Escape the Office
[01/24/14: Now available to play free in your browser!]
There's no story, no plot and no motive involved, unless you count the ongoing human narrative, the trials and tribulations of the workplace and the simple desire to get on the elevator and go home. Who needs a better reason to Escape the Office? Explore your surroundings, collect requisite tools for escaping and reach the best payday of all: that deep satisfaction earned when, your brain versus office equipment, you triumph. So forget about taking the copy machine out to an empty lot for a date with a sledgehammer.
Created by Afro-Ninja, known for logical puzzles and intuitive designs, Escape the Office is quick, fun and easy to play as long as you keep a couple things in mind when you begin. First, after collecting a usable object by tapping it on screen, drag it from the inventory and release when your finger is over the area you want to use the object (not where the object is since it hovers above your finger like a memo). Next, when played on a mobile device, there is no changing cursor to help you find interactive areas. So give attention to small details and tap everywhere that might yield a good result (there's no penalty in trying, unless you're trying to beat the clock or tap timer). Speaking of that, while the game is free, if you're stuck or need extra focus to play, an in-app purchase will provide some hints as well as a list of challenges to meet.
The game's brevity, with only a handful of basic dilemmas and a couple codes to ponder out, leads to disappointment for only one reason: it's too enjoyable to want to end it so soon. Only the most incurable of workaholics would want to linger in the office longer than necessary, yet these neatly rendered visuals and perfectly casual puzzles make for a relaxing getaway. It's fair to hope that the elevator ride would open to a new room, with more hidden keys and even harder to hack passwords. Meanwhile, though, Escape the Office is a great way to momentarily avoid other, less fun duties cluttering your inbox.
NOTE: This game was played and reviewed on the Nexus 7. Game was available in the North American market at the time of publication, but may not be available in other territories. Please see individual app market pages for purchasing info.