The Best Escape Rooms in South Carolina, We Rank The Top 11 You Need To Visit!

We know that the craving for adventure and mystery is always lurking just beneath the surface, and we’ve got the perfect antidote for that itch. Say goodbye to ordinary outings and hello to heart-pounding, adrenaline-fueled fun!

Our team at Lowcountry Style and Living has scoured every nook and cranny of the Palmetto State to bring you an exhaustive list of the best escape rooms in South Carolina. We’ve crawled through tunnels, cracked secret codes, and unraveled mind-bending riddles to rank these immersive experiences using our exclusive custom scoring system. 

We’ve considered factors like puzzle creativity, room design, and immersive storytelling to ensure that our recommendations offer nothing short of a truly epic escape. You can read about our scoring system below.

You’re about to embark on a wild ride through the creme de la creme of South Carolina’s escape rooms. Whether you’re a seasoned escape artist or a curious first-timer, our carefully curated list is sure to provide the perfect challenge for you and your crew. Stay tuned and prepare to unlock the secrets of the most mind-blowing, exhilarating, and unforgettable escape rooms that South Carolina has to offer.

Let the great escape begin!

The Zone, Bluffton

The Zone is home to some of the most challenging and originally designed escape rooms in the Lowcountry. Our judges have made it the overall winner in South Carolina.

The numbers:

  • Theme and Set Design- 10
  • A Compelling Story- 10
  • Immersive Experience- 10
  • Interactivity- 9
  • Puzzle Variety and Difficulty- 9
  • Encourage Teamwork- 10

Final Score: 58

The Zone
108 Buckwalter Parkway, Suite 2F
Bluffton, SC 29910
(843) 836-3701
https://thezonebluffton.com

The Final Door Escape Room Columbia

Challenging puzzles and engaging helpful hosts. Beer and wine available.

The numbers:

  • Theme and Set Design- 9
  • A Compelling Story- 10
  • Immersive Experience- 8
  • Interactivity- 9
  • Puzzle Variety and Difficulty- 9
  • Encourage Teamwork- 9

Final Score: 54

The Final Door Escape Room Columbia
930 Knox Abbot Drive
Cayce, SC 29033
(803) 602-2433
https://www.thefinaldoor.com/


Room 2 “Serial Killer”
Photo credit: Break Out Charleston Official Website

Break Out Charleston

Engaging puzzles and gadgets, helpful, friendly hosts, and a safe, clean environment.

The numbers:

  • Theme and Set Design- 9
  • A Compelling Story- 8
  • Immersive Experience- 8
  • Interactivity- 10
  • Puzzle Variety and Difficulty- 10
  • Encourage Teamwork- 8

Final Score: 53

Break Out Charleston
18 Leinbach Drive G
Charleston, SC 29407
(843) 714-9132
https://www.charlestonescapegames.com/

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Image from: Breakout Games Official Website

Breakout Games – Greenville

Great technology and supper immersive experience

The numbers:

  • Theme and Set Design- 8
  • A Compelling Story- 8
  • Immersive Experience- 10
  • Interactivity- 8
  • Puzzle Variety and Difficulty- 10
  • Encourage Teamwork- 8

Final Score: 52

Breakout Games – Greenville
614 North Main Street
Greenville, SC 29601
(864) 326-0190
https://breakoutgames.com/greenville

Photo credit: Trapped Upstate Official Website

Trapped in the Upstate Escape Rooms

Well-designed room and personable staff

The numbers:

  • Theme and Set Design- 9
  • A Compelling Story- 8
  • Immersive Experience- 8
  • Interactivity- 8
  • Puzzle Variety and Difficulty- 9
  • Encourage Teamwork- 9

Final Score: 51

Trapped in the Upstate Escape Rooms
556 Memorial Drive, Ext Suite D
Greer, SC 29651
(864) 416-1539
https://trappedupstate.com

Picture from: Tripadvisor.com

Riddles Escape Room

Great value and live actors make this a unique experience.

