There’s nothing quite like racing the clock to get your adrenaline pumping, and immersive escape rooms are one of the best ways to do so nowadays. These multiplayer, real-life adventure games are a fun way to test your mental mettle with family, friends, or even coworkers. 

Find out why this craze has swept the nation. Below are just a few of the super creative–and super stressful–options available across the country.

Brain Xcape, New York City, NY

  • Number of Players: 2-10
  • Price: $30-75/person, depending on group size and day of visit
  • Duration: 1 hour

New York City is no stranger to immersive theater, and one of the biggest hits in recent history was the mind-bending production Sleep No More. The creative minds behind the all-encompassing sets have been busy at work to bring you the two rooms available at Brain Xcape, so you know no detail will go unconsidered. Located in the convenient Flatiron District in Manhattan, you can choose between two options. 

In “Prison Break,” you find yourself locked in an old cell, and your only hope of escape is your team. Or in the heartstopping “Haunted Hotel,” you wake to find yourself locked in Room 224, where not everything is quite as it seems.

 PanIQ Escape Room, Chicago, IL

pictuhour glass running out of time

  • Number of Players: 2-7
  • Price: $129-189, depending on day of week and time of day
  • Duration: 1 hour

Put your IQ to the test with the three brain-busting escape rooms available at this Chicago establishment. Family-friendly options include “The Infection,” which lets you try your hand at saving the world from a deadly virus, the result from an experiment gone wrong, and “The Mob,” which takes you back to gang-run Chicago during the 1900s. “Prison” pits you against the final countdown of the executioner’s clock on death row. Set in a real prison, it’s not for the faint of heart.

 Houdini’s Room Escape, Cincinnati, OH

  • Number of Players: 2-12, depending on the experience
  • Price: $28/person
  • Duration: 1 hour

Houdini’s Room Escape is a must for puzzle enthusiasts, and with four different unique and downright wacky scenarios to choose from, you’ll find yourself itching to come back. 

“The Tower” finds you looking for missing game-day tickets while accidentally being locked in a gift shop. “The Lab” finds you putting your life on the line to find the cure for a virus threatening all mankind. In “The Game Room” your trying to prove you have what it takes to be the apprentice to the one and only Harry Houdini. You’ll find yourself in a world of trouble with the Secret Service if you can’t find your way out of “The Oval Office.” Unlike some other escape rooms, you’ll only have space to yourself if you book the entire thing, so there’s a chance you’ll make some new friends (who enjoy puzzles as much as you do!).

 Cross Roads Escape Games, Anaheim, CA

Attractive woman with glasses wearing a question mark on her forehead and really thinking hard about something

  • Number of Players: 4-10, depending on the experience
  • Price: $32-35/person, depending on day of week
  • Duration: 1 hour

The private-room real-life adventure games at Cross Roads Escape Games are rated the number one in Southern California and number three in the whole nation, and it doesn’t take a genius to see why. “Fun House” is a game that’ll either have you feeling magnificent or like a real clown as you search for clues to solve mind-boggling puzzles. It was so popular that they’ve also created an all-ages kids version specifically designed for ages 8-13. The “Hex Room” on the other hand is strictly for those 16 years and up. You’ll see if you’ve got what it takes to make it to the end of a murderous horror movie, where each player is assigned a character before entering.

 Puzzle Break, Seattle, WA

  • Number of Players: 2-14, depending on the experience
  • Price: varies, depending experience
  • Duration: 1 hour

No matter what part of town you’re in Puzzle Break has been filling all of Seattle’s escape-room needs. The Capitol Hill location lets you see if you can “Escape From 20,000 Leagues,” an adventure where you and your fellow submariners must try to make it to the surface for air before it’s too late. You can also “Escape the Midnight Carnival” by finding clues and solving puzzles before the clock runs out. If you find yourself in Belltown, you can go head-to-head with a rival team to see if you can find the will of a recently deceased professor and escape the enchanted seance in new digitally-connected “The Eventide Departure” or “Escape the Lost Temple” by finding and returning the missing artifact.

Don’t stress out about booking a hotel for your stay. Save all of the tough thinking for the Escape game you plan to play. Head over to our sister site, HotelCoupons for help finding affordable, no-brainer rates! 

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