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Escape: The Curse of the Temple - Board Game Box Shot

Escape: The Curse of the Temple

| Published: 2012

Escape: The Curse of the Temple is a cooperative game in which players must escape (yes...) from a temple (yes...) which is cursed (yes...) before the temple collapses and kills one or more explorers, thereby causing everyone to lose.

The initial game board consists of a row of three square tiles, each showing a combination of two symbols, say, two feet or one foot and one blue power symbol in one corner of the tile. All of the explorers start in the center tile – the safe room – and each player starts with a hand of five dice.

Escape: The Curse of the Temple components
images © Queen Games

Escape is played in real-time, with all players rolling dice and taking actions simultaneously. You must roll the right symbols to enter a room, and if you're at an open doorway, you can roll to reveal the next tile in the stack and add it to that doorway. Some rooms contain combinations of red and blue symbols, and if you (possibly working with other players in the same room) roll enough red or blue symbols, you "discover" magic gems, moving them from a separate gem depot onto that tile.

The real-time aspect is enforced by a soundtrack to be played during the game. At certain points, a countdown starts, and if players aren't back in the safe room when time is up, they lose one of their dice.

Once the exit tile is revealed, players can attempt to escape the temple by moving to that tile, then rolling a number of blue dice equal to the magic gems that haven't been removed from the gem depot. Thus, the more gems you find, the easier it is to escape the temple. When a player escapes, he gives one die to a player of his choice. If all players escape before the third countdown, everyone wins; if not, everyone loses, no matter how many players did escape.

Escape: The Curse of the Temple includes two expansion modules that can be used individually or together. With the "Treasures" module, some rooms contain treasure, and when you reveal such a room, you place a face-down treasure chest on the tile. Roll the symbols on that chest tile, and you claim the treasure for use later: a key lets you teleport anywhere, a path lets you connect two rooms that otherwise have no door between them, and a medic kit heals all players instantly (putting black dice back into play). With the "Curses" module, some tiles "curse" players by forcing them to place one hand on their head, keep mute during play, or otherwise do what you wouldn't want to do while escaping a temple!

User Reviews (13)

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Gamer - Level 6
133 of 140 gamers found this helpful
“Worth the hassle of finding a copy?”

For the Full Review With Pictures go to

My favourite part of this game that makes it pretty unique is the fact that there are no turns. Players will participate in ‘one big turn’ simultaneously and constantly for 10 minutes. Your goal is to escape the cursed temple. To do this you must ALL make your way to the exit tile with all the gems from the “gem depot” placed on their magic altars.

This is a cooperative game and you either win or fail as a team. Although there are several different strategies to win, it is best and easiest if you stick together and really help each other out. Being a lone wolf is not an option as you will soon find yourself trapped without help and no way back to the safe room when you hear the gong.
The 10 minutes is kept track by a sound track, 2 times during the game a gong will sound, that is your que to get back into the starting ‘safe room’ if you do not make it back by the time the sound of the door slamming shut is played, you will lose a die for the remainder of the game.

Now that those rules are out of the way you’re probably asking ‘how do I play?’ It’s fairly simple; you roll dice. The game comes with some custom dice and each face represents an action you are able to perform or store.

In order to get a magic gem off the depot and onto an altar you must roll the required number of keys or torches. Some rooms have multiple altars with different values, however you may only fill one of them per room. The required number of keys or torches required to unlock the altar is collective, meaning everyone located on that room’s tile can contribute.

In order to place a new tile you must roll 2 green running men.

In order to move into a new room you must roll the matching 2 symbols in that room. For example if the players wanted to move onto the tile before the exit tile it would cost a green running man and a key, if they wanted to move onto the exit tile it would take a running man and a torch.

A black mask represents a cursed die. You leave this die black mask facing up in front of you and cannot roll it again until the curse is lifted. A curse can be lifted by rolling a golden mask or if another player in the same room as you rolls a golden mask. Each gold mask cures TWO black masks, however you CANNOT split the cures between two players.

