Skurrilum – Ernie Hudson and the Zoo of Death – Escape Room Hamburg
This review is also available in: Deutsch (German)
Hamburg / 3-6 Players / Price: 26-33 Euro per Player / Rating: 8.9
Location: Spielbudenplatz 21 | Klubhaus St. Pauli, 20359 Hamburg, Deutschland
Date of Play: 03.07.2021
There are Escape Rooms, which you do not forget. One of them for us is Ghost Hunter Ernie Hudson and the wailing Woman from Skurrilum in Hamburg. After more than four years and two lockdowns we returned to Hamburg to finally play the second Ernie Hudson adventure Ernie Hudson and the Zoo of Death. Read here if this adventure also became an unforgettable experience for us.
For many players, the Escape Rooms from Skurrilum have become rooms that everyone should have played in their lives. The rooms were also regularly in our top lists, whether Guschi’s seedy cellar , Malvini’s Legacy or Ernie Hudson and the wailing Woman . Each of these rooms deserves to be played. However, one room was still missing from our list, the second Ernie Hudson adventure The Zoo of Death, which has been around since 2018 now.
We probably couldn’t have chosen a better room after the lockdown and the joy was not only on our side, but also on that of our host. He greeted us with such exuberant joy and enthusiasm that we were back in Escape Room fever in no time and started the adventure The Zoo of Death in a good mood after his briefing.
Ernie Hudson and the Zoo of Death
A new case for ghost hunter Ernie Hudson and his team. The investigation will take you to the abandoned sandy bay zoo. It is said that strange noises can be heard between the cages and gates at night. A case for real professionals! Do you have the courage to take on the case? The story is also told using radio play elements. Look forward to various locations, countless effects and lots of surprises.
As in Ernie Hudson and the wailing woman, we found ourselves in total darkness after the door was closed. As an introduction, a radio play in the style of the Three Investigators starts and tuned us into the world of Ernie Hudson. The dubbing is really fabulous and incredibly professionally realized and thus contributes a great deal to the atmosphere and thus the story. The Zoo of Death is for the most part coherently implemented and you forget that you are in an Escape Room. The abandoned zoological department in which the players find themselves is quite manageable in terms of size, but it is believably staged. Of course, there is also a small surprise effect, which gets even more out of the room. The real highlight, however, is Betsy, who will put a smile on your face. Sound and light are well matched to the experience and the finale is worthy of a ghost hunter.
The puzzles in the world of Ernie Hudson and the Zoo of Death were arranged in a linear fashion and subordinated themselves accordingly to the story of the room. These are well integrated into the setting and drive the story forward to its grand finale. Particularly in the first part, the tasks feel quite organic within the context of the room, with one or two more Escape Room-like puzzles then reappearing in the second part. The puzzles are designed to be accessible, and the difficulty level tends to be in the low to medium range. This makes Zoo of Death a highlight even for inexperienced players. Unfortunately, we had a small cleanup error at the end and an event was triggered a bit too early by our gamemaster due to lack of attention. However, both did little to detract from the overall experience.
Similar to the room, Skurrilum manages to create a perfect illusion here. The clues, when they come, are appropriately found within the audio play sequences, so that players don’t get them explicitly separated from the actual story. This ensures that everyone has the feeling that they are managing the adventure completely on their own as a group.
Ernie Hudson and the Zoo of Death has also shown that you can rely on the quality of Skurrilum’s adventures. Few rooms in Germany manage to present such a dense and believable story to the players as presented here. Despite the ghost hunter theme, The Zoo of Death isn’t really scary and offers a pleasant level of suspense, as can be found in The Three Investigators.
However, I have to admit that for me Ernie Hudson and wailing Woman is the stronger adventure in this series. This was in part even more choreographed in terms of story and the puzzles. But in the end, you don’t go wrong with any of the rooms.
The room is suitable for beginners and advanced players alike. However, you should not be more than four players for an optimal gaming experience. The room is not barrier-free – you should be quite mobile and not physically impaired.