I recently had a day out in London at Flight Club; and to be honest, I was a little sceptical about it… No, actually, I was completely perplexed by the whole concept (which is why I’m bring you a Flight Club Review. You need to understand this too). I just couldn’t get my head around how something so stereotypically… boring (a game of darts) could be turned into a modern, quirky and exciting game.
When I was told “Ooh Flight Club is fun! It’s an interactive darts club, like normal darts but different!” (Obviously not the most visually provoking description ever but still) I thought,
“Good Lord… What have I signed myself up for here…” It can’t just be me who at the mention of darts pictures plump old men with bad hair cuts, resting beers on their pot bellies, taking it all far too seriously, right?
Or am I just horribly judgmental? Don’t answer that. Anyway, I thought to modernize the concept, perhaps there would be loud music, cocktails and instead of an actual dart it’s a remote or something? Well turns out, I needn’t have worried because I’d actually signed myself up for a couple of hours of family fun with some of my favourite people in the world for a very reasonable price!
Bulging Bellies & Secret Squirrels:
For my boyfriends birthday, I secretly arranged for all of his family to come up to London and surprise him with a BBQ at my house (little did he know he was cooking) and then onto a trip to Flight Club Victoria. I could bore you with the ins and outs of the BBQ, but I won’t as I think I still have P.T.S.D from trying to find appropriate foods for his coeliac sister to eat without him putting two and two together. The lengths I went to to keep this day a surprise was actually a bit ridiculous upon reflection. I think at one point he probably thought I was cheating on him, I started accidental arguments to keep him off the scent and I’d even begun ‘taking an interest’ in gluten free substitutes, all for the sake of secret squirreling. Dedication or stupidity? You decide. Just know that he was grateful in the end. No prolonged relationship damage and the BBQ food went down a storm. Worth it!
Anyway, onwards to Flight Club:
Flight Club Victoria is a 4 minute walk from Victoria station and is surrounded by bars, cafe’s and restaurants – ideal if you wanted to make a proper day out of just mooching around London without being caught in the madness of Central. However, if South West London doesn’t suit you, there are two other venues located in Shoreditch and Bloomsbury. Walking into the Victoria branch, you’re greeted by a friendly member of staff at a colourful desk and this is where you are checked in. After that, you’re shown up a large spiral staircase and walked into what feels like a funfair or a circus! The lights, vivid colours and electric atmosphere is apparent as soon as you cross the social darts threshold. The ambiance is buzzing and the room has a warm welcoming feel to it. There are oche’s (rhymes with hockey and is essentially a booth area) filled with groups of people grinning and laughing with each other to the left and right of you, and in front stands a huge oval bar lined with spirits, optics, fridges of beer and wine (hallelujah!) and of course soft drinks. Each oche is slightly different, which in a city that can at times feel very impersonal, is a really lovely touch. The subtle differences meant that even as I walked through the venue en route to the loo, I felt like a kid in a sweet shop as I watched other groups whooping and cheering in their tailored areas in awe.
We popped in the queue at the bar for a pre-game loosener before being shown to our own unique oche at the back of the room. I was really happy with where we were placed as a few groups at the front were a little loud and excitable and with us not being 100% sure as to what I’ve dragged us all to just yet, the back seemed like the perfect place to be. Our drinks were bought over to us and the games explained by our own personal instructor. Food and drink can also be ordered from your oche tablet at any point in the game by simply tapping the food & drink icon on the tablet provided requesting a member of staff’s attention. Oh, and if you all think we’re absolute glutinous pigs who just continuously graze… you’re totally right, we are. However, on this occasion, I think we were all just too distracted by our inner child to focus on refilling our portly tums. Safe to say as soon as we got home after I’d whooped some ass* at Flight Cub, the distractions had gone and it was a different story.
(*no ass was whooped by me)
Meet The Team!
Each player had to take a picture of themselves using the tablet provided to create your unique player icon and enter their names or nick-names. Check out our mug shots below…
Flight Club Review – Let The Games Begin!
There are 5 various games that you can play on this interactive dartboard – Demolition, Shanghai, Killer, Quack Shot and Snakes & Ladders. You don’t have to choose a different game each time, you can repeat ones that you enjoyed the most and play as many games you can squeeze into your allotted time slot. Get through as many rounds as possible and the leader-board will give you the over-all winner at the end of the session. However, you can see a break down of individual rounds winners which can also be sent to your email address along with pictures, action replay shots and scores.
