CommercialAugust 2, 2018

Look but don’t touch? Using props in your Escape Room

Whether it’s an array of levers and switches set in the right order, a framed photograph which reveals a vital clue, or a cleverly disguised iPad hosting a hint dashboard – props can mystify your guests, decorate your set and even play vital roles in your Escape Room story.

New, dedicated suppliers spring up every day, offering devices including Morse Code machines, key turn puzzles, button press kits and weight-sensitive devices to add new depth to your challenges.

But regular handling and possible mistreatment can leave your best items broken. As an Exit Game owner, how can you make props a highlight rather than a headache?

Mechanical failure

Issue: Whether you set them to magnetically unlock a door, stop a countdown clock, ring an old-fashioned telephone or reveal the next clue, there are endless things you can do with mechanical props. But moving parts can seize up, keys can jam and buttons can break. What to do?

Solution: Regular inspection, at the beginning and end of each day, can highlight potential problems before they get worse. Stiff levers or jagged edges might mean potential health and safety hazards to guests. Always provide a basic briefing in your introduction, ensure there is a second exit and a fire escape in case mechanical room locks fail and make sure a staff member can be easily contacted during the game if something breaks.

Missing items 

Issue: Perhaps your theme was just too good or your props too well-curated, but there is a chance that small, loose or particularly valuable props might go walkabout. Distinctly un-spooky in nature, theft is a potential problem for any public-facing business with contents.

Solution: If your props don’t need to be moved for the game to be successfully played, there is no reason they can’t be affixed to furniture, walls and floors. It won’t look odd – in fact, most players won’t think twice about this, especially if the items are well-suited to their surroundings.

Broken props

Issue: Heavy footfall and regular handling can leave props in need of repair or replacement, especially when the “be curious” nature of gameplay leaves guests checking inside, outside and underneath every fixture and fitting in search of clues!

Solution: Bespoke insurance for your props, puzzles and contents can help cover the costs of repairing or replacing broken items. Specialists in Escape Room insurance, talk to The Insurance Centre team on 01524 848506 for a bespoke quote.