The Crystal Maze to return in 2019 with a brand new zone

Channel 4's hit game show is unveiling 'The Eastern Zone', an East Asia-inspired new games area and the first new zone since the 1990s

crystal maze

The Crystal Maze is returning to TV in 2019 – and Channel 4 has made a few changes.

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Presenter Richard Ayoade is set to return for a brand new run of celebrity episodes later this year. More importantly, the show is set to debut ‘The Eastern Zone’, the first new games area since the show’s original run in the 1990s.

Alongside the Futuristic, Aztec and Industrial Zones, the Eastern Zone is reportedly influenced by the historic art, architecture and monuments of East Asia. Featuring a lily pond, cherry blossom trees and ornate vases, the zone is made up of five games rooms featuring eight challenging new games for celebrity contestant teams.

While the Futuristic, Aztec and Industrial Zones have bene retained, it appears that the Medieval Zone has been dropped in favour of the new Eastern Zone.

Long-time production designer James Dillon, who has designed every zone since the show’s original run in the 1990s, said that it was “very exciting to be asked to design a new zone” for the iconic show.

“The challenge, to create a zone referencing such an ancient and beautiful part of the world, and to bring those intense, rich colours and textures to the mix of zones that make up the Maze, has been most enjoyable,” he added.

This is the first zone change since the Ocean Zone was introduced during the fourth series of The Crystal Maze’s original run.

Previous celebrity contestants in the rebooted series have included Big Nartsie, Derry Girls cast members, former Olympic athlete Dame Kelly Holmes, Strictly’s Ashley Roberts and Countdown’s Rachel Riley.

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The Crystal Maze will return to Channel 4 for 13 new episodes later this year