To celebrate the release of Resident Evil: The Final Chapter on Blu-Ray and DVD, Sony Pictures brought the horrors of the evil Umbrella Corporation to the Breakin’ Escape Rooms in London.
For one night only, the world – 89 Holloway Road, Highbury and Islington to be more specific – was brought to its knees as the T-Virus infected humanity, bringing about the Zombie apocalypse. It was down to myself, a handful of journalists and a few lucky competition winners to enlist in STARS, locate the antivirus, defeat the Umbrella Corporation, escape The Hive and save the world. All before tea time on Wednesday.
If you’re unfamiliar with the Breakin’ Escape Rooms, they are a unique immersive and interactive game, reminiscent of the challenges found on the old telly show The Crystal Maze. You and a small group of friends are locked in a room for 60 minutes and tasked with a series of puzzles, that once complete, will give you your next clue to escaping the locked room. This time, instead of breaking out of the Butchers Liar, Blackwing’s Cave or the swashbuckling Flying Dutchman we had to escape The Hive!
The experience was immersive from the get go. Upon arrival I was greeted by a zombie pleasant enough to offer me a drink to calm my nerves. I was then advised to proceed with caution entering lounge, now known as the infected zone. Waiting for me there around the corner was a armless zombie usher with a far less warming welcome than the zombie that gave me a drink at the door. I shuffled past the bastard soul who caused me mild heart failure and was then given the chance to play Resident Evil 7 on the Playstation VR. Another experience designed to cause mild heart failure. Still, if you haven’t had the chance to play this yet you must. It’s a fantastic game made all the more terrifying when experienced in VR.
After one last drink for courage, I slid past an ambling zombie gnawing on a hunk of meat in the corner and was briefed by an Umbrella Corp. scientist on what to expect within The Hive and how we might escape. As we got to the entrance there was no time to discuss team tactics, the doors beside us burst open and zombies start filing in. We rushed into the dark room and the door was sealed shut behind us.
The lights flickered and UV bulbs light the room up with potential clues. The Red Queen’s spooky voice wished us the worst of luck and the clock started to tick. Even with the handy assistance of the walkie talkie providing a clue should you inevitably need it, the various puzzles and games were a work out for the brain but they were also great fun and inventive. Half way through, our group had the pleasure of sharing the room with a hungry zombie sniffing us out, we were even forced to split up once in order to complete a task.
After a tense finale we all escaped, synthesized the antivirus and saved the world. It took Alice 6 films to do that and about 30 minutes for us so I’m calling it a win. Overall, the guys from Sony did a great job working with the already fantastic guys who produce the Breakin’ Escape Room experiences. Regardless of the theme, I recommend checking them out.
You can find out more from Breakin’ Escape Rooms here – http://breakinescaperooms.co.uk/
Resident Evil: The Final Chapter is out now.