You’re on the clock

How harrowing is the new escape room?


Photo by Jakob Fisher

The new North Platte escape room, “The Vault,” is now open to the public.

Jakob Fisher, Editorial Cartoonist

Imagine being locked in a room and hearing, “Put it back, put it back!,” and “This is why he said, ‘Don’t touch the props!’”

As part of a trade with “The Vault,” I was able to experience an escape room first hand from their “Last Days of Wonder” room. For those who have never been through an escape room, clues are placed on a monitor on the wall prompting you to solve puzzles for your freedom. Themes change depending on the season, and this one will be around through November.

Our mission: retrieve Father Time’s “Book of Wonder” to save the wonder of the world from dying out. I gagged on the cheesiness, but I still had hope for the room. It was a midsize room fully furnished with couches, bookshelves and even streamers hanging from the ceiling. Several things stood out right away. Placed upon the floor were locked containers of various sizes. I knew then that this would be far more complicated than I had previously expected.

For a full hour the group frantically searched the room with mixed results. On multiple occasions they gave up until another hint appeared on the monitor to fuel their motives. Passions were high with comments like “Does anybody have a wrench?,” and “If this doesn’t work, I will cry.” Yet they still persisted. Finally the time had expired and we were ushered out of the room… defeated.

When it was all said and done, the party collectively enjoyed the activity. A few had already planned return visits. Senior Kyle Mull was one of the group that was pleased with the experience. “I thought it was cool,” said Mull. “It was pretty neat that our town has something new to do.”

As a fly on the wall, the puzzles seemed complicated, and often unclear. At times they were barely eking along by the hints that trickled in. However, the progress is entirely dependent on group that you bring along, and that goes for the fun as well. So if you want to fully enjoy an escape room gather together a group of friends and get your thinking caps on. But remember in the words of junior Evan Perlinger, “I think it’s called The Vault for a reason.”