Escape Academy devs: "We can seriously jeopardize a player's character"

Escape Academy devs: “We can seriously jeopardize a player’s character”

Escape Academy is a virtual single-player and co-op escape room game with some serious twists coming to Xbox Game Pass. Here’s everything you need to know about Coin Crew’s cooperative puzzle festival.

During an Escape Academy preview event, Coin Crew founders Wyatt Bushnell and Mike Mohamed Saleh gave us a presentation of the game in action and answered some of our burning questions. If you are looking for an exciting escape room experience on Xbox Series X | S and Xbox One, Escape Academy might be able to scratch that itch.

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When is Escape Academy released on Xbox?

Escape Academy launches June 28 for Xbox Series X | S, Xbox One, Xbox Game Pass, PS5, PS4, Microsoft Store, Epic Games Store and Steam.

What is Escape Academy?

Escape Academy is the product of Bushnell and Salyh’s love for real-world escape rooms and the fact that video games are not currently available in the genre. “We made this game because we were locked up and wanted to play escape rooms,” Bushnell says. “We were kind of shocked looking at the Steam and Switch stores because there really doesn’t seem to be a good option.”

The game aims to focus on three specific pillars: real-world authenticity, unique puzzles, and narrative to tie it all together. The idea with Escape Academy is to offer players some of the best parts of escape rooms in the real world, like playing with your friends and the physicality of each room’s unique design, but in a digital environment. None of the puzzles in Escape Academy have been repeated, so you’ll have a new experience every time you enter one of the dozens of rooms. Due to the nature of the gameplay, Coin Crew focused on giving players a satisfying experience with an interesting story and narrative arc, rather than creating shorter puzzles with more content for replayability. Saleh tells us that if you have a slightly mischievous streak, you can have a little fun replaying some puzzles with friends: “I’ve seen some groups play this game when they beat [the rooms]and then they will co-operate with some friends and kind of gossip when watching their friends fail to solve the riddle they know the answer to.”

To truly bring the fun of escape rooms into the digital milieu, Escape Academy required a way to connect them all together, so instead of just offering a disconnected package of puzzles, Coin Crew decided to wrap them all into a comprehensive narrative. The game follows a cohesive narrative that aims to guide you through each puzzle room in a natural way, hence the Escape Academy.

What is Escape Academy about?

Escape Academy follows the story of a disgruntled employee who decides to visit an escape room for a short break from reality. The primary escape room is like a real-world low-budget room that you might find inside a mall or similar, and serves as a quick-fire tutorial to prepare you for the rest of the game. “Our goal with this is that we wanted to communicate that this is not a puzzle game, it is an escape room,” says Saleh. “So, we wanted to lay the foundation from the start.” The room will start out in a simple fantasy style to give you the basics of the game, but as you start solving puzzles, you’ll get “crazier and more serious as you make your way into the big secret world of Escape Academy.”

Once you complete the first puzzles, you will learn that it is a hands-on experience of a school that specializes in training those with a natural talent to escape into secret agents. In fact, it was built on top of the school, lending the whole subject a magical Hogwarts type feel. Just like the real-life academies, each room acts as a classroom to teach you a different form of escapism and cover different topics. Some will rely on perspective style puzzles, while others will put you in the opposite direction of time and life-threatening danger and focus on morality: “Fear will slow your mind.” The idea behind this is to make sure that you come out of each puzzle like you’ve learned something new. “By playing the game, you will get better at puzzles and escape rooms,” Saleh tells us.

As you try to move through the game, you will meet many different characters on your journey, from students to class professors, who, depending on their personality, will give you encouraging motive or half-hearted insults. To aid in the game’s more immersive qualities, you’ll receive an Escape Academy Report Card after each room, which will summarize your completion time and other stats along with the score.

What kind of puzzles are there in Escape Academy?

Escape Academy release date features modes

“In the world of video games, we can seriously jeopardize the player’s character,” says Saleh. “It allows us to do these really cool scenarios which I think is one of the things that makes this game so special. And also, sometimes it’s stressful.”

Escape Academy’s digital presence on top of realistic escape rooms allows the player to be placed in situations that wouldn’t be possible in the real world, so you can expect the rooms to contain dangerous dangers and scenarios. During the preview, Coin Crew showed us a single room located in a 50-foot-high tower filled with water. You’re against the clock on this, and you need to climb up the five floors of the tower to get to the exit – they’re basically five- and five-minute escape rooms rolled into one. Thanks to the nature of being a video game escape room, Escape Academy has plenty of Easter eggs and nods toward the overall narrative and characters you’ve met. It’s a way Coin Crew ensures that your experience remains cohesive with the overall narrative.

Does Escape Academy have multiple players?

Escape Academy offers co-op multiplayer and split-screen couch mode. There’s no dedicated mode, so you’ll play the same rooms as if you were playing solo, but Bushnell tells us that the puzzles are specifically designed to be fun in both single-player and co-op.

What accessibility features are available at Escape Academy?

One of the biggest features that Escape Academy offers to players is the hint system. Just like real-life escape rooms that have a game expert who can give you tips if you get stuck, Escape Academy has a virtual game expert who can point you in the right direction if you need him. The hint system is fueled by a feature called Room Review, which captures a list of the game master’s steps as they guide you through solving a puzzle. The hint system has been particularly entertaining when used with groups of players, says Saleh, as debate erupts over whether or not it should be used as time passes slowly.

The game has been fully translated into English, French, German, and Spanish, and any language-based parts of the game have been reworked to support the specific language. You’ll also find photosensitive modes and color blindness modes under Game Settings. In addition, the game uses only two buttons to interact with the environment, as well as action switches, of course allowing players to enjoy the puzzle sequence even if they are not the ones controlling the character.

While there is a time limit for playing against the clock in some puzzles, the game is just not over. You can continue playing for an unlimited amount of time if you wish, although it will have a negative effect on your scorecard.

How puzzles are tested at Escape Academy

Escape Academy release date features modes

The nature of creating puzzles is that you can’t truly Play and test it for yourself, because you already know the answers; You cannot cancel learning that. Coin Crew brings play testers every two weeks to see how they interact with puzzles and to learn theories players come up with to advance through the room. The final product will be the result of a dynamic process carried out by several testers.

Escape room gameplay tests are difficult to perform in the real world. There are a range of challenges to overcome, such as the logistics of moving equipment and play test equipment to the test space, renting the physical space, operating within short time frames, and a host of other difficulties which can be logistical and economic nightmare. The result is that escape rooms may only be tested a few dozen times before being shown live to the public. However, the digital nature of Escape Academy means that it can be tested hundreds of times by people all over the world, from all walks of life. In theory, this means that Escape Academy is a puzzle should To be polished and well balanced once the game launches in June.

Will Escape Academy have post-launch content?

Coin Crew didn’t go into details, but Escape Academy’s post-launch content and expansions are planned. There doesn’t seem to be anything running right now, so we’ll need to wait for more news later.

That’s all we know about Escape Academy so far. What do you think that? Will you look forward to mind boggling puzzles? Let us know in the comments!

2022-05-18 16:24:12

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