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Can You Play Laser Tag Outside?

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When one hears 'laser tag,' they do not typically imagine it being played outside. Traditional laser tag is typically played inside an indoor arena--the inaugural game was back in 1984 in Dallas, Texas.  However, one might wonder if laser tag can be played in other such environments?

Can laser tag be played outside? Yes! You can play laser tag outside. Outdoor laser tag is called laser skirmish, and it can be played a variety of different ways, either on a homemade course or at a professionally made course. Outdoor laser tag can be played with as few as two players and as many as hundreds of players.

While indoor laser tag is fun, outdoor laser tag might have it beat. Check out all the reasons for playing laser tag in the great outdoors!

How do you Play Outdoor Laser Tag?

Outdoor laser tag, also known as Laser Skirmish, can be played in several different ways. Much like the laser tag that is played inside an indoor arena, outdoor laser tag has similar rules and set-ups.

If you go to an outdoor laser tag course to play laser tag, the game will be more strategic and competitive. In fact, many outdoor courses closely resemble paintball courses.

These games operate as a tactical military operation. You can even wear camo, and the laser guns look like real rifles. Unlike paintball, however, outdoor laser tag is not painful.

Like indoor laser tag, outdoor laser tag performed at a professional course operates in a similar fashion: each player has a gun and a vest. The laser guns contain infrared lights that have been programmed to each player's identity.

When the laser gun hits the vest directly on the vest's sensors, it disables that player's gun for a brief time (or they are immediately disqualified and must leave the course, depending on the rules of game-play.)

Typically, once a player receives a certain amount of 'hits,' they are declared as 'dead,' and their weapon will cease to work.

Can Outdoor Laser Tag be Played During the Day or Only at Night?

The phasers use for outdoor laser tag are made to work in bright light as well as darker environments. Naturally, you will be able to see the infrared light beams better in darkness, but the laser guns will still work perfectly day or night.

10 Reasons to Play Outdoor Laser Tag

There are many fun outdoor sports games to choose from. Here are a few solid arguments for playing outdoor laser tag.

1. Fresh air

While indoor laser tag can be incredibly fun, and the effect of the dark and neon is spectacular, it is also very cool and refreshing to play outside in the crisp, fresh air.

2. Option to Change up Courses

Playing outdoor laser tag lends itself to changing the outdoor course in which you play. You can set up different obstacles, and you can change the location completely. It provides far more options to keep game-play fresh and new each time you play.

3. Painless and Safe

Traditionally, outdoor tactical rifle games like paintball can be both painful and mildly unsafe. Outdoor laser tag has the same desired effect of tactical game-play, without any sort of pain and potential to harm.

For this reason, laser skirmish can be played in public areas in total safety.

4. Cheating Less Possible

Due to the nature and science behind laser guns and vest sensors, it is extremely hard to cheat in the game of laser tag. At best, a player can be a bad sport by following around a player who's just been hit, hoping to hit them again instantly as soon as their pack comes back online. However, outside of this, it is difficult to cheat in the game of laser tag.

5. Play Available to More Ages and Number of People

Outdoor laser tag is open to younger aged players (unlike paintball) and can expand to include any number of players from 2 to 100.

ArmoGear Laser Tag – Laser Tag Guns with Vests Set of 4 – Multi Player Lazer Tag Set for Kids Toy for Teen Boys & Girls – Outdoor Game for Kids, Adults and Family – Ages 8+

6. Wider Shooting Range

Due to the nature and science of the laser gun infrared light beams, some laser guns can shoot as far as 1,000 feet! This is a significantly larger range than that of airsoft guns (150 ft range) or paintball guns (70 ft range.)

This also means that a laser tag's course can be significantly larger as well. Technically, once could play laser tag across high multi-storied buildings…almost like a tactical sniper game! …

Now I've got your attention, don't I!?

7. Rain or Shine

While this is relatively contingent on the player's comfort level, it is not at all contingent on laser tag's technology, as laser guns and vests can be worn outside, in any kind of weather, and still perform perfectly.

In fact, one might argue that a rainy outdoor game of laser tag might enhance the game-play by adding a level of reality and grit one might not experience in perfectly sunny 70-degree weather.

