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Escape Room challenges visitors

(June 19, 2015) A zombie episode of “The Big Bang Theory” put interactive “escape room” games on national television, and now Ocean City visitors and residents can join in the fun — finding clues and solving puzzles — before time runs out.

Escape Room is on 118th Street in the OC Square shopping center and features three rooms to solve: Pirate’s Treasure, the Boss’s Office and the Quiet Room.

“It’s a new and unique experience for Ocean City,” Escape Room owner, Linar Yagudin, said. “You unlock detective abilities and use brain power to escape the room and break the code. Get together with friends to solve the mystery and have adventures you will never forget.”

In the Pirate’s Treasure room, participants have one hour to find the pirate’s hidden treasure in his haunted cabin and solve the mystery of the wreckage before it sinks below the ocean.

Players are tasked with finding the boss, who escaped with everyone’s life savings, and hacking his bank account to return the money before it’s gone forever in the second challenge room, Boss’s Office.

In the Quiet Room, participants are transported to an abandoned asylum looking for an antidote to the “sickness” before it takes over after 45 minutes.

“Every room has a personal touch and they are all different,” Yagudin said. “We make up all the puzzles for the game and we have many ideas ahead.”

People are having a hard time getting out of the rooms without clues, he added. Throughout the game, employees will send clues to participants.

“It’s like being a detective with critical thinking and problem solving,” Yagudin said. “You’re thinking outside the box and using logic to figure out how you will use items in the room.”

Each room can hold six or more players, which means participants may be uncovering clues and finding keys to unlock answers with strangers. All items in the room could be a clue except for pictures or decorations hanging on the walls.

Escape Rooms have been used as a team-building exercise, a host for special events, birthday parties, work events and even bachelorette and bachelor parties.

A friend of Yagudin experienced an Escape Room in Pittsburg, which made him think it would be a cool idea for Ocean City. They started renovations in January and the interactive escape game opened up quietly on Memorial Day weekend to decent crowds.

 “Come play the brain game rain or shine,” Yagudin said. “It’s an adult, family-friendly game where you meet new people and get a full experience.”

To keep the rooms fresh and new, two rooms will change at the end of summer with holiday themes likely to appear. The Escape Room will stay open until at least Winterfest ends, Yagudin said.

The Pirate’s Treasure Room and the Boss’s Office costs $26 on the weekdays and $28 on the weekends.

The Quiet Room is $24 on the weekdays and $26 on the weekends.

Participants are asked to arrive 15 minutes before start time and reservations can be changed up to 24 hours before arrival. Expect to spend about 90 minutes at Escape Room for orientation, debriefing and playtime.

During the summer, Escape Room is open every day 11:30 a.m. to midnight with the last session starting at 11 p.m.

Visit www.escapetheroomoc.com for more information or to purchase a slot to play.

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