I recently played Urban Adventure Quest, in my own home city of San Antonio, at no cost to myself in exchange for this review. My thoughts are my own and my review is true and honest to the best of my ability.
Urban Adventure Quest is a game which was inspired by the Amazing Race, but in which anyone can participate and complete in one day, on their schedule. It is comprised of questions which you must answer, either by solving riddles, visiting landmarks to find the answers, or a number of other methods. It allows players to learn about a city’s history by sending them to various historical landmarks and providing historical facts as you answer the questions.
One can participate in the game by going to the Urban Adventure Quest website and purchasing entry into the game, at which time they can play whenever they see fit by logging into the site when at the starting location and following the prompts. Readers can receive a 20% discount by entering the following promotion code at checkout without the quotes. ” FGBLOG”
To keep from spoiling the game, I won’t give too much detail, but just a basic rundown.
We started at an intersection that was near the Alamo, a famous mission where a great siege took place during the Texas Revolution. In fact, our second question was regarding the Alamo monument to some of our greatest war heroes. The monument is pictured above, as well as a pair of plaques we had to use to solve one of the questions.
We went through the Alamo itself, and answered a handful of questions, all of which were done on the Alamo grounds. This is a major landmark in San Antonio, and one that you can’t miss if you’re doing a historical tour.
Several other questions took place at various locations positioned along San Antonio’s well known Riverwalk, which itself runs a historical tour via boat, another highly recommended activity for tourists as well as locals looking to learn a bit of history.
The end of our tour had us back fairly close to the starting point, and near some local shops and hotels. We answered the last few questions in this area, and got a nice picture of a very old wind-up clock, which still works, and is about one hundred fifty years old.
It took us longer than usual to complete as we had to leave part of the way through to pick up my son from pre-school, so he did the last bit of it with us. I don’t really think I’d recommend a young child to participate in this game though. If the child is old enough to understand it and to benefit from the history, then they might enjoy it, but a child that is younger than about fourth or fifth grade really won’t get much out of this.
Overall, I’d say it is a pretty cool game, and a great activity for both locals and tourists. However, there are a couple of drawbacks.
For one thing, some of the instructions are written in such a way that they are a bit confusing. Some of the directions to places were not well written, and at least one of the questions had confusing instructions as well. It asked us to count buttons on the monument, then to count cannonballs and subtract, then count that many words on the plaque. However, we got it wrong every time. It was unclear if they wanted only the buttons on one side or both, and if they wanted the partial cannonballs or only the complete ones. The confusing wording of the questions and directions could give you a headache, and be very frustrating when you know you could probably solve it if only it were more concise.
In addition, this game lacks replayability, at least in the same city. To my knowledge there is only one variation per city, so once you’ve played it once, there’s no point playing again. My mom, who was with me, thought my stepdad would enjoy the game, but did not want to have to replay through all the same things she had already done. Even if they kept some of the same questions, it would be better to keep their approximately eighteen questions but have a pool of say fifty to choose from for a little variety.
Also, their support team wasn’t very responsive to my inquiry regarding the existence or implementation of alternative questions for the game. I wrote to them and have not heard back.
That said, if you have Urban Adventure Quest in your city, or you are planning to visit a city that has it, this would be a great way to get some sightseeing done and learn about the history of the location. There are a few things they could work on to make the game even better, like improved clarity in directions and questions and a pool of questions to add some variety and replayability to the game, but overall, I’d say it’s a great activity, best done in a group, so players can put their heads together to solve the various challenges they face.
Have you ever tried Urban Adventure Quest? Are you interested in doing so? Feel free to ask me anything you wish about my experiences in the comments below, or share your own.