The BREAK-IN ROOM is a reverse escape room where a team of players have to break into a room and collaborate in order for their data not being published online.
This experience has been delevoped as a part of the course Project in Interaction Design at Chalmers.
The theme of the project 2021 is Diversity and local knowledge. Our take on diversity in this game is focused on highlighting the importance of inlusion.
To start the game, you leave your phone as deposit, a not-so-clever move. The inventors and hackers of THE BREAK-IN ROOM have now gained access to all of your data. They are malevolent and intend to release all your personal data. However, you are given a way out. Collaborate and solve challenges to press a button before the time runs out. If you manage your data will not be published online.
Will you succeed?
Or will all of your private data be leaked for the world to see?
- 4 players, 10 minutes
- First, the team members must crack their individual codes to break into the room
- Once inside the room, the team must work together to solve a number of tasks
- To win the game, the team must open a box and press the red button before the time runs out
If you scroll down beyond this point, you will learn about the clues and solutions. This means you will not be able to experience the Escape Room.
Are you sure that you want to continue?
Above we mentioned that we want to highlight the importance of inclusion through this game, but let us rephrase that sentence. The goal of the game is rather to highlight the issue of exlusion.
Exclusion due to people’s physicial and cognitive abilities, dissimilar backgrounds, language barriers and other differences are common in today’s society. Whether exclusion happens intentionally or not, most people are unaware of the consequences of excluding.
Those that get excluded are often the ones with different perspectives, the ones with different local knowledge than the majority. Therefore, exclusion is not only detrimental to the ones being excluded, but also those who exclude, because by being more inclusive and increasing diversity, everyones shared knowledge is richer.
In order to create awareness of exclusion and its negative consequences we present a 4 player collaboration game where one player, by the design of the game, is excluded from the gameplay. Players are not informed about this but the only way to win the game is to take action and include the fourth player. If not, they have no chance of winning.
Players are postitioned in front of each side of the room without being able to see each other. The first challenge is to unlock the hanglocks by each door, which is done by decoding the symbols on the wall.
What the players will not be informed about is that only three players are able to get inside the room on their own. The fourth player has no entrance code on the outside, instead it is placed on the inside. If the players on the insde decode that entrance code, they can pass the solution to the missing player through a slot next to the entrance.
If the players do not help the fourth player in, who is the only player with the crucial information needed to access the button, they cannot win the game.
A moderator requests players to be silent and place their phones in a box. When the moderator walks away with the box, a cyborg voice explains the game.
Each door is locked with a three digit hanglock. On three of the doors there are three symbols that need to be decoded to open the lock. One door’s code is on the inside, instead of the outside.
There are several unrelated clues inside the room in the form of text, article snippets, and images that are meant to distract players.
Inside the room there is a locked box that can be opened by moving a key along a string across the room. The box holds a remote to a projector.
The projector displays a GIF with persons holding symbols. The GIF reveals a six symbol sequence, but only three symbols are shown at a time. The sequence is needed to open the box with the button.
On the inside there is another set of symbols that can be decoded. This will reveal the digits needed for the fourth players lock.
If the players on the inside decode the symbols, they can write down the solution and pass it out to the missing player through a slot next to the entrance. This is the only way to get the fourth player inside.
If players bring the fourth player inside the room they most likely win the game. If they do not, they will lose the game.
If players do not manage to help the fourth person in before the time runs out they have lost the game. In order for the players to understand why, the cyborg voice will instruct them how to do it. When the fourth player is inside, they have all the information needed to access the stop button together.
The session ends with a message about how exclusion can easily happen and sometimes it is the ones that we exclude that have the valuable information that we need. The players are also encouraged to not feel bad about having exluded someone or having exluded someone within the game, but rather reflect on how easily exlusion can happen and that this game was designed for them to feel this way.