my time playing it. In fact, it has been one of my favourite co-op titles as of late, with the elaborate enigmas genuinely demanding teamwork from both players. Its first DLC released late last year, but now players get another adventure to embark on with the launch of the second DLC content, Escape from the Past.
Check out some screenshots down below:
Escape from the Past puts players in the role of familiar characters Sandra Solange and Eel Barnes, who players would have encountered during their time playing through the base game. However, there’s a twist: you’re playing as them in their younger years, back when they were students at the esteemed academy. Your task? To find out which member of staff tried to murder the headmaster, with the investigation sending you through five different levels full of tricky enigmas to solve that’ll really leave players scratching their heads.
Returning players will feel right at home with Escape from the Past, with it embracing the same setup seen in the base game. You’ll work through a variety of different areas, all whilst solving elaborate puzzles to a time limit – the quicker you solve them, the better your grade will be in the end. There are hints on offer if you need a helping hand, and if you don’t solve it in time? You can give yourself some extra minutes to finish it off (though with your pride hurt in the process.)
“Nobody likes a puzzle that drives you mad or forces you to use trial-and-error to solve, so I’m happy to say that Escape from the Past is free of those.”
It’s hard to detail the puzzling of the game without venturing into spoiler territory, so I’ll keep detail at a minimum on that front. I will say that they demonstrate the same ingenuity and creativity seen in the main game though, with Coin Crew Games once again showcasing that they truly are masters of the puzzling craft. There were plenty of moments where I was left scratching my head, but it was always due to the cryptic nature of the solution as opposed to overly obtuse design. Nobody likes a puzzle that drives you mad or forces you to use trial-and-error to solve, so I’m happy to say that Escape from the Past is free of those. It features a really cool finale that changes things up a little too, showing that the DLC can still surprise players despite following the same gameplay loop as before.
Given that it all takes place in the academy, players can expect some familiarity when exploring some area of the game. Thankfully, enough has changed to ensure they still offer a sense of discovery, with surprises aplenty as you open locked-off areas or find the hidden secrets scattered away. And hey, some areas feel COMPLETELY different… I mean, there’s a huge rocket at the Hall of Escapists (which players will remember solving a graffiti-themed puzzle in during the main game), so yeah, there are some certainly some changes to be seen.
Check out some screenshots down below:
Escape Academy is really at its best when played with a buddy in co-op, and that’s certainly the case here. However, it started off with a competitive twist this time around, with co-op players having to face off against each other in a puzzling race. This caught us off-guard a little, especially since teamwork has always made the dream work, but it was really refreshing. I won’t say who came out on top between me and my pal, but let’s just say one of us wasn’t willing to let it go (it was me, I’m the best puzzle-solver ever). And of course, it’s fun to play single player too, so don’t worry if you haven’t got someone to play with – you’ll still have a really good time getting to the bottom of the mystery.
Escape Academy: Escape from the Past Review
Escape from the Past serves up more of the same co-op puzzling goodness players have come to expect from Escape Academy, with the murder mystery twist adding an extra element of drama to see unfold. The puzzles are as clever and creative as ever, whilst there are a few new ideas thrown in that encourage piecing together evidence and even competing with your partner. And sure, there may be some familiarity for players given that you’re re-visiting locales you’ve been to before, but enough has changed to ensure that Escape from the Past still manages to stand out as an enjoyable breath of fresh air.
Developer: Coin Crew Games
Publisher: iam8bit, Skybound Games
Platform(s): Xbox Series X (Reviewed), PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series S, PC