You only need to glance at the announcements from last week's E3 gaming mega-conference to realise that game studios are constantly engaged the pursuit of absolute realism in their titles. But to this day with all the next-gen consoles on Earth, not a single game beats real-life. That's why physical games like IRL Shooter, Zero Latency and the now failed Z Day are taking off. A new real-world game centred around testing a player's psychology has landed. It's called Escape Room, and it's designed to drive you mad.
The concept of Escape Room is simple. You and a team of your friends are locked in a room, and told to get out of it by thinking your way out. It's a puzzle, you see: one that might just drive you mad.
You have 70 minutes to solve the ultimate puzzle, with participants encouraged to "flex [their] mental muscles to solve lingual, visual, mathematical, spatial, physical and lateral brainteasers".
Like all the real-world games of late, it has been set up in Melbourne's trendy arts scene. The brains behind the Australian version of Escape Room come in the form of two Victorian psychologists Ali Cheetham and Owen Spear, who set up the game earlier in 2014.
In an interview with the ABC, the pair said that they had visited the six rooms that formed the Escape Room concept space in Budapest, including one that literally translated to "Fear Room".
"You're in the living room of Robert, which is in a 1950s theme. You're going to be locked in a room and in order to get out, you have to solve a series of puzzles. The room's been set up by a crazy genius, but you don't know what he's discovered," Dr Cheetham said in the interview.
The pair are considering setting up a second Escape Room after the first proved so popular. [Escape Room via ABC]