25 Strange and Hilarious Escape Room Stories from Around the World
When in an escape room, things can get pretty crazy. Game masters do this for a living and we have seen everything from customers twerking on tables, to mysterious, inexplicable (possibly paranormal?) happenings, to people smashing boxes open with the hopes of winning the game… “isn’t the point to actually solve the puzzles?”… as a game guide, I often ask myself this question.
The clock ticks down quickly… tick, tick, tick… the desire to win is real and people to do crazy things in the heat of the moment.
These are the untold escape room stories of strange and hilarious happenings. These accounts are by real game guides at Big Escape Rooms, other game masters around the world, and the escapees who saw it all go down first hand.
I hope you get as many laughs reading these stories as I did putting them together!
Stories of… Unconventional ways of Escaping
Let’s face it, we all want to win.
“At our establishment we have a room called “Jailbreak” with a fake door towards the very end (it’s covered with plywood). this girl takes one look at it and says “jail…break….” and charges the door full force and breaks through.” – notyaryp, reddit
“People have tried to climb through the ceiling tiles on multiple occasions. We now have to mention in the pre-game spiel that it’s not necessary to climb through the ceiling tiles. My job often reminds me of this scene in the office. People laugh at the things we mention, but anything we mention that you don’t have to do has probably been attempted before. One of my co-workers said that a group started getting really destructive in the room, to the point where they literally threw the computer on the floor to see if something was hidden inside (there wasn’t anything hidden inside, they need to use a special magnifying glass to read the monitor). We abruptly removed them from the room after that. The next day the group came back and were extremely well behaved. I guess they learned their lesson.” – rayray223, reddit
Right Place, Right Time
“That is amazing. Something similar happened in my last escape room experience. It was a space themed one, and at one point, you open this up-link and get into a crawl space. In it, there are numbers spelled out in Russian, you’re supposed to solve another puzzle to get a computer screen to show you the words and their meaning. I was in the main room trying to figure out how to solve the final puzzle when I hear my friend shout “Wait, is that Russian? Yeyande, get in here!” we proceeded to skip a few steps in the room because I speak Russian. When we finished, the game master was so confused and had never thought that something like that would ever happen.” – unknown, reddit
“Once, I was game guiding a group of high school boys. They were mostly through the game and all was well. The group had about 10 minutes to go and struggled to get into a clear case mounted to the wall. Now, incorporated into this particular room, there is a set of golf clubs. One of the boys had a brilliant idea. The youngest boy decided to take one of the golf clubs and hit the clear plastic case until they get the item inside… the case broke, they got what was inside. I had to stop the game. My guess is Mom and Dad weren’t too happy about having to replace the clue.” – Game guide at Big Escape Rooms
Things can get weird. Especially when alcohol is involved.
Please, do not Flash the Game Guides
“At the escape room I worked at before I started working here, my friend had a group come in one day who maybe had a few drinks before showing up. They were in the room, cracking joke after joke. The group was a fun group to have for the most part, but I still can’t believe what happened next. They were struggling with a puzzle and talking about how they don’t want to use.one of their limited clues to solve this one. One of the girls in this group full of jokes stood up and yelled, “TITS FOR CLUES”, and LITERALLY lifted her shirt towards the camera!” – Game guide at Big Escape Rooms
“A customer opened a cryptex at the beginning of the game, figured out how the mechanism was set, the reset it to a secret word and closed it. I guessed PENIS, it was PENIS. Case closed.” – heroof1337, reddit
“We use to have a giant banana as a mascot and once we had a group of kids that were intoxicated and the one of the guys in the room started crying so we decided to let him hold it. So the guy cuddled with it on the ground and fell asleep about 10 minutes into the game. Had the time of his life.” – BlueWhite618, reddit
This Next Hour Won’t be Awkward at all…
“Escape Room employee here, we have a game that has wooden floors and guests regularly try to pull up the nailed down floorboards with a hammer that’s in the room, thinking they’ll find clues. Also one time I asked the group if they had ever played an escape game before, and an elderly gentleman responded ‘one time my wife tied me up and gagged me. Does that count?’. His friends thought it was hilarious, but the high school couple that was obviously on a first date they were paired up with did not find it as funny..
EDIT: I just remembered another common thing people do. Sometimes halfway through a game, someone that wasn’t paying attention will walk up to the entrance, realize its unlocked, and tell the rest of the group they solved it. Then group think sets in and everyone just stands in the hallway as their time runs out.” – breathe_intheair, reddit
Just Plain Unexplainable
It is hard to believe, but it’s true.
