Trend for Real Life "Escape" Games in China
    2014-04-14 06:22:16         Web Editor: Mao

In today's Special Report, we take a look at the trend of real life "escape" games in China.

The game, known as takagism, grows out of a Japanese computer game where players must discover the way out of closed rooms.

CRI's Hu Jia tells us some Chinese businessmen have taken the game off computer screens and into the real world.


The doors are locked and the clock is ticking.

A group of friends has only one hour to stop the doomsday plans of a mad scientist and find their way out in the process.

Takagism is proving to be a huge success in China.

Toby Chen is the co-owner of Omega Escape Room where the game is played.

Chen and his partners have employed a staff of a dozen engineers and designers to regularly come up with fresh puzzles.

"We play the games on the computer, we click the screen and find the elements or clues to solve the puzzles, but it's just all virtual stuff. And in 2012 we heard there is a TV show in Japan about room escape, but it's just for TV, not for real, not for a business, and from that time we are just wondering if we can create a real situation, a real circumstance".

One of the players, Hua Yang, says he enjoys the challenge he faces in the takagism.

"I think the game is unusual. And it is also fresh and new to me. The mental workout is hectic! Um? yeah, hectic, indeed! The moments when we solve the puzzles are most exciting for us. We enjoy the game a lot."

The players work together to brainstorm and try different solutions.

"The benefit of having a group of people together is that we can cooperate. On the other hand, the negative side is that players all have particular ways of thinking, and sometimes your own thoughts can be affected. But I think that's the fun part of the game. Players are reacting to each other and solving the puzzles together."

And that teamwork spirit is what Toby Chen values most from the game.

"I think in urban cities, just like in Beijing, the life can be very stressed. If they're working very hard, they try to find something like not only to entertain him or herself, but to find a way to communicate with others. To find something they can work together, they can solve together, and communicate in a way that they have a common purpose, they have a puzzle or a challenge to solve together. So this is not something they can actually achieve in urban cities".

But unfortunately for Yang and his friends, time is up.

The players are only able to solve the final riddle after receiving a bit of help from a staff member.

In a few minutes, the room will be cleaned up, reset, and ready for the next group trying to find their way to freedom.

For CRI, This is Hu Jia.


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The Beijing Hour updated 20:00 2014/05/23

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