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New Game Alert – Hostage Hostel

HOSTAGE HOSTEL – THE LATEST GAME ARRIVING IN CITY MAZES CARDIFF

That’s right – one of City Mazes’ most popular rooms is arriving at Cardiff – get ready!

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You will have up to 60 minutes to break free from the creeping looking hostel that you’ve  now been locked in. Are you and up to 9 other friends ready to see if you can take on the challenge? Remember, if you are booking for either a Stag or Hen do – the Stag or Hen themselves are free!

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We can also host birthday parties, corporate events and the best Christmas parties around!

Call us on: 0117 911 9878 or email [email protected] to ensure a slot.

 

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New Game Alert – Subject 11

SUBJECT 11 – THE LATEST GAME ARRIVING IN CITY MAZES BRISTOL

Something STRANGE is coming to City Mazes Bristol…

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From October 1st 2018, our Bristol branch will be experiencing a flip Upside Down, where our escapees will be using their best sixth sense to try and figure out what has been stealing children in the dead of night! Have you got what it takes to break free in less than 60 minutes?

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Our game designers are incredibly excited to bring you this brand new game, which we know will leave you feeling stranger than ever…

Book now to see how fast you can break free!

0117 911 9878 // [email protected]

 

 

City Mazes Hen Party

Organising the ultimate hen/stag party

Have you been tasked with planning your best friends last weekend of freedom before the big day? It can be stressful, especially as you want it to be perfect!

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We have some activity ideas for you for a guaranteed fun filled weekend!

  1. City Mazes

Well of course we are going to start with our escape rooms!! Now in four locations across the UK (soon to be five!) Bristol, Cardiff, Oxford & London, City Mazes offers a perfect start to the hen/stag party by breaking the ice and getting everyone to work together! So grab your hens or stags and get ready for a heart racing 60 minutes … will your party escape?!

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      2. Cocktail Making

Popular with the hens, cocktail making appeals to many as it is something everyone can do and enjoy!

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      3. Beer Bike

Now this one is normally popular with the stags! Ever wanted to see the views of the city whilst having a few bikes along the way?! Well the beer bike tour is perfect for your party!

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4. Its a Knockout

The ultimate event filled with barrels of laughter, galloons of water & LOTS of foam! Looking for a more active event, then Its a Knockout is perfect for your hen or stag party! Running from March – Mid October across three locations, Bristol, Cardiff & London (introducing more locations for 2019)! We love this event and think you will too … so what are you waiting for?

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These are just some of our favourite ideas for the ultimate hen or stag weekend! A few others that make tickle your fancy: Afternoon Tea, Go Ape, Zorbing, Zorb Football, Life Drawing are to name a few!

Happy Planning!!

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The Runner – installing a new game

The Runner – Installing a New Game 

Back on 10th March, we open the doors to our brand new, next generation, escape room – THE RUNNER! The story of the room goes a little something like this …

“You probably don’t remember how you got here (or much at all) but your name should come back to you soon. This area that you are in now will be only be safe for a short while, but something is coming for us all….you have about 60 minutes before this place is crawling with them…..you must ESCAPE!”

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So welcome to the glade! This is where you will start the room, but that is all the information you are going to get … we don’t want to give away too much! You’ll have to come & play it to find out what happens in the room.

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Installing a new game is exciting for us at City Mazes. It allows us to get our creative juices flowing & Amy sure has made sure that our individually designed, next generation room is fully immersive!!

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So what are you waiting for? Can you escape The Runner?! There is only one way to find out …

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The Capitol Escape

Here at City Mazes, we have had a very excited start to the year! We have teamed up with 20th Century Fox & Cardiff’s Capitol Shopping centre to bring you a BRAND new, one of a kind, escape room. Created especially to celebrate the release of the final chapter in the Maze Runner trilogy, the unique escape game will be open to the public for one month only from Friday 26th January to coincide with the release of the final installment of the saga, Maze Runner: The Death Cure.

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Located on the first floor of the Capitol Shopping Centre on Queen Street Cardiff, groups of up to eight people have 60 minutes to solve a series of challenges in order to reveal a code which allows them to escape.

Charles Bevan-Barratt, Centre Manager at Capitol Shopping Centre, said: “With easy access to Premiere Cinema, which is also based in the shopping centre, the escape room is perfect for film fans who want to totally immerse themselves in the Maze Runner experience. It’s been fantastic to work with Twentieth Century Fox and City Mazes to bring this unique attraction to life in Cardiff.”

