Aug 20, 2019: Ingress

It’s a bit of a strange experience when you find yourself having to break into one of your escape rooms instead of watching people break out.

We’d had a team in who, being two-thirds young children, were in everything as you might imagine. It’s always fun watching things being used for things you never really thought they’d be used for. But one of the favourite things of the younger hands, we’ve discovered, is to flick latches on door locks.

Which is fine. It’s a very child thing to do – half of the toys for young children have switches to flick or buttons to turn. It makes sense that presented with a flickable switch in real life they’d be all over it.

Unfortunately, when we’d reset the room, we didn’t realise they’d done it.

So we locked ourselves out of the Dungeon. The other two doors led to locked areas – locked from the other side, I hasten to add. It was a bit of a bugger.

So it was me versus a Yale lock. My boss wanted me to break the Yale lock off the frame by putting pressure on the door. As he was telling me this, I was looking at another door frame with a Yale latch on it and knew it wouldn’t be happening. He offered to come and do it, at one point, because he thought it would be better if he broke anything rather than if I did. But in the greater scheme of things he’s a twig and I’m a trunk. It seemed unlikely.

Instead, I was coming up with an idea to maybe manipulate one of the directional locks so that I could open it – an idea which, I will admit was the crazy talk of a man clutching at straws because there was no way I’d be able to get in a position to move the joystick of the lock in the directions (reversed for me) they needed to move in.

But as I was trying this I spotted that I might be able to unscrew the hatch doors from the side I was at, kick that out of the way and make my way into the Dungeon.

And that’s exactly what I wanted to be doing with fifteen minutes left until my bus was due!

I’m just glad I found it tonight and not tomorrow when I turned up for work before my first game in the dungeon. I wasn’t even originally supposed to be in tonight anyway, so it may have gone unnoticed as it was. But then, the very act of observation changings the behaviour so maybe by not being there it wouldn’t have happened in the first place.

Either way, I think I’m the first person – aside from those stupid robbers who broke into the fake bank room in Manchester thinking it was real – to break into an escape room.