Teams: You can choose whether you’d like to be in a team or whether you’re flighting solo (terrible joke, I’m sorry) and this can be picked manually or randomly generated. Although I do think this might depend on the number of participants… However with only 9 of us playing, we could choose!
Throw line: Next step is to choose your throw line! This is basically you asserting yourself and your ability to other members of the group. If you’re going from the ‘Pro’ line, expect shit from people. You will be their target. ‘Regular’ is situated in between the ‘Pro’ and the ‘Rookie’ line, with ‘Rookie’ being the throw line closest to the dartboard. Turned out, a load of my group used to attend a dart club or were no strangers to throwing some darts just for fun… In hindsight, I should’ve thrown from the Rookie line but my need to impress was more overbearing than maintaining some dignity apparently.
Each team has a pyramid of blocks that needs to be demolished! You have a handful of attempts to destroy as many of these blocks as possible before your opponents beat you to it! Essentially, score the highest to win. This game is the easiest of the 5 and is one to start with to help ease you into the session.
For this game, a keen eye and a good aim is key! You’re in teams (if you want) and you are automatically given a number on the board to aim for. The aim is to hit that number as many times as possible to earn points to help you win against your contenders! Just as you think you’re staring to get the hang of things, your target number will change, just to throw you off!
This one is my personal favourite! The aim of the game is to make yourself a “killer” and kill your challengers! You have to hit your numbered segment on the board three times to become a killer, only then can you start hunting down your prey and hitting other players segments. By hitting theirs, you take them further and further away from being a killer and eventually the aim is to take all of their points and killing them off all together! However, throughout the game double and even triple points will be awarded in a round so it really is anybody’s game!
You’ll be good at this game if you have precise aim or skill. Are you loose as a goose? Can you get a quack shot by hitting the inner or outer bulls-eye? Essentially all you’ve got to do is hit the center of the board to win! Safe to say, I struggled with this one. We played this game second last and by this point, people had figured out I had the eye-hand coordination of a tea-towel and no one wanted to be on my team anyway… Hey ho, I had fun!
Snakes & Ladders:
A modern twist on the traditional snakes & ladders game where players take it in turns to “roll the dice” to move their counter across the board. The board is segmented up and given a value from 1-6 and this acts as your dice. The more accuracy you have, the more strategically you can work your way across the Snakes & Ladders board and to the finish line before your competitors!
Gimme More Details!
Group sizes: 2-40 people can book an area with ease at Flight Club. However, if you have a bigger group than that ie; a staff party or an event etc, then you can get in contact with the customer service team to help arrange this for you. The oche’s are designed for groups of 12+ as they believe the bigger the group, the better the experience! However, we had 9 and it was fantastic! During busy times, no less than 6 people can book an area.
Cost: There are peak and off-peak times. Monday-Friday 4pm-close and all day Saturday are classed as peak times and priced at £35 per hour for a booking of up to 40. We went on a Sunday which is deemed as off-peak and the price was fantastic! Off-peak is Monday-Friday 12-4pm and all day Sunday for £15! We went for a 90 minute slot and split the cost of the oche 8 ways. An hour and a half of laughs, jokes and bullying Colin, for less than £3.00 each – I think that’s incredible value for money!
Peak times will be more expensive, busier and louder.
Ratings: Value for Money – 10/10, Fun – 9/10, Location – 9/10, Food & Drink – (Didn’t eat here, but based on drinks) 9/10, Service – 9/10.
Flight Club Review: Would I recommend this Club:
100%! Whether you’re shy and introverted or loud and ballsy, Flight Club has something for everyone. Whether you know your team mates inside out or not at all, by the end of the session you’ll be closer than before and planning your next trip back to have a re-match.
Age Restrictions: Children are welcome to pop in for food & drink before 5pm and only in the bar areas. For health & safety reasons, no persons under the age of 18 are allowed to be in the oche playing areas.
Myself and all of my fellow social darters thoroughly enjoyed this experience. I am already planning my comeback performance, so Flight Club better be ready for me!
Chesca (Froo), “I was a bit apprehensive because I’m rubbish at darts but it was so much fun and the pictures are great too!”
Georgia, “I was dubious when it was recommended, I mean, how much fun can you have with a dartboard really? But I was genuinely surprised at how much fun we had and the whole family loved it!”
Ollie (Big Dog), “(Bulls)eye absolutely loved it!”