Monday, April 19, 2010


SHAH ALAM, 17 Apr 10: Like or loathe it, challenges in the form of games are here to stay! A number of large treasure hunt events held this year had included games in their itinerary and I foresee this trend to continue. The event organizers simply love them as it is seen to foster teamwork. Most first time participants enjoy them for they can relate better to games than cryptic riddles. No doubt games are fun and can take away the monotony of deciphering cryptic clues. Games also provide for photo opportunities - usually to put a smile on everyone's faces at someone else's expense. It is also a tendency that the underdog garners more support (just ask Schummacher when he was dominating F1). So games are sometimes included to help level the playing field which is somewhat true to avoid the same faces dominating the top prizes.

On the other hand it is no big secret that the purists detest games. Unlike cryptic riddles (which typically follow a well defined set of rules), games are unpredictable - can either be a test of skill or chance and games are almost impossible to prepare in advance. While some purists choose to stay away from hunts with games, others (the die hards) continue to indulge but with fingers and toes crossed, praying very hard that somehow that god-forsaken ping pong ball will finally land inside the basket or that others will fail too just like they did.

While some games can be silly, there are others which provide a unique experience. I logged a number of firsts through participation in hunts - first time I had absailed, rock climbed, handled a blowpipe, drove in a go-kart, glided down a flying-fox, had snakes for company and many others. So, personally, I do not mind games although history shows that I don't always excel in hunts that incorporate games.

After many years of organizing pure hunts, for obvious reasons this year my weekday employers decided to include games into the hunt itinerary. This year our Amazing hunt was held at Taman Pertanian Bukit Cahaya in Shah Alam.

The hunt included 20 cryptic questions & 2 treasures which contributed 70 points and 4 challenges which made up the remainder 40 points. There weren't many signages within the agriculture park, so the hunt questions were hardly a challenge. In the end, the top three positions were decided by the games, and not surprisingly we had a new winning team this year!

50 teams of six turned up in support. There were prizes for the top 15 teams. Everyone had to pay very minimal entry fees. A boisteruos MC from Time Out Solutions managed the day's activities. Plenty of Fun & Games. Breakfast and lunch were provided. Everyone had a good time, RIGHT?


Most teams I had talked to were frustrated that the scoring mechanism was not clearly explained in 2 of the 4 challenges. For example, it was not clear how fast teams had to kayak in order to score the full 10 points. Neither was it clear how many bulls eye from the blowpipe challenge would be needed to score the full points. Without a transparent scoring mechanism, it becomes almost impossible to strategize. Not to mention, impossible to figure out how many points one had scored.

It has been two months since the same event managers last promised to improve on this aspect of their events. But till today I am still patiently waiting for them to WALK THE TALK .

Hunt Passport - to collect stamps at all 4 Challenge stations. (A familiar celebrity made an appearance in our passport)

Challenge 1: Kayak challenge - the team was fresh and eager at the start of the event.

Challenge 2: Blowpipe challenge - perhaps 6 puffs was just too demanding for one person.

Challenge 3: Brainy challenge - a case of too many cooks.

Challenge 4: F1 Challenge - we are lightyears behind (in design) the likes of Ferrari and McLaren.

And finally the Photo Treasure - everyone exhausted in the end. Believe me the agriculture park is NOT a small place!


Anonymous said...

Hi VK,

Why My Photo is appearing this Hunt?


2 Romans 1 Impostor said...

I was asking myself this same question (lol) during the hunt. Received any royalties?

hagisuhaimi said...

Venka, see the caption. Celebrity. U and Theresal are celebrities. After all both of you appeared in the 13 episoded Esso Smiles Hunt.

Hunt said...

Good venue for event.