“Same guy brought multiple tinder dates to our escape room and did the same room every time so he knew all the answers. He always payed and He never tried to break the record so I let it slide. The girls were always so impressed with him.” – se7enkb, reddit
“One time I was alone late at night closing up shop for the day. It was late- around 1 a.m. and I was the only last person on the fourth floor of the building. Keep in mind that the escape room I work for (big escape rooms) is inside of of an old building that used to be a wing of the hospital next door (talk about creepy). I was resetting the rooms after running a late show.
The only other employee left hours ago… Suddenly over the walkie-talkie I hear a woman’s voice giving clues to an escape game. I nearly peed my pants! A muffled sounding voice was breaking in an out. I got a truly eerie feeling after hearing her voice. There is no way to explain the woman’s voice because Big Escape Rooms is the latest open escape room in the area. The closest escape room closed nearly 4 hours ago… not to mention, a completely different company owns the room and they don’t even use the same walkies-talkies we do… ” – Game guide at Big Escape Rooms
“Finally, my time to shine! We had a group that was evidently high. They weren’t disruptive or anything, so we just briefed them, and took them to their room. So far so good. We have cameras and microphones inside the rooms, that way we know what hints to give out. Another important thing is that the room they were at had a small fountain, and since the particular aesthetic of this room was dusty, that water was filthy. I’m talking murky, brown-yellow, mud-water.
At one point one of the guys says he is thirsty, and proceeds to stick his mouth onto the fountain’s stream and take a hefty gulp of the mud-water. We spend a second of shock/guffaw, and tell them that drinking the freaking water isn’t part of the puzzle. The guy reads the hint and just says ‘that’s alright’. He proceeded to do the same thing four times and drank the whole fountain (small fountain, but still like a gallon of mud-water). We’ve had more inconvenient things happen, but that still remains as the worst thing I’ve ever seen.” – SartresChill, reddit
The Day Escape Rooms got Scary for the Guides too
“How can I forget this one: a little 12 year kid came up to me before the room and asked: ‘Are you in the room with us?’ I replied: ‘No but I’ll be in the control room’ To which he replied: ‘Okay, good, so we can torture you when you don’t give us any good hints’ ” – W1ckeDxt, reddit
That Moment of Realization
Aha moments ARE LIFE.
“We have a briefcase clue inside of one of our rooms. I kid you not, almost every single person who goes through this room can only find half of the combination (the briefcase has 2 sides with 3 numbers on each). They are convinced they have the right code and our briefcase is broken when one side opens (when actually, they only have half the code). People decide the clue is the problem and carelessly pry it open and shake out what is inside… but jokes on them because I have secured the items inside!
When their unconventional way of solving clues doesn’t work. I always hear this over the walkie-talkie, “*CHHK* We have the right code but the briefcase isn’t working *CHHK*”, so I reply, “What’s the code you have?“, “*CHHK* We have the right code, it just isn’t working *CHHK*”, and once again, “Tell me the code you are trying to input.”.. proceeds to tell me incorrect code then I explain to them what they really need to do. As if they practiced a million times before, in harmony they exclaim, “ooooooOOOOOOoooohh!”. The sound people make in the moment of realization never gets old.” – Game guide at Big Escape Rooms
But I Wanted to Win..
“One guy rage quit because someone found the last key before him.” – WakaFlacaPhlam, reddit
And I thought the Game was the Entertainment
“Actually work in an escape room but this one happened to my colleague. We have this false door that leads to a wall which is to make people believe that’s the way the came in (they’re blindfolded at first). One guy was so happy that he found the “last” key in a record time, that when he opened the door, he slammed his head so hard that the group in the next room got scared.” – Magnolious, reddit
Maybe Escape Rooms aren’t your Thing…
You think you’re ready for this challenge, but you’re not ready for this challenge.
Listen to your game guide, folks.
“For some reason people like to put the flashlight that one of our rooms has in their mouth. They know they aren’t the only ones who have used them. Some people put them between their legs, in the crack of their a** as a joke, and not to mention just roll around the ground a majority of the time. Besides that I’ve seen relationships almost fall apart. One couple insisted on going into our most challenging room just the two of them, and we let them know this was probably not going to be a good idea or enjoyable for them, but they didn’t really care. You could tell the guy wanted to impress the girl, but both of them were dumber than rocks.
I had to sit for an entire hour watching them get literally no where through the first puzzle arguing with each other and then sitting in moments of awkward silence. I offered to give them help and said I would just tell them if they wanted at this point, but they refused. Also people love to not listen to our disclosure we have to give before we send groups into rooms and kick in our air vents and break through our drywall and ceilings when we specifically say not to and put tape that says NOT A PART OF THE GAME in bright yellow colors” – WildyMegaWolf. reddit
What ever you do, DON’T PUT DOWN THE CANS!