8. Wider Selection of Laser Devices

Unlike paintball, airsoft, and indoor laser tag, outdoor laser skirmish lends itself to a wider variety of weaponry. In fact, laser tag has expanded to include some of the following laser weapons: mines, grenades, knives, bombs, and domination points!

If you're looking to create a more real (yet entirely safe and painless) tactical war scenario, outdoor laser tag is the best option.

VATOS Infrared Laser Tag Gun Set for Kids Adults with Vests 4 Pack,Laser Tag Game 4 Players Indoor Outdoor,Laser Tag Blaster,Group Activity Fun Toy for Kids Age 6 7 8 9 10 11 12+ Boys Girls

9. Wider Game Play Range

We've mentioned that the shooting range is wider and that you can change up the location of game-play as much as you like. What we haven't mentioned is just how BIG a course you can create with outdoor laser tag.

In theory, you could set up targets, divide up four teams, and disperse everyone throughout an entire forest if you wanted to. In fact, some people do just this.

10. More Military-Tactical Experience

Outdoor laser tag allows for a more rugged and genuine experience. Indoor courses tend to be a neon spectacle, which is fun and ideal for children's birthday parties.

However, if you are looking for a more 'real life scenario,' outdoor laser tag lends itself to be as real as you can get (without the pain, injury, or death part… which is pretty great!)

Where do you play?

Fortunately, laser skirmish can be played anywhere outdoors! Your backyard, a park, mountainous terrain. You name it! There are also many companies, depending on the state in which you live, that have their own outdoor laser skirmish courses. They resemble paintball courses but are laser tag friendly.

This video shows just how intricate and tactical outdoor courses can get!

What Size Property do I Need to play Outdoor Laser Tag?

The size of the property depends on the number of players in question. If you've only got two players, you could play at your local park or even in a backyard if there are enough things to hide behind (like tree-houses, play areas, a pool house, or shed).

If you have ten players, you'd probably want a bigger property to play on, like a local park.

With 30 or more players, you might want something big as a football field. 100 players? Take over a nature reserve, why don't you!

Is it Safe to Play Laser Tag Outside?

Yes, it is safe to play laser tag outside. Since laser guns do not use actual lasers, but instead use infrared beams or LED lights, laser guns are safe to use in the public, outdoor spaces.

What do you Need to Play Outdoor Laser Tag?

Outdoor laser tag equipment can range from simple kits (literally just laser guns and vests) to having stand-alone targets, grenades, headbands to acknowledge 'head shots,' to laser bombs.

All you need to play are the essentials: a laser gun and a vest or belt with sensors that can alert you when you have been hit.

Do I Need Permission from Parks and Recreation Services to Play?

If your party is large (like 50+), you may need to get permission from your local parks and recreation department, and there may be a small fee to pay.

However, it will not be significant, and that number can potentially be split amongst the playing parties.

TINOTEEN Laser Tag Guns Set with Vests Guns Set of 4 Players

What Should you Wear When Playing Outdoor Laser Tag?

This depends entirely on the type of laser tag you are playing. If you are aiming for a more military, tactical, and real-life game-play, then hit up your local army surplus store and dawn your best camo and olive drab. If you are looking to keep it light and fun, simply wear clothes you can run in.

If you have enough players to divide into multiple teams, it's fun to give each team either a color or costume theme. Therefore, in that scenario, players would either dress in their team color (red, blue, yellow, etc.,) or dress to their team theme (cowboys, aliens, 80's hair metal band, vampires, witches, etc.)

Get creative! It is a game, after all!

Paying Laser Tag Outside: The Key Take Away?

Outdoor laser tag just might be the best way to play laser tag. The outdoors provides fresh air, plenty of space to run and hide, and allows for flexibility and versatility of different courses.

Outdoor laser tag is completely safe and painless, and it allows for infinite game-play ideas. Outdoor laser tag weapons are not just limited to the normal phasers of indoor laser tag, but include stand-alone targets, bombs, grenades, head-shot-headbands, and laser daggers!

If you want to step up your laser skirmish game, head into the woods, wear your camo, and set up a real tactical 'military' offensive! The fun you can have with outdoor laser tag is limitless!

Laser Tag FAQ

Laser Tag Gear

Image Credit

This image was originally posted to Flickr by Doug Kline at It was reviewed on 15 June 2014 by FlickreviewR and was confirmed to be licensed under the terms of the cc-by-2.0.

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