Virtual and Augmented reality seem to be the two leading technologies of our time with the capability of transforming our sensory experience across many premises and user scenarios. No wonder, a Statista report says that both of these technologies are supposed to achieve a market value of a whopping $20.4 billion this year only.
As Multisensory Virtual Reality has grown from strength to strength and is more capable to reproduce an environment realistically, even the theme and amusement parks are increasingly utilising VR technology to provide unmatched experiences to the visitors. In the years to come, we can expect more amusement parks to embrace this technology to help users feel the immersion. An increasing number of these and amusement parks are now utilising this technology for their benefits.
There are several real examples of augmenting the visitor experience by utilising this technology to make rides or roller coasters more enjoyable. Already several parks have retrofitted their rides by incorporating this technology. Though not all of these parks and their rides could offer similar level of immersion by using this technology, the attempt already proved to be worthy of effort. In this respect, it must be noted that some early adopters also preferred to discontinue this because of the difficulties they faced in leveraging the technology and the complexities involved in storytelling.
In spite of these mixed reactions and feedback from various corners, some theme parks already started with the VR-enhanced rides that in overall measure helped improving the visitor experience across parks. In this respect it is to be noted that the most successful VR-enhanced rides have become possible when they were conceptualised keeping the VR technology in mind.
The promise of virtual reality in creating most immersive theme park rides already seems to be huge. VR optimised rides will really become popular if they can break the stereotypes of VR experience and offer something uniquely immersive. The VR experience designed for the rides from the beginning of the launching the ride can really make the difference. A ride should be designed from scratch keeping the limits and capabilities of the VR technology in mind. We can even expect digital smell technology to appear as the next value addition for amusement park experience.
Some VR-enabled rides in theme parks have been designed to deliver most sophisticated immersive experience by combining 3D stereoscopic 360-degree visuals with the motion base. The motion simulator platforms allowing visitors to experience the movement and the sensations of motion right from their seats have been a key value addition to many of these theme parks.
The virtual reality based immersion for the roller coaster rides and certain amusement park settings are helping to incorporate never-before experience that earlier VR headsets could not deliver. Apart from allowing immersion through the audiovisual VR content, the motion and sensations of movement are further creating sensorial stimulation to augment the experience.
The best thing about these Sensory Theme and Amusement parks is that the unique and immersive experience is compelling many visitors to take the same rides multiple times. In overall measure, the VR based rides gave the amusement park businesses a fresh lease of life with opportunities for more sales and business conversion.