31 - Puzzle Design with Dan Katz

This week we interview puzzle designer and enthusiast Dan Katz! This is probably our longest podcast yet. Blame Errol.

Dan Katz has written puzzlehunt puzzles for the MIT Mystery Hunt, the Gen Con Puzzle Hunt, and BAPHL. His puzzles have also appeared in Wired, MAA Focus, and Games World of Puzzles. His most notorious gift to the puzzling community is the follow-the-deranged-directions puzzle format known as the Duck Konundrum, for which he sincerely apologizes.

Check out Dan's new puzzle blog at puzzlvaria.wordpress.com

For the curious, see the most excellent Xbox puzzle on youtube.

And the parody song was written and performed by Dan Katz himself!

Posted on February 21, 2017 .

2016 Year in Review

We take a look back at our favourite and least favourite rooms of 2016! Thanks so much for listening, everyone! We're very excited for 2017!

Posted on January 5, 2017 .

Let's Play Escape the Room: Secret of Dr. Gravely's Retreat

Mike and Ruby aren't here in our 26th episode, however, we did have Margeaux join us! She's a brand new enthusiast and purchased Thinkfun's "Escape the Room: Secret of Dr. Gravely's Retreat!" which was designed by Nicholas Cravotta and Rebecca Bleau. 

Of course, we had to do a Let's Play, so again the obligatory warning:

WARNING: SPOILERS ABOUND! Do not listen to this podcast if you have not played the game!

Oh! The parody was written and sung by our very own Manpans! Huzzah!

Posted on November 25, 2016 .

Club Drosselmeyer - Escape Room meets Immersive Theater and Swing Dance!

It's episode 25, and we've taken a break from our normal format because we wanted to get this podcast up as soon as we could!

Manda and Errol interview Kellian Adams Pletcher and Carly Dwyer-Naik who are two of the organizers of Club Drosselmeyer: an escape room crossed with interactive theater in the Boston area!

They currently have a crowdfunding campaign going on and there are only a few days left! I encourage to check out the page, donate a few funds and listen to this amazing pair who have taken on a fantastic undertaking!

Posted on November 18, 2016 .

Escape Room Questions Answered

In our 24th episode, Mike, Ruby and Manda answer listener submitted questions such as "What makes an enthusiast" and "What is your winning rate?"

And Eric and Annie are back with a parody song! Eric Boudreau, owner of Escape Capers in Calgary, wrote the lyrics, and it was performed by Annie Pattison. Errol is pretty excited to have youtube celebs sing the opening song! Check out Annie's youtube page to hear more of her songs!)

Posted on November 3, 2016 .

Scary Escape Rooms - Halloween Episode

It's the Halloween Episode! For the 23rd podcast, the Divas chat about scary escape rooms, costume ideas, and snack foods. Or at least, they snack while talking, which doesn't make for good podcast listening.

This time around, Mike wrote the lyrics for the parody! Huzzah!

Posted on October 21, 2016 .

In Between Newb and Enthusiast

In episode twenty two, we decide not to go to the experts! Lizette Tanner considers herself not an enthusiast, but also not a newbie. She also happens to be Errol's sister and the teasing is rampant.

Listen to her views as she describes stories about watching enthusiasts, how newbies feel about escape rooms, and ghosting.

The parody song was suggested by Chris Dickson of Ex Exit Games. He and Errol co-wrote the lyrics for "Close Every Door To Me".

 

Posted on October 6, 2016 .

Customer Service and Escape Rooms

In episode 20, we talk about customer service and our experiences, both good and bad!

Errol was away this week doing other fun stuff, like escape rooms in Calgary.  He'll be back in full force next week.  

No Errol also means, no epic parody.  Manpans, Ruby and Mike try to fill in with "the best parody to date".

Posted on September 22, 2016 .

Family Focused Escape Rooms with Christine Hibbard

In the 19th episode, we have a wonderful chat with owner Christine Hibbard of Looking Glass Adventures, the first escape room in the GTA to be family focused.

