The Basement is the best escape room experience in LA and OC

Escape rooms have been getting really popular worldwide, with many popping up all over Southern California. Imagine yourself in a real-life video game where you and a small group of friends are trapped inside a room. You are given a time limit to solve the puzzles and try to escape. Nerd Reactor has daringly entered dozens of escape rooms, and we recently got the chance to experience The Basement in LA. As a fan of horror and live escape rooms, this is easily one of the best escape rooms we’ve done, thanks to the clever puzzles, high production values, and a creepy actor.

The Basement has three different rooms with different intensities and difficulties. Each room is a chapter that makes up a larger story, and if this is your first time, I recommend doing The Basement Room first. The Boiler Room is the second chapter and The Study is the third. You and your group are victims of Edward R. Tandy, an insane taxidermist who uses humans as experiments.

The Basement

You are trapped inside Tandy’s basement, and you’ll have to use your noggin and teamwork to get out in 45 minutes, or else you and your group of up to 12 are going to end up dead. The room is creepy and disturbing with dimmed lights and weird writings on walls. There are puzzles and secrets all around that will lead to more clues and something more sinister. The addition of an actor adds to the fear factor and immersion. Other escape rooms would offer hints via other means that would break the illusion, but the actor gives cryptic hints that keep you engaged. You’ll be browsing through lockers and a closet, looking underneath a bed, and watching an old television set. The basement area is pretty big to begin with, and you’ll get to explore hidden areas as you progress. We were very close to solving the last puzzle, but the time ran out and we weren’t able to escape. (The room has a success rate of 12.5%.) This has taught me that watching a horror film is completely different than experiencing one. Now imagine if this was real life. Yeah, I’d be screwed.

The Study

We didn’t get the chance to do the second chapter of the story, The Boiler Room, so we skipped to the third and new chapter, The Study. Groups of up to 10 can go with a time limit of 55 minutes. As part of the story, we actually didn’t die in The Basement, and we were one step closer to freedom. The Study has a very different vibe than The Basement and features a book shelf, coffin, desk, and more clues on the walls. The Study may look small, but don’t worry, there are more surprises waiting to spook you. Our group was separated from the beginning, and we had to figure out how to unite so that we can all escape in the end. One “lucky” member will have to undergo a terrifying and dark journey by themselves, and yes, I was that “lucky” person. In that journey, I was pretty nervous and had to rely on others to help me find my way. This was definitely my favorite part of The Study. In the end through trial and error, we were able to escape with just a few minutes left. (The room’s success rate is 34%.)

The Basement team has taken pride in creating unique and clever puzzles that feel like they are part of the environment. After experiencing dozens of escape rooms, Basement LA is easily the best escape room in the Los Angeles and Orange County area.

To purchase tickets, visit

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John Nguyen
John Nguyen 10427 posts

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