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Think you can solve puzzles and crack codes to get yourself out of a locked room in under 120 minutes? Then the challenge is on! Grab a couple of friends, sharpen those minds and get ready to enter the chambers of Pandora’s live escape games!

Pandora Experience lets you choose between three escape rooms episodes, each with unique themes and immersive atmospheres that look like they’ve been taken straight out of a movie set. Die hard escape room fans will enjoy the intellectual and physical challenges offered by Legends of El Dorado – think lost city of gold. More into conspiracy theories? Then the mysterious U.S. military site of Area 51 should be your kinda playground. And if you’re an escape room newbie, then Alcatraz is your go-to episode. Now, before the game starts, there will be a five minute brief during which you will be given a walkie-talkie you can use to ask limitless hints from the game master. Booyah! Once you’ve stashed all your phones, bags and other personal items safely in your locker, you’re good to go!

We tested our wits against the legendary Alcatraz experience. This could be as close as you’ll get to a real-life prison break, without the tattoos! As soon as you walk through the game door, you and your teammates are tasked with escaping a very cleverly designed prison cell, then getting out of the jailhouse by cracking codes, opening padlocks and finding clues to get you moving closer to the exit through a maze of cryptic steps.

At first, that 120 minutes stretches out like a Peter Jackson trilogy. And before you know it, the game masters are checking in with you, asking if you need a clue because 15 minutes have already gone by… Yikes! That’s when the concentration phase kicks in. Maths types try bullying integers into opening combination locks. Wannabe Columbos try to make sense of writings on the wall. And occasionally, the room rings with the slap of high-fiving palms and yells of ‘I’ve cracked it!’

Having more than one room to play in meant that there was a fair bit of teamwork involved and some instructions yelled at each other through walls, which, combined with the tense soundtrack, only added to the urgency of the situation. And as the end nears, everything moves fast-forward. “Only ten minutes left!” says the soundtrack. People running around the room like kiddies who’ve left it too long to wee.

It’s an exhilarating two hours and the satisfaction of tumbling out the door with just seconds to spare is immense. And don’t worry, they’re generous about timings – if you’re really struggling at the end of the hour, you’ll find an extra few minutes tacked on. We thought we’d beat the clock but they gave us an extra, ehemmm… 20 minutes to escape. Once outside, you realise that you’ve driven yourself up the wall for nothing more than your desire to prove that your brain is as good as anyone else’s. And if a game can do that, then you know it’s genuinely brilliant.

So, Happy Pandora Games! And may the odds be ever in your favour.

Go check it out: Pandora Experience Bali

Find it: Jl. Dewi Sri 45D (Across Anomali Coffee, near Warung Pepe) 12-10pm

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