Sheffield Eateries As An Outsider

The Lucky Fox Sheffield

I have visited Sheffield a handful of times in my adult life, and having worked in Barnsley for 7 years knew that it was the most likely place that I would live, if I moved to South Yorkshire.

Now, with opening my third branch of Cryptology Escape Rooms, I have seen much more of the Steel City and in this blog, I will discuss the places around Cryptology Sheffield where I have eaten and enjoyed!

The Devonshire

Pie & Pint @ The Devonshire
Pie & Pint @ The Devonshire

One of the first places I ate in Sheffield, on passing they were doing BOGOF breakfasts. We visitied, both had Croque Monsieur AND creamed mushrooms. It was excellent value for money, but we didn’t need both… EACH.

“Birdcage” (Frog & Parrot)

Frog & Parrot Sheffield
“Birdcage” Eatery & Drinkery

I am not sure why I went in here for the first time, but being a music fan, I loved the records on the ceilings and walls. There’s also odd birdcages that you sit in, not massively convenient for eating and drinking, but novel all-the-same. However, the food, particularly for a standard chain from Greene King is excellent! 

The Lucky Fox

The Lucky Fox Sheffield
Some deliciousness from The Lucky Fox

In a meeting with an HSBC Business Account Manager, he mentioned of a place which is basically “KFC on crack”. It’s a tiny place, you may be lucky to get a seat, however, the food is indeed streets ahead of Colonel Sanders’, not to be missed!

Forum Sheffield

Banging burgers 'til 9pm, and up to 50% off on Mondays
Burger @ The Forum

First of all, the in-house beers are varied and great! We came pretty much every Monday for their BOGOF burger deal, however they changed their menu and the burger were really not the same. They may have changed these again, but we cannot confirm. They also have a pizza bar where you can buy a giant slice! It’s pretty decent, but Frog & Parrot wins hands-down.

What’s Next?

There’s a few more places we have been, but these tend to be chains (Revolucion De Cuba is worthy of mention), but are keen to further explore what culinary treats Sheffield has to offer!

What’s your favourite?

Places to Eat and Drink In Barnsley

Our latest selection of food and drink establishments to visit in Barnsley once you have done Cryptology Escape Rooms Barnsley

Once you have completed your 60 minutes of high tension brain-building escapism you will probably need to look for some refreshment or food in Barnsley Town Centre! Below we look at some of the options this South Yorkshire area!

This is just a small selection of what is on offer in the town and if you have better/further suggestions then let us know and we can look to spread the word!


Continue reading “Places to Eat and Drink In Barnsley”

5 (Digital) Escape Games That Sam Loves Too Much

Before Escape Rooms were the thriving business they now are, many people who wanted to challenge themselves turned to other types of games, most notably, video games.

Portal
Yes, I made the jump! Now just to- Oh.

There are A LOT of video games based around escaping and, if you love playing or building escape rooms, then you certainly should be looking at some of these as your next inspiration, challenge, or both.

After the break, come and see what games you should start with that offer the best themes, puzzles, and challenge.


Continue reading “5 (Digital) Escape Games That Sam Loves Too Much”

Laser Cutter: Better Than Seabass

Sanding Machines in the Dust Zone

A laser may make you think of Dr. Evil, but for Cryptology employees it makes us think of Hackspace!

Nottinghack

For a modest monthly fee you can have access to a wide array of tools, including a 3D printer, embroidery machine, very large table saws, and more.

Biggest. Circular. Saw. Ever
A massive circular saw based at Hackspace Nottingham
Sanding Machines in the Dust Zone
There is a whole designated section for sanding, complete with industrial extractors
A small selection of tools at Hackspace
Some of the wide array of hand tools at Hackspace Nottingham
Bits & Bobs at Hacksapce
A wide array of bits and bobs you may need for any project

Most importantly an A0 laser cutter.

Nottingham Hackspace's A0 Laser Cutter
Nottingham Hackspace’s A0 Laser Cutter

Laser: Vector, Not Raster

Continue reading “Laser Cutter: Better Than Seabass”

Crystal Stations: From Concept To Creation

The creation of the Crystal Stations for Cryptology Sheffield‘s First Contact escape room game spanned April 2018 to July 2018 and went through 3 prototypes.

This has been covered by the video blog which is on our YouTube channel (and can be seen below), some extra details are within this blog.