We discuss children and escape rooms! And we discuss escape rooms. We always discuss escape rooms, it being an escape room podcast.

Sadly, Mike and Ruby couldn't join us this episode, but they will be back!

Furthermore, we have upgraded our sound! So we hope it sounds much better!

Posted on September 16, 2016 .

Defending Escape Room Tropes We Hate

In episode 18, we talk about the board game T.I.M.E. Stories as well as Cyan's latest adventure game Obduction!

We also talk about escape room elements we have ranted about but this time we defend them! At least, we start off defending them.

And there is a lot of Manpans teasing. Errol's a jerk. 

Links Talked About in Podcast

Posted on August 31, 2016 .

Escape Room Related Board Games with Donald Dennis

In Episode 17, we join Donald Dennis who is the host of On Board Games. We have a great discussion on escape room related board games, and other games that struck our fancy!

We are hopeful for the upcoming batches of escape room board games, but our expectations are especially high, being divas and all!

Errol is extremely pleased someone else wrote and sang the parody song! Eric Boudreau, owner of Escape Capers in Calgary wrote the lyrics to "At Least One Way To Leave This Locked Room", and it was performed by the one and only Annie Pattison, who also works there! (Seriously, check out her youtube page to hear more of her singing! She's awesome!)

We really hope you enjoy this episode! And Donald asked a question for the listeners, so by all means, please answer!

Posted on August 23, 2016 .

Let's Play Mystery at the Stargazer's Manor

In our 16th episode, we do a walkthrough of Mystery at the Stargazer's Manor, an Escape the Room board game created by Nicholas Cravotta and Rebecca Bleau. 

SPOILERS ABOUND! Do not listen to this podcast if you haven't played the game!

Thanks to Christine of Looking Glass Adventures for providing us with a copy to play with (since I couldn't find it anywhere to purchase on short notice!)

If you wish to just hear the review, it starts at 43:13, but it still may contain spoilers.

Music: Mozart's “Eine kleine Nachtmusik”, recorded by The Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra.

Posted on August 19, 2016 .

Puzzle Design: Aha vs Process

In this Episode, Manpans and Errol talk about the difference between Aha and Process puzzles. We also talk about puzzle difficulty and discuss Manpans time at ConBravo where she took a newbie crew to experience The Crux in Hamilton.

Special thanks goes to Lyndsie Scoggin, Tammy Mcleod, and Errol's daughter, Zoe Elumir. They sang the extra vocal parts in the parody song "I've Made a Plan for this Room"

Let’s get down to business
To complete this one.
Spread our talents broader. We won’t be, outdone!
You’ll be glad we’ve come our minds are set
And you can bet, we’ll make it through!
Know that I’ve, made a plan, for this room.

Track our time and progress
Where’s the light? It’s dim!
Gather in the center
We’ll be sure to win
We will find this trail, we won’t be caught!
And we have to get the clues
Because I’ve, made a plan, for this room.

I’m never going to solve this test
Say goodbye to light I can’t see!
Boy there’s a lot of books where to begin?
It’s so dark I’m scared to death
Hope that I can find the right key
Now I really wish that I could ask for hints!

(Here’s the Plan)
We must be swift and we will deliver!
(Here’s the Plan)
But don’t use force else you’ll break the clues!
(Here’s the Plan)
Follow that length of electric wire!
We’ll seriously find the exit to this room!
— "I've Made a Plan for this Room": Parody of Mulan's "I'll Make a Man out of You"
Posted on August 5, 2016 .

REDivas 14 - Transworld's Room Escape Conference

The divas got a chance to interview Rich and Elisabeth who are part of Transworld's Room Escape Conference in Chicago this August!

We were new to Transworld so we had so many questions! We learned about their history, the haunt industry, and the people behind this popular tradeshow!

Guest Info:
Transworld's 2016 Escape Room Show - Chicago Room Escape Conference 
Rich Bianco - Vice President of Transworld Trade Shows
Elisabeth Garson - Seminar Coordinator/ Room Escape Conference

Posted on July 25, 2016 .