I GOT TO GO ON THE CRYSTAL MAZE.
If you haven't already heard, this awesome company basically set up a crowdfunder (I think that's the right word!) to create an immersive experience based around one of the nations best loved TV shows - The Crystal Maze.
The public went crazy. Within months, they'd not only achieved their goal, but raised £933,798 which was over 185% of their original goal. WOW.
Luckily, as soon as I heard about the crowdfunder, I bought a couple of tickets pretty cheap by donating money and sat back eagerly, waiting for the whole thing to be completed.
The wait was long, but worth it.
The only few differences between the TV show and the experience are that it's not on TV (obviously), it's not presented by the amazeballs Richard O'Brien (although he was involved a little in the production), and it doesn't have an ocean zone (health and safety).
Everything else is spot on. A maze master even shouted out WILL YOU START THE FANS PLEASE (definitely the best bit), whilst we got our game faces on in an actual crystal dome. AMAZING.
I don't want to give too much away because it'll spoil it but if you ARE a fan of the original show, then you won't be disappointed. There was nothing better then running from zone to zone (or climbing up walls and crawling through tunnels in some cases) to the sound of the original theme song - although we heard apparently one die fan was rather disappointed that the 'mood' music between zones was replaced with the actual theme song. Silly, silly man.
My only complaint was that it didn't last very long. I WANTED TO STAY IN THE MAZE ALL DAY. But depending on the size of your team, you'll get two games (some of our members had three games as we were a member short) and it is kind of tough once you're in there. It's so easy to shout answers at the TV when watching at home, but when you're actually in there, it's definitely a surreal feeling.
The attention to detail was amazing also. The Aztec Zone was hot, and the Medieval Zone definitely had a chill about it. I still have sand in my converse trainers...
" WILL YOU START THE FANS PLEASE "
Tickets are around £60 at the moment although this is more than worth it for the once in a lifetime experience. However, you won't have much luck booking in with your friends as it's mostly single slots few and far between.
It was just me and my bestie who headed down and got paired with other team members who didn't know each other either. Although I admit I'd love to do it again with a group of my friends, taking part on a team of strangers didn't lessen the experience one bit. We worked well together and had a laugh.
And there was a real mix of people too, from a younger audience to older participants.
Nonetheless, after seeing the success of it all, I wouldn't be surprised if they expanded their run or even looked at launching the experience permanently.
It was a bonkers afternoon but so, so fun and I honestly feel ever so lucky that I got to participate in what was, in my eyes, a once in a lifetime opportunity. Never would I have dreamt I'd be able to take part myself back when I was a teenager watching it all on TV.
So I'd recommend signing up to their mailing list and keeping an eye out for when more dates are hopefully released, but don't be scared of doing it alone or with just one other person. You'll honestly be far too busy running round and scrounging for crystals to care...