Wizards Against Lizards [Hivemind Review]

Wizards Against Lizards will offer this experience as part of the Game Hall at RECON (August 22-23, 2021.) If you’re interested in playing this game, or any of the other amazing experiences offered, grab yourself a play pass here. Hope to see you there!

Wizards Against Lizards is a blend of immersive theater and escape room-style puzzles.

A wizard on zoom.

Format

Style of Play:

  • Online native experience (can NOT be played IRL)
  • Interactive NPCs
  • Immersive theater

Required Equipment: computer with internet connection

Recommended Team Size: 3-6

Play Time: 90 minutes

Price: £100 per team (~ $140)

Booking: book online for a specific time slot

Description

You are roleplaying as trainee wizards drafted into a secret mission against the lizard people, who are bent on destroying the world and increasing human misery.

You will need to solve puzzles and infiltrate the lizard people by tricking them via conversation. Multiple puzzling styles are used along with a good amount of character interaction and improv.

A lizard person on Zoom.

Hivemind Review Scale

REA's hivemind review scale - 3 is recommended anytime, 2 recommended in quarantine, 1 is not recommended.

Read more about our Hivemind Review format.

Matthew Stein’s Reaction

Rating: 3 out of 3.

Wizards Against Lizards is a brilliant work of absurdist immersive theater. It’s a near perfect example of how to effectively weave puzzles into an immersive narrative. The show smartly uses a wide range of puzzle formats – from ARG-esque transmedia trails to audio escape room interactions – which each make mimetic sense in context and keep the audience on their toes.

Moreover, the show is enhanced by its puzzles without being overly dependent on them. While our expert team breezed through the puzzle content much faster than the average team, it didn’t feel like we had a truncated experience, as is often the case in escape rooms. The puzzles were satisfying, they felt essential to the narrative, and the robust non-puzzle elements ensured we still had a full experience.

I’ll refrain from commenting too much on the plot itself, other than reiterating that it’s as hilarious as it is ridiculous, supported by fully committed, top-notch acting. (Also, it was an excuse for me to wear a wizard hat.) This show was a refreshing surprise, and it has quickly risen toward the top of my personal recommendations list.

Richard Burns’ Reaction

Rating: 3 out of 3.

Wizards Against Lizards is a goofy romp of a game with a mix of online puzzle content and fun character interactions. It is a game that takes itself very lightly and should be fun for a wide variety of audiences. Teams with a mix of puzzling skill sets and comfort with character engagement will do well.

The worldbuilding and storyline had depth, but were quite easy to absorb during the game playthrough. The flexible time limit is something I appreciate with a game like this. Time pressure wouldn’t feel right with this game style.

The game doesn’t really break any new ground, but it does do a lot of simple things very well. The thing I was most impressed with was the size of the staff required to run the game!

Fro’s Reaction

Rating: 3 out of 3.

Wizards Against Lizards was a delightful blend of immersive theater, puzzles, comedy, social commentary, and some bizarre moments. This experience was brilliantly conceived and superbly acted, with excellent use of video conference technology. Our avatar was a true delight and I really appreciated how our onboarding into the game world was extremely thematic and effectively built trust in and comfort with the world. This experience is interactive so get ready to roll with whatever silliness comes your way. In case it’s not obvious from everything written above: definitely try this one! I hope to see more from this creator, and more of this style in general.

Brett Kuehner’s Reaction

Rating: 3 out of 3.
  • + Light roleplaying with an engaging host guiding the players
  • + Not afraid to lean into bizarre humor, in the best possible way
  • + A variety of puzzles, fun and not too hard
  • + Players could choose how much or how little they wanted to actively participate
  • + Good mix of pre-recorded video and live performance
  • -/+ A few minor technical glitches, but the host leaned into them, in character, and made them entertaining
  • + Substantial narrative content and interactions, so even though we solved puzzles quickly, the game was still a satisfying duration
  • + You get to defeat the secret lizard people destroying the world; what could be better than that?

Theresa W’s Reaction

Rating: 3 out of 3.

Wizards Against Lizards took us on an absolutely insane journey through the world the creators have designed. Everything from the acting to the interactions, improv, and activities was well thought out, fit the world, and wildly fun. This game had our whole team laughing not only at the gamemaster, but also at ourselves and each other. Wizards Against Lizards is a perfect example of how creators can fascinate such a strange journey and at the same time allow the players to make their own fun. This may be the weirdest game I’ve played (in the best way possible), and I highly recommend it for people who are interested in the weird and kooky world of immersive theater and interactive puzzles.

David Spira’s Reaction

Rating: 2 out of 3.

Wizard’s Against Lizards was delightfully nuts. With a blend of puzzles, interaction, and performance in roughly equal quantities, there was something for everyone. (Note for players: you probably want someone who is excited to fulfill each part.)

Wizard’s Against Lizards played fast and loose with quality control in general, but this was strangely part of its charm and our host gracefully smoothed over errors with jokes. Oddly, I think this added something to the experience that I can’t quite explain.

Where Wizard’s Against Lizards fell short for me was a certain sloppiness to its script. Conceptually the game was all over the place, but it held itself together right up until the ending, which just didn’t quite work, given the story beats we had experienced up to that point.

I genuinely enjoyed playing this game, especially the interactional elements. I love making stuff up with an NPC.

Disclosure: Wizards Against Lizards provided the Hivemind reviewers with a complimentary play.

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