I owned a Photon set, which I bought from the Brent Cross Toys R Us in 1988, blowing my entire wages for the month in one impulse purchase. It was a big, bulky, ridiculous thing, and I only ever got to play with it about twice, because - frankly - where was I going to play it, and with whom?
Mr Hairs and I were invited to cover the opening of a laser tag centre in Wembley during the Digitiser years, only to be frustrated by the actions of one particular player, who failed to enter into the fantasy of it all and won the game by a significant margin. He wandered around imagining he was a Terminator, and will probably spent the rest of his life feeling really good about himself for ruining everyone else's day. I still hate him.
Heck, I even got a Sega Lock-On as my leaving present when I left Teletext to write Digitiser full-time from home. I played it once, in the Teletext car park, on my last day. And that was the end of my laser tag story, until a couple of years ago when I played it again at a leisure centre in Swanage, or somewhere.
Somehow, the reality of laser tag has never been as fun as the fantasy. Here are ten images which demonstrate this fact.
What a terrible shame that this landmark product was sold via the means of a pair of rubes, who would've looked more at home running around a field, having recently helped their community construct a new barn in which father's many wives were to be stored.
Regrettably, once again, we have the above image to remind us that laser tag games never make you look anything less than laughable.
What's with the feller in the flouncy white shirt, business slacks and leather gloves? Why can't he see the other chap? Perhaps he's too busy considering how cool he looks, dressed - as he is - in the clothing of a 17th Century dandy.
"I've got it all going on, guys!"
"Ma... Ma... I'm going to shoot you, Ma."
"OMG! It's Nasty Nick (not the one out of Big Brother)!"
"Stand in a big group in the open, and have three of us kneeling down. Put the two who are terrified of harmless infrared beams in the front. Also, we must be flanked by The Twins."
"Drop the gun!"
"Hunnnnnhhhh...? Is this real life?"
Judging from the reaction of the middle-aged woman in the ad, it was the single most terrifying thing anybody could ever experience.