Now reading the above this may not sound like the most amazing game, sure it’s different but does it really work? Is it really that great? The brilliance comes from two mechanics that are imbedded brilliantly into the game. You can keep or ‘store’ a die if you like / need the symbol on it. Say you are trying to reach a cursed friend a couple rooms away and you are having trouble rolling the correct symbols to get there, you can keep any gold masks you roll for when you finally reach your friend. Say you are a few tiles away from that big 10 key gem altar, any keys/torches you roll on your way over there you can keep and use to unlock the altar. The trouble is finding the balance between how many dice to keep / which ones to keep and how many you want to roll. The other mechanic is the timed pressure. Not only does the game give you a mere 10 minutes to escape, but twice you must make it back to the safe room or you are now rolling 1 less die for the remainder of the 10minutes, between this pressure and the constant 10minutes of game play creates a very intense cooperative game that leave players shouting in pure excitement.
Once the exit tile is drawn you simply have to get all of your gems into a magic altar, then each player must get onto the exit tile. If you all make it before the final sounds of the temple sealing shut play through your speakers you all escape and win, if even one person is left behind you all fail.

Okkay the adventurers are not that impressive, they are wooden and serve the purpose for the game quite well although they could be a little bigger / easier to grab so you can move quicker. The tiles are great, good quality they don’t tear easy and you can actually shuffle them perfectly or maybe I’ve just got the perfect size hands, but lots of tile games ask you to shuffle and you can’t really or they give you a bag to draw out of and that would only slow you down in a game like this.
The cd the game comes with not only includes the soundtrack for playing the game but it has a track on it that tells you the object / backstory of the game and then explains in full detail how to play. Alternatively if you cannot play the soundtrack the game comes with an hourglass timer.
As if the game isn’t enough fun already they throw in a full expansion that allows for a lot of replay and defiantly makes the game more interesting for more experienced gamers or people that just know how to work well together. I will do a full review of the expansion later.

Let’s talk about who would enjoy this game and why.

Family Gamers: The rules are simple enough that kids can play although if they have never played a cooperative game before this could take some extra explaining. But it is defiantly a game that mom and dad can enjoy while playing with their kids without feeling ‘dumb’ for lack of a better word. This game has no violence or adult theme and if there are any Indiana Jones fans in your family this is sure to be a big hit!

Casual Gamers: Most of my friends would be considered casual gamers, they have only tried a handful of games but do enjoy trying and learning new ones and I can tell you they loved this one. I had them intrigued right from my words “try this game there are no turns and we work as a team”. There is a lot of table talk in this game I think more then I have seen in any other game even other cooperative games. The game lasts only 10 minutes (maybe 15 if you include setup) so if time is an issue for you it won’t be with this game. You win or lose as a team and either way your group will want to play again and because the game has some elements from more complicated games (tile placement, specialty dice, and cooperative game play) it can work as a bridge to other games, perhaps dungeon crawlers and other team games.

Gamer Gamers: Although there are exceptions to every rule or statement I do believe that even most hardcore gamers have not played that many cooperative games. There are less of these games to choose from and they just seem to be catching on. I think that the uniqueness of this game allows it to appeal to gamers, the sheer intensity of the game is eye catching and enough to make even dice haters give this game a try. The ‘sharing’ of dice with players in the same room as you as well as the time limit/pressure of the game does a great job of making people who hate the randomness of rolling dice forget they are rolling dice all together! The game itself is hard enough that without a solid strategy you will fail, and the expansion makes even a solid strategy fall apart! Although the basic game might not keep a ‘gamer’ interested the included expansion sure will.

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Intermediate Reviewer
131 of 141 gamers found this helpful

You like the Indiana Jones movies and how he always escapes the temples, tunnels and traps just in the last second? Here is just the game for you. The temple around you is collapsing and you have 10 minutes to find the exit … so now … ESCAPE!


The components are good. Wooden adventurers, thick cardboard temple rooms and curse cards, nice little plastic gems, beautiful custom dice and not to forget an audio CD with the needed soundtrack and even a “How to Play” chapter.


Put down the start tile and two additional tiles, put the adventurers on the start tile, start the soundtrack and keep rolling dice!

