[BATON ROUGE, USA] A little while ago, on the French Escape Room Addicts Facebook group “Accros aux jeux d’évasion”, the following existential question was asked: which room would you like to be able to erase from your memory in order to replay it with the same wonder?
After our quick trip to Louisiana, I know that at the time of writing this article my answer to this question is Cutthroat Cavern, at 13th Gate Escape, in Baton Rouge. This scenario was THE most awaited moment of the 40 hours we spent on American soil with Isabelle, Steven (from Sauve Qui Peut) Loli and KC. I might as well tell you right away: the experience exceeded all of our high expectations!
Thinking back, this incomparable scenario challenges the very concept of this philosophical question. It is such an epic, disproportionate and incredible adventure that I would relive it without the slightest hesitation, with the same enthusiasm and without even having my memory erased! It was that awesome!
Cutthroat Cavern : 7 out of 5 stars !
|20 %||45 %||35 %|
|💲 / 👤||⏱||💬|
|30 $US||60 min.||EN|
|👥||👥 ideal||Our group size|
|4 – 10||6 – 8||8|
|🗿 Ancient Civilization / 🏴☠️ Pirate
🏆 Cadenas d’Or / 🇺🇸 in the USA
While on a Caribbean vacation you decide to explore the island of Isla Mujeres, rumored to be the location where the notorious pirate Jean Lafitte hid his most priceless treasure.
Stopping to talk to a local tour guide, he gives you directions to a large series of Mayan Ruins and caves overlooking the ocean. He tells you that according to island legend, the pirate had a secret hideout somewhere within the caves, though no one had ever been able to discover it. The caves themselves were known as Cutthroat Caverns because the ancient Mayans would frequently perform human sacrifices within them.
Before you depart, your tour guide also cautions you about exploring too late, for many of the caves flood when the tide comes in at dusk and a person could easily get trapped and drown.
You find the ruins easily enough and after many hours of fruitless searching you are about to give up when you see a small hole at the base of an ancient Mayan statue. You cautiously reach inside and feel a small handle which, without thinking, you pull…
The ground opens up beneath your feet and you tumble down an ancient slide into a dark underground passage many stories below. As you stumble back to your feet you remember the tour guide’s warnings and wonder how you will ever escape in time.
Can you Discover the hidden mysteries of Cutthroat Cavern before you become its next Sacrifice?
– Synopsis taken from 13th Gate Escape’s Website
Other than the first 10 seconds of rainforest, everything you will see in this video is in the room! As the Beastie Boys rap: « What you see is what you get / And you ain’t seen nothing yet! »
Imagine, Cutthroat broke our decor / immersion rating system! Don’t laugh. Yes, I know this is the second time this has happened to us, but we have to face the fact and adapt. Some games are in a league of their own.
Rule # 4 – Do not feed the sharks
For starters, a « detail » struck us at the time of the pre-game instructions. We were served our first swimming interdiction! Say what? Does that mean there is water? Enough water to be able to swim? At this point, the anticipation reached its peak. I was so excited! If I had been a puppy, I might just have peed on the floor. The game was finally about to start!
IIIIIIt’s Tiiiiiiiiime ! This is THE moment escape room fans around the world have been waiting for !
Thanks, Bruce Buffer. From the start we appreciated a well constructed set and were impressed by the mechanisms in place. Ah! We should have known better. From this moment on it would only get better.
This game is even more extravagant than The Tomb of Anubis, another 13th Gate’s scenario which, at the time when we played played the version offered at X-Cape (Dorval), had made us say pretty much the same thing about its gigantism.
The staging is extremely precise. The places depicted are noticeable in their realism and seem straight out of certain movies such as Indiana Jones or the Goonies. After the first stage, we were no longer in a conventional escape game. We weren’t even at 13th Gate anymore, but in an old cave. It doesn’t feel like a set as everything looks so real! From floor to ceiling, no square inch was left untouched. Enhanced by carefully planned lighting effects, the sets are impressive, inspiring and will take you from surprise to surprise. It is impossible to remain unmoved.
Even the tablet used for clues in the company’s older games has been abandoned in favor of a much more immersive and, at times, funnier method.
Perfect for the adventurer in you
Prepare to feel like a real adventurer. The environment is very interactive and the required tasks are all thematic. Expect to play a lot with the set and to be amazed more than once by the different manipulations to you have to perform as well as by the mechanisms you’ll activate. The little hamster in my head spins quickly in his wheel when I try to think back about all of the tasks that stand out. Each accomplishment will allow you to gradually unveil the big picture.
Another reason why you might want to go back? There is so much to do and so much to see, so much to explore and analyze, that it will be almost impossible to witness everything. There are also periods when certain tasks can be worked on in parallel. You better plan to go with a sizeable team. (The minimum required to play at 13 Gate is 4 people anyway.) There are situations where it is possible for several players to actively participate in solving a riddle. Our party of eight enthusiasts dif not feel overcrowded at any point.
We completed the mission at the very last minute and at no time did it seem like we were wasting time. We would have taken one or two extra hours with a game like that! Actually, make it ten hours!
Ladies and gentlemen, if you will look right here
As mentioned in the introduction, Cutthroat Cavern is not a game that I would like to erase from my memory. It’s like a movie that you can watch dozens of times, even if you know the outcome. In the end, the game’s curse is not having played it already, it’s not being able to talk about it to others in as much detail as you’d like! I know, that is the problem with all scenarios, but there is so much to say here, with so much enthusiasm …
I would be very happy to have the little « flashy thing » from Men In Black. After telling you everything there is about Cutthroat, I could then invite you to look right here, and stare at the light…
International favorite – Cadenas d’Or 2019
Without a doubt, Cutthroat Cavern earns its spot as one of our 4 international favorites of 2019. It is one of those exceptional games, all its magnitude, which will remain etched in our memories! If you still had doubts, Cutthroat Cavern is a game worthy of any detour. We had a blast playing it and we highly recommend it.