We tried the FREE adventure game at the Tuileries Garden. Here’s how it went.
Who wouldn’t be enticed by the words ‘free’, ‘adventure’ and ‘game’?
The Louvre has created a free adventure game inside the beautiful Jardin des Tuileries for summer 2018 and we booked online a month early to reserve a date that turned out to be the hottest day in Paris for the year.
At the booth we were handed one bag per team which contains a clipboard, a decoder and two pencils. The staff explained the rules and that thankfully you don’t really need a knowledge of french history to win the game (thank god), only common sense, patience, and the ability to walk under the scorching sun during a canicule (heatwave). There will be two types of clues, one that will make you think more and the other one which is pretty straightforward. All clues have a french and an english version, which by the way I did try very hard to resist reading to practice my french but my competitiveness got the best of me and I ended up using the english version. Afterwards, an ‘archivist’ started to tell us what mysteries we needed to solve. The goal being to get a code to open this contraption made by our mystery man:
She handed us the clues and off we went around the garden!
I kid you not when I say we went to each end of the garden. We were able to explore gardens, sculptures and art installations that we would never have looked at had it been a normal walk around the area. Normally we just go here to exercise (ok I lied, only my boyfriend go here to exercise. I did before though! 😋).
It was only then that I learned the tree in the photo below isn’t a real tree but an art installation. Even the grass around it was made to look like it had been abandoned by a lazy gardener, but it was created like that on purpose to give it a disorderly feeling. It’s called the vowel tree since you’re supposed to see the five vowels on the roots. Can you find them all below ?
Considering it’s a free adventure game, all the materials were well made. The only thing is that you’re not interacting with the garden all the time. Although all the clues will lead you to different parts of the garden, with some of them you don’t even need to be at that exact place in order to solve the problem.
WARNING. SPOILER ALERT!!
The entire game was supposed to last around 1 to 1.5 hours. It’s hard to admit that we were able to finish it after two hours because of a transposition error I made when I was decoding a clue. But hey, we had fun! (right Flo?). It was rather chill since you can go at your own pace as long as you finish before the garden closes, which is already saying something.
And inside are more clues! Yes, the mystery isn’t over yet! This was in fact only part one of the game and the next stage is inside the Louvre itself ! Unfortunately we’re both at that phase in our life where we can no longer qualify for free museums and entrances aka we’re old. But we had the chance to join a sort of raffle where they give tickets to the Louvre museum and like that we can continue the game. We haven’t done it as of the date of this post nor have we won anything yet but I’m excited to go back to the Louvre since it’s been years since I’ve been.
This adventure game is only until 26 August 2018 so if you’re interested make sure you check out their website quick and reserve your slot! (the Louvre stage can be done anytime even after 26 August).