Ok, that was a little short. *g* What you are trying to do is rolling the faces of the die which let you enter or reveal other rooms. Sometimes in these rooms you can roll different symbols to lay down gems from the supply and that is really neccesary because the more gems you can get rid of the easier the last door of the temple will open for you. While searching for the exit tile and getting rid of the gems the soundtrack will warn you with a gong sound three times. The first two times you better run as fast as your legs will carry you back to the start before the door shuts. Then you can explore further. The third and last time you run for your life to find the exit before the temple collapses.

With the expansion within the basic game it’s possible to add helpful treasures (yay … easier) and nasty curses (grrrr .. harder) to change the gameplay a little and in my opinion … make the game a lot harder.

Replay Value:

There are three different soundtracks on the CD (of course each 10 minutes) and some other to download on the Queen Games page. This combined with the tiles that lay out different every play, the short 10 minute gameplay and no downtime at all … I would say there is a lot of replayability in this box. Not to mention the expansions that are out.


– short game
– no downtime
– short learning curve
– strong theme


– can get a little loud with the soundtrack and everyone shouting at each other
– maybe to hectic for some people

Last Words:

I’m really impressed how tense this game is. I played it with three players, two players and alone. And everytime there was shouting. Yes, even in my solo play I shouted at the **** dice to do what I want (not that it helped much). I like this game very much and would recommend it to everyone who doesn’t have a problem with time pressure games.

Best wishes,

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I play green
131 of 142 gamers found this helpful
“Dicing with danger as you hastily find the exit!”

I followed this game for a while and was eager to purchase it on day of release. I must say after a solo play and a team play, it was well worth the money and everyone I’ve played with has given it the thumbs up.

The idea of the game is a real-time strategy game which lasts only 10 minutes and plays along to a soundtrack. Using dice, players must explore a cursed temple which can only be escaped by activating magic gems to make it easier for the players to escape and thus win the game. It’s a co-operative game and with it being such a fast paced game, can bring players to life as you see them trying to roll the specific side of the dice.

Dice have 5 different symbols on a 6-sided die. These being:
Man x2
Key x1
Torch x1
Cursed Mask x1
Golden Mask x1

You roll 5 dice at a time (7 for solo play).

The symbols for man, key and torch all relate to moving and exploring rooms, as well as activating gems in the cases of torches and keys. The cursed mask, if rolled, stops the player from using that dice again until a golden mask is rolled which breaks the curse of up to two dice, thus allowing the player to pick up the dice again and continue to roll.

The game play for this title is great! I really enjoy the concept and idea of it being an actual real-time game. Having to start off in a safe room with two rooms adjacent, you must move into the explored rooms and then continue exploring by rolling dice and matching the symbols that relate on the corresponding tiles to the dice and move through the temple like so. As it only lasts 10 minutes, you have to be on top form to be aware of what you’ve just rolled and everyone else (especially for activating gems and cursed masks) and what to pick up and what to leave in terms of dice. You explore the temple to find the exit tile. When you find the exit tile, the strategy would dictate to move into a room where you can activate magic gems to make it easier for you to escape.
To escape, you have to roll the number and one extra of ‘key’ symbols as there are magic gems left in the depot (i.e. if there were 5 gems left, you’d need to roll 6 keys to escape).
To activate gems, different rooms have different requirements. Once these are met, you can take the gems from the depot and place them in the room you activated them from.

At three points of the soundtrack, a gong will sound, informing the players they have a 30 second countdown until they have to get back to the safe room in the first two instances (or risk losing 1 die for the rest of the game) or on the third and last time, escape from the temple. As you can get heavily involved in dice rolling, when the gong sounds, it becomes all hands on deck as you try and squander your way back in to the safe room or exit. It brings tension and relief, especially in close circumstances.

Overall, this game is a real treat to play and I haven’t had any bad reviews from my friends about the game. It’s got a lot of praise and I certainly feel it is something fresh in the collection and definitely something fresh on the market in terms of real-time playing and the overall fun factor that you’ll get from the game when you play it. Top quality and certainly well worth buying.

