Wands at the ready, Witches and Wizards! Brackendel School of Magic needs you!
Completion Time: 32 Minutes
Date Played: 8th of June 2020
Party Size: 3
Recommended For: Kids, Families
I’m having a very Harry Potter week! First, watching a few of the films on my birthday, then later becoming obsessed with the Lego Harry Potter PS4 game (seriously it’s hilariously addictive – go try it!). So Escape Hunt’s “School of Magic” fit perfectly and gave me an excuse to keep the witch hat on one day longer.
The only big thing I absolutely must preface at the start of this review is that it’s very much aimed at a family audience. Give this to your kids, or play with a group of beginners for sure! I only mention it as 20-something Harry Potter fans like myself may wiz(ard) through this game in half the time as another escape game and be left feeling a little ‘meh’.
But as the genre of ‘wizard escape rooms’ go, this one isn’t bad at all! It has absolutely charming illustrations and it toes the line of Harry Potter better than others on the market (meaning there’s no “Henry Potter”, or “Professor Grumbledore”, you instead meet brand new characters in a brand new school that sits seamlessly in the Harry Potter universe without breaking immersion). In fact, to take that further I’d like to imagine that the Brackendel School of Magic is another alongside Hogwarts in the UK. If Hogwarts be Eton, I reckon I’d have gone to Brackendel.
In terms of gameplay, it’s quite simple and straightforward. You and your fellow students are gearing up for an end of year celebration when disaster strikes! Puzzle your way through the winding corridors of the school and collect magical items that you and your fellow witches can use to defeat an evil sorcerer, the Griffinex! You have to solve puzzles to uncover the spells (or write them yourself, really! This is serious magic we’re talking about). Helping along the way is another handy chatbot. This time, it really feels like you’re having a two way convo as your friend guides you through the school from the safety of your library. It’s creative! I like it!
Overall, rated 4 stars for some really solid puzzles, wonderful illustration and a unique take on the magic school genre. It’ll be a bit too easy for your average escape game player, but families will love this one.
You can purchase School of Magic from Escape Hunt‘s website for £14.99.
Mairi is the editor-in-chief and covers escape rooms/immersive theatre in London, play at home games, and video games.