Time to escape: A guide to escape rooms in Fort Collins

Seth Bodine

A locked room, 10 people and one hour. These are the three components of escape rooms, a popular interactive game that locks participants in a room and tasks them with solving riddles and puzzles in order to escape. The thrill comes with the pressure of solving the puzzles in an hour or less. If the time runs out, the game is over. For this reason, escape rooms are known for their difficulty, with small percentages of participants winning each game.

Escape rooms are popular trend, with a total of 30 across Colorado according to the escape room directory. There are four running escape rooms in Fort Collins, each with unique features and stories. Each room is riddled with puzzles, and nothing is as it seems. Here is everything you need to know about the escape rooms in Fort Collins. The rooms are listed in no particular order, with no spoilers of stories or puzzles of the games.

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Enigma Escape room
Location: 151 S. College Ave
Cost: $26 per person
Players: 2-10
Room theme: The missing scientist
Website: http://www.enigmafortcollins.com/

One of the first in Fort Collins and Colorado, Enigma is a classic-style room. Once all the players are gathered, you enter a small room that might look similar to your grandparents’ house. The game does not hold the players hand, and trusts in the team’s intellect. Not much guidance is given, except for a note on a table that introduces the story and the goal in order to escape. Unlike some rooms, all the items inside are interactive. Enigma owner Matthew Sisson described the room as a living museum.

“You usually go into a museum and you can’t touch anything,” Sisson said. “With an escape room, you’re walking in and everything is fair game.”

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Photo courtesy of Enigma

Fort Collins Escape Room
Location: 4025 S. Mason Street
Cost: $24
Players: 2-8
Room theme: Escape from the machine
Website: https://fortcollinsescaperoom.com/

If you are looking for another classic-style room, Fort Collins Escape Room is the place to look. There is a heavy emphasis on creating a vintage feel, with the room decorated with antique furniture and clocks. The room is more forgiving for those who get stuck, and give clues to guide their way. According to their website, the goal of the room was to create something that was challenging and highly entertaining.

ConTRAPtions Escape Rooms
Location: 3720 S. College Ave
Cost: $26 on weekdays and Sunday, $29 on Saturday
Players: 2-10
Room theme: Mafia room, The Koor-I-Noor Heist
Website: https://escape.place/

The newest room in Fort Collins, ConTRAPtions puts a large emphasis on technology between its two games. This brings a unique twist to the typical escape room formula. The heavy emphasis on technology brings a new angle to the puzzles in the room. Both rooms involve automation, sensors and wires. Stories are one of ConTRAPtions strengths. The recorded voices of a mafia boss or sassy AI gives brings immersive qualities to each room. The room is beginner-friendly and gives audio clues for those who are stuck.

“When people walk away happy … that’s when we know we’ve done our job,” said ConTRAPtions co-owner Abigail Dalton.

Somewhere Secret

Location: 222 Walnut Street
Cost: Suggested donation of $25
Players: 2-8
Room theme: Alchemist room
Website: http://somewheresecret.com/

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While the door is not locked in this game, Somewhere Secret pays specific attention to the feel and atmosphere of the game. Cory Storb, co-creator or the room, said she spent a couple of months just searching for a room that had the right feeling. The location, upstairs of a historic antique shop in Old Town, creates an authentic feel to the room. Everything in the room is unique and hand-chosen.

“The feel and the aesthetics is really important to me,” Storb said. “I’m pretty picky about what I put in there.”

The goal is not to escape, but to find a map hidden in the room. If the team succeeds at solving the puzzle, the game doesn’t end. The team is given a map with a clue to a treasure hidden somewhere in Colorado. For the best atmosphere and experience, schedule to play at night.