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Escape Rooms: Can you break Apartment613’s record at Makerspace North?

By Laura Gauthier and Samara Caplan on October 19, 2019

Laura and Samara spend their days as non-profit unicorns and fill every spare minute exploring the world of musical theatre as BFFs (that’s Broadway Friends Forever).

You may recall from our preview article that the BFFs are escape room champions. We are proud to let you know that we retain our championship title after successfully defeating the Escape Makerspace North pop-up escape room!

Details on our championship party are to follow, but for now, we thought we’d let you in on how this all panned out. But no spoilers! You will have to find your way out of this one yourselves.

Adam Wilk, Space Director at Makerspace North, was kind enough to invite us attempt the room right before some of the final details were in place, but it was such a blast that we didn’t even notice there were still a few pieces to add before the official opening on October 17th.

What sets this escape room apart from the plethora of others around the city, is  that it’s uniquely Makerspace. If you don’t know what that means, that’s ok, because discovering what Makerspace North is all about is part of the adventure! The BFFs and our two recruits (ahem, friends) loved getting to learn a bit more about what Makerspace is all about as part of the experience.

This was definitely different from others we’ve seen.

The details of the escape room also incorporate Makerspace objects, a few more technical gadgets and local items, to help you solve your puzzles, which was a really fun twist we hadn’t seen before. Building these elements into the experience made for thrilling challenges in figuring out the “mystery of the missing tenant.” If you’ve done other escape rooms and are used to a certain style, this was definitely different from others we’ve seen.

The story of why you’re trying to escape can vary in strength and detail from escape room to escape room, in the ones we’ve experienced around the city, and for Escape Makerspace North there’s a loose story, but the important part is just the fun of the puzzles and the challenge of the room itself, which we were more than happy with! The escape was fast paced and difficult enough that we were starting to debate amongst ourselves about asking for a hint as we got closer and closer to our time limit, but it kept a good balance so that we never felt like it wasn’t doable, or that it was too easy and we could race right through it. We did manage to figure it all out without a hint and with a few minutes to spare! (Keeping our streak alive and setting a new time record for the room at the same time!)

We were surprised to hear that everything in the escape room was thought up, created and executed by the Makerspace North folks. No googling for puzzle ideas, or copying things they’d seen elsewhere. It definitely made for a uniquely Ottawa experience, which we’re big fans of.

The buzz is already big around this limited edition experience, and while another two weekend of time slots have opened up, it is filling up quickly so it’s best to book soon with your best team of sleuths to help you escape before it’s too late.

Escape Makerspace North runs at Makerspace North at City Centre from October 17–19 and 24–26, October 31 to November 2 and November 8–9. Tickets are $20 each and it is suggested to do in groups of four. The experience should take about 45 minutes. Note that construction means you actually drive up what is normally the down ramp on the north side of the building to access the 2nd level. Follow the Ottawa Tool Library signs. Watch for oncoming traffic!