"Gabriel, help!" the four of us cried out. We were locked in Lady Chastity’s boudoir, in a race against time, and we were determined to finish victoriously, a bottle of her famous aphrodisiac reserve tightly in hand.
Our Saturday night proved that games should not just be for Christmas. The company behind the magic, Handmade Mysteries, has cleverly devised this live team game which adventurously tests your wits and team skills.
The aim of the game is to follow a series of cryptic clues, set by the debauched character, Lady Chastity, and unlock a series of padlocks to win her prized bottle of wine. It’s aged 18+, takes just one hour and transports you into an era, not too dissimilar to that of Richard O’Brien and Mumsey. There’s an element of horror and suspense but nothing close to putting off those of a nervous disposition (like me!)
Our bowler-hat and pocket-watched host, Gabriel, played the part of the storyteller perfectly. He was an eloquent force of wit and ethereality. His innuendo-fuelled narrative about Lady Chastity had all of us gripped, giggling and geared up to play. Throughout the game, Gabriel time-kept and remained outside the door, available for 3 help requests when we were stuck.
The tasks were a mixture of physical skill and logic; We decoded secret letters, climbed into awkward spaces, shone ultraviolet lights on secret patterns and much, much more. It would be revealing too much to divulge what they specifically entailed but the diversity renders all team members useful; the brainboxes, the do-ers, the common senseless...
We found ourselves in secret backrooms of The People’s Park Tavern in Hackney (which is one of multiple UK locations hosting the game.) Walking into the game, you’d never guess you were in the pub. Gabriel greets you and takes you into a completely separate and intimate area where you really do feel in another realm. The space is so well-decorated and the combination of nerve-wracking music, crumbling furniture and taxidermy absolutely immerses you and your friends in the game.
The pub itself is an unexpected gem off Wells Street Common. It’s not hipster, it’s not old man - it’s just several mid to late twenty-somethings. It’s a perfect place to have a drink before and after the game.
The girls screamed at each puff of smoke, loud bang and creepy cackle and our valiant male friend kept up the pace. It was fantastic. We were simultaneously bonding over our collective determination and equal ineptitude. One of my friend’s love the fact she "got to test out (her) Goonies skills" And the others loved the "unexpected" nature of it all.
There seems to be a real demand for immersive experiences today. As prices for the bigger, more established ones have rocketed, something like Lady Chastity’s is just one hour of unadulterated fun and costs a more digestible £15.50-£19. Teams are between 2 and 6 and would suit birthdays, an ordinary evening out with a twist and general adventures. Definitely recommend taking up Lady C’s challenge.