Last weekend a group of friends and I found the lost tomb of a pharaoh, foiled an evil corporation plan to start a nuclear war, and attempted to slay a dragon that managed to escape from a storybook all within an hour and a half time frame. At this point, you might be wondering how any of that was possible in the DMV area, but it was quite possible because we visited 5 WITS, which offers various adventure rooms. 5 WITS is a real-life, hands-on adventure game across multiple rooms in which guests play an active part in a storyline. Throughout their adventure, guests will be faced with puzzles, games, and challenges, and their successes and failures will have a direct impact on the ending they receive. Neither less, to say my friends and I had a blast, and if you’re looking for something to do on the weekend or even during the week that doesn’t center around drinking or eating, then 5 WITS is the place to visit.
Location & Parking: 5 WITS is located on the 3rd floor in the relatively new Ballston Exchanged building in Arlington. The exact address is 4238 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA 22203. 5 Wits is also located in NY, MA, and PA, so you don’t have to limit your adventure to VA. While it wasn’t hard to find parking, I wasn’t able to locate the designated parking lot for the Ballston Exchange building, which I thought was odd, but regardless you should be able to find parking easily.
Pricing & Hours: 5 Wits offers three different price tiers. One adventure room is $29.99, 2 adventure room is $36.99, and 3 adventure room is $39.99. I would highly suggest going with the three adventure room package because it’s just a $10 difference. Also, your ticket never expires, so if you’re unable to finish all three rooms in one day, you’re able to come back on a different day to complete the remaining adventure room(s). My friends and I completed all three rooms, and it took us 25- 30 minutes to complete each room, but the time different flew by. 5 Wits is opened Monday – Thursday at 12 pm – 9 pm, Friday & Saturday 12pm- 11 pm and Sunday at 12 pm – 7 pm. 5 Wits do not have a timed schedule, so you’re able to show up at the location and start your adventure at whatever time is convenient for you.
Experience: Unlike an escape room, you’re not stuck in one room, and the computer-generated system is continuously adjusting the experience based on your progress in the room. If you’re taking particularly long at one puzzle, the system offers clues throughout the session to assist with solving the problem, and you can progress to the next room after a certain amount of time has passed, so you’re never stuck in one room. The adventure rooms are very interactive with various special effects. One minute you might be sneaking into the evil corporation headquarters by crawling through an abandon air vent, and the next minute you might be maximizing the most out of your agility abilities, so you don’t trip the laser wired security system. Overall the special effects combined with the various puzzles and challenges provide a high production value that makes you feel like you’re apart of a live-action game. Each room varies in difficulty level, but completing all rooms is very doable.
As I mentioned before, my friends and I did all three rooms, and without a doubt, my favorite was the Tomb adventure room, and surprisingly, the most difficult was the Dragon Castle. I would recommend dressing comfortably when visiting because depending on what adventure room you choose, it might entail some crawling ( the crawling part is not mandatory, but it does make the experience more fun). 5 Wits is great for date night, team building, an activity to do with friends & family night. I would highly recommend checking out 5 Wits if you’re looking for a unique experience.