The numbers:

  • Theme and Set Design- 9
  • A Compelling Story- 7
  • Immersive Experience- 9
  • Interactivity- 8
  • Puzzle Variety and Difficulty- 8
  • Encourage Teamwork- 9

Final Score: 50

Riddles Escape Room
9713 North Kings Highway
Myrtle Beach, SC 29577
(843) 213-1586
https://www.riddlesescaperoom.com/

Source: Break Out Myrtle Beach Official Website

Break Out Myrtle Beach Escape Room

Six spacious and well organized rooms with an engaging staff.

The numbers:

  • Theme and Set Design- 10
  • A Compelling Story- 8
  • Immersive Experience- 8
  • Interactivity- 7
  • Puzzle Variety and Difficulty- 8
  • Encourage Teamwork- 8

Final Score: 49

Breakout Myrtle Beach Escape Rooms
314 Main Street
North Myrtle Beach, SC 29582
(843) 231-5644
https://www.breakoutmyrtlebeach.com

Image from: Escapology Official FB Page

Escapology Escape Rooms Columbia (Vista)

Large, spacious environment with 12 escape rooms, two meeting rooms, and welcoming lobby.

The numbers:

  • Theme and Set Design- 8
  • A Compelling Story- 8
  • Immersive Experience- 8
  • Interactivity- 9
  • Puzzle Variety and Difficulty- 6
  • Encourage Teamwork- 9

Final Score: 48

Escapology Escape Rooms Columbia (Vista)
717 Lady Street D
Columbia, SC 29201
(803) 900-4144
https://www.escapology.com

Picture from: Escape Eight Official Website

Escape Eight

A hidden gem with challenging rooms and helpful staff.

The numbers:

  • Theme and Set Design- 7
  • A Compelling Story- 7
  • Immersive Experience- 8
  • Interactivity- 8
  • Puzzle Variety and Difficulty- 9
  • Encourage Teamwork- 8

Final Score: 47

Escape Eight
2301 Dave Lyle Boulevard Suite 101
Rock Hill, SC 29730
(803) 386-3841
https://escapeeight.com/

Source: Escape in 60 Official FB Page

Escape in 60

Well-run escape room with great supporting staff.

The numbers:

  • Theme and Set Design- 8
  • A Compelling Story- 7
  • Immersive Experience- 8
  • Interactivity- 7
  • Puzzle Variety and Difficulty- 8
  • Encourage Teamwork- 8

Final Score: 46

Escape in 60
45 South Market Street
Charleston, SC 29401
(843) 709-6266
https://www.escape60.com/#home

Picture from: Every Second Counts Escape Room

Every Second Counts ESC Escape Rooms

Welcoming, organized place with an energetic and friendly staff.

The numbers:

  • Theme and Set Design- 7
  • A Compelling Story- 7
  • Immersive Experience- 8
  • Interactivity- 8
  • Puzzle Variety and Difficulty- 7
  • Encourage Teamwork- 8

Final Score: 45

Every Second Counts ESC Escape Rooms
22 Sams Point Way
Beaufort, SC 29907
(843) 525-9000
https://www.everysecondcountsesc.com/

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How We Scored These Escape Rooms – Our Criteria

Theme and Set Design

Usually escape rooms have a specific theme. They may depict a certain time period, recreate a movie scene, or set the mood for a unique scenario. Furniture, props, and other decorations are all part of the fine details that help develop the theme and engage the players’ imaginations. You’ll know you’ve stepped into a high-quality escape room if you are awestruck and immediately immersed in the environment.

A cleverly designed escape room will leave players searching for clues amongst every notebook, painting, and piece of technology. Every detail must be relevant to the setting or time period to really suck players into the experience. The more dramatic and realistic the theme design, the more game players will feel the stress and adrenaline of the escape.

