TSF saw this article in the New York Post, and we wanted to bring it to the attention of our readers in the hopes that someone will do this in the bay area.
The concept appears similar to paintball, laser tag, or airsoft: run, duck, take cover, and crawl while playing a version of snatch the bacon (i.e. capture the flag, siege vs. defend, take them out before they take you out) but WHILE ARMED WITH BOWS AND ARROWS. For those of us who remember the late 80s/early 90s, this can only mean one thing: that’s right, kids; we’re THIS CLOSE to recreating the Assault Game from American Gladiators!
In all seriousness, this looks like a lot of fun. Unfortunately, none of the numerous indoor sports venues in the bay area appear to be onboard the “arrows to abdomens for amusement” bandwagon just yet. According to ArcheryTag.com, only a few places are officially recognized as purveyors of the new game, including Orlando, Jacksonville, and Saint Cloud. A group called Tropical Extremes has hosted archery tag events in Tampa, but they aren’t based here.
Slow to jump on the newest trend? Understandable. Depending on how one feels about the Nerfication of a (we hope) fictional blood sport in the twin names of amusement and capital gain, padded archery may just be further confirmation that we’re all just one step closer to actually having some version of the Hunger Games in the near future. Or The Most Dangerous Game. Or Surviving the Game. Or The Running Man. Or possibly Spartacus, if you really want to be cynical.
That being said, this needs to happen in the bay area yesterday.
Think of the obvious benefits something like this would have in the bay area. There’s already a healthy market for outdoorsman activities thanks to the varied landscapes offered throughout the area (that means we like shooting things). Now those people would have a chance to level an arrow at a friend in a closed-off arena and let it fly without feeling any pesky remorse about causing grievous bodily injury later. They’d also be grabbing hold of the archery pop culture zeitgeist that started with the Hunger Games and went off to shows like Arrow, Revolution, and Once Upon a Time.
TSF approves of this in general terms. Anything that gets our readers active (read: running around) is good, so marathons and triathlons are satisfactory. Things that allow for groups of people to engage in said activities are usually better, ergo our fondness for CrossFit, outdoor yoga classes, and dragon boat races. But unique, physically-challenging activities where bruising may be involved wins the House Cup every time. The added benefit of being able to whack someone with a padded weapon gets a gold star here.
I mean COME ON, who wouldn’t want to fire an arrow at someone and then go out for a beer with the person you shot?