ODTUG EPM SFL Meetup - "Think Escape Games"

On a beautiful afternoon in Florida last fall (80 degrees!), several EPMers met up for what would be one of the most interesting ODTUG meetups yet.  Our chosen location to host the event was nestled just a few miles away from Ft. Lauderdale beach in a commercial strip plaza.  We entered into the Think Escape Games office and were met with an eclectic décor that immediately sparked our interest.  Was this really the place we were hosting an ODTUG meetup??

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Yes it was!  Think Escape Games offers a unique activity that has become quite the new trend in Florida and is appropriately described by the company as follows:

“Live escape games are team-building adventure games in which people are locked in a room with other participants and have to use elements of the room to solve a series of puzzles, find clues, and escape the room within a set time limit from different scenarios.”

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After the initial excitement of what we were in store for died down, we got to work on the setup of the lobby into a presentation friendly area.   Once the majority of our members arrived, John Riley kicked off the event with some information about ODTUG, KScope17, and our continued focus on the local ODTUG meetups.

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Once John wrapped up, I led us through a presentation on DRM.  The content focused on the journey my organization took that led to DRM being a vital part of the EPM processes.  In the true spirit of best practice sharing which we strive for at ODTUG, there was a healthy engagement by many of the ODTUG’ers on their experiences with DRM – good and bad (but mostly good).

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Having wrapped up our presentation, the Escape Room fun could begin! 

We quickly split up into two teams and were assigned to two different escape rooms: the Laboratory and the Study.   With the clock ticking (<1 hour is the goal) both teams set to solving the series of puzzles needed to complete the game.  

Having been assigned to the Laboratory team, I can’t speak to the Study, but our game was extremely challenging (or we were the duller of the two teams!).  About 40 min in, and clearly a lot of progress yet to be made, we had to call in for support (there is a 5 min penalty for any assistance).  

Even with help we were still struggling, and at 60 min we were out of time.  Fortunately, the moderator took pity on us and extended our play for an extra 25 min.  With that extra time we were able to complete the game (thankfully), and we walked out of the final door back into the lobby with our heads held high. To our amazement the “Lobby” team was already there and looked like they had been for some time.  Their completion time was certainly impressive, and they even ended up landing a spot on the wall of fame! 

After boasting subsided, we wrapped up our meetup by collecting feedback on the event and what folks would like to see in the future.  Not surprisingly, this event was a huge success, so we’ll probably end up here again in the future.  Not to mention the “Laboratory” team wants a rematch!

Special thanks to our primary sponsor, Edgewater Ranzal for the great time and great food!  Until next time.

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