A Compelling Story

The best escape rooms have a storyline or portray a particular scenario. An engaging narrative will develop the theme and get game players thoroughly engrossed in a room. Movies, books, video games, and escape rooms all use storytelling to draw in an audience, motivating curiosity and excitement. Some escape rooms may only use a story as a guide throughout, encouraging the progression from puzzle to puzzle, but the best escape rooms bring the story to life.

Whether a room is based on escaping a situation, investigating a crime, or solving a mystery to escape the room, the story is vital to portraying the experience. A compelling story must make sense and should be somewhat realistic depending on the scene. For example, if the room recreates a popular movie scene, the storyteller should work with the theme. Some of the most popular escape rooms, assign games players roles or characters to play with detailed storylines that keep them thoroughly engaged.

Immersive Experience

A great escape room must have a unique theme and compelling storyline, but that’s not all that goes into creating a fully immersive experience. Being given a specific character or responsibility to help the story along helps players to feel like they are truly part of the experience. Feeling the slight anxiety of time ticking enhanced by a bit of panic and confusion on what to do next…that‘s what separates a good escape room from a great one.

The thrill of a great escape room is all in the immersive details that trigger emotion and awaken our senses. The visual setting and story are brought to life even further with smells, noises or soundtracks, and (of course) the feeling of competitive adventure.

Interactivity

Keeping people engaged can be a challenge. By creatively incorporating clues or hints, players can be encouraged to interact with different aspects of the room to help them progress. Turning lights, TVs, or radios on or off, flipping switches, turning knobs, opening doors — prompting interaction with the room and the props really helps motivate players. The inclusion of technology appropriate to the scenario or a helpful gamekeeper character are also great ways to interactively guide players through the experience, without breaking character.

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Photo credit: Scavengerescape.com

Puzzle Variety and Difficulty

This is where the magic really happens. Developing a theme and ensuring it’s engaging and immersive is key to really capturing an audience. However, the excitement of following clues, discovering puzzles, and the competitive satisfaction of solving them is what really draws a crowd.

The best escape rooms feature a variety of puzzles, leading players from one step to another in search of the next task or clue. Number codes, written puzzles or riddles, and scavenger hunts can all be carefully intertwined to create a seamless flow. The challenge for gamekeepers is to offer an experience that tests players’ skills without being undefeatable. There’s no fun in a game you can’t win. Although it’s always great to have hints available to keep game play progressing, winning should be possible without hints.

Encourages Teamwork

Most escape rooms are designed to be played with a certain number of players. Most rooms have a range of 2-5 or 3-8 players, for example. This is why escape rooms are perfect to enjoy with friends, family, or coworkers. However, if the story doesn’t incorporate all members and encourage teamwork, it’s not likely to be an equally engaging experience for everyone.

The best escape rooms are carefully designed and planned to include each player and incite collaboration. Puzzles and activities that stimulate interaction or require multiple people to physically compete encourage teamwork throughout gameplay and ensures every member is included.

Source:Groupon.com

What Is An Escape Room and Will I have Fun?

Pop Quiz: What fun gaming activity has become so popular across the U.S. that it’s grown by over 9,000% over the last decade? Baseball? Golf? Skiing? Snowboarding? Bowling?

The answer: none of the above!

Whatever the craze, there’s no escaping it!

The correct answer: Escape Rooms!

Just a short while ago, in 2014 to be precise, there were just 22 escape rooms in America. However, today the number has grown to over 2,500 and counting. And the escape room mania isn’t just confined to the U.S. It is a global phenomenon. In the U.K., for instance, the number of escape rooms has blossomed to nearly 2,000 and is continuing to grow.

A search for the hashtag “escape room” on instagram gets you over 2.0M posts and counting. Escape room enthusiasts from every continent are jumping right in, completing “escape missions.” Finally, they’re posting pictures of some of the proudest (and most fun) moments in their lives.

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The definition for a fad is an intense and widely shared enthusiasm for something, especially one that is short lived. This can also be known as a craze. Yes, escape rooms became suddenly popular across the entire globe, but their benefits are so enormous that people will love them forever. We do not believe that this will be short lived.

So if escape rooms aren’t a fad why are they so popular?

Picture from: vulture.com (David Bloomer/CTMG)

Amazingly Designed Sets

One of the reasons why escape rooms are so widely enjoyed is because of the clever and wonderful designs. Each room has its own authentic look, resembling an expensive movie set. There isn’t a person in the world who doesn’t like the movies, but escape rooms go a bit further. Being part of a unique story and solving puzzles and mysteries in a movie-like environment is everybody’s dream. For a moment you can feel like Tom Cruise in Mission Impossible or Clint Eastwood in a wild western. This kind of experience cannot be replaced.

Puzzles and Mysteries

Most of us are stuck in our daily routines, having our mind on autopilot. That’s why many people enjoy solving Sudoku and crossword puzzles. People love those two to no end, but they also can become part of a boring daily routine. Escape rooms are different. They shift your perspective by changing your environment from regular life to an extremely fun adventure. Our minds are curious and all of us like a bit of a challenge. Facing zombies, ghosts, and pirate chests, pushes our cognitive limits and enables us to discover new things about our personalities.

Family Bonding

Besides corporate team building events, escape rooms are also popular for birthday parties and family reunions. Recent research shows how families who engage in regular bonding activities have overall better communication. Taking your kids or relatives on an escape room adventure is a great way to maintain family connections and strengthen your bonds. You can even make custom T-shirts or create a family road trip investigating the local area and trying every escape room out there.

What Makes It Fun?

Let’s face it: Who wants to find themselves locked up in a windowless, seemingly inescapable room, and given a deadline – typically 60 minutes – to solve a mystery, crack a puzzle, or find the way out? Well, judging from the over 9,000% spike in popularity of escape rooms across the United States, we’d say there’s an entire population of thrill-seekers that want to taste a piece of the escape room action. And once you’ve sampled the goodies, there is no turning back.

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Photo credit: Itstimetoescape.com

The Thrilling Part

Part of the thrill is showing off your puzzle-solving prowess in front of friends, family, and colleagues. And then, there are the frequent adrenaline hits that participants experience each time they get nearer to finding their way out, or closer to saving the world (or at least they think that’s what they achieved). But, vanity aside, there are many reasons escape rooms have grown in popularity:

With their emphasis on safety first, there’s really few safer pastimes than escape room fun.
Unlike rock climbing or miniature golf, the technology and special effects of escape games takes you beyond the realm of the here and now, and transports you to mythical places that everyone loves.

There’s a heightened sense of bonding with family and friends when you play together.
Locked in an enclosed space, knowing you only have each other and your wits and skills to count on to pull off an escape….it’s probably the best way to shape a sense of comradery among friends and co-workers.

The shared experience which serves to bring teams of players together, is probably what really motivates thousands to gravitate to escape games. That, and the fact that there’s so much fun and excitement in the escape room fighting for your survival (even though you are only playing make-believe, of course) make it a hit with people of all ages. For the younger generations, there is also the anticipation of the moment of glory, your photo-op at the end of the escape, that makes it an activity worth escaping into.

At Lowcountry Style and Living we were curious about the quality of experiences in South Carolina escape rooms. We decided to scour the entire state and compose a list of the best escape rooms. We enlisted some staff and brought aboard some friends that are escape room aficionados. We then formulated a criteria as to the components of a quality escape room. We decided to award points (for 1 to 10) for each component. We visited over two dozen escape rooms in South Carolina. Of course, due to time constraints (and budget) we only sampled two rooms at each establishment, even though some had more than two. Every review of this sort is subjective, but we made a deep dive and whether you are a veteran or beginner in visiting escape rooms in South Carolina, we think you’ll find our guide to be informative and spot on.

The escape room experience is obviously built on mystery and intrigue, so as not to be a spoilsport there are not a lot of descriptions to specific rooms. We are providing an overview of what you can expect from the best escape rooms in South Carolina.

Blair Witkowski
Author: Blair Witkowski

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