Before 2012, a Hidden door was impossible to find in the UK, as the country didn’t have a single escape room. Following HintHunt’s first facility in the country in North London, the country now has around 1,500 of the facilities.
The country’s love affair with escape rooms and taking on a Hidden door for themselves led to the Red Bull Escape Room World Championships being held in London. The championship is a contest of the best teams from across 23 countries to see who can claim victory, with the Slovenia boasting the win for 2018. Of course, that competition needed its own escape room, specially designed to cater to the level of the competitors.
A Scottish escape room company, laconically named Escape, was responsible for building and operating the challenge room for the championship’s duration early in April. The room’s design was the work of Dr.Scott Nicholson, an escape room designer, and Brantford Games Network Research Lab Director, Wilfrid Laurier University, Ontario, Canada.
The room itself was designed by bringing together concepts in order to create a space aimed at testing six key problem solving skills, namely; creative thinking, logic, visual thinking, musicality, memory, and, of course, strategy. The good news is, people in London can give the room a shot for themselves, as Escape will keep it around and keep it running following the championships.
The 2019 iteration of the Red Bull Escape Room World Championships is only the second iteration of the event in the discipline, and was broadcast, live, for all the world to see.
Escape was founded back in 2014 in Edinburgh, and claims to the Scotland’s first escape room company. Regardless, the company’s since grown into a multinational operator, with more than 200 rooms across the world, with 150 employees in the UK alone.
Escape Founder Daniel Hill stated that escape games are only continuing to grow in popularity, and after Edinburgh played a key part in popularizing it, it’s only fitting that the world championship was held in the UK.
For Escape’s part, Hill says that it’s a privilege that they were tasked with building the unique escape room. For a company that just had one room to work with in Edinburgh back in 2015, with no clue as to whether or not they’ll even be popular, it’s such a miracle that they’re now thrust into the global stage.