Shadowland Laser Tag has multiple locations, including Gaithersburg, Columbia, Alexandria, Chantilly, and Frederick. Speaking on behalf of the Gaithersburg location, I can tell you that the staff is friendly, the arena is clean, and the activity provided a ton of fun for my 6 and 8 year old children. In addition to having a big arena, there are lots of ramps and alleys to hide in, and a lot of action depending on the size of the group. While the activity is a ton of fun, you should keep in mind that the arena is dark (black lights are used), so it is important to prep your child(ren) before going in so that they know what to expect.
Note: This is not an activity for kids that are terrified of the dark. Additionally, it always helps to call ahead to see if they have people there, because you could end up going and if you only have 3-4 people with you, and nobody else is there, it could be a pretty quiet game. Alternatively, if there are a ton of people there, you may have to wait in the lobby for a bit until it is your turn to go in.
When you arrive at Shadowland, you will have the option of playing arcade games or filling out the waiver and going into the training room to begin learning how to play. In the training room, a staff member will debrief you on which type of game you are going to play, how the game is played, and how much time you will have in the arena. Most games, including the explanation of rules takes about 30 minutes. After they give you all of the instructions, you will follow them into a vesting room, where they will give you your laser tag vest and gun. You will then be let into the arena, where you can quickly get set up on a spot that you would like before the game starts. Once the game starts, know that you may not be with your child unless you request that they put you on the same team when you sign in and fill out the waiver.
The first time we went to this location as a group of parents with our kids. Expecting that this would be more of an activity for our kids was certainly a mistake. The adults not only had an amazing time as well, but a few weeks later, we arranged a couples night out at laser tag. They were great at accommodating for our group, for which they offer discounts once you have at least 10 people. This activity also provided for a ton of great exercise. Be prepared for a lot of running and a great workout. At the end of the game, the “Marshall” (who is in the arena the whole time in case of an equipment malfunction) calls everyone out of the arena, and participants can wait for their score cards to see how well each person did, where they finished in the rankings overall, how many times they shot each person, and how many times each person shot them. We are planning on going back again soon!
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