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Caring for clueQuest: Keeping Things Safe

by Freya Carroll

published on

When Operation Blacksheep opened in 2014, we made sure that all our props were the best of the best. Nine years on, we’re still striving for the best quality in our rooms, and so we regularly update our items in the room to make sure we’re delivering top standards. In this article, we take a look behind the scenes at how we replaced a vital prop… the Operation Blacksheep safe.

Although we won’t say where it is (we don’t want to ruin the fun!), we can say that the safe is part of a key puzzle, so it was very important that we got it right. So how did we begin?

We started from scratch, with a brand new design. We knew that making the safes ourselves would guarantee that they would be something no one had ever seen before, giving that spark of clueQuest originality! We wanted to create something that would be interactive and fun, and the result took a whole year to design. It’s covered in 3D-printed buttons and LEDs, and started life as a 3D model on a computer to ensure that it was perfect. 

Of course, that was how the safe looked on the outside, but what about on the inside? The safe’s brain is a microcontroller, and we wrote a custom software program on it to control the lock and LEDs. It also checks that everything is working and reports to a server - high-tech stuff!

Once the safe was made, it was time to install it in the rooms. Each safe took a full day to install, largely due to having to fish a cable through a wall, which is much more complicated than it sounds! Once the mass of wires was inserted, the screws tightened, and the safe door closed, all was ready to go. Stop by our three Operation Blacksheep rooms to see it in action (if you can find it)! 

Watch this space - the Operation Blacksheep safes aren’t the only thing we’re updating…

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