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How Long is a Game of Laser Tag?

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In such a fast-paced world, it can be hard to parcel at one’s time to include hobbies and games. Whether you are planning a birthday party or wanting a quick but fun activity for you and a loved one or planning a team-building activity, you might wonder if laser tag is a time-friendly option! So… how long is a game of laser tag?

While the game-play time of laser tag does vary location to location, you can generally expect a laser tag game to last anywhere between 15-25 minutes. Indoor laser tag games tend to be shorter than outdoor laser tag games.

Most laser tag facilities include the option to pay in advance for multiple game-play, so if you are looking to occupy a few hours of your time, you can easily play laser tag for hours, taking breaks for food and using the bathroom in between.

However, if you’re looking for a quick game to break up the day, a game of laser tag shouldn’t take up more than 45 minutes of your time.

Length of Game Play

The length of a single game of laser tag varies from business to business, as well as style of laser tag (indoor vs. outdoor).

Indoor Laser Tag

When you go to your local laser tag arena, it is likely a smaller venue that caters to birthday parties and intense teenagers. These smaller venues will run shorter games to ensure they can cycle through the most amount of people during a day.

Instructional Video or In-Person Instructions

These facilities typically show an instructional video prior to game-play. The videos are anywhere from 3-5 minutes long. Some facilities that do not use an instructional video often have a board of rules in the waiting area, which a staff member will go through in detail before the game begins.

A staff member will also open the floor for questions in case anyone is confused or was not paying attention (the latter is more likely).  This and other staff members will assist any and all players in correctly programing your vest and gun and wearing it correctly.

Players will also be separated into teams during this instructional phase.  

Once players have been separated into opposing teams and are all geared up, an overhead sound system will usually countdown to start time. If it is not a recording, then it is likely a staff member.

Actual Game Play Time

The amount of game time during a single laser tag game varies. However, you can generally expect the game to last anywhere between 15-25 minutes.

Some games allow for a player to continue playing even if they are hit more than once, only disabling the ‘injured’ combatant’s pack and gun for a few seconds, before they can play once again.

Other games of laser tag are more competitive and therefore eliminate players if they are hit after the first shot.

Many factors determine your laser tag’s ‘mission’ time. The length of game-play can be bumped up or down depending on the age of the players, the size of the arena, and the number of players participating in that game.

Post Play - Score Announcements

After the mission has been completed, the game manager will re-assemble the teams in the briefing room once more to go over scores. One team will be declared the winner, and individual scores will be either printed or placed on a leaderboard for all to see.

Participants will be able to see their overall performance, the total amount of kills, their level of skill, and see which player ranked highest. You can expect this post-game score assessment to last anywhere between 2-5 minutes.

Outdoor Laser Tag

Laser skirmish, or outdoor laser tag, does differ from indoor laser tag as to the length of gameplay and pricing. Outdoor Laser Tag USA, for example, offers anywhere from 2-4 hour game-play sessions. A 2-hour session includes 5-7 different missions or mini-games. Whereas, the 4-hour session includes upwards of 10-16 missions. 

If you wanted to play your own game of outdoor laser tag, sans help from a laser tag company, you could technically let game-play go on for as long as your laser tag equipment (and those participants playing) could last.

How Much Time Passes Between Laser Tag Games?

Most companies will need to cycle through as many laser tag games as possible on any given day, while still needing to sweep the course for any hazards, mess, or obstructions before the next game begins.

For this reason, most laser tag games do not simply start immediately after the prior game has ended. There is a 5-15 minute interval of time that passes between one game to the next. If there is only one group present in the facility, they may be more lenient and allow for game time to begin much quicker.

A standard ‘good’ turnover rate for a well-oiled laser tag machine would be around seven games per 2 hours.

What is the Longest Game of Laser Tag Ever Played?

The Guinness World Record holder of ‘longest laser tag game ever played’ belongs to Zap Zone in Canton, Michigan. They received this honor from the dates of August 22nd- August 23rd, 2019, by playing a laser tag marathon that went on for 26 hours and 40 seconds. There were eight combatants per team, and they played 24 rounds of 1-hour missions. Woof!

Is the Amount of Game Time Worth the Money?

This depends on the individual and how much they value their time, pleasure, and money. If you love laser tag, then yes, it is worth $10-$20 to play a game or two. If laser tag is not your thing, then I would venture to say… no, it may not be worth your time or money. Each to their own!

How Much Does a Game of Laser Tag Cost?

Indoor Laser Tag

The cost per individual for one game of laser tag varies depending on the venue, as laser tag facilities get to price their games however they see fit.   Standard price per game is somewhere around $10 for one game, and then somewhere around $20-$25 for three games.

Depending on the city in which you live, this price may be higher or lower (zip codes can determine how much you pay because the laser tag facility must be able to pay their high rent.)

Outdoor Laser Tag

Even though outdoor laser tag comes with more bells and whistles (a more tactical feel, along with more weaponry), it is reasonably priced. Some outdoor laser tag companies charge $35-$40 for five rounds of game-play (within a 2-hour span,) and charge $60 or more for ten plus rounds of game-play (within a 4-hour span.)

If cost is an issue and you enjoy playing outdoor laser tag, then you could invest in your own equipment and then there is only a one time cost. You can play every day at no additional cost.

Here is a table where I compare a number of different laser tag gun sets available from Amazon. Order today, and you could be playing tomorrow!

My choice is the AmoGear Infrared Blaster. This set is mid range in price, you get four guns and vests and has a good shooting range of up to 150 feet.

Read this article where I compare 11 different laser tag sets: How much are Laser Tag gun sets? 11 Examples

The Key Take Away?

While most indoor laser tag facilities put game-play somewhere between 15-25 minutes, there is no saying how many games you can play back to back, as we’ve clearly learned from the impressive 26-hour laser tag marathon that landed Zap Zone in the Guinness World Records.

If you are looking for a more inexpensive way to play laser tag for longer periods of time, we would recommend outdoor laser tag. However, if you’re looking to simply play a game or two and hit the road, indoor laser tag will work perfectly.

Laser tag is still relatively affordable and offers endless amounts of fun and game-play depending on how much time you have and how much money you’re willing to spend.

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