There is one escape room skill that experienced players are really good at, one thing that sets them apart. It is deceptively simple, but learning to master it will help you escape faster and more frequently. The secret is this, you have to know when to step back. That’s it. The record-breaking players are great team players and they know when it’s time to let someone else shine. Let us explain:
Escape Rooms are a group activity for a reason. Even the smartest person can’t solve every single puzzle on their own. Some people are better at math and some people are great at ciphers, but no one is good at everything. Too often egos get in the way and players want a hand in solving everything. Bragging rights become a priority, and there’s always a conversation about who solved what when groups return to the lobby. But in truth, it’s the players who have the skill to recognize that they have hit the limit of what they can contribute and trust their teammates to take over that are the real escape rock stars!
Putting trust in your team can be tough. We are not suggesting that you should participate less or that you should limit your involvement in the room. We are saying that there is a point when you’ve stared at the puzzle for fifteen minutes, you’re probably not any closer to solving it. Our brains develop patterns and it can be hard to think outside of them. That’s why it’s so beneficial to grab a teammate to help you out, and we consider it an invaluable skill. A new brain working on the puzzle means a new way of thinking and looking at the problem. Realizing that you are stuck and not contributing new ideas to solving a puzzle is a huge asset. You can help your team by stepping back so someone can get a closer look, or turn your attention to something else.
It’s easy to get wrapped up in trying to solve every element in an escape room, but if you’re struggling, the best thing you can do for your team is to step back. Work on a different puzzle, or grab a friend to get a new way of looking at the puzzle. The important thing to do is to switch up your approach. If you’re worried that stepping away might limit your involvement in solving the game, don’t worry. Every player contributes, besides if you step away from a puzzle it’s likely your team will likely use your ideas to solve the puzzle. Don’t let your ego get the best of you, know when you’re out of ideas and step away to let your team have the best chance to escape.
*Stock photos courtesy of Rawpixel, all other images belong to VS Entertainment.