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Fringe review: The Bootlegger’s Dilemma

Adelaide Fringe

Puzzle lovers rejoice – Escape Room Treasure Hunt has returned to Adelaide with its new room, The Bootlegger’s Dilemma. ★★★

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It’s the roaring 1920s and in New York City prohibition laws are in full force, but for you and your teammates every night is a party as employees of an illegal speakeasy bar. That is, until you learn that the police are on their way to raid the establishment.

With just 45 minutes to hide, the players must work together to find clues and solve the riddles or face being arrested.

Unlike other adventure rooms, where the goal is to escape, The Bootlegger’s Dilemma requires players to solve a series of puzzles which unlock hiding places for each bottle of alcohol in the bar – and it is easier said than done.

The action takes place in a small, nondescript portable building tucked away in a hard-to-find corner of Gluttony (turn right immediately after entering the hub and follow the path around).

On opening night, my guest and I were two of seven people participating in the 6.30pm session. Our evening began with an apology from our host, who explained that due to an airline mishap, he had arrived in town late and with damaged props, which meant the room was not yet operating exactly as intended.

As the countdown clock began, it soon became obvious that the cramped confines of the room were not built to accommodate such a large group. The seven of us were constantly bumping into each other and it was almost impossible to search the antique draws or cupboards or gain access to locked areas without someone blocking your way. In such a small space, communication is vital to success.

Imaginative and cleverly designed, each new challenge tests your teamwork, communication and puzzle-solving skills, and some of the devices in the room are quite ingenious.

Despite opening-night hiccups, The Bootlegger’s Dilemma is an enjoyable activity, but given the size of the room it would be better suited to smaller groups.

The Bootlegger’s Dilemma is playing in Gluttony until March 18. Read more InDaily Fringe reviews and stories here.

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