Crystal Maze Cyberdrome



There were once a number of Crystal Maze Cyberdromes around the country, including the one we did on holiday in Blackpool. It was based around what was one of my favourite TV shows called the Crystal Maze. Like the show you had to travel around 4 themed zones (Aztec, Medieval, Future, and in Blackpool Industrial, the others had Ocean that replace Industrial in the TV series) playing various games in order to win crystals that earned you time in the crystal dome at the end.

Unlike the show you didn't play the zones one after the other in a set order. This meant you had to move around between the themed areas between each game. There were a number of obstacles around, with you having to climb ladders to access the games, and in Aztec Zone there was a secret chamber you exited into future zone by sliding down a fireman's pole.

Most of the games were simplistic affairs controlled by a track ball and a few buttons. Some involved solving puzzles, some were more action orientated. The two games I played (on which I can boast a 100% record) were a version of snake, and one based on a blowpipe game from the TV show where you had to move the cursor around the screen and hit targets. While you played your team mates could give advice, and also had to keep an eye on the clock, as the player couldn't see it. If you didn't quit the game before time ran out you were penalised one of the crystals you'd won.

At the end you returned to the entrance area where you played the final game in the Crystal Dome, the more crystals you won the more time you got. You had a number of flashing buttons, some with crystals, some with skulls. The more lit crystals you hit the higher the score, but you lost points for hitting skulls.

Surprisingly quite a few of these remained open, even after the TV show ended after 6 series. There was one at a fun centre near Oakwood that lasted well in to the 00's. In the end the dated look of the games, and no new Cyberdromes after the TV show, meant they all went.

I do wonder if a modernised version could work today, with an updated theme (not directly linked to the show) and games. I've seen articles on scavenger hunt style games in parks and zoos, that include some electronic games, that aren't that big a leap away. I wish I'd been able to do one of the Cyberdromes a few more times, as I have very fond memories of the short times I spent at one of them.