One of those "escape room" companies is coming to Dallas' Victory Park. Called Escapology, it's opening at 2375 Victory Park Ln., in the same block as the Cinepolis theater.
According to a representative from the company, they're planning to open by Christmas.
Escapology has the same basic setup as all of these escape room places: Players are cast together inside a room and must solve clues, puzzles, and strategies to get out.
The first Escapology opened in Orlando, Florida, in 2014. Simon and Paul Davison, who run a training and events company, founded the company; in 2015, Simon Millington, owner and CEO of online retailer Shop247.com, came aboard.
There are now more than 35 locations, including Las Vegas, Denver, San Diego, and Austin.
The Victory Park location is from Parker Coddington, who owns the Escapology in Tyler, with Keegan Ripp and Justin Ripp, who own Shenaniganz, the entertainment center in Rockwall, where an Escapology opened in 2018.
Other Escapology locations in North Texas include McKinney, which opened in spring 2019.
The Victory Park facility will be relatively small, accommodating up to six players — some hold up to 15 players at a time — who must find clues, solve puzzles, and pick locks to escape. Yelp reviewers seem to think that having four people is the ideal number.
There are a variety of room experiences, such as assassination express, the contaminated laboratory, and nuclear annihilation. The write-ups are very vivid. To wit:
"You will travel back in time to 1962 Cuba at the height of the Cuban Missile Crisis. The existing timeline that we all know has been illegally changed and you and your team have been tasked to stop Fidel Castro, leader of Cuba, from launching nuclear missiles upon the United States and causing Nuclear Annihilation. You will be transported to a Safe Room located just off Fidel Castro's private office moments before the attack to destroy a secret launch code document. The document was hidden by Ramon Castro, a master of game theory and older brother of Fidel Castro. In just over 60 minutes, the time ripples of this illegal change will reach the present and our future will be changed forever."
There won't be food, but they will serve alcohol.
The concept of live escape game rooms was born in Japan, then came to the U.S. in 2012. They first arrived in DFW in 2013, and are proliferating all around us, with names such as Escape the Room, Ultimate Escape Game, and Dallas Panic Room, many out in the suburbs.
This is the first in the middle of town, and it gives Victory Park another activity that is not just eating, drinking, or seeing a game or concert.
According to a MarketWatch analysis, the industry is "unbelievably lucrative," requiring very little investment up front and a quick recoup, in some cases as quickly as one month, with ticket prices ranging from $25 to $30 per person.