Way back in April, Crack the Code in Sheffield was to be the third game of our epic day. Before we started, Crack the Code were already amazing to us, moving the time of our game to accommodate our attempts, and did so without any fuss, and extremely quickly ( luckily the time slot we wanted was available!!)
Crack the Code is set up on a main Sheffield street, surrounded by offices, and have used this well to ensure their storyline, based during the Cold War, reflects the location. The storyline, as shown on the website is:
The year is 1973 and the cold war is in full flow, Soviet agent “Hudya Nickafilov” has intercepted a dossier containing the names of CIA operatives working behind the Iron curtain. Fortunately Nickafilov has nipped out for his usual lunch of Vodka and potatoes and won’t be back for an hour… Your teams’ mission, should you decide to accept it, is to enter the Russians office and decipher the clues to find the hidden file and save the American dream of “Liberty, Freedom and a McDonalds on every street corner”
Crack the Code had the usual good assortment of puzzles, and they all tie nicely in with each other, with some clues for puzzles much later in the game as well as others keeping the game flowing along. There were some very unique hints that we’ve not seen elsewhere, and with all escape rooms being, in effect multiple rooms, there was a very novel way of progressing through the room. It’s also one of very few rooms to use lighting effects, and they are put to good use. The use of an objective, as well as escape, adds to the game play.
We progressed very rapidly through the rooms, and seemed to be making decent time, and as they often do with us, clues came together, puzzles were solved very rapidly, and before we knew it, we were out the door with the file with more than 20 minutes to go. This absolutely threw the game host, as he couldn’t understand how we had successfully escaped so quickly!! He took us back into the room, and it very quickly became clear that we’d somehow skipped 2/3 puzzles, but after we’d all gone through it, it was just completely random good luck with a puzzle answer that isn’t random ( obviously), but we’d got the answer right. However, by doing that, we’d managed to miss what is surely the most “fun” puzzle we’ve ever laid eyes on!! We played it anyway!!
Game 3 of the day was the only record we broke, so it obviously takes us a while to dial in to getting our speed up, and as far as I’m aware, the time has since been beaten just the once since then.
As a last addition, Crack the Code hold a monthly giveaway on Instagram for a free game, so people may want to pop to that!!