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Our Escape Adventure Part 17: The Glitter Duck Awards!

Our Escape Adventure Part 17: The Glitter Duck Awards!

Hey fellow escapists and adventure seekers! If you’ve been following along with our RV trip around North America, you know that we've just wrapped it up with a whopping 282 escape rooms played! You heard that right – 282!

The Glitter Duck Awards: Celebrating the Best in Escape Rooms Across North America

Now, we know you're dying to know which ones stood out, made us laugh, and left us in awe. Well, buckle up because it's time for the Glitter Duck Awards! (We decided to call it that since we left mini ducks in nearly all the rooms we played.)

Best T-Shirt Collection - The Nemesis Club (Phoenix, AZ)

We've got a thing for escape room merch, especially T-shirts. The clear winner for the best-looking and most varied collection goes to The Nemesis Club. Trust us; you'll want to wear these shirts proudly.

Best Restrooms - Daydream Adventures (Toronto, Canada)

Yep, you read that right. We're talking about restrooms. Daydream Adventures takes the throne with not just one, but two uniquely themed restrooms, complete with murals, decorations, and soundtracks. Because why not make even the bathroom experience an adventure?

Best Lobby or Waiting Room - The Immersive Machine (Phoenix, AZ)

The first impression counts, right? The Immersive Machine's waiting room stole our hearts. Costumes to wear, puzzles to solve, and briefcases full of snacks – it's more than a waiting room; it's an experience in itself.

Best Tour - Five Senses Escape Rooms (Novi, MI)

Ever wondered what happens behind the scenes? Five Senses Escape Rooms gave us an exclusive tour of two new builds, their workshop, game master area, and the tech behind Starship Final Voyage. Talk about VIP treatment!

Most Gracious Owners - Think Solve Escape (Turnersville, NJ)

Patty from Think Solve Escape takes the crown for being the most gracious owner. Offering us a free game when she found out about our RV tour, she went above and beyond to make our visit memorable. Class act!

Best Secondary Business - The Nemesis Club (Phoenix, AZ)

Who says escape rooms can't have a side hustle? The Nemesis Club's ice cream parlor, Soda Jerk, stole our hearts (and taste buds). Those shakes are legendary, and you can even order off the secret menu if you've conquered their rooms.

Say Cheese! - The Exit Game (Anaheim, CA)

In an era where phones are often locked away, The Exit Game in Anaheim encourages the opposite. They want you to snap pics, make TikToks, and share your experience. Christine spills the beans on their savvy marketing strategy in a podcast – check it out! It’s Season 6, Episode 3 of the Reality Escape Pod.

Best Small-Town Hidden Gem - Boxed In (Festus, MO)

Small towns can have big surprises. Boxed In takes the title for being our hidden gem. Surprisingly good rooms with excellent set design put them on our must-visit list.

Best IP Game - Evil Dead 2 at Hourglass Escapes (Seattle, WA)

Evil Dead 2 took us on a wild ride, especially after watching the movie. Hourglass Escapes nailed the integration of the movie's characters through clever videos in the room. Groovy!

Best Family Friendly Game - Trouble in the Toy Shop at Enchambered (Sacramento, CA)

Finding family-friendly rooms isn't child's play, but Trouble in the Toy Shop made it look easy. Challenging for adults, with kid-friendly elements, it's a win-win for everyone.

The Game That Kept the Story Going the Best - Xtraction at King’s Eye Escape (Westminister, CA)

Xtraction at King’s Eye Escape had us on the edge with its unique game mechanic. The race against time to disarm each set of explosives kept us hooked and invested in the story throughout.

The Game With the Best Intro - 40 Thieves at MindTrap (Temecula, CA)

The intro to 40 Thieves at MindTrap left us saying "Wow!" We didn’t see anything like it anywhere else. It’s something you need to experience firsthand – no spoilers here!

