Aries Escape: Episode No.13
In the last episode of Aries Escape, you enjoyed a sun soaked, blue sea drenched island vacation marred only by a slight wardrobe hitch: a misplaced suitcase key resulting in an inaccessible bikini. Now the holiday is over, you're returned to much more mundane surroundings and it's time to wash the spilled Mai Tai and suntan oil from your clothes. I mean, you can't always go around in a lime green cropped top and sweatpants, can you? But since this is an escape game—Aries Escape: Episode No.13 to be precise—doing laundry isn't a simple affair. Not only will you have to search the coin-op from top to bottom for the secret codes to operate the washers and dryers, you'll also have to figure out how to solve the puzzles and unlock the front door. You know, so you don't live out the rest your years in this place and become the plot for the next Japanese horror movie.
For the most part, navigating the scene is straight-forward: you have arrows at the sides of the screen to let you know where you can move, even when you're in a close up view, so it's important to not overlook that as you'll only end up missing an important clue hidden at the side of some object or other. It's also helpful to pay attention to the changing cursor although some of the active areas are small or close together. Perhaps the messaging that pops up as you click around the room would be of use, but only to those who can read Japanese; the rest of us will need to rely on both inference and trial-and-error to get past some less-than-intuitive spots. Still, as long as you can find the clues, it takes only a bit of deductive reasoning to solve the puzzles. Finally, before you head out the door, remember to turn around and look for the second ending (you can save your game by clicking the blue disc icon). As ordinary as the setting may be, Aries Escape manages to make the room interesting and unusual in a character-driven escape game with a few quirks yet full of playful personality.