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James Sweetnam from City Mazes, who created the escape room especially for Twentieth Century Fox, said: “We designed the game from scratch with the previous films in mind so this really will be a treat for fans of the films, as well as those who simply want a new escape experience. It’s the only one of its kind in the UK, employing new technology never before seen in an escape room, so it’s a truly unique gaming experience.”

Carrie Bellett, Local Partnerships Executive at Twentieth Century Fox, said: “Maze Runner: The Death Cure is the long-awaited final chapter in the trilogy and we wanted to celebrate that with a new, real-life game experience for fans to enjoy. Not only is Capitol Shopping Centre home to a popular cinema where fans can see the film, it is right in the heart of Cardiff, which is a young and vibrant city, making it the ideal location to base the Maze Runner escape room.”

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Don’t miss out! There is only 1 month to escape from Capitol! Book now here

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Unique Christmas Present Ideas

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Holiday season is upon us! Whether this prospect excites or scares you, one thing is for certain: you will have a lot of free time that needs filling up and gifts that need buying! So we’ve come up with some suggestions that might help you find those gifts and enhance your holiday!

Of course the first thing that many people think of when the holiday season rolls around is spending time with your family & those close to you. From my own personal experience this usually means days out in the city with your family and friends, visiting Christmas markets in various cities, trying to stay warm, hunting for some unique presents, all while experiencing what that city has to offer!

But why stop there? What could be better than ending a day of holiday shopping than experiencing something completely different by playing an escape game? You’ll get your brains working (and warming up!) and then you must work together to escape – what says holiday spirit more than teamwork?

We have branches in London (Islington), Oxford, Cardiff & Bristol, so wherever you are you can escape to another world and have a truly unique holiday memory! At all of our branches there are games that are family friendly, so children can play too. Plus if you’re struggling for present ideas, you can always pick up a gift card for anyone you know who would enjoy the experience as well!

But what if you’re already an avid escape room fan? Why not get your family, friends or even colleagues involved by organising an escape room event, where you can challenge other teams of your peers to see who can escape in the quickest time or just to see if you can beat our challenging 5 star difficulty rooms…

So whether you want an exciting experience to end a day of shopping, a memorable family gathering or a teambuilding experience, why not make an escape room experience part of your holiday tradition?

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What is Augmented and Virtual reality and how are they used in the game?

 

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While augmented reality and virtual reality might seem similar from the outside (as both require a headset with a screen inside) what the viewer will end up using and seeing with the two different types of technology is very different.

 

With  Augmented Reality  the viewer will seem to see the real world as if normal (the camera on the headset providing a live feed) but when certain triggers are picked up on by the camera (in the game these triggers will be puzzles and clues that you will have to find or solve) the player wearing the headset will see “reality” altered or augmented in some way to provide them with another clue or hint to solve the game.

 

The Virtual Reality system in the game works in a similar fashion to the Augmented Reality headset, in the sense that until the “trigger” is found the player wearing the headset will see the real world through the device’s camera. Once the trigger is found the headset will automatically begin the Virtual Reality experience, the player will no longer be able to see the real world and will be taken into a fully immersive 360 degree virtual world. The camera is no longer used to broadcast a live feed of the real world but is used to track the player’s head/the direction they are looking within the virtual world.

As with all of our games we try to make our games as immersive as possible which means using new technology inside our games that can improve the escape room experience. With a technology as new as AR & AR there are precautions that should be taken. We do not believe that these games is suitable for players under the age of 14 or any other group where players might not be comfortable using the Augmented or Virtual reality technology.

 

We hope that you guys really enjoy this addition to the immersive City Mazes escape games and I hope this article was able to answer any questions about Augmented & Virtual Reality that you might have had!

 

Elliott: Technical Officer at City Mazes.

 

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Atomic Agency – Creating a New Game

Hello again!  

As you see from the title of this post, we are going to be covering something very exciting today; a brand new game called ATOMIC AGENCY. As the technical officer here at City Mazes, I have been working on bringing this new game to our Bristol complex and I will be explaining what to expect from this new game!  

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The first thing we always think about when creating a room is “what story are we going to tell?” This is sometimes determined by the theme of the location (for example we have a lot of film based games in our Cardiff complex, such as Jumanji and Titanic) and sometimes it is determined by new technology and props that a game is then based around, and this new game is a combination of the two!

