, it’s this kind of customer service that left us walking away glowing after an otherwise regular escape room experience. As I write this review, I’m sipping tea from the very same mug, though not wearing the medal.

Overall, Escape Entertainment is a hidden gem in the heart of London. A fun enough room with a brilliant team behind it who genuinely love what they do.

Bank Heist by Escape Entertainment can be booked on Escape Entertainment’s website here.

Ratings

Escape Entertainment: Bank Heist | Review
  • Decor
  • Puzzles
  • Immersion
  • Innovation
  • Fun Factor
  • Value
3.3

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