At The Escape Effect, many people go through our escape rooms every week. This means that the rooms see quite a bit of wear and tear from players searching the rooms for clues. Keeping everything in good condition is the role of our escape room maintenance team.
General escape room maintenance
Our set designer puts a lot of effort into designing props to last. However, even the most durable props need regular care. As excited players rush to solve the final puzzles, some items can get dropped or scratched. Other minor issues, like damaged boxes and drawers that stick, can build up over time.
Painting is one of the biggest jobs. With so many people coming through the rooms, the paint inevitably sees a lot of wear and tear. High-traffic areas like windows and doorways are especially prone to scuffing, as well as areas where people slide objects across the walls. The escape room maintenance team regularly checks the rooms for damaged paint. Matching the colors and textures is a challenge, but we take great pride in our ability to make the rooms look as good as new. When it’s done well, you can’t even see where the damage used to be.
Repairing decorations and props is another important part of escape room maintenance. If something comes off of a wall when it’s not supposed to, or if a prop gets knocked over and broken, we need to get it fixed as soon as possible. For items that can’t be repaired, like anything with glass, we have a number of spares on hand. If an item breaks or gets too worn out to use, we can quickly put together a replacement and get it back into the game.
We keep many spare test tubes for Sherlock Studies. If something happens and one of them breaks, we can add a new label to it and replace the broken one very quickly.
Sherlock Studies has a number of old books in it. We make sure to keep plenty of spare books on hand in case something happens to any of them.
Building new props
Sometimes, larger props need to be completely replaced. Whether it’s because of damage that’s too big to fix or because a puzzle is being replaced, our escape room maintenance team will make the new props or change up the old ones.
When the snake basket from Fright Before Your Eyes was damaged beyond repair, we decided to take it out of the game. The swords that were in the basket became the main pieces to the puzzle. Our escape room maintenance team took the swords out and repainted them. The swords were given a fresh coat of black paint followed by several gray tones to build up a weathered metal texture, then brushed with some shades of reddish-brown to add some rust and dried blood. Once the symbols and finishing touches were added, the swords were ready to go into the game.
Escape room maintenance takes a lot of work, but it’s an interesting and creative job. We find solutions to design problems and explore new ways to make stunning and long-lasting props. The best part of all is seeing the players that come to play our rooms. Their reactions when they see the rooms is what makes the work worth doing.