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Critic - Level 5
Professional Advisor
Expert Reviewer
Marquis / Marchioness
106 of 116 gamers found this helpful | Medals x 2
“It Gets Dicey When Attempting to Escape a Collapsing Cursed Temple”

You must activate the magic gems in the temple chambers in order to banish the curse, and you have only ten minutes to do so before the temple collapses. Don‘t sit still for a second – start running now and you might just escape!

So starts the introduction to the rulebook. It’s a good two sentence overview of the game, but it doesn’t really answer what’s so bad about the curse, how your team found themselves in the temple, where you learned what to do when you hear a gong, or how 5 dice ended up in your hand. None of this really matters at the moment, you’ve just heard a disembodied voice implore you to ESCAPE, and you feel certain your team better do so within 10 minutes, or else!

Game Play

You’re on a team of adventurers (one presumes). You’ve found your way to a cursed temple, and now you need to get out. To do this, you need to explore the temple, activate gems (thus releasing the curse), take shelter in a safe room while the temple collapses around you, and ultimately escape.

This is attempted while a CD plays in the background, acting as the 10 minute timer, and at a few points giving a signal (ringing gong) that you need to make it back to the start room before a counter runs out (the sound of a slamming door). Make it, and you can continue unharmed, miss it and you lose one of your five dice.

During your adventure, you’ll be rolling your dice, and taking actions based on the results. All rolls are done simultaneously with the other players, and you can immediately re-roll if you desire (except for dice with black masks which are only re-rolled when cancelled by a gold mask). The dice have 5 different symbols that can come up.

Green Running Man (x2)
Red Torch
Blue Key
Black Mask
Gold Mask

To place a new room tile from the stack, you need to roll 2 Green Running Men. You spend these dice (which in this game just means that you’ll have to re-roll them) to draw and place the tile. Each tile will have two symbols outlined in a red box. These symbols show what dice results are required to enter the room. Additionally, some rooms will have 1 or more large gem icons with a required dice roll next to it (often 4 torches or 4 keys). If your dice show at least this result, you can take a gem from the “gem depot” and place it in the room, this counts as having “activated” this gem. Some rooms have multiple gems that can be activated if enough symbols are rolled, which will require a teammate to be in the room with you, sharing dice results.

Your goal is to activate gems throughout the temple. Eventually, you will find the exit tile (in 3+ player games seeded in the bottom 5 tiles of the draw stack). To exit, each player will need to make it to this room and roll a number of keys equal to the gems left in the gem depot, plus 1. This all needs to be achieved within the 10 minute (real time) countdown, and while rushing back to the entrance when you hear the gong. If everyone escapes, you win, if anyone does not escape, you all lose.

My Thoughts

Escape: The Curse of the Temple is a high energy dice rolling game with cooperative elements. I can’t say that I really feel like I’m on a team when I’m playing the game, I’m too focused on what I’m trying to do, and rolling and re-rolling (and re-rolling) dice to get the results I need to move forward. While I find it helps to move around with a partner, I don’t get the feeling of teamwork I get from other cooperative games like Pandemic, Space Alert, or even Defenders of the Realm. This does have the benefit that you won’t be bossed around by someone, telling you what you should do; instead each team member is responsible to get as much done as they can, quickly.

I like that the difficulty of leaving the temple is based on how well you played the game, the more gems you found and activated, the easier it is to leave. Once one player escapes, they can give 1 die to another player, which is a nice bonus. They also made a good balance of requiring the team to get back to the entrance twice throughout the game. You can’t explore too far, or get too focused on what you’re doing. The loss of a die if you don’t make it can be brutal for a player, but a fair penalty to ensure people at least try to make it back.

The 10 minute timeframe immediately brings to mind Space Alert, another timed coop. Escape: The Curse of the Temple is a much lighter, more casual game than Space Alert. You can have the game setup, rules explained, and game started in under 10 minutes (often Space Alert requires that just to get the board arranged). As one would expect, this ease of learning/play means Escape: The Curse of the Temple doesn’t grab you quite the same way. I don’t feel nearly as much tension, and there isn’t as great of a need to communicate. This doesn’t mean Escape: The Curse of the Temple is a bad game or should be avoided, it’s just lighter, and thus more accessible.

