Sensory space adventure beats a coniferous puzzle hands down.
The Passman (of Cornish rappers Hedluv and Passman) and I experienced the Odyssey Sensory Maze last week. I'm not a fan of mazes so before I tell you about the Odyssey Maze let me briefly explain why ...
On my 8th birthday I was faced with entering a maze. It was the only attraction left undone at the theme park that day.
"Why don't we do it?" yelled my friends. "Get lost!" I replied, not realising my own irony.
All my friends went in ... so reluctantly I followed. I knew, as I entered the maze that it was a bad idea. Like Han Solo I was overcome with a bad feeling accompanied by the desire to voice that feeling ...
"I've got a bad feeling about this."
Within five minutes I was lost and alone. Ten minutes in and the panic began.
"Help I'm lost!"
It was my birthday, damn it, and I was lost. My friends had literally disappeared and by that I mean ... not literally but you know what I mean. I mean not literally, that's what I mean ... but they had disappeared.
I must've been in that maze for a good half hour before I came across the "panic phone". Yes, in every corner of this maze there was a phone with a direct line to a help booth. I used it.
"Hello, the Maze Panic Helpline. Geoff speaking."
"Oh hello Geoff, It's Rhys here. Hey look I'm ..."
"Don't tell me. You're lost?"
"Umm ... can I tell you now?"
"Yes ... and it's my birthday so I'm quite upset. My friends have literally disappeared."
"No not literally but you know what I mean ..."
Geoff then told me how to get out of the maze.
Unfortunately though I found his monotone voice quite boring and after a few "turn lefts" and "turn rights" I started to switch off. This resulted in me lying to him with the phrase "got it" and then getting lost again. Long story short, I was eventually rescued by a staff member.
So 30 years later here I am in the Metro Centre and as you can imagine I'm rather nervous about entering the Odyssey Maze. The thing is though, it's not really a maze. And this is a good thing (especially if you don't like mazes). The Odyssey is more than a maze, it's a multi-dimensional sensory space adventure.
We had to take our shoes off and wear special gloves. We travelled through 13 realms of illusionistic lighting and sound. One moment we were in a pitch-black forest, the next we were on some sort of alien ship.
It was a blast.
The only time I got remotely lost was in the mirror zone. I could see the Passman up ahead of me but he was also beside me six times on both sides.
"Which one's the real you?" I asked.
The image of him in the distance turned around and waved. But the real Passman was standing behind me the whole time ... literally.