Welcome to The Game Shelf!

After getting into the board game hobby at the end of 2014, we've decided to share our thoughts on the games we're collecting on our shelves. The collection has certainly expanded over the last few years and we've been making up for lost time!

Sometimes our opinions differ, so Amy will be posting reviews every Tuesday and Fi will post on Thursdays. We hope you enjoy reading some of our opinions on board games - especially those for two players.

Get in touch by emailing thegameshelfblog@gmail.com

Saturday 28 April 2018

The Game Shelf Reviews:- The Lost Mummy from Lock Paper Scissors

Game: The Lost Mummy

Publisher: Lock Paper Scissors

Designer: Jason Stroud & Elliott Bailey

Year: 2018

Lock Paper Scissors promotes the concept of Do-It-Yourself escape room kits that you can print and play at home. Their creator, Elliott, is an adventure fanatic who dreams of being Lara Croft hunting for buried treasure. Since that career goal’s been taken, he crafts ‘Do It Yourself’ escape room kits for friends and family to enjoy together.

The Lost Mummy is a short escape room scenario for groups of children aged 10-12, set in Ancient Egypt. To play, you'll pay to download the game at a cost of $19.99 Australian Dollars and then print out the game on your home computer, making enough copies for all of your players. We'd like to give some information on what you should expect, without spoiling any content of the game.


The Lost Mummy is an escape room scenario that works best with groups of approximately 4. In preparation for the escape room you will want to have an adjudicator who can confirm that groups have correctly answered the puzzles. You may also wish to have cut out some off the print off components into their respective parts, or to have scissors and tape available so the players can do so themselves. It may pay to have a few spare components available in case there are any accidents, but since you can print off as many copies as you want, this isn't an issue

The game is split into 3 sections, each of which has a main puzzle that will require you to solve a series of smaller puzzles to figure out the answer. As The Lost Mummy is designed for 10-12 year olds none of these are extremely difficult, but you will be dealing with some mathematics, some spatial puzzles and some word puzzles. The key component is the diaries, each group will have 4, each of which contains a handful of clues that will be used throughout the escape room. This means that with a group of four, each player has one diary, which helps bring the whole group together to cooperate and share ideas, as each person will have their own information to bring to the group.

A "hand-made" quality to the game components we constructed
Amy’s Final Thoughts

The Lost Mummy does a great job of bringing the escape room premise to your home, it's also highly customisable. If you wanted to you could easily hide some important components around the room and add clues as to where they can be found. The components are of as good quality as you can expect for a print and play game, the art is clear and concise and we were never stuck for knowing what to do next.

Obviously the game is easy for adults, but we appreciated that the puzzles do have some good variety. I enjoyed how you have to be able to take information from the 4 diaries and combine them to be able to solve some of the puzzles. Many of the puzzles interact with each other, which makes a nice change from many escape room games where you are expected or even told to throw away cards the second they stop being important. There is a good feeling of progression being able to use the cypher that you created in part 2 to translate things in part 3.

Lost Mummy is a game that I would highly recommend for children's parties, the whole activity takes about an hour, though as it is separated into sections you could easily intersperse it with other activities. Lock Paper Scissors also produce at-home escape room games for adults and other age groups which we will be reviewing in the future.

Fi’s Final Thoughts

We have played a lot of the Escape Room board games that have become increasingly popular over the last 18 months, including Unlock, EXIT and Deckscape, but Lock Paper Scissors are providing different experiences that try to turn your home into a real escape room. Compared to some of their other games, The Lost Mummy is quite simple in terms of the scope, with no need to make it into an escape room, it can just be played as a series of puzzles on paper, with access to a pen, scissors and glue or sticky tape.

One of the key strengths of this game for kids is that the puzzle is quite linear and has been broken down into three separate pieces, so that there is no chance of not yet having enough information to complete a puzzle (something that can be a hinderance in other escape room games). The game also really promotes team work with the information being held in four different journals, so that the participants need to communicate and help each other to collect all of the relevant information. Finally, the game has puzzles for those who are good at maths, good at codes, or good at reading thoroughly and figuring out hidden messages, so hopefully everyone's strengths can contribute.

The one drawback I see with the game is that there is no system for knowing if your answer is correct, besides asking the parent or teacher who knows all of the answers. It is very hard to be both a participant and a moderator, although it can be done if you're very strict about not accidentally seeing the answers!

The Good
  • The game has some good, challenging puzzles, with variety which will suit the strengths of different people.
  • The theme of the escape room is pretty strong and I can even see it being played in a history classroom.
The Bad
  • The game definitely needs a moderator to tell the participants if they got the answer right or wrong. This means it has to be an activity rather than a game.
  • The level of maths required in the game includes fractions, simple equations and square roots, which could be a barrier to some players.
The Verdict 
7/10 The Lost Mummy is perfect for a children's party or a classroom environment. It has an interesting story, as well as a mixture of puzzle difficulties and a craft element. It's not too long and should be achievable for kids of the target age, whilst being challenging.

The Lost Mummy was a review copy provided by Lock Paper Scissors. You can find out more about their DIY escape room kits for kids and adults at https://lockpaperscissors.co/

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