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Puzzle Rides launch new unplugged experience in Scottsdale and Prescott

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Like an escape room, players only have a limited amount of time to reach their final destination. (File Photos/
Puzzle Rides in Scottsdale and Prescott offer ‘tournament of champions’
Staff Reports | Digital Free Press

Puzzle Rides Scottsdale and Prescott is a well-known adventure game where players are taken on an escape-room style adventure via golf cart and must use teamwork, along with elements of the route, to solve a series of puzzles before time runs out.

Like an escape room, players only have a limited amount of time to reach their final destination. As the golf cart version of the experience became wildly popular, the owner added large group activities that incorporated more walking-based clues.

“With groups of over 25 people, we were very limited as we only have five golf carts,” said Puzzle Rides owner Katie Dufort, in a prepared statement.

“We introduced the Puzzle Relay in the fall of 2021, that allows groups of up to 100 compete as teams at a local bar or restaurant as the hub — with golf cart rides away from the location to find clues. Last July, we had a group who asked if they could skip the golf cart part because it was hot outside. That’s when a lightbulb went off to start offering fun team building and group activities where finding clues was based on puzzling, rather than riding.”

Here’s how it works—- based on the very popular pub crawl puzzles, participants meet at a local bar or restaurant for a tournament of champions. The group is split into teams of five or less and each team must solve a group of puzzles as quickly as possible.

Team times are recorded as puzzles are completed, but the teams are mixed up every round and at the end of the final round, one team will win overall, and the top three teams are honored. Instead of heading out on the golf carts for clues, one team member from each team must head over to the challenge table —- where they will compete either individually or with others to earn the clues by solving physical puzzles.

“Participants will add up their individual total time — and the top three individuals are also presented with awards,” Ms. Dufort said. “The really cool thing about the no-cart option is if a visit to Old Town isn’t in your plans, we can bring the Puzzle Relay to you.”

When Puzzle Rides launched in July of 2020, only four signature mobile escape room-style scavenger hunts were available. Today, Puzzle Rides offers more than 20 rides and no-cart adventures.

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