Updated: May 7
A scene from Boda Borg Malden:
“One, Two, Three…Go!” The three of us press our buttons at the same time and we hear the exhilarating beep-beep that means we’ve solved the puzzle. High fives abound, and with great anticipation, we open the next door.
That was after about 15 tries and fails. And it was awesome.
This is just a snapshot from our session at Boda Borg on Pleasant Street in Malden. You can do as we did and sign up for a 2-hour session, or stay all day. Here’s how their website describes what it’s all about:
Guests are transported into a real-world gaming environment; an experience we call Questing. Teams of 3-5 guests literally move through our Quests tackling a variety of mental and physical challenges. Success in the first challenge means entry into the next challenge and so on… Failure in any challenge means starting over or selecting another Quest. No video games, no virtual reality, no special clothing or equipment....real people, real Questing, real adrenaline and heart-pumping excitement.
Boda Borg is a Swedish company that’s been in the Questing business since the mid-1990s. They expanded here to the US in October 2015, and chose the up-and-coming city of Malden for their very first location. We think it was a great choice: close to Route 93, with on-street parking, surface lots, and garages, it’s easy to drive to. It’s easy to take the T there, too; hop off at Malden station and warm up on the quick walk there.
It can be addictive!
One of our friends went the first month they opened, and has been back 4 times. She’s not even close to solving the 20 (and counting—they're always adding and changing rooms) Quests and she’s always talking about her strategies for the next time.
We’ve seen school groups, families, office workers, and millennials questing at Boda Borg. They do recommend that children be at least 8 years old to participate, and definitely pay attention to the skills needed for each Quest—some demand only mental strength, while others will have you crawling on the floor, hanging from bars, and leaping from place to place.
Here’s what we recommend in order to be prepared to Quest:
Wear comfortable workout clothes and closed-toe shoes, especially if you’ll be doing the more physical Quests. Don’t wear heels, fancy jewelry or heavy layers. You’ll be a sweaty, happy mess!
Bring a water bottle and a snack. You will get access to a locker to hold your phone and keys, so pop the refreshments in there, too. You might get hungry in there, and a few calories + hydration can do wonders when trying to master Dansa Pausa or Platoon for the tenth time.
Be prepared to fail. A lot. You’ll get an orientation from the folks that work there, and they’ll tell you this. They’re right. Remember it’s ok to fail! Really! It’ll make your successes that much sweeter.
Before or after Questing, grab a bite at one of the dozens of restaurants near Boda Borg: Pho Bistro for Vietnamese, Mystic Station for upscale burgers and beers, and Hugh O’Neill’s Irish pub are three fantastic places only a minute’s walk away.
Check out Boda Borg now and get Questing!