See the Escape Room That Started a Worldwide Trend

Even if you haven’t tried one personally, you’ve likely heard of escape room events. Where groups of people get locked in a room and have to solve puzzles and find clues in order to escape?

It’s a world-wide trend that’s popped up in nearly every city on the globe (you can find plenty of them on Goldstar), but do you know where it all began?

Atlas Obscura recently visited the original escape room in Hungary, created in 2011 by Attila Gyurkovics.

“Of course, my inspiration partly came from computer games,” Gyurkovics says from the crumbling, street art-covered courtyard of Bujdosó Kert, one of Budapest’s many “ruin bars,” whose basement houses three of his games. “I played a lot of hidden object games and I saw how it hooked people. But the idea to create real-life room escape games came from wanting to apply this idea to small group setting.”

One of Gyurkovics’ goals with the escape room was to help people get into a focused mental state called “flow,” which occurs when groups of people work together in a state of hyper-concentration and creativity. “I felt that by bringing those games to life, with those elements, would be something that would offer people a great experience,” Gyurkovics said to reporter Jennifer Walker.

You can read more about the original escape room here, as well as how Hungary’s history of puzzles  contributed to its success.

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