Just because you’re stuck at home doesn’t mean you can’t engage in a cool adventure with your friends. Assemble a team, turn your webcam on, and prepare to test your general knowledge and keen eye in a challenging race against time throughout art museums. Welcome to the world of virtual scavenger hunts!
Hanging around with your pals might seem complicated nowadays. Social distancing has complicated human interaction in unprecedented ways, but, luckily, technology and savvy entrepreneurs are here to make things easier. Enter Watson Adventures, the NYC-based leading scavenger hunt company in the US that figured out a way to turn in-situ, team-building games into a completely online experience during these difficult times. How? Connecting people via Zoom, of course!
Our Experience With Watson Adventures: Escape to the Museum
Watson Adventures currently offers many different virtual scavenger hunts for families, corporate gatherings, and private groups, from Trivia Slams to Murder-Mystery sleuthings.
Watson Adventures kindly invited us to participate in their new public virtual scavenger hunt called Escape to the Museum, a 1-hour competition where we had to earn as many points as possible by answering questions correctly. And since it implied a virtual visit to some of the best museums in the United States, we were stoked.
How a Virtual Scavenger Hunt Works
First, we had to gather a four-member team. Once we recruited the best Spanish expats the Big Apple can offer, it was time to join our amazing Hunt Host via Zoom using a laptop or a smartphone. Once every team was greeted and accounted for in a public virtual space, we got right into it.
The rules are simple. Participants have one hour to guess correctly as many correct answers as possible in a series of trivia questions. Believe us: You’ll have so much fun that you will blink and your hour will be gone. Get ready to answer your questions quickly to make the most of the game.
The virtual scavenger hunt is based in several rounds of questions that come by pairs:
First, you get a straightforward, trivia-style question. It can cover absolutely everything and anything, ranging from pop culture and food habits to trailblazing inventions. If you guess it right, you get 5 points. If you fail, the game will help you with a hint. You still have another chance to succeed, obtaining 3 points instead of 5. But hey, it’s better than nothing.
Now for the tricky, elaborate part. Remember that correct answer from before? You better, because that’s the key to unlock the riddle that comes next. You’ll have to open new tabs in your browser to virtually explore some of the best museums in the US while admiring stunning masterpieces in order to find the correct answer hidden in them. Paintings, sculptures, photographs… you’ll need a solid teamwork effort to coordinate yourselves while reading descriptions and looking for clues to finally unravel the answer. Of course, time is of the essence here!
Each team has its own private virtual booth to talk to each other during the whole hour, so there’s no need to worry about the rest of the participants being able to hear your ruminations and wild theories. You can request assistance from your jolly Hunt Host if you have any questions about the way the game works… just don’t expect him to give you the answers, obviously! He’ll also reach you at some point to dare you to a bonus round (which we completely nailed, by the way!) as an extra opportunity to score more points.
This is a live, non-stop game, where quick thinking and sharp reflexes are highly valued and as important as your trivia skills. Hands down, a reliable Internet connection should be considered a must, too. And even if we weren’t fast enough to answer the whole set of questions, we did a good job in the end!
Escape to the Museum is an exciting, educational, and tremendously fun scavenger hunt that we highly recommend. Not only a different way to test your knowledge and artistic flair, but also the perfect twist to spice up that weekly video chat with your buddies!
Our Honest Review
The plus: We very much enjoyed the experience and it made me forget for a full hour that I am currently confined in a dignified wardrobe (ahem, I mean apartment!) It truly felt like I was visiting a museum! (the pic below is from our surprise trip to Frankfurt, a city with so many cool museums that we couldn’t believe our eyes!)
The game flew by pretty fast, and we had an absolute blast with our host. He was fun, knowledgeable, and very engaging, making it an easy experience for all of us involved.
The questions were very interesting, and the riddles that we needed to solve with the help of our virtual visits to American museums were very interesting. Aside from having a blast, we ended up learning a few things about art!
One thing that we personally liked was to see that this game attracts families and friends from all over the country. It was a memorable collective experience, and even though we didn’t win the special prize, we left the game very energized by the positivity in the room, which is exactly what we need after two months of barely leaving our house.
The -: This has nothing to do with Watson Adventures, but I am personally not a big fan of Zoom since the latest reported cyberattacks. The company seems to have solved the problem by fixing their vulnerabilitites, and Watson Adventures uses a specific URL with a password for increased security, but I did not enjoy having to use that technology for my adventure because I find it tremendously intrusive. Please note that you can join Zoom from a browser for an extra layer of security.
Hint: It’s always a good idea to get out of your PJs and comb your hair before starting a Zoom adventure with a virtual room full of strangers. Just sayin’. We didn’t know what to expect and one of us (and we won’t disclose who!) had to take a quick trip to the bathroom to fix their hair.
The deets: The Escape to the Museum public scavenger hunt costs $60 for a group of up to four adult players. Watson Adventures also offers the possibility of creating a private event for your group of friends or for business virtual gatherings, so don’t hesitate to ask them if that’s what you are looking for.
To check the available dates and make your reservation, visit watsonadventures.com.