Open door policy: can an escape room be queer?

July 3, 2024
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Hello! Eurogamer is once again marking Pride with another week of features celebrating the intersection of LGBTQIA+ culture and gaming in all its guises. Today, Florence Smith Nicholls explores experimental escape room Memoirscape and its tale of queer love in the 80s.

“This room is very gender.”

We’re in a teen bedroom – the exact location and date is a little hazy, but it’s somewhere in Queens, New York City, in 1986. All the hallmarks of adolescence are here, posters on the walls, a brightly covered duvet, knick-knacks. The space is bathed in warm light. I sit down on the bed and pick up a romance novel left nearby. It’s comfortable, one might even say cosy, but we’re not alone. Another group is huddled around a cassette player, listening to a recording of a private conversation between two young women. When I look closer at the photographs on the walls, some of the faces seem to be crossed out. Oh, and the novel is extremely gay.

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