Escape Academy Review – Layers of Enigmatic Satisfaction

Escape Academy Review on PC

For good reason, escape rooms have become a staple of entertainment around the world in recent years. Here was a shared experience with friends or family that could test your critical thinking and puzzle-solving skills, with an often interesting premise to give things that narrative flair.

However, instead of doing it physically and outdoors, what if you could enjoy all of this from the comfort of your own home? That’s the appeal of Coin Crew Games’ Escape Academy, and the authenticity of this puzzle game makes for both good times and bad times.

As a new student just arrived at the titular escape academy, this is the first goal for promising students to transform into the ultimate escapist. That means you’ll have to progress through over a dozen rooms specially designed by the sneaky masterminds behind real-life escape rooms to test your skills, with the ultimate goal of earning 10 badges throughout the school year.

 

In between your attempts to escape, a diverse cast of characters helps flesh out the lore in this particular universe, although honestly, there’s really no need for an overarching story. Gamers who are here are definitely looking for puzzles to solve, and while the extra flavor is always appreciated, it’s not exactly a huge selling point here.

However, as soon as you enter one of the various escape rooms, the real fun begins. Much like you would do in real life, it’s always helpful to get a feel for things through the first-person perspective in the beginning. Checking out suspicious objects and sifting through containers for clues and links are just a few things that come naturally, and the tried-and-true point-and-click mechanics are pretty much perfect for this type of gameplay.

It doesn’t take long for the rooms to get more complex and the puzzles more complicated. As players progress through Escape Academy, there’s a gentle but satisfying curve to mastering their systems and challenges, and it certainly helps that you can take on all of these tasks with a partner via either couch or online co-op.

Escape Academy faculty

When a team can bring different perspectives and skills to the table, it not only increases the fun but also gives you more chances to complete the room yourself. Sharing and reviewing items can make solving puzzles that might require multiple passes suddenly a lot easier, and it’s always good to discuss things and see if anything important has been missed along the way. Whether you’re a logical thinker or someone with a more creative bent, the way Escape Academy captures that particular essence of the experience makes it a thoroughly enjoyable co-op game.

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That’s not to say you can’t have fun playing alone, but the presence of a co-op partner elevates things to a degree. Then again, it all depends on how competent your partner is, and we all know how frustrating it can be when no progress is made, even with more heads put together. In such cases, the game also offers a hint system to help if your ego can take such bruises. Completing rooms quickly and without using these hints will also result in a higher score.

Escape Academy co-op game

It’s that hunt for a better grade that will likely feed into Escape Academy’s replayability, but since the rooms themselves remain the same, losing intrigue and surprise is almost a deal breaker. Unless you’re constantly changing partners to bring more people into the party, the game might be good for at most a new run.

At the end of the day, Escape Academy achieves much of what it set out to do. Giving players and, where possible, their co-op partners the authentic escape room experience removes the frustrations of real-world escape attempts and instead focuses our attention on making connections and solving puzzles. There’s great satisfaction in cracking a difficult puzzle, and while the narration is hardly needed, the effort to add color to the world is greatly appreciated, creating an overall package that really brings to life what escape rooms are all about.

Escape Academy

Escape Academy Critical Review

Escape Academy advantages

Escape Academy Disadvantages

Escape Academy release date

July 14, 2022

Escape Academy developer

Coin Crew games

Escape Academy publisher

iam8bit, skybound games

Escape Academy is available on consoles

PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S

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