Trapped! Can You Escape the Room?

You and a group of friends are locked in an eerie room with no windows, no way out and only one goal: to escape in under an hour.

This is the concept of Lubbock’s unique “live action puzzle” attraction, Trapped! Escape the Room.

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Owner, Ben Posey, in “the laboratory” room.

“You have one hour in the room, and you have to try to figure out how to escape using anything that you can find in the room,” Trapped!’s owner, Ben Posey, said, “and throughout the room are puzzles, riddles, clues, keys, hints, and you kind of have to piece them all together and solve all of the puzzles.”

Posey said he first heard about this kind of attractions while backpacking through Europe.

“We kept seeing these room-escape things in all of the different cities that we went to, and they were, like, consistently the most highly rated attraction,” he said, “but we didn’t know what it was, so we were really interested, obviously.”

He said he ended up participating in one while in Prague, Czech Republic, and it turned out to be the most fun thing he did on the trip.

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Lobby of Trapped! Escape the Room

Posey, a Boston University graduate with a degree in environmental analysis, said he moved to Lubbock with his fiancee after she was admitted to the Texas Tech Health Sciences Center School of Medicine.

“Once we moved here, I was looking for a job and didn’t really find anything I wanted to do, so I thought, ‘You know, we did see that thing, and I was wondering what it would take to start one of those,'” he said. “So, eventually I just decided to do it.”

Posey opened Trapped! Escape the Room, on 50th Street, last October.

He said he had to design and furnish the two escape rooms, “the laboratory” and “the playroom,” and came up with stories to build the clues, riddles and puzzles around.

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The Playroom

“They all kind of intertwine, so it’s kind of like a domino effect,” Posey said when explaining the clues. “You have the first thing that leads to the next and the next, and eventually, if you have solved everything, you will escape the room, which is, like, the ultimate answer to all of the clues will lead you to escaping.”

The playroom, a dimly lit, eerie space filled with Victorian furniture and children’s toys, is the hardest room to escape with a 31 percent success rate. Groups of two to five can participate.

According to the story behind the room, found on the Trapped! website, a widow and her daughter inhabited the room during World War I, and the widow was driven mad with grief over an “untold tragedy.” The player’s job is to piece together the tragic tale, which ultimately leads to an escape.

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The Laboratory

The laboratory is meant to be a little bit easier and has a 44 percent success rate. The story is the room was used as a scientific laboratory in the 1930s, but it turned into something “much more sinister.” Participants, groups of three to eight people, are told to investigate further into its misdeeds, according to the website.

J.J. Lopez, a junior media strategies major from Lubbock, went to Trapped! twice and participated once in each room.

“I thought it was really fun, and it seemed like a good idea,” he said.

Interestingly, and contrary to the rooms’ difficulty levels, Lopez said he did not finish escaping the laboratory in time, but his group set the record for finishing fastest in the playroom.

He said he thought it was really fun to pretend like he was a detective.


J.J. Lopez and friends after escaping The Playroom.

“It’s kind of like a scavenger hunt or something,” Lopez said. “It’s a thrill having the challenge to do that, like, getting out in an hour. Can you?”

Posey said participants are usually groups of young adults or coworkers in team-building exercises, but anyone can play. Those interested must make a reservation on Trapped!’s website and pay $20 per person (10 percent off with a student ID).

“The concept is very unique, and most people have never heard of this type of thing, and so it’s a totally new experience,” he said. “I’ve had a couple people who have done this type of thing before, but for most people, this is a totally new concept, so it’s just fun to do something new.”




About Nicole Crites

Entertainment Director - Senior journalism major from Fort Worth, TX

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