PIER PRESSURE - Loot the Lanes
Updated: Oct 13
Of the three rooms we booked, THIS was the ro
om my friends hadn't stop raving about - telling us it was the best set they'd experienced, to the extent our entire visit to Brighton pretty much hinged around this room. Having already been impressed by 'Modrophenia', I felt we wouldn't be disappointed...
Pros: Set, puzzles, staff
The premise of the room is that you are "looting the lanes" to find a famous diamond. "The Lanes" is a famous, and beautiful, part of Brighton, full of winding cobbles. The room reflects this pretty closely, with beautifully laid floors and authentic shop fronts. It's surprisingly spacious, especially as you work your way into the shops themselves.
The shops are all unique and perfectly decorated to suit the shopfront, as well as being pretty varied and full of minute details. There are also plenty of hidden surprises to keep you on your toes!
The game starts with no clear direction - immediately you are searching around for what to do. Pretty quickly you realise that the room is chock full of puzzles, but in a way that somehow makes sense. Although there's plenty to do, you will never be totally lost - it's fairly obvious what needs doing, and what comes next.
The puzzles themselves were all great fun - there wasn't too much searching in this room, other than observation required for puzzles. Instead, time was focused on solving the puzzles themselves, and that time was definitely needed! The puzzles ranged from visual, to audio, to manual. As someone who usually hates any sort of puzzle requiring physical skill, this room had not one but three physical puzzles (at l
east)...most of which I loved! It actually has my favourite example of a 'dextrous' puzzle, where they've taken a couple of common puzzles, combined them, and taken out the frustrating bits. It actually left me wanting to play it again!
Most of the puzzles, in fact, were very tactile - rather than working out some sort of algebra, you physically had to find things, measures things and count things. I loved this, as it really played up the narrative that you are robbers, using whatever you can get your hands on. In fact, almost all of the puzzles made narrati
ve sense and tied back to this narrative in someway. You're not going to be able to guess the combination lock by looking for random numbers in a different shop, but you might be able to figure out another way to get into the room.
Ultimately I loved this room and had an amazing time playing it. I have very little to actually critique about it. My only critiques would be based on accessibility (more on that later), hint mechanism (loud speaker) and potentially limited team size (we played as a 3 - I wouldn't want to play as any more than a 4!).
As much as I loved this room, I think it was also one of the most inaccessible ones I've done. The room is down a set of fairly steep stairs with no bannister (only a rope on the wall), with only one area inside the room where you could feasibly sit. The floors were uneven, with steps into shops and some requirement to crouch/move also. As mentioned, there were a couple of dextrous puzzles, and quite a few puzzles relying on colour identification and hearing. There was little light in some places, although there were torches, and the room itself is fairly small, so I can imagine it getting hot quickly.
Outside the room
The GM greeted us in full costume and character, and immersed us right from the start. She was fabulous - really setting the scene for us, and throwing us in. In fact, all the staff at Pier Pressure are fantastic - we had some of the best briefs and most in-character GMs ever! This room is also located in the basement of a pancake cafe, so not only does it smell amazing, but you have the perfect location to debrief afterwards!
Was it worth the money?
We paid £26.80 per person for a group of 3, including a group booking discount (as we booked 3 rooms). I loved this room and think the puzzles, set design and experience all contribute to it being well worth that cost!