When you think of laser tag, you will probably think of an indoor arena with dark rooms, neon-painted walls, cramped mazes and loud music – and with the players donning thick armour-style uniforms and shooting infra-red light rays at each other.
But laser tag can be played outdoors too – completely surrounded by nature. Laser tag company BattleStrike, which was founded by three friends last August, offers outdoor laser tag in a variety of locations to suit the players, including local parks and compounds at condominiums.
GETTING A MORE BALANCED WORKOUT
Why go against the grain with outdoor laser tag? Said Yves Tan, Senior Manager at BattleStrike, “Most versions of laser tag are played indoors in air-conditioning. But when playing outdoors, you get to go under the sun and you will sweat more, thus having a more well-rounded workout.”
But he added that outdoor laser tag, while not so common, is not completely new to Singapore. Said Yves, “Outdoor laser tag has been around in Singapore for more than 10 years.”
Yves added though, that with BattleStrike’s outdoor version, their main objectives are to promote a healthy lifestyle. This is achieved by encouraging people to get out of their comfort zone – to venture outdoors to have some sweaty fun.
This is especially the case nowadays, with many people choosing to stay away from outdoor activities, instead preferring to take up sedentary social activities like watching movies, eating and playing video games.
For those who are interested in losing weight, Yves also explained that BattleStrike is coming up with an app that will include the health benefits of playing laser tag as well as the number of calories burned per game.
LATEST STATE-OF-THE-ART LASER TAG EQUIPMENT
In terms of equipment, Yves also shared that BattleStrike has the latest Battle Rifle Pro (BRP) guns, which are equipped with Wi-Fi and BlueTooth technology to give players a completely wireless experience.
There is also a vibration feedback included in the gun so that you will sense it immediately when you fire your weapon and make a hit, or when you get shot. There are also special sounds given out by the gun, so that you know instantly too, when you are ‘dead.’
Attached to the guns, are also two different scopes that match the multi-gun functions of the BPRs in terms of their sniper and fast-aiming capabilities. As well, an LED light meter on each gun also gives you continuous real-time feedback so that you will be immediately aware of your health status throughout the game.
Connected to each gun, are also wireless head sensors that are worn around the head, as a headband. This comprises of tiny vibration motors that alerts you to when you have been shot. These head sensors are the first of their kind in Singapore.
To make a hit on your opponent, you would target the infra-red sensors on either their guns or their wireless head gear. Keep doing this, and you will eventually ‘kill’ them. That is, unless they retaliate and shoot you back.
So in this way, laser tag is somewhat like a real-life version of the popular Counter Strike computer game.
INVITED TO PLAY LASER TAG
Thanks to BattleStrike, I was recently invited to play an afternoon of outdoor laser tag with a group of friends.
While Yves says that a minimum of six are needed to form a team, our group had about 18 people altogether. So we had three teams of players – which meant that we could take a break in between games if we were feeling tired.
The usual cost of BattleStrike Laser Tag are $25 per person for children and $35 per person for adults.
Each game of laser tag lasts 20 minutes, and our group played four games altogether.
Laser Tag in action.
Added Yves, “Most other laser tag companies have 15-minute games. We have done research and the maximum length of time that an adult can stay focused, is up to 20 minutes. If it’s more than that, people will be walking around and shooting aimlessly. Also for kids, 15 minutes is a bit too short, so 20 minutes suits them well.”
As we were playing at East Coast Park, Yves also explained that our games were tailored accordingly, to tie in with this natural setting. However, the games may vary if the laser tag is played at, for example, a hilly area or at a private condominium because of the different settings and ‘hiding’ spots made available to the players.
The games that our group played were:
1) BattleStrike – Two teams playing against each other, and the winner was the team ending the game with the lowest death counts.
2) Run & Gun – Two teams playing against each other. Here, you infiltrate the enemy base repeatedly to score as many points as you possibly can.
3) Capture the Flag – Players try to ‘catch’ the moving ‘flag’ target, which a Singapore flag being waved by a staff member who is running very fast. You must catch it as many times as possible, to beat the opposing team.
4) I Am Legend – A last man standing game that’s absolutely free for all.
More Laser Tag.
GAMES WERE FUN AND ADDICTIVE
As this was my first Laser Tag session, I must admit that I didn’t really know what to expect at the beginning. But after playing, my friends and I all definitely agreed on one thing – that it was extremely fun and addictive.
The session is also very physically tiring because there is quite a lot of sprinting involved – and at the same time, you must concentrate because you have to keep your eyes and ears alert for the enemy.
Also, I realised that adopting a strategy is useful for the team games, as it gives each player a specific role to focus on, rather than having everyone simply running around like headless chickens. For example, some players can focus on attacking and others on defence, much like a football team. As I was in a predominately attacking role, I was pretty exhausted after playing just one game alone. However, after catching my breath and sipping some water, I managed to continue playing till the end.
On strategies, it also helps, if you and your team mates go out to attack in a pair or in threes, so that you can team up together and watch out for each other. This particularly applies, in the ‘I Am Legend’ game – whereby everyone is literally trying to shoot everyone – somewhat like the popular reality show ‘Survivor.’
PROVIDES A GREAT WORKOUT
I have discovered that Laser Tag certainly provides a good and engaging workout. In fact I was so thirsty by the end of the session, that I found myself gulping down a whole 500ml bottle of water at one go – and furthermore, I still had room to drink iced Milo from the nearby hawker centre after that. As Yves says, he always tells his clients that an afternoon of laser tag is equivalent to a week’s worth of gym sessions.
Playing laser tag doesn’t feel like you are working out at all, because it is a fun game. I would definitely recommend laser tag to those who want a good workout but find that the regular recommended exercises are boring.
For more on BattleStrike’s outdoor Laser Tag, check out http://www.battlestrike.com.sg
BattleStrike is offering 10% discount to readers of PrisChew.com. When you make your booking for a Laser Tag session, just quote ‘PRISCHEW’ and you will receive the above discount. Bookings must be made by 31 December 2015. Limited to first 50 readers.