The discovery of new worlds, the sense of being somewhere else... isn't that why we play games? Isn't that why they're pushing virtual reality as The Next Big Thing?
Immersive theatre offers all that... but it does it for real, whether its the faded 1930s glamour of Punchdrunk Theatre, or zombie experience days. And yet it has its critics.
Secret Cinema has come in for some stick over The Empire Strikes Back. Secret Cinema purists seem to view it as a move away from the concept's origins - one-time-only screenings of, generally speaking, slightly more highbrow fare (The Shawshank Redemption, Blade Runner, If..., Lawrence of Arabia) - into more populist and ambitious territory (heck - even kids are welcome these days!).
It's like those who drop their favourite band the second they have a hit single: suddenly, you're sharing your passion with others who don't "get it" like you did.
In all honesty, the ticket prices are comparable with West End theatre prices (nearly £80 for decent seats to see Derren Brown), or concert tickets to watch major music acts (seats for U2's latest tour are around the £100 mark), or theme park tickets (£50+ for Alton Towers)... all of which also offer overpriced food, drink, and merchandise.
For our money, the food options available at Secret Cinema are far better than any theme park fast food - in the case of the latest endeavour, it's all Moroccan spiced chicken burgers and tagines that stay within the universe they're trying to create.
It seems there's something more cynical at play among those who disapprove. No, it obviously isn't cheap, but we don't believe anyone who enters into it with an open mind would find anything to sneer at.
With Secret Cinema, you can really see where the money goes. Last year's Back To The Future built a full-size Hill Valley, complete with working barber shops, a fun fair, farms, diners, The Enchantment Under the Sea Dance and a smokey 1980s bar, and scores of performers... The scale was immense - the closest thing this side of the Atlantic to the 360-degree world building of Florida's theme parks.
This year's The Empire Strikes Back goes even further, spread across a number of different scenes and locations, and employing much more of a storyline.
Unfortunately, visitors to Secret Cinema aren't allowed to say much about it; phones and cameras are banned (understandable - you'd spend your whole time taking pictures), so photos from inside the event are thin on the ground. But what we can tell you is that the immersion begins months before the event: you're given a character class - after answering a series of questions - asked to come in appropriate fancy dress, wearing a slightly hipster-y scarf of a certain colour, and bring items to trade. See? It's like a video game.
As would-be Rebels, you find yourself swept up in the events of the original Star Wars movie... it's not a huge give-away to say you'll visit iconic locations from the film, and encounter familiar characters (or semi-lookalike interpretations of those characters).
Then, as is the way with Secret Cinema, you get a screening - in this case, The Empire Strikes Back, with certain scenes being acted out in synch with the on-screen action. In truth, TESB does less of this than Back to the Future - which had DeLoreans time-travelling and driving at speed around Hill Valley, and zip lining Doc Browns - so it can feel like a slight anti-climax after what preceded it.
Nevertheless, what happens before the screening is immense - and the more you get involved in your own personal adventure (if you can get past the inevitable self-conscious feeling that you're playing Star Wars as an adult), the more fun it is. Trading with Jawas, avoiding cantina bar fights, and chatting about moisture farming with Luke and Uncle Owen...
Those who look down their nose at Secret Cinema are missing what something like this means to those of us who grew up with Star Wars or Back to the Future.
What's more, there's something wholly un-cynical about the endeavour. Without a massive corporation like Disney or Universal Studios behind it, there is a slight tinge of the amateur about it. But that's actually part of its charm; it feels like it's being done for the right reasons - for the fans, as if the people behind it are as invested in the fun and the fantasy as those who visit.
Without getting into the specifics, there are some genuinely breathtaking set pieces - both in sheer physical scale, and imagination. Anyone who ever played with Star Wars action figures, or zipped up a parka jacket pretending to be Han Solo on Hoth, will get it.
We honestly couldn't recommend it more.
Secret Cinema runs until the end of September. Tickets are still available.