The ‘escape room’ global phenomenon is set to grip the North West with the opening of a new live game challenge at The Old Courthouse in Lifford.‘The Heist’ is a new live game experience which imprisons groups of up to six people in a ‘Crystal Maze’-styled puzzle fest.Players are forced to think their way out of the room by solving a series of carefully devised puzzles and problems in a game styled on the escape room craze which is taking the world by storm. Lifford’s Old Courthouse is one of the first locations in Ireland to offer the escape room experience. The Donegal venue’s latest brain-teasing challenge centres on a daring newsroom heist theme.Teams are tasked by a secretive millionaire to retrieve ‘extremely sensitive information’ from a newspaper magnate’s office before it’s delivered to his editors. Contestants are given 60 minutes to break into the office vault and ensure the information never goes to print. They are also given the ominous warning: ‘do not get caught’.The role-play experience is billed as a tremendous team building adventure and is expected to be a big hit with a diverse range of groups in the North West.“From teams of employees and groups of pupils to family units and circles of friends ‘The Heist’ is an experience which everyone will enjoy,” says the game’s developer Patrick McHugh, from the Old Courthouse in Lifford. “Our latest game is a high intensity heist scenario which places players in the roles of thieves in an against-the-clock newspaper office raid. Much planning has gone into making‘The Heist’ a fantastic live game experience for everyone from 14 years and upwards,” he adds.The escape room phenomenon is relatively new to Ireland and the UK but has been taking the world by storm in recent years after originating in Japan.Mr McHugh says: “The Old Courthouse has the only escape room experience in the North West and was one of the first in Ireland. Our ‘Jailbreak’ game has been imprisoning players since June 2015 and has been a huge success.“’Jailbreak’ evokes a unique feeling of authenticity as it takes place in the genuine dungeon cells beneath the courthouse, giving our death row ‘prisoners’ 60 minutes to escape or else face the gallows. “Several hundred groups have taken part so far and although some have not made it out alive – ‘Jailbreak’ has enjoyed fantastic reviews,” he quips.Mr McHugh’s team plans to change the game themes every six months while also introducing some seasonally themed ‘pop-up’ escape rooms to ensure new user experiences.“The themes will be changed and fresh puzzles devised but the fun fundamentals will remain the same. Our escape rooms are all about finding keys to open boxes and doors, and working out combinations to get into safes and locks. Players work from scratch when they enter and get an hour to think their way out of the room by solving one problem after another,” he says.The puzzles involve players thinking quite a bit outside the box while they remain imprisoned inside the box. “In our escape rooms there’s hardly any math involved – we found during our extensive research that nothing can kill momentum in a room more than flummoxing someone with tricky square roots or equations. Our games focus more on encouraging players to think outside the box and work out testing riddles – it’s more about thinking laterally than thinking literally,” he explains.‘The Heist’ escape room challenge will be on tour at Letterkenny Shopping Centre on Saturday, April 2. Shoppers will be given an opportunity to get a flavour of the experience by working out on-the-spot puzzles for prizes.For information on The Old Courthouse room escape experiences log on to www.liffordoldcourthouse.com/heist or www.liffordoldcourthouse.com/jailbreak‘The Heist’ and ‘Jailbreak’ escape room challenges are open Monday to Saturday for teams of 2-6 people with an entry fee of €12 per person. For teams of six the entry fee is €60.ESCAPE OR DIE AT LIFFORD’S OLD COURTHOUSE was last modified: March 31st, 2016 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:donegalLiffordTHE OLD COURTHOUSE
