Adventure Company Zooms into Virtual Escape Room Experience

Featured Future of Work Wearable Tech

For three months, people have been unable to participate in most of their normal activities – at least the way they’re used to them.  Everything from working to shopping to dining to entertainment has all changed.  Now, as restrictions are being loosened, some facilities are able to operate in some capacity, while others are still not open.

Many, however, spent time re-creating their business plans to not only drive revenues during the crisis, but also to provide services people need or want, or both.  Fitness tracker company OxyStrap, for instance, shifted its production to make facemasks; BossTek adapted its commercial misters to help disinfect larger spaces and venues; and many communications and collaboration providers started offering free services or temporary licenses to companies that needed help transitioning to teleworking.  That’s all in addition to all the temperature monitoring, distancing, contact tracing, and other applications that are being developed to help businesses safely re-open.

But, as much as millions of businesses needed help staying operational, consumers, too, have struggled during the past three months.  Staying at home, not having much social interaction, and being very limited in terms of available activities can certainly have an impact on mental well-being. 

UK-based adventure activity company Twinwoods Adventure, with its normal activities like indoor skydiving, indoor surfing, and many other activities paused, saw an opportunity to adapt its product using readily available technology and a bit of ingenuity.  The result was not only an opportunity to generate a little revenue, but also provide people some isolation relief.

One of the activities it offers normally is an escape room challenge – an entertainment option that has steadily grown in popularity over the past few years.  But, with stay-at-home orders in place, the company quickly created a virtual escape room experience.  It’s first virtual adventure is its Morse Code Escape Room. 

“I believe that COVID-19 is set to spark a revolution in travel and leisure.  By leveraging technology to deliver immersive experiences, we are reconnecting families and friends that are distributed across the world.  Coronavirus has driven us apart but technology can bring us back together again.”

Roy Castleman, CEO, Twinwoods Adventure.

The virtual adventure takes players back to war-time in 1942, with an assignment to help infiltrate and enemy tower to prevent an attack.  Players must gain entry to the tower and, once in, must retrieve a package and then relay the enemy’s attack plan using Morse Code, then get out safely.  Teams have 60 minutes to complete the mission.   

Using Zoom’s video conferencing technology, participants control a live person with a wearable video camera.  Each team’s “avatar” acts out their commands based on verbal instructions to complete the adventure.  Just as an in-person escape room, the experience is predicated on collaboration between adventurers – the only difference is they don’t have to go anywhere to participate. 

The process is simple:

  1. Participants log into their dedicated Zoom meeting room where they collectively navigate their escape room challenge.
  2. Once logged in, participants are paired with a member of the Twinwoods team (their ‘avatar’).
  3. Physically located in the escape room, the avatar responds to directions from participants to solve a series of puzzles, crack the Morse Code and successfully escape from the room.

The Morse Code Escape Room experience is online and being delivered by the Twinwoods team 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, with prices starting at £17.50 ($22) per experience.