In the Bristol complex, the games tend to have a link to the past: be they WWII bunkers or Office blocks due for destruction, so we decided to keep this in mind when creating this new game and set it in the past, but in an era we had not explored before. Then once we were sure of this we started looking at what props and puzzles we might want to use and the rest fell right into place!

With this game, players will be travelling back to the Cold War, as this game is set in 1961 and you find yourself in a suspicious office somewhere in England where all is not as it seems… As you would imagine from a game called “Atomic Agency” players will be faced with a high stakes situation that will need to be diffused before the time runs out! Players will take on the role of counterintelligence agents trying to uncover a sinister plot that has been taking place right under our noses… Fortunately for you, there is a person on the inside who has left you a few clues that might help to reveal what is really going on at this “agency”. But don’t be fooled by the initial appearance of the office, despite your man on the inside, you’re going to need to bring your A-game as this will be a 3 star difficulty room: even 007 would have a hard time getting out of this one in 60 minutes!

This game will be perfect for any James Bond fan or spy enthusiast as puzzles are based around spycraft, subterfuge and decoding! Equally, any escape room enthusiast or even a newcomer looking for a challenge will feel right at home in this room, as it brings together a classic escape room experience integrated with 4th generation tech to give you a fully immersive cold war spy thriller experience!

I am very excited to bring this game and story to life for players to experience at City Mazes Bristol (and maybe a few other locations…), as both the story and the technical side of this room will blow you away!

Elliott – Technical Officer. 

Professors Predicament

Can you save the Wizarding World?

Can you save the wizarding world from the dark lord?

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Lets be honest, it is every child … and adults dream to receive their letter from Hogwarts, we bet some of you are still waiting for it in the post! So what if we told you, you could actually spent 60 minutes experiencing what the wizarding world has to offer? If you complete the adventure and escape, you can become a wizarding hero for saving the wizarding world!

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Our brand new, next generation game Professors Predicament allows all budding wizarding fanatics to truly put their knowledge to the test! 
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And what better place to escape than Oxford! Where some of the scenes for the movie were shot! Oh, and did we mention that you will get the chance to dress like a wizard too?

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Don’t forget, this is your chance to finally say “Mischief Managed”!

 

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What is a 4th generation escape room – A guide to different types of escape games.

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In December ‘16 we were very proud to have brought the first 4th generation game into the UK, a game called Bamboozled in Cardiff, but many of you (even experienced escape room enthusiasts) might be wondering what a 4th generation game is. To answer that it’s best to start from the beginning and explain how escape rooms and City Mazes have evolved from 1st generation games to the cutting edge.

First Generation rooms are where it all started and they rely heavily on padlocks, combination locks and the act of finding items hidden in a room and then using these items to solve a puzzle or get a code/key to unlock something manually. These rooms are often a good way to start your escape room career as many of the core mechanics of escape rooms are based on these ideas even if they have gotten more advanced.

At a Second Generation level escape rooms begin to have themes and themed puzzles as well as the introduction to puzzles that rely on technology such as UV lights and simple electronic puzzles. Some of our most popular games (like The Hostage Hostel in Bristol) are second generation games which combine the intrigue of classic escape room puzzles and padlocks but with the addition of more complex and exiting tech based puzzles.

At Third Generation we begin to get into the exciting world of “smart” escape rooms. These rooms are where we start to see padlocks replaced by keypads and codes replaced by switches and other engaging puzzles that lead a player through the game relying less on codes and more on a linear structure where the game leads players to the next puzzle through tech based equipment. Examples of games like this would be Operation Spaced X in Oxford where players start in completely blank white room, no padlocks no puzzles are visible and players must not only work out the puzzles but how to find them!

And finally (for now) 4th Generation games! These rooms are entirely tech based but also have a distinct advantage over 3rd generation in that they are where escape rooms become computerised! This means that anything that you do in the room could affect an item, set off a sound or visual clue or open a lock somewhere else in the room! These actions can be a simple as touching an item or for example, in our New wizard themed game Professor’s Predicament, casting a spell on various items can lead players to many different results…as if by magic! These games allow the greatest level of immersion and excitement as players are not only trying to escape a room but they are involved in the story of the room and affect it by their actions.

Obviously, this is a very exciting time to be an escape room enthusiast and I hope you’ll stick around to see what else city mazes has in store! Perhaps a 5th generation room (including Augmented and Virtual reality) might be coming sooner than you think…

 

Elliott Barrett – Technical Officer