Imagine that you are an 8-year-old boy. What would you want to do for your birthday? If you said run around and shoot laser guns at your friends while getting covered in dirt, then you would most likely be friends with my son! (And let’s not leave out girls; some of you may have girls who are into laser tag too!)
This past Saturday we had an epic laser tag party with the help of Tom’s Laser Tag!
Here’s how the action went down.
The awesome thing about Tom’s Laser Tag is that he comes to you! You can host a laser tag party at your house, your church, the park, anywhere! We own a piece of land that I thought would be perfect for our party. The kids could run amuck, and my house could stay muck-free!
When I called Tom to schedule the party, he gave me some suggestions on how to have a successful party at my location based on his experience. One thing he asked me to do ahead of time was choose an area that would serve as a “graveyard” where players would go once they had been “killed.” This would be a spot where they would wait for the next game to begin. Since we were playing on a piece of land with only a small little studio, that was the obvious choice for our graveyard. A porch, garage, or pavilion could work too. He recommended that I have the room set up with snacks and drinks for the kids to enjoy while they were waiting. This was also a great location for parents to relax and watch the action.
Preparing for the Mission
Tom arrived at the party about 30 minutes early so he could survey the area and decide how to best set up the playing field. We discussed where the boundaries of the game would be, and verified the number of players we were expecting. Then Tom got to work setting up barricades. The barricades were painted to blend in with the surroundings and provided a spot for players to hide behind during the game.
Once our guests had all arrived we gathered in the graveyard to receive instructions. Tom showed the kids one of the guns and explained how to use it. He reviewed some general rules of the game – how to know when you’re hit or when you’ve hit someone, how to reload the gun, how to change from single shot to semi-automatic, and what the gun does when you’ve been killed (it makes a lovely screaming sound in case you’re wondering!).
Dividing into Teams
The next task was to divide into teams. My son chose to do team captains. Once all the kids were on either the red or blue team and had tied on their team flag, we divided up the adults that wanted to play. (To be honest I think the adults were even more excited about playing laser tag than the kids, since most of the kids had never played before and the dads were reliving their glory days!) Tom then gave more specific instructions for the first game they were going to play and outfitted them with their laser guns. When everyone was at their starting flag he blew the whistle and they were off!
As soon as the whistle blew everyone darted behind some type of barrier and started shooting. The first game was team versus team, so whichever team had the last person (or people) standing won. The game was set up so each player had 10 lives. Basically, you can get hit 10 times before you are considered dead and have to head to the graveyard. The first game seemed to end pretty quickly because the players quickly figured out the range of the guns (they hit from really far away!) and realized they needed to develop a little bit of strategy.
I watched the first few games from the graveyard. It was so entertaining seeing kids and adults sneaking around in the woods, running, hiding, and taking the game super seriously. They played a few games of team versus team and kill the captain. Then it was my turn to get in on the action, and let me tell you, it is super serious. I got killed pretty quickly in the first game because I didn’t realize how sensitive the sensors were. You really can get hit from across the playing field without even realizing it! You have a sensor on your front, your back, and your gun so you really have to be hidden to stay safe.
Then it was time for adults versus kids. I don’t care who you are, when you are presented with an opportunity to compete against kids (especially your own kids) things start to get serious. Real serious. I will go ahead and ease your minds and let you know that we did in fact hold our own and defeated the children. I’m not sure if this is something to be proud of, but we were definitely all high fiving each other. We did wonder why it took so long to knock those little buggers out though, until Tom told us that he gave us 10 lives and he gave the kids 40. Whatever, we still won.
Our laser tag session lasted almost 2 hours and ended when the pizza arrived. While we enjoyed pizza and cake, Tom picked up the barricades, put away the guns, and headed out. As our party guests sat around the table eating, I listened to them all talk about how much fun they had. Adults and kids, players and spectators — everyone loved it. A few kids even asked me if they could come back and use our land to have a laser tag birthday party of their own!
I would highly recommend Tom’s Laser Tag for a great party experience. And not just for boys or a kids’ birthday party – adults love laser tag too! This would be a great option for a youth group or church event, or even a 40th birthday party for your husband! It was great for me as the host because all I had to do was provide the food and location. Tom ran all the games, set everything up and cleaned up. The kids were entertained the entire time and had an absolute blast.
If you want to host your own laser tag party, here are some things to think about and my recommendations on how to have a successful party.
- Know your audience. My son was turning 8, and I think that is probably the youngest age this would work for. Tom recommends the same. The guns are rather heavy, and there are quite a lot of directions to take in – especially at the beginning. Having adults play with the kids seemed to be really helpful especially in the first few games. The adults were able to help them figure out strategy and game rules.
- Choose your location wisely. Having a huge open space for the players to run around in was perfect. Tom does most parties at people’s homes, but unless you want kids jumping in your bathtub and sliding across your dining room table, I would keep the party outside. If you don’t have enough yard space for that you could look into a local park.
- Don’t just host — play too! Trust me, you won’t regret it!
For pricing, scheduling, and more information visit Tom’s Laser Tag online.