Escape room startups are just like any other startup, in that they require an entrepreneur to have a myriad of skills to get the business started and make it successful. But starting up your own escape room can be more complicated than a typical business startup, because the skills an entrepreneur needs to be successful are varied and unrelated. Entrepreneurs in the escape room world need to have skills in many areas, including general business skills, hardware and installation skills, and advanced technology skills.
There are many nuances to designing and building an escape room. As an escape room owner or architect, form and function are some of the most important aspects of the room you build. Patrons to your escape room will come with a certain level of expectation for each room. As an architect, however, it is up to you what you want to focus on. You can build a game room that has little ambiance or adherence to a theme. These rooms are typically just a collection of puzzles that may not provide the immersive experience some guests want. Alternatively, you can build a room with great ambiance that tells a story throughout the experience. In these rooms, the construction comes together with the props and puzzles that make up the theme and the challenge of the game.
There are two main areas of construction focus for escape room builders who want to make a great escape room. These two areas of focus are ambiance and complexity. In order to build a great puzzle, builders need to create the right balance of these in the room to immerse their players in the experience.
Ambiance in Escape Room Construction
Ambiance is the character and atmosphere of an escape room, which should tie in closely with the theme of the escape room. When properly executed, the ambiance of an escape room can contribute significantly to the competitive edge of the business. Businesses will often have to invest more to make an escape room and a business that really stands out. This is especially true in areas with increased competition. Ambiance is also one of the best ways for an escape room to build a reputation and positive reviews to attract non-local patrons.
When customers visit your escape room location, the ambiance should be the very first thing they notice, and the first thing that draws their interest. Some escape rooms set the tone right with ambiance even before their customers enter the room by decorating and configuring the lobby to match the theme of the rooms. This can prime your customers and evoke a feeling of adventure and mystery, which is a great way to set a positive first impression with your customers.
Ambiance can be physically accomplished with different features that you plan, design, and install during the construction of the escape room business. Some of these features include lighting, exterior building paneling, signage, and interior decorating. The best way to capture a customer’s attention can be to engage all of their senses, so focus on sights, sounds, smells, and textures.
An escape room is like a Rorschach test. You design and build the room to reflect what in your mind constitutes a particular level of challenge, but every person’s perception is different. Your guests may not see the room’s puzzle flow the same way you envision it. Escape room builders need to create rooms that are flexible to different perspectives and personalities in order to cater to every type of visitor. Complexity is one of the best focuses for an escape room owner looking to increase the appeal of their escape room business.
Complexity is the level of intricacy and challenge for an escape room. In general the harder an escape room, the more complex it is, but at the same time, having a room that is too complex might be unfavorable. Escape rooms should be complex insofar that the construction of the room will speak for itself. This means that the controls, decor, and storyline of the room all fit together in an intricate way without breaching into the overly complicated. Deciding how complex you want the storyline of the room to be impacts the process that players will go through to solve the puzzle.
Also important to note are the props in an escape room. Props inside a complex room need to be strong enough to withstand heavy use. The more complex a room is, often the more players pull, twist, and push on everything inside the room in order to find a clue.
The Importance of Construction
At the end of the day, escape room owners and architects need to determine whether or not people are having fun while playing the game. Games should be challenging, but it is important to consider whether the room was so difficult that participants were frustrated with their game.
It is ultimately important to keep the puzzle complexity and room ambiance in mind when both designing and conducting the construction of escape rooms. The right balance of complexity and ambiance will signal that a room that is going to succeed in bringing in customers and provide a solid profit. It is tempting during the construction process to cut costs by self-installing and building features yourself, but bringing in professional help can save you time and money down the line.
If you’re building an escape room, contact Escape Room Techs. Our team will help ensure the durability of your room’s construction, which can save you significant amounts of capital and reduce lifecycle costs for your business.