Tag Archives: mike

Terminus – An interview with the Room Escape Divas!

The Room Escape Divas are getting ready for their next event.

An escape room.

On a moving train.

For three hours(!?!).

Thanks to Errol, Manda & Mike from the Room Escape Divas for discussing their newest adventure.
Q. Who is involved with this event and how did it get started?
Errol: There are three groups involved in this: the York Durham Heritage Railway [in Ontario, Canada], Panic Factory, and the Room Escape Divas. The railway approached Nick and Ray of Panic Factory about an escape room on a train.

They said yes.

A few weeks later, the divas did a room at Panic Factory. Afterwards, Ray casually mentioned the event they were doing.

Apparently, as soon as he said “train”, I took off my coat, sat down, and began to drill them with as many questions that I could think of.

At least, that’s the story they told me. And then I told them I was going to be involved with the project.
Q. What inspired Terminus?
Errol: I am a huge fan of adventure games, and one I particularly enjoyed was The Last Express (video game), set on the Orient Express in 1914.

The game had characters with their own agendas and would even change their plans in case the player intervened.

It was also one of the few real-time adventure games: if multiple events occurred at 4:00pm, the player could only see one of them at the time. And of course, it’s on a train.

To be honest, I create games I want to play myself. I want to feel like I’m involved in some nefarious plot and I want the environment to match that.

I’ve played a few adventure games on a train, and it’s always been one of my dreams to make an escape event on one!
Q. Are you playing as an Non-Player Character (NPC) on the night? If so – what’s your role?
Errol: Yes, I am playing a ‘train official’ for the night. We won’t have that many NPCs for this event, though.

Manda will be Train Announcer, so she will be on the intercom the whole night. And we do have on other actor, but then that goes into spoiler territory!
Q. How many cars are on the train? And how many people does each session take?
Errol: There are 144 people on this train and five cars!

They will be split up into two groups so each group will see three train cars at the most.
Q. Will teams get to wander in between train cars or will they need to visit each train car in a sequence?
Errol: For the most part, in sequence. The two main cars are the dining car and the bar car.

People will be in one or the other, but because of the tight fit walking down the cars, we don’t encourage a lot of wandering.
Q. The fourth session of Terminus is almost sold out! Are you planning a fifth session to be held?
Errol: Oh dear, no. *laugh*

As of writing, the fourth session is now sold out which is terribly exciting for us!

This is taking up the majority of my summer and is like putting on a theatre show, so as exciting as it is, I will also look forward to having one month where we can relax!


The Canadian Caper team is back! Their second live escape event, A Night at a Wedding will premiere on April 9th


Save the date! Our Canadian friends in Toronto are hosting their second pop-up event, A Night at a Wedding on April 9th. Between jobs, event planning and everything else, the Canadian Caper team (http://canadiancaper.com/) found time to answer a few questions (as the awesome people they are) – on the upcoming wedding of Cassie and Calvin.
– Essa 🙂

Q. Who chose the name Canadian Caper and what was the reason behind it?
It was actually Yuri who thought of the name. Errol had designed an online puzzle hunt and one of the hardest puzzles involved an old song called Canadian Caper. Yuri suggested that we use that name for the company because it is catchy and would be recognizable to anyone who had done Errol’s online puzzle hunt.

Q. What did the team learn after going through Canadian Caper’s first event, A Night at the Speakeasy last year?
Firstly, how awesome an interactive escape game with actors can be. We were floored at the amazing and flattering feedback we received.

Secondly, it is vital to have good teamwork, cooperation, and communication. Everyone has to carry their weight on the organizing team in order to succeed.

Q. The story for your upcoming event, ‘A Night at a Wedding’ involves a wedding between Calvin and Cassie – can you share their story?
The story is a bit more involved than our previous event, and we are doing our best to keep it under wraps; we haven’t even told our actors all of it yet because of a number of surprises. Here is the synopsis though:

You have been invited to the wedding of Cassie and Calvin, people you used to work with years ago. You are surprised to hear from Cassie, who seemed to disappear after the company dissolved. She used to work in HR and loved riddles and puzzles, which was the bane of all employees considering the yearly aptitude tests she would conduct.

But out of the blue comes an invitation. Normally, you’d treat such an invite as you would a Facebook event, but there’s something that compels you to go. Whatever happened to her?

Q. How are preparations going this time around?
Really well. We have a great group with a diverse set of talents. Also we know which people enjoyed working on what aspects of planning last time so it was even easier this time to divide up tasks. We have a meeting every two weeks to check in on how various aspects of preparation are going and discuss issues that warrant everyone’s feedback.

Q. Serious question time, will there be a guestbook to sign and cake to eat? And how many guests can be accommodated during one session?
Probably not a cake. Food and drink are hard to do.  When you only have an hour, people want to focus on the game. We would love to be able to have people stay after the game is over and eat and drink with us but sadly that isn’t in the cards this time (unless we all just go to a bar after the last time slot).

Other than food and drink, you can expect things that you would normally associate with a wedding but, of course, those seemingly normal things will likely have more to them than they would in a normal wedding. Is that gift table just a gift table?

As for guests, we can hold fifteen teams of six, or ninety people. A nice size for a wedding.

Q. Would the team ever consider opening a permanent escape room in Toronto, Canada one day? Or will you keep going with pop-up events?
We will stick with pop-up events.  While designing a permanent room would be fun, we all have day jobs so running it day to day would be less fun. Also, the one-time only nature of the event allows us to do cool things. Practically, it would be a bit much to hire six actors and a number of extras to put on a ‘show’ every night.

Q. Since the team is based in Toronto, do you keep track of how many escape rooms are now opened in Toronto?
We don’t keep track as part of the company but we are all pretty keen on escape games so we have a pretty good idea of what is out there and in fact have probably done almost every room between us. Actually Mike (from Escape Games Review) has probably done almost every room himself. If anyone ever needs to know which room to do next, they could ask us and we could tell them.

Q. Any last words or stories to tell?
Our last event was set in the 1920s at a speakeasy. Many people came dressed in their best 20s garb and it lended so much to the atmosphere. This time around, we want to encourage everyone to be involved and get dressed up so we decided on a wedding!

Ruby is an events and certified wedding planner so she was a great boon for us. She knew where to get all the props you need to have a wedding! And the place we chose is very pretty. In fact, Jen and Will had their wedding there! There is a stage, multiple rooms, and plenty of room for us perform our event.

If anything, we can’t thank our actors and volunteers enough. Their enthusiasm for our speakeasy event made it as successful as it was. Most of them are returning for the “Night at the Wedding” and with their energy and excitement, we’re positive we can capture the same immersion and magic we had at our last event.

RSVP: For more information and tickets for Canadian Caper’s upcoming event, A Night at a Wedding – check out: http://canadiancaper.com/