This game would work very well for family, casual, and social gamers. It’s easy to learn, quick to play, and when things go wrong, you tend to blame the dice as opposed to your fellow players. Avid gamers will like how easy it is to get fellow players for the game. Unfortunately, there is not a lot of strategy to the game. I think it is well worth any strategy or power gamer at least giving it a try. The real time aspect of the game ensures that if you don’t like it, you’ve spent little time on it, and you could find the game a great outlet for any dice chucking tendencies.

Escape: The Curse of the Temple gets bonus points for including two expansions with the base game. The game plays perfectly well without them (and this is how I would guess most people will play it), but it’s great to have a built-in ability to up the difficulty when the time comes.

In total, I expect Escape: The Curse of the Temple to be a big hit with more casual game groups, and won’t be surprised if it garners a nomination for the Spiel des Jahres award in the future. It should be making the rounds at conventions and game groups in the coming months, and is well worth your time to check out!

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It's All About Me
129 of 142 gamers found this helpful
“Frantic yelling, frantic fun”

Many good games contain a strong mechanic paired with a good story. The goal of the game is to let you experience the story with the mechanic. And if any game is dedicated to replicating the experience of the story, that game is Escape!.

I always explain it as “you’re Indiana Jones, and you realize you can’t get out of the temple unless you put all the gems back. And there’s dice.”

The dice include four sides that show images that are your goals for moving around the game- to unlock a new room, you roll two green adventurers (this is two sides of the die, so a 30% chance of rolling), or to move into some rooms you need a running person and a key. Black masks lock your dice, meaning you can’t pick them up and reroll them, and gold masks unlock two black dice.

It’s important to stick with other players so that if you get all five of your dice being black masks, someone else in the same room can give you one of their gold masks. If they roll one.

I hadn’t played a real time co-op game before Escape!, and I don’t deny it- it’s stressful. All that dice rolling, keeping track of the dice you have and the dice you need, and getting the strategy deciding which dice to re-roll. Do you keep rolling when you have what you need, but you have too many dice locked up, or do you dedicate everything to getting your gold masks to unlock your black masks? Then there’s getting locked up and needing help.

We have people in our gaming group that don’t enjoy that aspect of it, but I find the immersive feelings integral to the experience. That’s the challenge: you don’t just have to escape, but you have to escape NOW.

There is a mechanic so that if enough people get too many black masks, you can decide as a group to add one gem to the stash you must return to the temple, making the game a tiny bit harder, but giving everyone a free reroll of all the dice.

The best part is, if you like the game, then you can play several games in an evening to get the hang of the game. And if you don’t like it, then it’s just ten minutes out of your evening and you can go play something more sedate. There’s no reason not to try Escape just once, you can’t go wrong. Lot of dice rolling, lot of yelling, and a whole lot of fun.

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Gamer - Level 6
Asmodee fan
Count / Countess
128 of 141 gamers found this helpful
“Roll those dice! Come on! Come one!”


5 dice! 10 minutes! 1 temple! RUN!

If your life depended on it, and you only had 5 dice to save your own skin in a 10 minute timeframe, I’d reckon your pulse would’ve reached new heights. That is the case in this game. Each player has their own set of 5 dice, and have to use these to navigate the temple, activate switches and get out of there as soon as possible. You have to cooperate with other players and make sure that everyone reaches out alive. But that’s not all. It’s all done simultaneously! That means that there are no turns, and you just roll those dice as much as you can.

In this game all playes start in the middle of a collpasing temple. It’s almost as if a team of adventurers all fell down a hole toghether, and the only way out is finding a way through the temple. But it’s not as easy as just finding the exit. The temple is self-sealed, and you have to activate several switches in order to get the exit to open up. And these switches are hidden throughout the temple. Sounds fair enough, except for the fact that a soundtrack is playing in the background, and you only have 10 minutes to do so! If only 1 player is still in the temple when it finally collapses, the game is lost for everyone. But not only that! Two times during the soundtrack, you have to hurry back to the start room before the gong hits, or you’ll face a penalty of losing 1 die for the rest of the game, each time you don’t reach back!

