The popularity of escape rooms  has continued to grow steadily as new locations are consistently opening in cities around the world. There are countless concepts, themes, and storylines on the market, each offering its own spin on the experience. But, what makes a good escape room? 

A lot goes into creating a successful escape room experience, from the story and set design, to the fluidity and difficulty of puzzles and clues. A great escape room should be carefully planned to take participants on a fully immersive, challenging adventure that pushes for out of the box thinking and collaboration without inciting frustration or the want to give up. It’s a fine line, but there are a few key aspects that make great escape rooms stand out!

What makes a good escape room?Theme and Set Design

Usually escape rooms have a specific theme. They may depict a certain time period, recreate a movie scene, or set the mood for a unique scenario. Furniture, props and other decorations are all part of the fine details that help develop the theme and engages the players’ imaginations. You’ll know you’ve stepped into a high-quality escape room if you are awe-struck and immediately immersed in the environment. 

A cleverly designed escape room will leave players searching for clues amongst every notebook, painting, and piece of technology. Every detail must be relevant to the setting or time period to really suck players into the experience. The more dramatic and realistic the theme and design, the more game players will feel the stress and adrenaline of the escape.

A Compelling Story

Many escape rooms have a storyline or portray a particular scenario. An engaging narrative will develop the theme and get gameplayers thoroughly engrossed in a room. Movies, books, video games, and escape rooms all use storytelling to draw in an audience, motivating curiosity and excitement. Some escape rooms may only use a story as a guide throughout, encouraging the progression from puzzle to puzzle, but the best escape rooms really bring the story to life.

Whether a room is based on escaping a situation, investigating a crime, or solving a mystery to escape the room, the story is vital to portray the experience. A compelling story must make sense and should be somewhat realistic – depending on the scene. For example, if the room recreates a popular movie scene, the storyline should work with the theme. Some of the most popular escape rooms assign gameplayers roles or characters to play, with detailed storylines that keep them thoroughly engaged!

Immersive Experience

A great escape room must have a unique theme and compelling storyline, but that’s not all that goes into creating a fully immersive experience. Being given a specific character or responsibility to help the story along forces players to feel like they are truly a part of the experience. Feeling the slight anxiety of time ticking, enhanced by a bit of panic and confusion on what to do next – this is what separates a good escape room from a great one. 

The thrill of a great escape room is all in the immersive details that trigger emotion and awakens our senses. The visual setting and story are brought to life even further with smells, noises, or soundtracks, and of course the feeling of competitive adventure.


Keeping players engaged can be a challenge, by creatively incorporating clues or hints, players can be encouraged to interact with different aspects of the room to help them progress. Turning lights, TVs, or radios on or off, flipping switches, turning knobs, opening doors – promoting interaction with the room and the props really helps motivate players. The inclusion of technology appropriate to the scenario, or a helpful gamekeeper character are also great ways to interactively guide players through the experience, without breaking character!

Puzzle Variety and Difficulty

This is where the magic really happens. Developing a theme and ensuring it’s engaging and immersive is key to really capturing an audience. However, the excitement of following clues, discovering puzzles, and the competitive satisfaction of solving them is what really draws in a crowd. 

The best escape rooms feature a variety of puzzles, leading players from one step to another, in search of the next clue or task. Number codes, written puzzles or riddles, and scavenger hunts can all be carefully intertwined to create a seamless flow. The challenge for gamekeepers is offering an experience that tests players’ skills, without being undefeatable. There’s no fun in a game you can’t win. Although it’s always great to have hints available to keep gameplay progressing, winning should be possible without hints. 

Encourages Teamwork

Most escape rooms are designed to be played with a certain number of players. Usually, most rooms have a range of 2-5 or 3-8 players for example. This is why escape rooms are perfect to enjoy with friends, family, or coworkers. However, if the story doesn’t incorporate all members and encourage teamwork, it’s not likely to be an equally engaging experience for everyone.

The best escape rooms are carefully designed and planned to include each player and incite collaboration. Puzzles and activities that stimulate interaction or require multiple people to physically complete, encourage teamwork throughout gameplay and ensures every member feels included.

Escape from the 6 is the best escape room in  Mississauga. We offer 3 distinctively different escape room experiences designed with different mental and physical/tactile obstacles along the way. You must work together with your team to solve puzzles, discover clues, and overcome challenges to escape within 60 minutes. 

Your team is your greatest asset and your biggest challenge. Only by working together, communicating, and using your time wisely, will you find the items, tools, and answers to win the challenge!