Red Lantern's MIDNIGHT ON THE BAYOU is a gem of an escape room that incorporates a multitude of unique scenarios and puzzles to solve in an hour long duration. Seeing as New Orleans is one of my favorite places in the world to visit, my excitement level for this experience was extremely high. Luckily, what waited for me behind the doors of Red Lantern's Escape Room was more than I could have ever imagined.
The story surrounding MIDNIGHT ON THE BAYOU is tragic at best. Though we are there for a carnival-themed reunion since graduating from Bayou High, the catastrophe of a barn fire that killed several students of Cormier Parish School District multiple decades ago still hangs in the thick air. Upon our arrival, we noticed that there were not carnival workers or any other former students - all that was waiting for us was our host who seemed just as confused, albeit a tad bit nervous, to the silence and absence of all those who were supposed to attend...
Soon after our arrival, we learned that our job would be to release the spirits of the deceased students from the material world. On the surface, that might seem easy, but rest assure, it is not, as this escape room has plenty of tricks up its sleeve to throw you off it's track. The spirits are restless, and though they do need our help, they don't make it necessarily easy for us.
The thing that sets MIDNIGHT ON THE BAYOU apart from other escape rooms is the sheer size of the space. The room is large, and I mean LARGE. It's a singular room designed to look part high school reunion/part carnival/part bayou and it's incredible. There is everything from carnival games, to a carefully designed bayou (equipped with an alligator), to the details of what you would find in a high school, such as lockers, the prom kings crown, and more. I was really taken aback by how much work and detail went into creating such an immersive space.
As for the puzzles and games themselves, I have to admit, there were a few that had us all stumped. My best advice is to not overthink the puzzles, though most likely everyone will, I know we did. I wouldn't say this was the hardest escape room that we have done, but it's up there as we escaped in just the nick of time. I also loved how certain puzzles corresponded to the spirit that we were trying to free as it was a great way to bring the story full circle. Not content with just mind teasers, the creators also made sure to add in a few surprises that really elevated the overall experience.
Something I found to be very unique, and an aspect I've only seen at this escape room, was in order for us to get a clue, we would have to solve a puzzle given to us by our gracious host. I liked that the system set in place wasn't too easy and we weren't just handed a clue whenever we needed one. The creators made us work for any hint we wanted and I thought it was an interesting way of going about things. Also, I really enjoyed our host, the charismatic magician, who was on foot to help guide us if we found ourselves a bit lost. I had a wonderful experience with him where he read my cards, ultimately leading to the eventual solving of a clue. Though he didn't give us too much info about what was going on in the game, he was still an added asset and an enjoyable one at that.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed Red Lantern's MIDNIGHT AT THE BAYOU. I found it to be unique and fun as well as an escape room that is welcoming to all levels of escape game participants. The owners are extremely passionate about what they do and it's apparent in the care and detail put forth into creating this experience. For those who like a touch of horror, but nothing too extreme, this is a great escape room to start with.
For more information on Red Lantern's Escape Games, visit https://www.redlanternescaperooms.com/