How to play
The base game is very easy to learn and also to play. The goal of the game is to get rid of a given number of crystals that lies in a pile next to the board. For 3 players there are 11 crystals at the start. The more crystals that you remove from the cache the better. And in order to remove crystals from the cache, you have to activate switches all around in the temple.

In order to move from one room to another, you’ll need two matching symbols on your dice and on the room you’re trying to enter, ie a symbol of a man and a torch. When you have those symbols, just pick up the two dice matching those symbols, move your figure, and roll those dice again. You get to choose which dice you want to roll, and may keep whichever dice you want to keep, all the time. Other rooms might require two identical symbols. The rooms are either empty, or they have a switch you can enable. To enable a normal switch, it’s usually required that you possess 4 dice of the same symbol. So if the room requires 4 torches, you need to roll until you have at least 4 torches. Sounds like a roll-fest? It is. Sounds easy? Think again.

The dice consist of different symbols. A man on two of the sides, a torch, a key, a curse and a blessing. The symbols are generally used to navigate and activate switches. But the blessing and the curse have their own purpose. When you roll a curse, you’re not allowed to re-roll that dice. It’s locked. The only way to free it, is to have a blessing. One blessing allows you to roll up to two cursed dice. So if you have 3 torches and two curses, you’ll never get 4 torches unless you re-roll one or more of your torches. Alternatively you may borrow a blessing from another player who is in the same temple room as you are. This is especially helpful in cases where all your 5 dice are locked.

Some rooms enables full cooperation. There are 3 switches, and you may choose only one of them. If you gather 4 of the same required symbol, you may place 1 crystal on it. But then you may not use the other two switches. If you as a team get 7 of the same required symbol, you can place 2 crystals on it. The last requires 10 symbols, but lets you place 3 crystals on it. Imagine 3 out of 11 total, just in one room!

Adding more complexity
When everyone gets the hang of the game, you are able to add some additional modules. The game comes with optional rules for curses and treasures, which really ups the ante. When you discover a new tile with a curse symbol on it, you must draw from the curse stack. The curses really makes the game harder, and adds even more tention to the game. The curse lasts until you roll the required set of dice to remove it. So, what do they do?

– Hold one hand on your head. Yes, you physically have to keep one of your hands on your head, while rolling and moving with your other. It can really get tiresome if you don’t get rid of the curse, and is a lot worse than just keeping your other hand idle and resting.
– Be silent. You’re not allowed to talk. If you want to communicate, you’ll have to use other means, like pointing and such.
– Really cursed. Normally a blessing allows you to re-roll up to two cursed dice. With this curse, you may only re-roll one cursed die.
– Lost dice. In this game it’s not unusual that dice go off the table. With this curse, those dice are lost for the rest of the game! Even if you manage to cure yourself, those dice are lost.

The curses are nasty! But they really make for good fun. Luckily, the module also consist of treasures! They are always positive:
– Everyone can re-roll their cursed dice once.
– You may create a shortcut between two rooms.
– You get two key symbols for later use.
– You get two torch symbols for later use.
– You may teleport to another player once.

Each session lasts a maximum of 10 minutes, which is a perfect length for what the game is. If the game lasts any shorter, you’ve most likely won the game. Or you’re really unlucky and everyone has locked all their dice at the same time and can’t move any further. But then you just play again. And again!

The game is visually appealing, with high quality components. The board pieces are of thick and solid cardboard, able to withstand a lot of plays. All the dice have indented symbols with strong colors and easily identifiable symbols on them. The player figures all have an Indiana Jonesy look to them, and are easily spotted on the board. The soundtracks (3 of them) that comes with the game are all very tense, and really brings out the thrill of the game. If you won’t or can’t play music, the game also comes with a sand timer to replace the music. I haven’t played with it yet, but it’s set for approximately 3 minutes.

I really enjoy this game. It’s fast, easy to learn and chaotic every time. The expansions allows for an additional player, and introduces more curses, new treasures and new illusion rooms which disappears from the map during gameplay. I really recommend that as well as the promotions that are avaliable. They each provide variety to the game and new challenges.

