Vicon, a world leader in motion capture, has partnered with Europa-Park/MackNeXT and VR Coaster, the developer of VR experiences used in over 60 theme parks, to create a ground-breaking location-based virtual reality (LBVR) entertainment platform. Vicon and VR Coaster’s platform creates ‘infinite’ free roaming environments, with full-body tracking of 32 simultaneous players in large venues – supporting the world’s biggest, most compelling VR experiences to unlock the full commercial potential of the LBVR market for theme parks.
The new LBVR platform’s first commercial installation is located in Rust, next to the Europa-Park and the Rulantica waterpark (opened in 2019), and will be open to visitors from summer 2020.
MackNeXT and VR Coaster have created a platform to power a new generation of VR experiences, of which Yullbe is the first. Yullbe is a new fully-immersive form of VR entertainment targeted at a broader audience than any VR attraction before – not just console and PC gamers, but the whole family, bridging the gap between music and art experiences and the more classic, game-like VR experiences.
The new platform has been built on Origin by Vicon, which raises the bar for VR by now enabling support of full-body tracking for 32 players in large arenas, and is powered by the use of Vicon’s latest Viper and Viper X cameras alongside high-performance Pulsar active marker tracking clusters.
Vicon’s advanced VR technology has been combined with Europa-Park’s unique content and operational expertise to ensure that the large-scale, immersive LBVR experiences enabled by the platform minimise customer wait times and player set up while providing maximum uptime and commercial value, with a throughput of up to 48 people per hour.
This fusion of seamless technology, operational structure and commercial model forms a unique new platform that will allow other IP holders to develop their content to be showcased in any Yullbe attraction worldwide or to even create their own Yullbe attraction. By creating a new revenue stream for IP holders, the MackNeXT / VR Coaster solution powered by Vicon has the potential to drive forward the forecasted multi-million-dollar market in immersive entertainment experiences.
Andy Ray, Sales Director, UK & ROW at Vicon, commented: “The fact that one of the world’s leading theme parks selected Vicon’s technology for this new platform is a massive endorsement of the work we have done to develop a system that can support the incredible demands of fully immersive, full-body tracking experiences for high numbers of players.
“Yullbe is a perfect showcase for the power of the platform to enable the VR experiences of the future and the revenue opportunity that LBVR represents for entertainment IP holders. We are giving developers the ultimate solution to create VR experiences at unprecedented scale with incredible immersion.”
Sven Meyer, Division Director of MackNeXT, commented: “Once you stop thinking of VR as a game, the possibilities become endless. Yullbe not only delivers everything you need to run a full-fledged LBVR attraction, but also the platform behind it – for a broad range of VR experiences of the future. Where there is convergence between VR, film, branding and storytelling there are major commercial opportunities for the media and entertainment industry.”
Marcus Ernst, Digital Projects Manager of MackNeXT, added: “Of course, there was a huge technology challenge to overcome in order to capitalise on that opportunity – and Vicon has pushed the boundaries of what is possible with LBVR technology. That work has been absolutely critical to realising our vision to create a new business model for VR entertainment.”
Thomas Wagner, Co-Founder and CEO of VR Coaster, commented: “Just because it’s VR doesn’t mean it’s not real. By seamlessly integrating real-world tangible objects and at the same time playing with all dimensions, we have combined the best of both worlds: High-end props and theming plus exciting magic moments that would only be possible in a virtual world. Our approach was not only to create the most advanced free roaming VR experience, but to raise the bar with some surprising new ideas that will amaze the audience – and a high capacity that is so important for theme parks.”