#38: Mystique Room (Budapest) – Time Machine

An above average room with a strong focus on the steampunk theme makes it a must-do room for anyone keen on that style, though the puzzles, while often creative, felt lacking in some places.

Rating: ★★★☆☆ (Recommended)
Location:Budapest
Team:Rhubarb Rhubarb
Date:25 March 2019
Hints taken:2
Time:52m
URL:Mystique Room

Front & Briefing

We came to this room having just had a disastrous experience in The Tower of Wollongong (#37), but had put that to one side and attempted to see Time Machine through fresh eyes (despite an immediate technical failure of the exit door resulting in the instruction “just don’t leave until you finish the last puzzle”). It was worth doing so.

Theme

Upon entering the room it was clear how much work had gone into the theme of this steampunk-time-travel game. It was decked out floor to ceiling in exciting looking props and everything you’d expect, without heading too far in the red herring direction. There was a rough storyline to this; something about a scientist trapped in the past after trying to go back in time to see his deceased wife once more; but the basic premise was to find your way into the lab and activate the time machine.

Puzzles

Some really novel stuff in this room; while one puzzle required a bit too far a logic leap and we had to take a clue for it, the rest of the room flowed well and had some very clever mechanisms in places. Like the set itself, the puzzles were of a high build quality; the room wasn’t entirely padlock-free but I don’t think that’s a problem when there’s a wide variety like in this one. It definitely benefited from having differently-minded thinkers on the team as a solution to one puzzle was obvious to one person in a way that had completely passed another by.

Hint system

A walkie-talkie with clues on request, as with the rest of Mystique Room’s games. We took two clues, one for the aforementioned logic leap, and another for a search fail. I would suggest leaning slightly towards asking for hints sooner rather than later if you are struggling with any particular part or unsure how to proceed.

Finale

The final puzzle was combined with several satisfying effects, including something that we very much did not expect to happen; unfortunately the GM came in and terminated the effect barely after we’d “escaped”, which I can sort of understand but was a bit of a pity.

Debriefing

The GM was happy to answer questions about things we hadn’t quite understood the significance of at the time, along with one part we’d rather done by trial and error rather than discovering a particular clue at the right time. We had a photo taken using one of our own cameras in the room itself. There were hats.

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