– Easy to learn
– Fast play
– Nice components
– Great music
– No down-time
– Very tense
– A lot of shouting
– For the entire family

– Takes longer to learn than to play
– Very tense
– A lot of shouting

Player Avatar
76 of 84 gamers found this helpful
“Fantastic Party Game for anyone”

Some key facts you want to know:

– This game is awesome fun even for 2 players only, and completely nuts when you’re 4 or more.
– Games are quick (10 minutes each)
– Accomplishing the objective means various interactions (moving, discovering rooms, unlocking treasures, etc.)
– The dice rolling mechanic is NOT just chance, you have to think twice and use strategy to cooperate with other players.

First I’m going to say: buy this game. Buy it, because there’s nothing like it in your board game library and you WILL find this fun, trust me.

We play with an iPhone, the game’s soundtrack is available on YouTube, or you can download the MP3. If you’re anything like me, finding a working CD player in your house might be a quest 🙂

Now here’s the picture:

My wife and I are 40. We have 2 kids, and and our friend couple (same age) has 3 (including a baby). On rainy weekend days we call each other because the only way we can have a life is by having the kids play together while WE play together *some* game. Any game.

I was looking for something that’s easy to learn, but still provides enough action and strategy to get our brains going while we have a good time.

What would not be enough: would be out of a question, because there’s too many rules to teach, for zero action and not enough strategy.

What would be too much : , while being a great cooperative game, there’s just too much strategy and not enough action.

Just perfect for the situation, is Escape.


1. It’s ambient. The soundtrack takes you straight in an Indiana Jones movie.
2. Easy to teach. 10 minutes. Really.
3. Lots of challenges, especially with the curses which make an already challenging game even more challenging. Did I mention it’s challenging?
4. This doesn’t feel like playing a boardgame at all. It feels like playing a video game on a board.
5. YOU WANT TO SUCCEED. Badly. But the more you are, the harder it’s going to be. So you’ll be playing 10-minute game after 10-minute game.
6. It’s EXCITING. It actually gets you through a rollercoaster of emotions, just like when you’re betting those fat 10,000$ chips at the Casino (something I have yet to try).
7. Your friends, who had barely played anything else than Monopoly, Sorry or Twister — and that’s before they had kids— will absolutely enjoy the sheer fun of discovering and playing this.

For all the hesitating you’re going to experience the next time you’re figuring out which game you want to buy, remember my words:




You can thank me later.

Player Avatar
Video Game Fan
54 of 60 gamers found this helpful
“Ten Minutes of Joy”

Is there anything more joyous than rolling a handful of custom dice? In Escape: The Curse of the Temple, each roll sees a colourful cacophony of symbols flash before you as you eagerly wait to decipher the result.

Then, “Oh no!” you’ll think as all of your dice inexplicably turn up black masks. You need help, you need to scream for help, but you’re cursed so instead, you wave frantically at your friends. They finally notice but *BONG* the gong sounds and they have to make a split second decision; do they help you or make for the start tile and save themselves?

Almost every second of Escape goes like this; it is perhaps the most stressful game I have ever played. Set to a sound track, you and up to 4 others have 10 minutes to explore the temple, find the exit, activate gems and get out of there! Either everyone escapes or you all lose in typical co-op fashion. You roll dice, you match symbols and when the gong sounds, you sprint for the start tile or risk losing one of your precious dice.

There is nothing particularly complicated here, but being pitted against the clock creates a comradery and a real sense of the theme that other co-ops sometimes fail to achieve. There is less strategy involved in winning than other co-ops and the ‘alpha gamer’ problem is somewhat eliminated by the frenetic nature of the game, you simply don’t have time to dictate.

Playing Escape is wonderful; I highly recommend it although I don’t find myself itching to play again, enjoyable as it is. The components are nice without being show stopping and the mechanics are well implemented, though with the clattering and shouting that goes on, the sound track is sometimes hard to follow. I often play Escape as a penultimate game on a games night – it’s too stressful to finish up with but short enough to slot in. Win or lose, you’ll have fun for 10 minutes and then pack it away.

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71 of 80 gamers found this helpful
“Frantic and Easy to Learn”

This is such a great game for people who are not board-gamers, and still tons of fun for people who are more serious. I absolutely love this game. I’m not letting it break into the 9s because it lacks a good scale of complexity and difficulty, but it is so much fun for beginners.

