In Depth: a Traveling Mental Health Escape Game (Canceled)
A Portable Escape Game designed to shead light on mental illness in a unique way
We love escape games.
For the past few months, Ye Olde Dandy's has existed as an escape game venue in the heart of downtown Toronto. We've set ourselves apart by creating immersive stories, but now we seek to take ourselves on the road in a big way.
We are looking to create a portable escape room entitled "InDepth;" that addresses and explores mental health in a new and unique way. Our room will tour across Canada for two weeks starting September 1st and going until September 15th. Our journey seeks to take us from Toronto to Vancouver, Calgary, Regina, Winnipeg, Sault St. Marie and Sudbury, before finally arriving back home in Toronto.
According to the Canadian Mental Health Association, one in five people face the reality of living with mental illness, but less than half will ever seek treatment for it. We seek to craft an escape room that not only challenges and entertains guests, but carries a positive message in a portable package that can be easily assembled and disassembled in a matter of hours. We want the experience of the room to be clear and concise, but not preachy. We seek to create an experience that immerses people in a game that encourages communication, cooperation, and fun.
With InDepth; participants must solve a myriad of puzzles to sort out the chaos in the mind and piece together a fictional person's story. The story will be told through puzzles and challenges that will serve as pieces to a greater story arch. As more and more puzzles are solved the room will become difficult to maneuver through, and communication and co-operation will become increasingly important. In the end, passing or failing will ultimately come down to how a team cooperates, and whether or not they can solve the mysteries of the mind before time runs out.
In addition to this exciting endeavour, we seek to create a documentary that follows our process from crafting the room, all the way up to the point when our car finally limps back into Toronto. We seek to use this documentary to not only delve into the stigma surrounding mental health, but also to track stories of mental health struggles that exist across the country. The documentary will be shot by our assistant who, in addition to driving the car with us, will be creating and participating in all aspects of the journey.
We are seeking funding to create the escape room and to cover the costs of transportation across the country.
Risks and challenges
The entire journey will cost us approximately $6,000, and we are seeking to raise the lion's share of that on Kickstarter. Between accommodations and transportation ($1500 and $2500 respectively), it leaves us little room for construction and equipment for the protable escape room where we can easily travel with after our initial tour. Not only we be able to film everything, but to be able to walk away from this with a portable escape room. To be able to share this unique experience with small towns who otherwise might not be able to sustain a long-term escape game set-up, or to spread a positive mental health message in a compact and low-impact way.
We have already begun to book the locations for our room, but would love the opportunity to spread this message to other cities along our journey. In addition we want to be able to tour this room to other cities in the future.
Any money we make over our initial goal will go towards making the room bigger and better, expanding capacity and creating multiple rooms, in addition to adding more cities for our future journey.
This is all going without saying that this journey promises to be an incredibly exhausting experience. To get from Ontario to Vancouver, only to get back again wishing the period of two weeks promises to be draining and living in such a small space, with such tight deadlines promises to be a challenging two weeks to say the least.
- (30 days)