Adventure 3 : The Mental Gymnastics

By Thomas Dunagan

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The mental Gymnastics

Now that construction has finally commenced on the newest room, I can’t help but feel like I’m doing something I haven’t done before. I guess to some degree that is true as this is a completely new room with a fresh design and new puzzles. I haven’t constructed any rooms since the summer of 2019. I’m not a foreigner to tools but even getting back to the basics of putting up walls and running light fixtures feels a little unsteady for me. I think part of that has been the mental gymnastics I have gone through in the development of this room. It’s a far more elaborate endeavor than my first two designs and it has been rolling around in my head for over a year now. So trying to put it all together into a tangible thing is almost surreal. There are so many nooks and crannies to this game I don’t want all the little details to be missed.

I anticipate The Playbook to be something absolutely groundbreaking in terms of gameplay that I have yet to see in this industry. I’m not saying that it hasn’t been attempted or even done. I just haven’t seen it done to the level of what I’m trying to create. A truly replayable escape adventure. The replayability does have its limits, ideally up to three times without any repetition to see everything assuming it’s a full player count game each time. However, what is even more interesting is the rarity of any games ever playing out alike. Through the combination of characters and “audibles” players choose; they are creating a sense of ownership for their game.

That is the ultimate goal I have for this game. I want players to have sense of ownership throughout the game. I want every player to feel like they played a vital role in the progression of the story. That is what this game really is, a story. The language of this game is in particularly not in line with “escape room”. This is truly a storytelling adventure game. While the game play and nuances may have some semblance of an escape adventure through puzzles and tasks. The flow will not have that pressure of time element. I want the players to have fun. I want them to experience their own Goonies adventure, their Breakfast Club antics, and their Stand By Me comradery.