You start in a central room in a cursed temple and have 10 minutes to escape. You are constantly rolling dice to try to take actions in order to explore rooms, activate gems, and complete other actions. It is tons of fun and insanely wild. Everyone is just frantically rolling their dice to try to accomplish their objectives, then someone gets stuck and you need to rush to rescue them. SO MUCH FUN!

It is not complex. There are very few rules to master, and there is almost no grand strategic thinking. Just think about it like this:

You are dashing archaeologists. You have found some rare wonder in a hidden temple and you (in typical western imperialist fashion) callously remove it in order to add it to the collection of your local university that will ensure you get tenure. Upon stealing the wonder, the temple begins to groan, and you have ten minutes to escape. Are you going to spend 20 minutes min-maxing your possible strategies? **** no. You’re going to run as fast as you can, seeking to get whatever you need as frantically as possible in order to escape.

That’s how this game plays out. Tons of fun.

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United Kingdom
I play yellow
Gamer - Level 6
69 of 79 gamers found this helpful
“Chaos and Confusion”

I bought this after watching RAHDO doing a run through on You Tube.

I enjoy playing tile laying games where you explore areas and this did fit the bill. It is played in real time and I have played 2,3 & 4 player games of it. A game will take 10 mins from start to finish as each player frantically rolls their dice AT THE SAME TIME over and over again to get the Symbols they require to move around and complete tasks in the labyrinth.

there are occasions when you have to rush back to your starting tile before you’re locked out (and lose a dice)

Now I found this fun at first and the chaos, screaming and shouting gets ridiculous as you try to concentrate on what you are doing as well as what everyone else it up to(you may need to help others if they get their dice locked – by the black skull symbols – yellow skull symbols can release them)

I have played this about 10 tens now and the novelty has worn off. You find that in a panic some people are just not honest and wizz around without really throwing the correct dice, easily done.

The younger kids I played this with found it hilarious though!

It does get your heart beating fast as the clock ticks down and your desperately trying to throw the correct symbol on the dice to ESCAPE!

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64 of 78 gamers found this helpful
“Fun, challenging cooperative dice game in real time”

This is a good game for those who like to play with others rather than against them. The game is played to a ~10 minute soundtrack which keeps the game going quite quickly! All players roll dice simultaneously and rapidly try to place tiles, find the exit, and capture gems in order to escape the temple before it’s too late! Players must work together or success will be difficult if not impossible. The game is easy to learn but quite challenging so you won’t grow tired of it to soon. Once you have a firm grasp on the game you can vary play in order to increase the challenge.

Quite a fun, chaotic game for several players or even solo play.

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Miniature Painter
71 of 89 gamers found this helpful
“Stressing chaos and insane objective”

The objective of the game is to get out of a temple before the time is up.
The running back and forth to find the exit, but also collecting diamonds to be able to get out of the temple.

With people rolling and rolling and rolling dice, it is almost impossible to coordinate usage of all the dice.
Also the time track that comes with the game is insane.. In the basic time track, they want the players to return to the starting room twice… It is almost impossible to get back and find the exit room, so we actually wind up just using a stop watch instead of the soundtrack.

Generally the game can be fun enough, but I find it way to stressing..

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Jungle Elves - Summoner Wars
I play blue
114 of 149 gamers found this helpful
“Keep Rolling!”

There are so many things I love about this game! It’s so easy to get people to play since it only takes 10 minutes and it’s simple to teach. I’ve played the first 3 modules of Escape though I also have the 2 expansions. I’ve played by myself, with 2 people, and with 4 people. The first time, I played with 2 people and we tried going our separate ways but found it was better to work together to win. When 4 of us played, we broke off into groups of two to cover more ground. We only ran into a problem when one pair had all black dice and the others had to come rescue us.

I was surprised at how much shouting was involved and how intense it gets when you are trying to make your way back to the starting tile or to the exit tile when time is running out.

I definitely recommend this game for beginners. It’s an exciting one to start out with and there are so many different ways to play even with just the base game and add 2 more ways to play with each expansion.

Play this game and keep rolling those dice!


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