According to Wikipedia, the first official 'escape room' was Real Escape Game in Japan. However, I can't find anything about a physical escape-the-room type activity before that, and I seem to recall having been to something of the sort before 2007, when Real Escape Game was developed. (I keep thinking Wannado City, but I don't think that's it.)

So: were there any escape-the-room type games before 2007, even if not marketed as an 'escape room'?

  • $\begingroup$ Crystal maze might count - for the 'mystery' rooms you have to find objects to solve a puzzle to unlock the door - that started in 1990 $\endgroup$ – Beastly Gerbil Aug 15 '17 at 9:22
  • $\begingroup$ (Are we talking about real life or video games or both?) $\endgroup$ – Beastly Gerbil Aug 15 '17 at 9:26
  • $\begingroup$ @BeastlyGerbil - I mentioned in the title 'real-life', and 'physical' in the body. $\endgroup$ – Mithical Aug 15 '17 at 9:27
  • $\begingroup$ You might be thinking of the catacombs. But, I heard that Budapest had quite a big market in escape rooms, so if you want to focus your research, Budapest might be a possibility. $\endgroup$ – JohnyNich Aug 15 '17 at 10:21

According to this site, "one of the first escape rooms developed in Silicon Valley, California in 2006".

I thought it was a Hungarian invention, as they are extremely popular here, and many people come here from the UK for example.

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