Mixing It Up
Of course, I love to travel and report back about my laser tag adventures, whether it’s a tournament or a road trip or a Tag 4 A Cause night, but sometimes it’s nice to just appreciate a normal night of tag with at your home arena (or as normal as ever we get in Syracuse!) so this past weekend I didn’t plan to do anything all that out of the ordinary…except, well, we kind of did!
What I mean is we had a normal SM5 night planned, but instead of playing that format all night we tried mixing it up with some game formats that we just don’t play all that often, and it was great to peruse the special format options and play some “just for fun” games this week.
Typically, Photon emulation is only played when I am there to specifically request it and there were a few players who had never experienced it before. Even the staff normally defers to me to give a briefing on this format (which always begins with a bit of history…Photon emulation is based on the original laser tag game invented by George Carter III in Dallas, TX in 1984) so I gave an overview of the key points before we went into the game. Always one of my favorites!
Then Mama Bear wanted to play around with one of the newer game formats, Laser Ball, which is really a good “team builder” kind of game because it is played a bit like soccer or basketball in that you have to “pass the ball” by tagging teammates or steal the ball from the opposing team and run it up to the opposite base to score.
Then a bit of three-team Z Game (which is also an emulation of another system I enjoy) was on my list of favorites to play.
Now, we don’t necessarily play these formats a lot, but they are games we know and fun to mix things up. But when we go off the tablet, that’s a whole other story!
What do I mean by that? Well, I play at a site where the tech-talented staff members have created some of their own variations on the “official” formats. These are unique to our site, so you would not expect to come across them at any other arenas. Even we don’t know them all! So when someone found a custom variation, which I will abbreviate as D.M., as it is a tweaked variation on Masters, we all wanted to see what this was about!
For this customized variation, the points are doubled, missiles are worth 1000, bases are worth 5000, you start only needing one special point for nukes and then subsequent nukes go up by one, maxing out at 10. Does that sound crazy? It was!!! That’s why this creation will never likely be played outside of a special members night at this specific site, but it was a treat to get to try something completely out of the box!
Of course, since this started as an SM5 night we had to make sure to get in a couple of practice games. We did not have full number, so we ran the games with teams of five instead of six, which I think is fine for practice purposes.
A couple of games of SM5 followed up by a bit more Laser Ball made for a really fun night of mixing it up! I think playing a variety of games is not only a way to keep things interesting, but also sharpens your playing skills. I would encourage other arenas to schedule designated nights to mix things up as well and play games from the full menu of what their laser tag system has to offer.
Comments or Questions?