Theme Park Rides Become More Exciting with VR
Visitors of themed parks this summer are in for heightened experiences, which will jolt their sense of adventure. Theme park rides are made even more fun with the help pf virtual reality.
VR Makes Theme Park Rides Experience More Immersive
Imagine the excitement one would feel, flying alongside Superman, seeing the world as the Man of Steel sees it, or the fear as one comes face to face with King Kong, a 30 feet towering mass of strength?
These experiences are now possible thanks to virtual reality headsets on roller coaster rides all over the country.
“In terms of virtual reality, this has the chance to revolutionize the roller coaster experience,” said Colleen Mangone, director of media relations at the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions. “The guests physically ride the roller coaster while wearing the virtual reality headsets. So their visual line follows a story line, or they could be accompanying a superhero. They are flying next to the superhero and as the superhero dives down, the coaster is diving down.”
This season is expected to be thrilling as several exciting theme park rides are springing up across the country.
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Mako, a new SeaWorld shark-themed attraction, is set to open in Orlando in June, and is argued to be the tallest and fastest coaster. It is expected to go at a speed of up to 73 mph at 200 ft high.
Different Attractions in Different Places
In Los Angeles, Universal Studios Hollywood is buzzing as a new Walking Dead attraction is expected to commence in July. Another exciting experience, the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, has already opened there. Dollywood’s Lightning Rod will also thrill enthusiasts of wooden coaster in Tennessee.
In Florida, Universal Orlando will in July debut Skull Island: Reign of Kong, one of the most anticipated theme park rides. Visitors will explore the jungle home of the 30-foot-tall, 18-foot-wide King Kong, and everything will be brought to life by 3-D technology and animatronics.
The dark ride, Frozen Ever After is expected to open at Disney World in Lake Buena in late June in Epcot’s Norway Pavilion. Riders will be taken in a boat into the kingdom of Arendelle during the winter festival, where they’ll encounter characters from Frozen.
Legoland California in Carlsbad debuted Ninjago in early May. There, riders get the chance to influence the outcome of the battle by using hand gestures to shoot, instead of laser guns, to help fight off evil during the experience.
In early May, Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio opened Valravn, which is touted to be the world’s tallest, fastest, and longest dive coaster. Riders of the coaster will hang over the edge of the first hill, which is 20 stories high, for four seconds before dropping off at a 90-degree angle, at a speed of 75 mph.
In Georgia, Six Flags Over Georgia will debut DC’s Super Friends kids area in time for Memorial Day weekend. There will be five family experiences themed on superheroes and villains. These will include Superman Tower of Power, Batcopters, Wonder Woman Flight School, Harley Quinn Games, and lastly, The Joker Funhouse Coaster.
“It’s going to be a great year,” said Arthur Levine, a theme park expert for About.com. “For a while there the economy tanked and parks kind of retreated. We weren’t really seeing a lot of new things happening at parks. Now they are re-investing and they are opening up new attractions and new roller coasters so that there really are types of exciting things to talk about.”