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Escape Room Employees Describe The Worst Escape Attempts They've Ever Seen

Reddit user avantgardengnome asked: 'Escape Room employees, what’s the least successful escape attempt that you’ve ever seen?

Lock on a door
Jornada Produtora/Unsplash

Escape rooms have been a popular interactive experience enjoyed by fans thirsting to solve clues.

While participating in such activities seems to meet the satisfaction of many adventurous guests, not all of them are necessarily good at it.

In fact, some are just downright helpless, much to the amusement of employees who oversee operations.

Curious to hear from those who've seen it all, Redditor avantgardengnome asked:

"Escape Room employees, what’s the least successful escape attempt that you’ve ever seen?"

Expect the unexpected.

Can't Get Unstuck

"We had a group from work go for team building. They got into the elevator and it stopped working. They spend 15 minutes trying to figure out if the elevator was meant to be part of the escape room. Didn't want to press the emergency button because wasn't sure if it was some reverse psychology thing."

"Ended up getting really hot and one of the dudes started panicking. Took off his shirt while in the elevator."

"Basically spent the whole time debating."

"Ended up getting a call from the escape room people about if they were going to miss the appointment."

"Waited another hour for the fire department."

"Got out and had to come back to work."

"Team building things have been on hold since. No one talks about naked Brian."

– the_amatuer_

"Other than Naked Brian, this is the weirdest part to me. Even if it was part of the escape room, the emergency button is the only reasonable/logical solution at that moment."

"If I were designing a room like that (and you'd never be allowed to for safety reasons), hitting the emergency button would trigger a voiceover to play and the doors to open into the main puzzle area, giving the narrative context and starting the room in earnest."

– PvtSherlockObvious

Going Nowhere Fast

"One group spent the entire time arguing and never even solved the first puzzle."

– fitorlki

It's Triggering

"The escape room I worked at had a real fire alarm inside the room… I’m sure you can see how this ended up."

– DieselPickles

"As a guest at an escape room, we had the opposite problem. They had a fire alarm be what you needed to pull to open a secret room. We would have never dreamed of using it until we were explicitly told to do so. We were quite annoyed"

– multicolored

How Romantic

"Every first date couple that thought an escape room was a good idea for a first date. Always super awkward."

– crunchybucket86

Social Time

"A friend works at an escape room. A group of Mom's come in once every few months but do not even attempt to solve any thing...they all just lay down or relax in the silence! I think they come to 'escape' life for a bit. The workers all know them and they are lovely women who just need to escape."

– jersey8894

Some damage is to be expected.

Escape Or Bust

"My wife managed rooms, the best story is where a laser pointed to a wall and instead of redirecting it they kicked the brick wall in."

"My friends had one in a tower with a water tap in a cage. They managed to open it with a wrench through the bars. It was not part of the game, they could not get it closed and the water ran into the control room below. They gave them a record time for that."

Smashing Walls

"The guy that used a hammer on the drywall, because he swore there was a secret door, because he could 'see the seam'."

– Tangboy50000

"I maybe have a better understanding about why the first escape room I ever went to was very clear about how all the power outlets were in-fact, just power outlets and were not to be touched under any circumstances.

– Wild_Loose_Comma

"As someone who builds escape rooms, this breaks my heart just a tiny bit!"

"The builds I do are all about immersion, and having electrical plugs that are bright orange in the middle of a cool looking murder room would be so sad!"

"I try to remove anything that players CAN'T touch, or keep it entirely out of reach of players. If it's not possible to do that, we have a sticker of the company logo, and a message at the beginning that says 'anything with this logo on it is NOT a part of your game!'"

– Without-a-tracy

Customers are always good for a laugh.

Focused On A Lock

"Had one group get stuck on the thought a lock was the next solution. Even after basically telling them the solution and that it wasn't that lock, they ran back to it."

"It wasn't even a lock they were supposed to open. It was one for us. And they wasted 75% of their time on it."

– HasSh*ttyIdeas

Under Surveillance

"You get these kinds of people from time to time, but there are people that no matter how much help you give them, they just cannot understand what to do. You get people sometimes where you can straight up tell them 'put the code 1234 into the lock that you're holding to unlock it,' and they just will not get it."

"We have a room where there are backpacks that you find with items inside. In an escape room, if you ever find a bag, usually, the first instinct is to open it. So I had one team where I told them to check out the backpack in the room, and they just picked the backpack up and then said, 'Now what?' And I had to tell them that they're supposed to open it and see what's inside."

"Also, FYI, when we say that we'll be watching your game, we're telling the truth. If you ever go to an escape room, understand that someone is always watching and they can see absolutely everything that you do and hear everything that you say."

"I've seen and heard many things that I wish I could forget, don't be all over your partner to the point where you're borderline f'king in the rooms and please, don't play an escape room at the same time that you have a phone appointment with your doctor, I learned more intimate information about a woman who is a complete stranger than I ever wanted to know."

– LilyWednesday666

Wired That Way

"I'm 100% positive that I'm the subject of one of these stories. My group once put me in charge of a puzzle involving wires during crunch time, since I'm a tech geek."

"I stood there with a handful of wires being completely useless, and it took a couple of precious minutes to get the team to stop panicking with their own projects before they realized what was wrong."

"I'm colorblind."

– MaximumZer0

It's a toss-up regarding who is being more entertained.

Lock Inexperience

"Not an employee but the group I was with spent 30 minutes trying to figure out how to use a combination lock(3 right turns, 2 left, 1 right). We had the right numbers and I assumed my group knew how to use that type of lock."

– Axel_Dunce

Is It Alive?

"Did a Silent Hill escape room once. You had to get past Pyramid Head to escape. Me and my friend were convinced it was animatronic and was gonna jump at us when we went by, so we wasted time throwing slippers from the previous puzzle at/near it to try to trigger it.It was not an animatronic."

"We got out to the guy running the room doubled over laughing. We had run out of time but he'd let us finish because he saw and heard us panicking over PH and wanted to see what we'd do. He said no one else had ever done that before."

– goodgollygopher

A Different Frequency

"Had a radio in our game that linked to a specific station using an FM transmitter. When the player tuned to the correct frequency it played a nice, clear, loud message from the game character giving a clue."

"Players thought they had the right frequency but this was in fact a real radio therefor they accidentally tuned to an actual radio station."

"The announcer gave the phone number for the radio station and one of the players called it thinking they would get a clue. I reminded them that phones weren't needed and gave them some extra time for the clever effort."

– bornacidgaming

On one hand, it's nice to know that escape room employees are always at the ready if they see customers at a complete loss and unable to advance to the next room.

On the other hand, it's hilarious how customers forget they're being watched and are unwitting participants in a comedy show.