Escape from LaVille Review

By , on June 15, 2011

Escape from LaVille
Download on the AppStore
2 out of 5


  • Cute zombie puppy.
  • Short and to the point; doesn't pad out the game longer than needed.


  • Painfully slow transitions.
  • Poor art mash-up; difficult to distinguish between important items and background images.
  • An ending worthy of M. Night Shyamalan.


Escape from LaVille places players in an awkward scenario with little motivation outside of simply completing the game to drag them forward; snappier transitions would go a long way to make this far less frustrating to play.

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Were you ever 'treated' to a book of puzzles as a kid? Maybe it was a gift from a well-meaning aunt or grandparent looking to provide you with something educational and entertaining at the same time. It's a bitter-sweet joy that's almost perfectly captured by the puzzle-adventure genre and while some games fall in to the 'sweet' category, others like Escape from LaVille tend to slide in to the other.

After a brief expositional introduction you're dumped in to a locked room with nothing but a cup and your wits to survive. At this point it's up to the player to work out how to control the game despite being given very little feedback besides the occasional text message and a loading circle, which will become your constant companion during your journey. This is further complicated by areas featuring 'secret' panels or additional spots that you can zoom in to, however 'pixel hunting' is tedious when each scene change takes a couple seconds to register.

One of the other weak points of the genre is justifying the reason for such a bizarre and elaborate trap for a single person. While the ending does try to cover this rather large plot hole, for most of the game players are left wondering if the mansion's owner is huge fan of Resident Evil. Scraps of newspaper articles can be collected to learn more about the city's grisly history, but these past events do nothing to inform you of your current situation, making them all but irrelevant outside of solving a particular puzzle.

Similar titles like 'The Secret of Grisly Manor' may have already set the bar high up, but Escape from LaVille's exploration, puzzles and storyline fail to satisfy, making it hard to recommend even though it's short enough to finish in one sitting. If you're desperate to flex your neurons, you can get something out of this game, but it's an otherwise easy game to avoid.


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AppUnwrapper 9 years, 11 months ago

I have to agree. I'm not sure why Laville got such glowing reviews on the App store. Your review is much more accurate. I couldn't stand it for long because of the inexcusably long loading times between each move. But I did find a really amazing room escape game recently, called Atmosfear. Check out my review at It's like virtual reality!

Ambiguity 10 years, 3 months ago

You're right, it doesn't look tempting at all :\ Plus the English seems rather bad:
- 'Zobie-dog'
- 'What the hell they do in this house?'