The Game With the Best Music - The Mad Rapper at Scenario Escapes (Brea, CA)

Scenario Escapes in Brea cranked up the beats with The Mad Rapper. If only they had a Spotify playlist for those original jams!

The Game With the Best Hint System - Sal’s Cybernetics at Immersive Machine (Phoenix, AZ)

The charming Crumbz in Sal’s Cybernetics at Immersive Machine made hint-taking a joy. A fun hint system can make or break a game, and this one takes the cake.

The Game With Our Favorite Task - The Mogollon Monster at The Nemesis Club (Phoenix, AZ)

Creating music to summon the Mogollon Monster at The Nemesis Club had us in stitches. Frustrating for some, but an absolute blast for us. We just wish we could take our tunes home!

Best Use of an Actor - The Last Supper at Quest Tavern (Pomona, CA) & The Study at The Basement (Sylmar, CA)

For Curt, The Last Supper at Quest Tavern took the cake with a terrifyingly terrific scenario, while Tina fell in love with the puzzle-like interaction with the blind servant in The Study at The Basement.

Most Original Theme - The Great Potato Escape at Oh Key Escape Games (Blackfoot, ID)

Potatoes gone missing in Happy Potato Land? The Great Potato Escape at Oh Key Escape Games wins for the most original theme. A mash-tastic mystery indeed!

The Game With the Most Heart and Soul - Outside In at Top Tier (Oceanside, CA)

Based on the Pixar movie Inside Out, Outside In at Top Tier took us through a rollercoaster of emotions, reflecting the designers' real-life experiences. Truly heartfelt.

Most Shocking Reveal or Twist - Casino Heist at 60 to Escape (Milwaukee, WI)

Casino Heist at 60 to Escape blew our minds not with a story twist, but with an epic set change mid-game. You have to experience it to believe it!

Most Impressive Set Design - Cutthroat Cavern at 13th Gate (Baton Rouge, LA)

Cutthroat Cavern at 13th Gate left us in awe with its jaw-dropping set design. Puzzles aside, the sheer scale and quality of the set are unparalleled.

Most Fun Room - The Ripper at Nocturne Adventures (Hickory, NC)

Fun is the name of the game, and The Ripper at Nocturne Adventures nailed it. A perfect blend of flow, humor, and well-timed scares made it an absolute joy to play.

Best Overall Game - The Seed of Hope at The Sanctuary (Oklahoma City, OK)

Drumroll, please! The ultimate winner of the Glitter Duck Awards for the Best Overall Game goes to The Seed of Hope. Unique puzzles, mind-blowing set design, and an unforgettable experience make it a must-play.

And there you have it, fellow escape enthusiasts – the Glitter Duck Awards, a celebration of our journey through countless rooms and the memorable experiences we had across North America. These awards aren't just about locks, keys, and clever puzzles; they're about the heart and soul that each escape room owner, designer, and actor poured into their creations. From the quirky to the heartwarming, the jaw-dropping to the downright fun, these awards reflect the diverse and creative tapestry of the escape room world.

If you want to see our other nominees for each category, check out our Facebook page Mystery Soup Games.

We hope our recommendations inspire you to embark on your own escape adventures and discover the hidden gems, thrilling surprises, and heartwarming moments that await. As we wrap up our glittery journey, remember: the joy of escape rooms lies not just in solving puzzles but in the stories told, the connections made, and the laughter shared.

So, grab your friends, gather your family, or embark on a solo quest – the world of escape rooms is waiting for you. Until next time, keep escaping, keep exploring, and may your adventures be as bright and shiny as our Glitter Duck Awards! Quack on, escape enthusiasts, quack on! 🦆✨

Tina Deater & Curt Jackson

Tina Deater & Curt Jackson

Enthusiasts, travelers, bloggers

Tina is a former city and transportation planner turned escape room owner and Curt is a podcaster/blogger/content creator for the summer camp industry. Their worlds collided when they were handcuffed next to each other in a pirate themed escape room while attending an escape room enthusiast meet up event.

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