Swamp Motel: Plymouth Point

Ivy has gone missing. The residents of Plymouth Point are concerned. Gather your team, and get your ticket to join the Residents Watch emergency meeting.

Rating: Dramatic!
Completion Time: 43 minutes
Date Played: 27th March 2021
Party Size: 3
Recommended For: Folks who enjoy ARGs

If you’ve been following my progress with the Swamp Motel series, you’ll know that whilst this is the first game in the series, it’s the second one I’m playing! Yep, we (shout out to Shiny Life and Me) kinda-accidentally booked ourselves in for The Kindling Hour two weekends ago and whilst it worked fine as a standalone experience, the series makes a lot more sense now I’ve played Plymouth Point. Oops!

As such, you’ll probably hear a lot of comparisons between this game and The Kindling Hour. Confusing, but it makes sense in my head!

So to start, unlike The Kindling Hour, Plymouth Point is set in Zoom. It makes sense, in a kind of proto-Handforth Parish Council Meeting, you join your neighbourhood’s local watch. The Plymouth Point Residents Watch, where the chair raises concern for a missing girl: Ivy. Up until now, Ivy had been diligently checking in with her every day then suddenly *poof* vanished. You’re set the task of finding out what happened to her.

From here, it’s very self driven. You aren’t actually given a lot of direction (unless you need it of course – there is someone on hand for hints). Your goal is simply to ‘find out what happened’. Just keep digging, just keep digging *la la la*. If you were going to look for an actual missing person, where would you start? Her Facebook page of course! Who do they talk to, where do they live, where might they have gone? Second place to look – their email account. And, with a cheeky password ‘hint’ on her Facebook, the game is afoot.

From a typical missing person case to a large and unfurling conspiracy centred around the London Stone Consortium – a shadowy organisation tasked with protecting the mystical London Stone. It seems as if Ivy has somehow become trapped within it’s web, and that’s where the real thriller unfolds. But, that’s not all! It also dips fairly interestingly into history. I now know a lot of local history of this small town in England and more about witchfinders than I ever knew possible! Woah, pretty neat!

There aren’t puzzles per se. The whole game is much more of an ARG (alternate reality game) that takes place on the internet. Your stage is Youtube, Facebook, email clients, password protected pages and more. In fact, the only time we really needed a hint was when we mis-Googled, rather than been unable to solve a specific puzzle.

The game recommends that one person share their screen and everyone follow along either on screen or by clicking through the various steps of the game in the background on their own devices. We played as a team of 3 and this was a pretty optimal number to make sure everyone had something to do, I think any more and it would be a case of a lot of folks watching along.

We did have some minor technical hiccups – not as many as the Mermaid’s Tongue (I’ll add a link here once I write that review!), but nothing that was game breaking. At some points in the story the actors and characters drop in and out of your Zoom call – but I’ll chalk up any difficulties to the *gestures vaguely* new digital world we find ourselves in, post-pandemic.

Overall, a fun and exciting experience with just enough of a dash of drama to keep us all excited from start to finish. If you’ve ever wanted to take centre stage in a digital mystery, this will be right up your street. But be careful… Somebody’s watching you!

Plymouth Point can be booked for £55 per team on Plymouth Point’s website.

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