Here at JIG we like to offer an "escape from the everyday" for each Weekday Escape. So this week how about a nice vacation in an empty hotel? There's something... unsettling about an empty hotel, isn't there? Peer around the vacant, echoing corridors and you almost expect creepy twins, an old lady with a large knife, or — worse yet — the Carpenters. (Quick, name those three movies!) Fortunately for those of a delicate constitution, this week's escape game, Hotel Bianco-Bianco, features none of those things. All you have to do is escape the lobby, no ghosts involved.
Atmosphere aside, Hotel Bianco-Bianco comes packed with the standard room escape features: navigation bars to move around with, a handy inventory control that involves double-clicking objects for a close up, a changing cursor to indicate hot-spots (thank you!), and even a save button if you feel like stopping for a while and coming back later. All of the things that make life easier if you're a professional escape artist or just trying to get home.
Bianco-Bianco's escapes run a wide gamut, from quirky to creepy, to the sappily sentimental. What they do have in common, however, is quality. Beautifully rendered visuals, logical puzzles, slick design, these are always present when Bianco-Bianco brings us a new escape. There are even two different endings to discover.
Hotel Bianco-Bianco continues the tradition of quality design inherent in the developer's escapes. The eerily empty lobby aside, this looks like an upscale establishment, one you might not mind spending a night in. What follows is not the most difficult escape out there, but one that is clever, logical, and has a nice twist on the old theme of two endings. The quality shows everywhere, from the finely rendered backgrounds to the ease of navigation, from the simple inventory controls to the blessed relief of a changing cursor. Bianco-Bianco even kindly offers us a save button, although the escape is simple enough that you shouldn't need to use it.
Perhaps the only downside to this charming little locked room is the presence of a color-based puzzle, which can make the going difficult for some. Hotel Bianco-Bianco is not rocket science, but an escape game which illustrates how to create a good room escape game. A nice combination including use of found objects, puzzles, and a little ingenuity, and you should be out and looking for new accommodations in no time. You know, a place where there are actually living people? Never stay in a hotel where the clientele is conspicuously absent, that's all I'm saying. Checking in!