Two decades ago, a room full of locks and riddles, with no real explanation of why you’re trying to escape, was sufficient entertainment. No one had done such a thing before and people were excited to test their minds. Over the years, storylines were added to make sense and provide context to the room. Slowly, props and decore made their way in, and more and more immersive experiences were born.
When considering our list of Most Immersive Escape Rooms in Ontario here are the things we consider:
- The locks and puzzles match the theme and story
- The walls, ceiling, and floor all match the theme
- The props and decore are well thought out and of good quality
- There are minimal out of bounds items, and minial signs of damage and repair
- Technology is seemlessly integrated where appropriate
- Both audio and lighting are considered in each space and throughout the story progression
- Additional atmospheric effects are considered such as smoke, smells, animatronics, or haptic feedback
- Live actors involved at any level. Minimally, hints should be provided “in character” or fitting with the setting
With these things in mind, here’s a list (in no particular order) of our Top Immersive Escape Rooms in Ontario:
Dream Portal (Toronto)
The evil witch is ruining everyone’s fun! This magical room is as much an art installation as it is an escape room. With a beautiful fantasy forest and charming witches home, this room redefines immersion. Incredible care and attention to detail has gone into everything you see, hear, and touch in this incredible space.
You were out camping with some friends when the tornado warning went off. Now, you need to find where you stuck those car keys! This “outdoor” experience places you on your campsite complete with full-sized trailer, campfire with chairs, waterfall, trees, and animals. This room does not have live actors and there is noise from other rooms but it is a really well made and large space.
New Haven Orphanage (Burlington)
Where have the kids gone that used to call this place home and who is responsible? You’re digging into this cold case to finally uncover the truth. While this room and props have seen a lot of repairs over the years, it is still a great experience. This dark and spooky area features live actors that will stop your heart when you see them from the corner of your eye. It features great decor, lighting, and audio, and is one of the highest-rated rooms on many sites.
Neverland: Heist on the High Seas (Kingston)
The notorious Captain Hook has captured your group and locked you in the brig, deep in the bowels of The Jolly Roger. Escape before your capture returns and makes you walk the plank! This room has the most complete build and decor we’ve ever seen. Great audio and lighting is present throughout along with a magical tinkerbell and video display portholes. The space is so good the only thing we could think of to improve the room was hiding a single microphone that was visible. They’ve done a great job and the only thing that’s missing is a live actor.
The Graveyard (Hamilton)
Help remove the curse that has been plaguing the nearby town before the curse takes ahold of you forever! This room is creepy but not scary and includes some really interesting pieces. It is very well made and contains several unique spaces with their own sets of audio and lighting, cielings and floors. Adding a live actor is the only thing we can think of that would complete this well made room.
The KW Psycho is abducting groups of people from local entertainment facilities and they are never seen again. This room has all the necessities of an immersive room – great audio, great lighting, almost nothing out of bounds, and great live actors. The only thing we would add would be some additional environmental effects and better sound isolation, but this is a great creepy room that’ll get your heart going.
Trailer Park Stash (Mississauga)
Your mistake led to your buddy getting caught with some weed and now he’s locked up! You need to find his bail money before he’s put away for good. This is a well-completed space with several well-designed areas, appropriate puzzles, and great technology integration. The props are high quality and the hint system is delivered in character. There’s great audio and lighting built-in throughout. A very well-made space.
The Pirates’ Code (Ottawa)
The Ghost Ship has arrived under the light of the full moon. As it moors you know you have just an hour to plunder what you can before the ghost pirate walks among the living once more. This space is well completed from top to bottom. It uses audio and lighting cues as well as projection and animatronics. The puzzles are a clever range of styles and the ending is a blast.
Seven Dwarves: Mining Mission (Kingston)
Destroy that poisonous apple once and for all! This mission begins in the dwarves’ cottage before taking you deeper and deeper into the mines. While the technology is slightly overused in this room the build quality is incredible, the props are perfect, and there’s truly a magical feeling while in this room. From physical puzzles to pattern memorization, to make sure your mining cart arrives in the right tunnel, this room is an experience and a journey.
Firefighter Rescue Mission (Mississauga)
Just another day in the life of a firefighter, rescuing pets from a house fire. Apparently, one of the owners of this location is a firefighter and was the one who designed this room. Because of that, you get a very unique look into some of the problem-solving real firefighters may have to go through including using unique tools you may not have seen before! You will feel the heat and pressure while going through this realistic space.
The Thompsons (Hamilton)
Your neighbours have gone into witness protection as The Thompsons and as their favourite neighbourino, you’re looking for clues that may indicate who the perpetrator is and help your friends. Stepping into this room is like stepping onto the set of The Simpsons. It is a vibrant and colourful space full of references to your favourite adult cartoon. You will move throughout different spaces that you’ll recognize and hear and see familiar cues. This is a very unique space that makes you thirsty for a Duff when you’re done.
Zen Room (Mississauga)
Hint Hunt does a great job with immersion. It begins in the staging area outside of the room where they put more thought into your surroundings than some places put into their actual rooms. They consider the 360-degree experience, putting detail and care not only into the walls and custom-made doors, but the floors and ceilings as well. Speakers are cleverly embedded and hidden throughout and the HVAC and sprinkler that cause so much frustration for other rooms are seamlessly integrated. Go check it out and try not to relax too much because the time is ticking!