Universal Citywalk’s vehicle-powered VR experience makes traffic fun.
This past January, in-car VR entertainment startup Holoride made its world debut at the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show, revealing an exciting new take on backseat passenger entertainment.
By taking advantage of the physical effects caused by a moving vehicle, including sudden changes in speed, Holoride is able to enhance the immersion of VR games and experiences. For example, when your car speeds up in real life, so does your in-game vehicle; when it makes an abrupt right turn, so too will your character. These levels are generated based on which routes are being taken as well as the total duration of a trip. This means that no two journies are ever the same, despite the fact that each of them ends as soon as the user reaches their destination.
Previously only available to those lucky enough to have attended CES 2019, Holoride today announced the public launch of their backseat entertainment system as part of a limited-time attraction taking place at Universal Citywalk.
“We want to change the passenger experience of vehicles globally, in as many vehicles as we can, so that passengers are able to experience stories, worlds, characters they love no matter which brand they’re sitting in,” said CEO Nils Wollny during an interview with The Verge.
“The connected vehicle technology from Ford can help completely revolutionize what the in-car experience can be, moving us toward never-before-imagined productivity and entertainment in the vehicle,” said Brett Wheatley, vice president of Mobility Marketing and Growth at Ford. “This collaboration allows us to showcase the promise of the connected vehicle and get essential customer feedback on what they want and don’t want in terms of immersive in-car entertainment experiences.”
Whereas CES attendees were treated to an exclusive Avengers-themed immersive adventure referred to as Rocket Rescue Run, visitors at Universal Citywalk will have the chance to experience Holoride’s Bride of Frankenstein, a haunting interactive journey which will have users blasting their way through waves of ghostly spirits as they assist the legendary bride in delivering a package to her infamous husband.
Traveling in the backseat of a Ford Explorer, passengers will be taken on five to ten-minute drives on public roads throughout the local area. By mixing up routes and engaging with different roadblocks and traffic, visitors are guaranteed an original journey completely unique to those experienced by other passengers.
“The thing that excited us was this idea of a procedural experience, the idea that you could build a story created around everyday travel,” added Greg Reed, vice president of technology partnerships at Universal Pictures. “It really sets it up as an experience that could fit in a vehicle you own, a ride-sharing vehicle, or public transportation. Again, this idea that you’re adding an experience like this to everyday life.”
Holoride’s Bride of Frankenstein VR experience will be available at Universal Citywalk in Hollywood, Californi October 14th – 16th, October 2st – 23rd, October 28th – 30th, and November 4th-9th between 12pm PT – 8pm PT.
Tickets are available to purchase here.
Feature Image Credit: Holoride, Universal Pictures
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