• Nikki Latham

Weymouth's Newest Attraction Is Open To All Abilities For Fun

Chesil Radio saw an offer to visit the Weymouth Player Ready VR Gaming & Escape Rooms, and although I had some concerns with my disability issues, I was pleased to see them very welcoming and understanding of disabled customers.
We are not planning to focus on this, but the location is very disabled friendly and just speaking to the lads in charge, I felt confident that they were aware of my limitations and saw this care, with another group, who were in one of the two main areas, was a lady with a rollator and although had some assistance with completing some tasks, it was all done with great care and more importantly listening and explaining to the lady, what they were doing to help and making sure she was happy at all times. The venue is also Dog Friendly too and they will be displaying one of the local stickers very soon.
The location is a little off the normal tourism route and away from the seafront, which means the usual passing trade is not easy, but is well worth a visit, to give it a try. You can find them on Maiden Street in Weymouth, opposite Fish & Fritz chip shop on one corner and The Doggie Shop from the other side and do not be phased by the luminated open sign on Maiden Street next to a door as the entrance is actually on the corner.
The area occupied by the group with the disabled lady was the escape room format, that has an area defined within it, you have a small space to remain in for each stage, and has less movement required, although some use of your hands is required to use the equipment, these have a time defined, in which you should be able to complete the tasks with collecting keys. If a group seems lost or stepping out of their area, they are guided back in by the team on hand all the time.
Each headset is controlled by a PC, behind the desk, and the team all have the knowledge to help each individual whether a novice or a true gaming lover. I would put myself sort of in the middle of that grading, but had never used Virtual Reality before. Now I am sure that people would like to know about the graphics and any "lagging". For someone like me, who isn't a huge gamer, they were more than I could have imagined, there was no lagging, when you turned your head you could see what was there, or "virtually" there. It was smooth as any game I have played on consoles in the past and the fact I felt I was there was in no doubt till you heard a voice in the real world, which is necessary to keep a safe eye on you. The lads can see what you are seeing on a screen, so they can advise as little or as much as necessary, when playing too, but doesn't feel intrusive of the effect and feel of the game.
I was given the opportunity in the free play area, which you move around freely, and I was a little tentative of that at the start. The headset was not heavy, although I did get a little sweating around the face, and there was a paper towel on hand when taking the headset off. The lads take you through everything, and as I said before check that you can see everything clearly, I won't spoil the foyer for people who are visiting, but in the foyer you get used to the hand controls to pick things up. Having done something that I have done thousands of times was weird to start with, and felt strange that areas that had nothing was still obvious a room as there was a carpeted area to one side. It is good to practice picking things up before starting a game, and so important when I started the game itself.
All I will say is before I left the boss, said that there is bound to be zombies, and so right he was, but as a solo player, I was told afterwards I made good choices of options to help and upgrade weapons. However, I nearly completed it, but my lives were used up. They said I was only a couple of arrows away completing it. While playing although you could hear the "real world" you felt you were in the castle, well that's how I saw it. Although it was zombies, which is only one element, it wasn't scary, it was just pure fun. There are other choices to play, but this one seemed to suit me well playing solo.
I really loved it and can't wait to go back. From my fibromyalgia point of view, towards the end my eyes did get a little tired and I slowed down moving around the area, which I think is what cost me completing the game, as I couldn't dodge the extra elements, as it ramped up on each level. The day after it did feel like I had over-exerted myself a little, which is all part of the payback of having the disability, but it certainly hasn't put me off wanting to go and do it again with the boss and friends, or even solo again.
Overall, its a welcome new addition to the Weymouth area, and well worth travelling from further out, and have a go. It is something everyone can take part in, it's an experience, that I initially thought I wouldn't be able to enjoy, but it was incredible. I believe that there is another centre, within the Chesil Radio counties, and may be we shall visit them too in the future. But for myself, I really enjoyed it and can only highly recommend this venue as somewhere to have fun, whether rain or shine.

"Probably" one of the best things I have been invited along to do with my disability in a very long time... and as I said before I will be back.
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