Clean up, aisle ♾️
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Date Played: December 17, 2021
Group size: we recommend 1-4
Duration: We recommend at least 90 minutes to explore the space, and at least 4 hours to follow the story, possibly many more.
Price: $49-55 per adult (less for children, seniors, and military)
Accessibility Consideration: The first floor of the exhibit is ADA accessible. There is also an elevator to access the second floor, but some areas include steps or narrow passage ways.
Emergency Exit Rating: [A+] No Lock
Physical Restraints: [A+] No Physical Restraints
Las Vegas in and of itself is a surreal alternate reality, and Meow Wolf’s second location, Omega Mart, felt like the perfect immersive art installation to mimic, mock, and embrace the consumeristic excesses of Sin City.
The sprawling Omega Mart storefront was packed full of actually purchasable, real, fake products. It’s a hilariously dissonant world, and it’s worth the price of admission simply to spend some time walking the aisles of Omega Mart, reading the product packages.
… But there was also a much deeper and considerably larger world behind Omega Mart. This world felt like the original Meow Wolf… if it had been built by Disney. This massive step up in production value added a polish that isn’t present in Santa Fe, but that sheen came at the price of some of the grit, oddity, and soul that grabbed me in the House of Eternal Return. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing so much as it is an aesthetic preference. I can see plenty of folks preferring the Disneyification of Meow Wolf to the grittier artsy vibe of their earlier work.
Where my feelings about Omega Mart turned to disappointment was in their game design choices. The mystery and game within this world started off fantastic, and hit a wondrous climax… and then it kept going and going and going well past its “sell by” date. This could have been fine, but many of the associated touchscreen interfaces were clunky, space was limited, and lines formed at key locations. The net effect was that when we were about to have a big moment in the plot, it was destroyed by watching half a dozen people have that exact moment that I was about to have while I waited.
Finally, the conclusion of the game was utterly disappointing… it fizzled into forgettable nothingness.
Omega Mart would have been better with a little less game, or a lot more thought put into the game and the way that players would engage with it. For all of the improvements that Meow Wolf made to their overall production, it felt like they badly needed to hire some proper game designers.
My advice: absolutely go experience Omega Mart. It’s a wonder. Play the game too… but once you hit a point in the game where you feel like you’ve substantially impacted the world, not just for yourself, but for others… stop playing and go about exploring.
Who is this for?
- Adventure seekers
- Story seekers
- Scenery snobs
- Any experience level
- The store and its products are a riot
- The world was gorgeous, truly a Disney quality production
We entered Omega Mart as customers, with the opportunity to become employees, learn the ropes of the business, and explore the exciting opportunities afforded to us by its revolutionary parent company Dramcorp.Continue reading “Meow Wolf (Las Vegas) – Omega Mart [Review]”