What is The Game?

The Game is interactive competitive performance art in which you and your friends are participants in the performance. It is a race requiring a diverse knowledge base, strong puzzle solving abilities, good navigational skills, and mental and physical endurance. You will be immersed in a storyline requiring you to visit a series of  memorable locations. Along the way, you will solve clues that advance the plot of the story, leading you one step closer to accomplishing your mission. Finishing The Game can take anywhere from 20 to 40 hours. Sleep is generally not considered an option.

Your Team (usually between 4 and 8 people)  must occupy a single vehicle large enough for you and all the equipment you decide to bring. A variety of skills can be your greatest asset. Technical expertise is not necessarily enough, as clues may require knowledge of any discipline.  Pop culture, orienteering, music, codes such as braille and semaphore, foreign languages, sports trivia, Shakespeare, and yes, even physics -- anything is fair Game. Since some clues may also require athleticism or dexterity, it is helpful to have Team members who can climb, run, swim, throw, and more.

It is not uncommon to see Teams bring technical equipment such as cell phones, laptop computers, or GPS devices, as well as non-technical items such as in-line skates, formal attire, or even inflatable rafts. Flashlights, two-way radios, and plenty of scratch paper (for trying that wrong approach to a puzzle again and again) are practically a must, as are enough food and beverages to keep your Team alert and nourished all night long. You may choose to stock up on sugar and caffeine, or you may prefer apples, granola bars and energy drinks. The choice is yours.

Though the Game is competitive, it is also a lot of fun. Teams often get into character by dressing up in costume and decorating their van. Some Teams dress in keeping with their Team name, while others choose costumes based on the theme of that year's Game. The kickoff of The Game is very energetic: Teams usually entertain each other with food, music, or brief skits. In keeping with this sense of camaraderie, some Teams will help each other even as they are trying to finish first. Also adding to the spirit of the game, Teams generally have some small token that represents them, their Calling Card. If you arrive at a clue site in the front of the pack, you may leave your Calling Card, letting the others know that you were there before them.

Game Control is the group of people who create The Game and ensure that it runs smoothly. If you get completely stuck on a particular clue, you can call Game Control for a hint, but this assistance may not come without a price. Too many hints on one clue could limit the help you receive later on, so be sure to weigh your options carefully. Game Control is the all-knowing referee, your last resort; they can be a best friend or simply a frustration depending on your perspective.

The Game is a physical and mental marathon; participants leave their reality behind for a weekend to test their wits and endurance against others. It is simultaneously a taxing and very rewarding experience. While the bragging rights of finishing first are certainly something you may strive for, completing The Game is truly its own reward.  Once you play, you'll never be the same. If you think you're ready, The Game is afoot!

Below are some more sites that describe The Game in its various incarnations: