The Attractions Magazine Escape Team was recently invited to check out Puppet Heist: The Hand of Life at The Bureau Orlando.
This was our first time at The Bureau and we were really impressed by the aesthetic and theme of the entire venue itself; think “Men in Black” meets the video games Portal.
With the themed façade, we wondered how many people wandered in by accident. We were also given access to the venue’s private lounge to relax in before and after our game, and enjoy some discounted refreshments. The lounge was large and well-appointed, and was a great area to strategize in before we were called for our game, Puppet Heist.
In Puppet Heist: The Hand of Life our team of operatives was sent into the puppet universe (more Henson as opposed to ventriloquist) to assist a brave puppet named Melvin as he attempted to steal a relic called “The Hand of Life.”
This is one of the most unique and high concept themes we’ve had the chance to experience in Orlando. We’ve seen heists, of course, but the addition of the puppet universe concept made this one particularly unique.
We had a fear that the puppet element would feel tacked on but was truly integral to both the aesthetic and many of the obstacles. I hesitate to call them puzzles because, while, yes, they were puzzles in the escape room sense, they fit the narrative well and felt more like tasks that logically needed to be solved in order to progress. Many times, we found ourselves laughing and pleasantly surprised at the reveals.
The room was fairly advanced, technology-wise, with video and automated elements behind the scenes that allowed for a more seamless experience. We did unfortunately run into a few tech issues, once with an objective not triggering when completed and once with the completion audio playing twice after a certain success, but all told these hiccups weren’t enough to dampen our enjoyment of the experience.
Our experienced team of six escaped with about twenty minutes remaining of our hour and together had a really enjoyable time.
Our group felt the experience was just right as far as how long it took and the relative difficulty. The sheer uniqueness of the room and its obstacles and style more than made up for the few bumps along the way. We even had a few of the group run up to our engineer (their term for the gamemasters) right before we left, to sign up for another room and to bring some new friends next time, a sure sign of an experience enjoyed.