Gamification 2: Breakout Puzzles

In the second post in our Gamificaiton + Excel Training series, we’ll talk about another fun element used in our training pass: Breakout Puzzles. My family enjoys going to Escape Rooms, and if you haven’t been to one, I’d recommend checking it out.

In summary, you go to the Escape Room and they lock you in. You have 60 minutes to solve puzzles which reveal combination lock codes. One code may unlock a trunk or safe, and inside, you get additional clues to help solve other puzzles. Ultimately, you figure out the code for the door letting you “escape” from the room. It is like a real-life video game, and if you like video games or puzzles or mystery movies, you’ll probably love doing an escape room.

I wanted to do something similar in my Excel training. So, I came up with the idea for an Excel Breakout Puzzle. The idea is that I’ve hidden a code inside an Excel workbook. The student needs to use their new Excel skills to find the code. If they find them all, they can “escape” the “university” … cute, right? This is another gamification element I use to help make learning Excel fun.

If you’d like to give one a try, download the file and see if you can find the code:

And, if you’d like to see a walkthrough, check out the video below:

Our Extreme Gamification strategy uses numerous game-like elements to make Excel training fun. These are available in our Campus Pass. More info below:

If you solved the Breakout puzzle, share a quick comment below!!!


Posted in ,

Jeff Lenning

I love sharing the things I've learned about Excel, and I built Excel University to help me do that. My motto is: Learn Excel. Work Faster.

Excel is not what it used to be.

You need the Excel Proficiency Roadmap now. Includes 6 steps for a successful journey, 3 things to avoid, and weekly Excel tips.

Want to learn Excel?

Our training programs start at $29 and will help you learn Excel quickly.


  1. Toni Bullard on January 15, 2020 at 9:06 am

    GOT!! Love “playing” in Excel! Thanks!

    • Jeff Lenning on January 15, 2020 at 9:07 am

      Way to go Toni … and I love playing in Excel too 🙂

  2. Eric on January 15, 2020 at 11:39 am

    Great one. May want to let people know that you want the total of the high scores. I did it a different way but got the same result! Thanks! I love these.

    • Jeff Lenning on January 15, 2020 at 11:41 am

      Thanks Eric … and great tip!

Leave a Comment