Experiential design firm Holovis has released details of its latest project, Thorpe Park's newest attraction: The Walking Dead: The Ride.
Holovis created the immersive queue line, and preshow, as well as dramatic on-board effects and the climactic 'death defying' finale for the attraction, which is a retrofit of the park's X: No Way Out ride, the world's first backwards, dark coaster. It takes riders on a thrilling adventure as they try to escape from murderous 'Walkers' - the name given to the undead antagonists of the popular AMC show.
During the preshow riders are loaded into a 'Safe Zone', and witness as it is compromised by a group of Walkers. Riders are shown mock CCTV footage of Walkers attacking the area of the queue that the riders have just exited, as well as trying to force themselves through the window, a 4K screen, into the Safe Zone.
Following the preshow, guests make their way through the ride in a batched queue, which features zonal surround audio and lighting, designed to create a feeling of isolation and make the guests think that they are the only ones left.
The immersive media - which was shot and produced at Holovis' Demonstration Campus in the UK - continues throughout the loading station and on the coaster itself. With physical and digital effects, as well as live actors, being used during key moments of the ride.
Peter Cliff, creative director at Holovis, said: "This is a great example of our turnkey capability, as we've worked with Merlin Magic Making from the initial design phase through to capturing and creating all the media and integrating it with the AV and lighting across the whole attraction and special effects. This has allowed us to really maximise the impact, as the repercussions from things that are being seen and heard are interconnected to fit the gripping story."
"It also showcases how existing attractions can be given a new lease of life through integrated media, special effects and theming making it a quick and easy transition, with minimal structural work required."