WHAT IS LASER TAG?
Our LASER TAG FAQ Sheet:
What is the equipment?
What makes Digital equipment different from all the other taggers out
Q. How much does extra ammunition cost?
Q. Where can you play?
Q. How much fun could it be to play in an open
Q. How much space do you require?
Q. What do I bring?
Q. What if it rains?
Q. When you are tagged out is your day over?
Q. How do I know I need to be respawned?
Q. How do I know I have tagged someone?
Q. Does it hurt when you get "hit"?
Q. What is this "mission" you keep talking about?
Q. Which missions do we get to play?
Q. Is it like paintball?
Q. Is this like indoor laser tag?
Q. Who can play?
Q. Do I need a reservation to play?
Q. How many people do I need to play?
Q. Is it really as safe as your web site says?
Q. Why haven't I heard of this kind of thing
Q. Can this be used as training for police and
THE WORLD OF LASER TAG
LASER TAG OF TODAY:
Laser tag is a team sport where players attempt to score points by engaging targets with a hand-held infrared emitting 'tagger'. Infrared-sensitive targets are worn by opposing players and sometimes integrated within a specialized laser tag arena. Since its birth in 1979, Laser Tag has evolved into both indoor and outdoor styles of play and includes simulations of combat, role play-style games, and competitive sporting events with tactical configurations and precise game goals.
The computerized targeting device wielded by a player, called a 'tagger', emits a brief infrared beam, which carries an identifying signal, and the sensors worn by other players or mounted in fixtures around the arena record the signal when they are "tagged". In some cases the targeting device also contains a low-power visible laser, to assist the player and create ambiance. At a glance, laser tag may appear similar to paintball and other simulation-shooting or targeting sports, but it is notable that laser tag is both highly processor-dependent and exceptionally versatile in game play. Most laser tag equipment may be used for one style of play, rules, timing and goals, known as a game format, then switched rapidly to another game format. Differences can include switching from solo to team play, or from direct player interaction to siege-style rules, with the software altering both general game play and equipment behavior. Many modern laser tag systems allow for different characteristics to be applied on a per-individual basis, based on game progress or personal in-game adjustment, allowing for even greater customization.
Laser tag is popular with a wide range of ages, and is considered to be far safer and less physically demanding than other simulation-shooting sports, such as paintball, because there is no physical projectile impacting the target, and many indoor venues prohibit running or roughhousing. There are amateur tournaments in several countries, featuring one, or occasionally, multiple laser tag systems.
Laser tag systems vary widely in their technical capabilities and their applications. The game mechanics in laser tag are closely linked to the hardware used, the communication capabilities of the system, the embedded software that runs the equipment, the integration between the player's equipment and devices in the facility, the environment, and the configuration of the software that runs the equipment.
The resulting game play mechanics can result in anything from the highly realistic combat simulation used by the military to far fetched scenarios inspired by science fiction movies and modern video games.
Rate of fire, objectives, effects of being "tagged", and other parameters can often be altered on the fly to provide for varied game play.
A BRIEF HISTORY:
(Please note, "Lazer Tag" is a brand name and registered trademark, originally created by Worlds Of Wonder and now owned by Shoot The Moon products. Laser Tag and Lasertag are generic terms for any game or sport in which players attempt to tag one another with infra-red or visible light beams.)
In late 1970's and early 1980's, the United States Army developed and deployed a system using infrared beams for combat training. The MILES system functions like laser tag in that beams are "fired" into receivers that score hits. Similar systems are now manufactured by several companies and used by various armed forces around the world.
The first known toy to use infrared light and a corresponding sensor was manufactured and marketed in 1979 as the Star Trek Electronic Phaser Guns set. In 1982, George Carter III began the process of designing the system and facilities for his new business idea and can be credited as the originator of the sport of arena based laser tag by opening the first Photon center in Dallas, Texas in 1984. Players could come to one of the centers (there were as many as 45 operational in the US in the mid-1980s) and compete against each other, but the equipment was not sold in stores.
In 1986, the first Photon toys hit the market, soon followed by Lazer Tag toys from Worlds of Wonder. The Christmas season of 1986 was the real beginning of home laser tag, and soon millions of kids would be playing laser tag with each other anyplace they could. Worlds of Wonder went out of business around 1988, and Photon soon followed in 1989, as the fad of the games wore off.
Today there are laser tag arenas all over the world bearing various names and brands, as well as a large variety of consumer equipment for home play and professional grade equipment for outdoor laser tag arenas and businesses.
Infrared (IR) radiation is electromagnetic radiation of a wavelength longer than that of visible light, but shorter than that of radio waves. The name means "below red" (from the Latin infra, "below"), red being the color of visible light of longest wavelength. Infrared radiation spans three orders of magnitude and has wavelengths between approximately 750 nm and 1 mm.
Outdoor commercial systems are not too different on the surface from their indoor cousins, but are quite a bit different under the surface. Real lasers are not usually used due to the hazards to players and anyone within blinding range, partly because of the increased laser power required when playing outdoors and because there are no walls to block the laser from traveling long distances. Range is required to be much greater so better lensing is used, and full sunlight requires improvements in both sensor and IR emitters. Sensor placement is similar to indoor commercial systems. The outdoor industry caters strongly to birthday parties as well as enthusiasts.