Why play a game when you can live it?
Next year, visitors to Utah-based The Void will be doing just that. Ken Bretschneider plans to open what the Washington Post described as “laser tag on steroids,” or Virtual Entertainment Centers (VEC) that will let visitors strap on VR gear and wander around, exploring virtual worlds. The first VEC is expected to open in Pleasant Grove, Utah in the summer of 2016.
Bretschneider initially planned to open a 45-acre theme park in Evermore, Utah, but had to put that on hold because he did not have enough money, according to local affiliate Fox 13. Instead, the company will start with an expansion on one of the park’s attractions with The Void.
“The Void is the first and very real step to us getting Evermore (the physical park) off the ground,” the Evermore Facebook page said.
In the meantime, The Void aims to provide an immersive experience from the moment you walk through the doorswhich are designed to “reflect the feeling that you have passed through both time and space, where ancient past meets distant future,” the website said.
Choose your adventurebe it visiting haunted castles, dinosaur safaris, or futuristic battlefields. But instead of just strapping on a helmet-like device and flailing your arms through the living room air, players fully suit up.
Along with the Rapture HMD (head-mounted display), you’ll wear the Rapture Vest, with four types of haptic feedback, and Rapture Gloves, which allow users to interact with the virtual physical world around them.
“We live in an age where endless entertainment options exist at our fingertips, yet we still have a real need to get out of the house and share new experiences with our friends and family,” the site said.
“At The Void you walk into new dimensions and experience worlds without limits,” it continued. “From fighting intergalactic wars on alien planets, to casting spells in the darkest of dungeons, The Void presents the future of entertainment.”
Some scenes require a seat in the two-person motion simulators, which perform 360-degree motion over three axis rotations (roll, pitch, yaw), as well as lift.
Others may wander The Void’s 60-by-60-foot Game Pods, where up to 10 players can compete in different scenarios, with changes in air pressure and temperature, moisture, and actual touch-interaction with objects both real and virtual.
Enter multiplayer mode to to play competitively or cooperatively with friends.
“Only limited by imagination, our advanced Virtual-Reality technologies allow you to see, move, and feel our digital worlds in a completely immersive and realistic way,” the company website said.
The Void has plans for global expansion, with plans for locations throughout North and South America, Asia, Europe, and Australia.