India’s dream of winning a gold in men’s hockey event at the Asian Games came a cropper after lower-ranked Malaysia stunned the Commonwealth Games silver medallist with a 75th minute golden goal from Muhammad Amin Rahim in the second semifinal here on Tuesday.The decisive punch in India’s 3-4 defeat was provided by Malaysian penalty corner specialist Amin Rahim in the fifth minute of extra time after he had brought the southeast Asian country on level terms three minutes from the end of regular time with another drag-flick that completely beat Bharat Chetri under the Indian bar.Malaysia, ranked 15th in the world, came out on top in the additional time after both sides were tied 3-3 at the end of regulation time to make their maiden appearance in the Asian Games summit clash, where they face Pakistan, who knocked out defending champions South Korea in penalty shoot-out in the first semifinal.India will now be up against South Korea in the bronze medal play-off match.By virtue of this victory, Malaysia has broken their Asian Games losing streak against India, against whom they lost in all 10 previous meetings in the mega-event.Penalty corner conversion turned out to be the difference between the two sides as Malaysia converted three out of the four short corners they earned in the match, while the Indians could utilise only two out of four.The Indians were also done in by some sloppy defending inside the circle, which resulted in all the penalty corners for Malaysia.advertisementComing into the match with an unbeaten record, a lot was expected of India, but they cut a sorry figure against a determined Malaysian outfit who were by far the better side on display.India, who missed their penalty corner specialist Sandeep Singh due to a neck injury for 20 minutes in the second half, were down by a brilliant 32nd minute field goal scored by forward Abdul Jalil Tengku.However, Malaysia’s joy was shortlived as Sandeep equalised three minutes later with a powerful dragflick as both teams went into the breather locked at 1-1.The Indians came out with purpose after the change of ends and surged ahead in the 37th minute through Tushar Khandkar’s field strike.India then displayed controlled hockey for nearly 12 minutes before Azlan Misron (49th) drew the scores level with a well worked-out variation from Malaysia’s third short corner.Five minutes later, captain Rajpal Singh made it 3-2 for India with a rebound after Dhananjay Mahadik’s initial flick from a set piece was stopped by Malaysia custodian Kumar Subramiam.But it was not to be India’s day as Malaysia earned another penalty corner in the dying stages of the match from which Amin Rahim (67th) scored to make it 3-3.With little more than a minute to go for the hooter, India got a golden chance to seal the match in their favour but coach Jose Brasa’s boys wasted their fourth penalty corner to take the encounter into extra time.Pressure got the better of the Indians in the additional time as they gave away another short corner in the 75th minute from which Amin Rahim scored yet again, to avenge Malaysia’s 2-3 defeat against India in last month’s Commonwealth Games.India will now play South Korea for bronze while Malaysia will be up against Pakistan in the gold medal match, the winners of which would directly qualify for the 2012 London Olympics.In the first semifinal earlier in the day, Pakistan got the better of Korea 4-3 in penalty shoot-out after both sides were locked 1-1 at the end of regulation as well as 15 minutes of extra time.Incidentally, this will be seven-time champions Pakistan’s first entry into the Asian Games final after a hiatus of 20 years when they won the gold at Beijing in 1990.India captain Rajpal blamed his side’s missed opportunities for the loss and said the team missed Sandeep at vital stages of the match.”If we had converted 50 per cent of the chances we got we would have won the match. Their goalkeeper also played well and once a defender also made a goal-line save off a penalty corner. Then Sandeep Singh was absent and had he been present we would have had better chances to convert the last-minute penalty corner,” he said.Coach Jose Brasa, whose contract ends after the Asian Games, said he was “very angry and disappointed” with the result.He also praised Malaysian custodian Kumar Subramiam for denying the Indians a couple of times in the second half.advertisement”Their goalkeeper played very well and brought off some good saves in the second half. And on one instance their defender also stopped the ball on the line. This was one of the important moments of the match. We did not control the game when we needed to control it,” the Spaniard said.Brasa predicted difficult future for India in the forthcoming London Games qualifying tournaments.”Our main target was to win the gold here and qualify and we have not done so. I see difficult times ahead for the team to qualify,” he said.Brasa was also quite candid about his future with the team.”I don’t think the government would retain me after these Games,” he said, adding it was not the right time to answer the question whether he would accept the job if offered to him again.