Define The Concept

The concept was simple, players have to find a crystal and place it in the correct station. Each crystal has different lugs which will mean it will only fit in the correct location in the correct station. The stations will be lit by LEDs and when the correct Crystal is placed the LEDs change colour. Continue reading “Crystal Stations: From Concept To Creation”

10 Stag Do Hen Do Ideas For Nottingham

Nottingham has the most eateries per square metre in the whole of Western Europe, this is not the only reason it is a great location for a stag do or hen do! Now, this is slightly skewed because Nottingham is a well-populated city in quite a contained city centre. It only takes about 20 minutes’ to walk from one end of town to the other and it’s not that fragmented. This means there’s countless places to eat and drink all within a stone’s throw of each other. In no particular order, here are our recommendations for a stag do hen do in Nottingham.

1) Bar Iberico

Bar Iberico Nottingham
Bar Iberico, tapas bar & restaurant in Nottingham

This is usually my top tip for visitors or locals to go to for casual eats. Bar Iberico has a great atmosphere, a good selection of drinks, reasonably priced, great service and most of all, a perfect and changing menu. The food is genuinely out of this world!

2) Tilt

Continue reading “10 Stag Do Hen Do Ideas For Nottingham”

Music of Cryptology Builds

Music Cryptology Listened To On Builds

Music has always been a large part of my life, I’m a bit of a muso. I learned violin and trumpet in school, taught myself guitar (and then bass) and now drums. Drums are a tricky beast, so I’m now having weekly lessons. But there’s certain bands and/or albums that were synonymous with the creation of various Cryptology games.

Cryptology Nottingham Creation: Music

The building of Cryptology Nottingham started in approximately April/May of 2015. At this point, the band of the moment for me was Of Monsters And Men.

However, I cannot pin a song to Cypherdyne‘s creation. This whole creation process is quite a blur, but once opened work for The Crypt started and I have definite recollections to Crypt-building and their first album My Head Is An Animal.

Next creation at Cryptology was “The Basement Game” (this is being transferred, less about this, more to the choons!). This game started creation in February 2016, and this was deep in my Everything Everything phase, strengthened by seeing them in Nottingham in November of 2015.

Continue reading “Music of Cryptology Builds”

The Creation Of Cryptology Escape Rooms

Cryptology Creation

The Beginning

Before the creation of Cryptology Escape Rooms in Nottingham, my career was as a buyer, a job I had for over 8 years. Whilst it was indeed a great job, I felt that I had ticked all the boxes in that career path. I really wanted a change of scene. But with 8 years of one career on your CV, it is difficult for another employer in a different field to take you on! Or take you on at a wage that supports your mortgage and debts!

The last buyer job I had really did not fulfil me, there was no pressure and I was used to having many things on the go at once. One weekend I was visiting I used to live with in his new home town of Bristol. Whilst a weekend of drinking and eating out was great, I felt we should do something extra. I found this weird thing called an “escape room”. Continue reading “The Creation Of Cryptology Escape Rooms”

What’s The Reason For A Cryptology Blog?

Why A Blog?

Hi, I’m Mark, the owner of the UK escape room franchise “Cryptology”, welcome to our blog. I opened Nottingham’s doors in July 2015. Currently there are open branches in Nottingham and in Barnsley, our newest branch in Sheffield is currently in production; it’s all go!

The Trigger Point For A Blog

In June of 2018, an ex-colleague was heading to a LinkedIn networking event just around the corner from Cryptology Nottingham. He suggested we met up for a drink, I didn’t realise that I’d actually be taking part of the event!

After signing up, receiving some Prosecco and access to a cheese board (I was very pleased!), the concept of the meetup was explained. People from all different industries and from Nottingham and the surrounding areas were left to mingle. After a few introductions to other people who jumped in at the deep end to just meet other people, I began describing Nottingham’s latest game that was in production, Dreamscape. The organiser who is from London walked past and said “this sounds interesting” and joined in the conversation. I was explaining some of the concepts and themes within the game, some of the issue we are having in setting them up, and what’s coming up on the horizon.

Linked In And Beyond

I asked about LinkedIn and what marketing examples she could tell me about. She summed everything up with if she is interested what I was explaining, then other people would be too. I had indeed toyed with the idea of a blog about Cryptology. But I really didn’t want it to be a diary, an ego boost, or a sales pitch. But after explaining the creation of Dreamscape to my ex-colleague and a stranger, I did indeed conclude that some of you may be interested in the behind-the-scenes of an escape room franchise.

As it is now 2018, I would want this to be more of a video blog (VLOG), I will encorporate as much video as I can. But with Dreamscape Nottingham, and First Contact Sheffield my time is stretched very thin! Watch this space!