“My friends and I did one escape room that had a bunch of tin cans scattered across the rooms. Like 25 of them. Not sure who got it in their heads that we needed them, but for some reason we started carrying them from room to room. Each of us with hand-fulls of tin cans. They served no purpose. There was never anything about needing tin cans. The guy running the thing was killing himself laughing at us once we got out.” Control-room, reddit
Mom knows best
“Did a space stationed themed room. We got paired with a mother and her adult sons. The sons did just fine but mom was clueless. There was a prop fire extinguisher on the wall that she was CERTAIN had to be for something. For an hour she wandered around aimlessly carrying a fire extinguisher.” – darwin57, reddit
“Actual escape room employee here! The weirdest thing I saw was a young couple, in our hardest room (they asked for our hardest), who when they couldn’t solve our puzzles took off their shoes and just sat down and talked. When I would send them hints (to get them to start playing again), the lady would call me a commie. It was weird. For example: the lady would pick up a red clue paper that goes with a pyramid puzzle. They would stare at it, then put it to the side. I type in a hint “the red papers go with the pyramid!” She looks up the screen, “we were getting to that, commie!”. I’m not a communist, and the room isn’t communist themed in the slightest” – Hussain300, reddit
Please do not eat the clues
“I saw a man eat a magnet. There are rubber snakes in the room and one has a magnet in its mouth. He thought he should do as the snake did. He offered it back, but we told him once he found it he could keep it.” – MrKerk, reddit
Trivia Check-Point! Click here to see a really cool riddle.
No… Anything but that!
If there is a weird rule at the Escape Room you visit, that’s because it has happened before.
For emergencies only
“It doesn’t matter how many times you say: ‘The entrance is not the exit’. When people ultimately find the “escape-key” they all run to the entrance.” –W1ckeDxt, reddit
I feel for this game guide….
“Like most rooms, we have cameras all throughout the game so we can keep any eye on players, give hints based on what puzzle they’re on, and watch out for any shenanigans. So, ours is a prison themed escape, at one point there are 3 cells that need to be opened in order (one of them has a live actor in it that messes with you the entire time, even after you rescue him). Anyway, each cell is pretty much the same, with a toilet, shelf, and a few other items.
One guy was pretty drunk and repeatedly put bones and other stuff in his pants to get a laugh out of his teammates. Eventually, they stopped paying attention to him while trying to actually make their escape. He must’ve gotten bored being so drunk and not caring about the escape room, he left the main group to head back to he prison cell area. I’m watching on the cameras and see he’s not with the rest of the group,.so I start clicking around trying to find him. Sure enough, he’s in a jail cell hovering over a toilet, taking a piss. There’s no plumbing, they’re definitely just props.
We shut their game down on the spot, his group was not happy with him at all. After they left I had the pleasure of soaking up his piss with a mop little by little,.and it was after that night we added the ‘anyone visibly intoxicated will not be allowed to participate’ rule.” – LowTower, reddit
Want to hold hands?
“There is a little “hint-door”, we put hints behind it written on paper and I tell kids all the time:.“THERE’S NOTHING BEHIND THAT DOOR”. But every damn time a kid walks up to it, starts opening and closing it before putting their hand inside. This one instance I was so done with it I shook their hand and let go, they freaked out and never touched that door again.” – W1ckeDxt, reddit
Stories so funny, I couldn’t leave them out!
“I own an escape Room in Australia. A guy called up and said he was bringing his friend for her birthday. Her nick name is “Pickles”. So he requested that at the end of the game, they could find a jar of pickles. So, I obliged and went out and bought a jar of pickles and replaced the possessed doll you were meant to find with a jar of pickles. I guess that was the weirdest thing…” – popnfresh24, reddit
More hilarious stunts I couldn’t exclude
“A guy was playing with a soccer ball, keeping it off the ground for quite some time. He kicked it up to face-level, kissed the round object and repeated this every so often. I commented : ‘you must like balls’, to which he replied ‘if you want to play ze ball, you have to love ze ball’. First time I broke character laughing out loud.” – RamirPascal, reddit
More from this Reddit user…
“Had a participant fake a stroke/heart attack because he thought that by doing.so one of our actors would help him escape, or that it would get him outside ‘his own way’. Didn’t react to several questions and agreed upon code-words, safe-words, exit phrases, actual human panic, several employees telling him that this is not part of the experience, that the emergency services had been called, that we shut down the experience for all of the 150 (paying) participants for the emergency services to get to him…
It was not until the police, firemen and ambulance people told him to stop faking it that he stopped. We got a pat on the shoulder from the emergency services. He got served with the bills but his stunt cost everyone.” – RamirPascal, reddit
Try an escape room out yourself. Heck, you might even enjoy it! You will definitely get a few laughs along the way! Click here to book a room at Big Escape Rooms Atlanta.
If you have any funny escape stories of your own, stop what you’re doing right now and tell us about it in the comments!
We would love to hear from you.