I was in JB with an hour to kill, and was amazed to find from TripAdvisor that there are FOUR escape game operators within walking distance near the Sutera Mall area. Hence, I dragged my newbie friend to try out the newest kid around the block: Lost in JB, The Haunted House.
The Haunted House is a new outlet from Lost in JB, which headquarters at Mount Austin. I was told that new themes are there now, so do try them out. The Haunted House is made up of 4 different games centered around various horror themes. The staff picked the School Murder for us, which is a beginners game good for small number of players.
We’re introduced to the backbone story: a gristly murder of a school girl in the local school. This is the first game ever in Malaysia (apart from escape events) in which we had a video briefing on what happened, with real human actors enacting the scenes, news announcements and instructions from the boss. Since we’re the investigative arm of the police force, we have 60 mins (awesome) to investigate the crime scene, identify the suspect, motive and weapon.
That said, the TV used for the video were a little out of place in the classroom, the first room we encounter, minor minor complaint. Video briefing was presented in Mandarin, with English subtitles provided. All written clues are bilingual. Decor, ambience, were spot on for a school setting, inclusive of the haunted school toilet. You’ll always want to look behind, wondering if the murderer is still lurking somewhere.
Puzzles are in line with the theme, with the appropriate level of difficulty for beginners, no tedious maths or many leaps of logic. Experienced gamers may find the puzzles too easy. According to the saff, the most players had trouble with the last puzzle, it will help if you have good ears, or if you are a music teacher. Clues are laid open for you to see, no painstaking searches required. There is some use of multimedia and technology, but nothing too high tech. Technology was mainly injected to create the ambiance, and also to direct the flow of events (remember, we’re investigating). The investigative element also means that we should have to pay attention to all written or recorded narratives, but there is no real need for any deductions, as the secret was basically told to your face. It will be more interesting if more real detective elements thrown in.
I do find that one puzzle is sightly under-clued, most likely because we’ve been out of school for at least 10 years and old farts like us can’t really relate to the info given. Students may relate well to it. Feedback had been given to the staff on adjusting some clues, which was graciously taken in, evidence of attentive staff who are happy to engage with players. Hopefully, the feedback reaches the game designer.
Since it is a game with a horror theme, do expect some minor jumpscares thrown in. The website helpfully included a “horror meter” which indicates that this game is one of the least scariest. Also displayed are the indicators for “physicality”, so the not-so-athletic may have been warned. The place is still kinda new, so everything feels polished for now and no signs of technology failing.
In all, beginners may be wowed and will enjoy the simple yet purposeful puzzles. My newbie friend here had a great time, a testimonial to it. Recommended for the experienced only if you are looking for some cheap scares.
I now look forward to the more difficult rooms from Lost in JB, wait till I bring my team over. Definitely need more manpower.
Image from Lost in JB, click to book!