Dale Yu: Review of Legacy- Hellas 2019 (An escape room game)

 

 

Legacy: Hellas 2019

  • Designer: Mathias Daval and Johanna Pernot
  • Publisher: Argyx Games
  • Players: 1-4
  • Age: 13+
  • Time: 60 minutes
  • Times played: 1, with review copy provided by Argyx Games

In this game, which is currently in the midst of a Kickstarter campaign (that has already been funded), your group tries to solve the mystery of your family history.  There are two episodes included in the box, and we were given a chance to try the second.

 

In the first, Eiffel 1889, you try to track down your ancestor who was involved in the construction of the Eiffel Tower – the star of the World’s Fair that year.  You have a lot of different sources of information at your disposal.  Now, I haven’t had a chance to see this first episode, but luckily, it is not needed to play the second.  The two stories are meant to be standalone from each other.  In Hellas 2019, the story now moves to Greece, where you work with your cousin and his travel agency to try to find your family’s treasure.  This is the part of the game that we got to experience this weekend.

In LEGACY, you will:

  • Browse through letters, newspapers and various documents
  • Search for clues
  • Manipulate items
  • Decipher codes
  • Solve audio & video puzzles
  • Enjoy immersive background music & sounds
  • Interact with the real world
  • Use maps to find your way
  • Search the web

In my final prototype, I got photos, maps, letters, brochures and other objects!  Even though many of the bits were only “prototype”, the quality was quite high.  Interestingly, there isn’t a rulebook included.  The basics of the story are outlined on a letter, and then you’re off to look at all the different things given to you.  You open the package, read the letter and then find a webpage that acts as your portal/judge/timer for the adventure.

The game was contained in a single sleeve, and when you open it, essentially everything is seen at once.  While you have a number of different objectives (puzzles), you have to kind of figure out which pieces of information will be used for which puzzle. At first it seems overwhelming, but it’s well done and is quite managaeble in the end.  With three people, we spent the first few minutes passing all the different pieces around and looking at stuff, and then we started to discuss how we would attack the challenges presented to us in the letter. As you can see on the letter in the photo below, a few brightly colored icons are used to denote the different challenges, and this helps you organize your thoughts.

There has been a lot of thought put into the contents here. I like the way that you are forced to use both the physical pieces given to you as well as using the Internet for certain things.  In that way, it is reminiscent of Fire in Adlerstein, another puzzle game which made perhaps even better use of the capabilities of the Internet.

The puzzles were challenging in this game – I would say above average in difficulty for the escape room genre.  None of them seemed unfair, though one puzzle was fairly non-intuitive and could have maybe used a ltitle more granularity in the solution.  If you get stuck, there is an online hint system which can provide you the nudge that you need.  The hints are broken down by puzzle – and there are 4 or 5 levels of hints for each one, with the eventual solution being provided if necessary.  We only needed one (Level 1) hint as we played, but afterwards, we went back to look at all the hints, and the hints are set up to help you just enough as you need.

Overall, Legacy Hellas 2019 provided a very satisfying experience – the three of us took 46 minutes to work though the puzzles, and it was a time where we were all actively engaged in the solving.  All of us loved the puzzle with the Travel Agency brochure, for both the puzzle solving as well as the creativity needed to devise the puzzle.

I would be quite interested to see how the first episode in the box turns out – from what I have read, it involves even more material and is more involved (more puzzles, more time, etc.).    For those people looking for a family-accessible challenge, LEGACY could be a great fit.

The project is currently on Kickstarter thru the end of this week, and you could get your own copy of this as well as access to other puzzles from these creators.  They also offer monthly puzzles sent to you in an envelope – possibly like their previous works – such as Apocalypse – as well as some online puzzles.  It would definitely be worth checking out!

Provisional rating:

  • I love it!
  • I like it – Dale Y
  • Neutral –
  • Not for me…

 

 

About Dale Yu

Dale Yu is the Editor of the Opinionated Gamers. He can occasionally be found working as a volunteer administrator for BoardGameGeek, and he previously wrote for BoardGame News.
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