One of the more unusual experiences we had on our New York City itinerary with The Britannia Entourage was Accomplice: The Village. It’s really difficult to write a review of Accomplice: The Village without giving too much away. Most descriptions on the web respect this aspect of it, so we went into the experience not entirely sure what to expect.
Accomplice shows/tours (there are two in NYC – Downtown and The Village) are part walking tour/part scavenger hunt/part whodunit mystery/part interactive role-play. The Accomplice website describes the experience as:
The world becomes your stage during this urban exploration. Part cafe crawl, part immersive theatre, Accomplice transports its participants into a world of secrets, clues, and mystery.
Bars, street corners, and iconic landmarks take on new depth and meaning as you stroll through historic neighborhoods carrying out a mission.
Lines between reality and play are blurred as actors send you from place to place, leaving you asking, “Who’s in on this? Who’s not?”
It all started for us at our pre-booked time at a designated meeting spot (which was emailed to me the day before). There we met the other two participants booked on our tour, and we obtained our first clue (I’m not going to say how) which set us off on a meandering route through the back streets of Greenwich Village seeking clues, solving puzzles and meeting a cast of eccentric characters. It wasn’t always clear who were characters of the show, and who were innocent passers-by. We became so paranoid we were diligently checking out everyone encountered en route.
We were on our own, with our maps and clues, and no guide. One of the other participants in our group was a resident of Greenwich Village herself, so was able to quickly direct us to the next destination. As a result, our group sped through the tour. I suspect that if there were no New Yorkers in the party it would take a lot longer to work out where you needed to go. I think that would actually be a preferable scenario for visitors to New York, as you would really need to look around and take in your surroundings. We were able to let Ms Greenwich take the lead, and we just followed along behind her.
There was a couple of pit stops along the way, where the plot continued, but we got refreshments (included in the ticket price).
With this type of experience, you get more out of it if you’re prepared to play along and interact with the characters. Right throughout we were never quite sure about what was ‘real’ and what was a part of the story. And when it finished, I didn’t see the ending coming.
The puzzles and clues could be a bit more challenging, and the ‘storyline’ was a little flimsy, but all up it’s a fun way to spend a couple of hours walking the New York streets.
Accomplice: The Village
Suitable for adults and kids over 10 (accompanied by adults)
Tickets: USD $65