The world’s first Virtual Reality bumper cars

[This press release from Qualisys describes what looks like a clever use of presence to enhance a traditional amusement park attraction; follow the link below for pictures and videos, and there are more videos on YouTube here and here. –Matthew]

Qualisys and HolodeckVR join forces to produce the world’s first Virtual Reality bumper cars

The “Steampunk VR Scooter” attraction at Erlebnispark Schloss Thurn in Germany gives visitors a unique, futuristic VR experience with all the interactive fun of traditional fairground bumper cars

April 29, 2019

Gothenburg, 29 April 2019 —Qualisys, the leading provider of precision motion capture technology and 3D tracking systems has teamed up with VR experts HolodeckVR to develop the world’s first Virtual Reality bumper cars attraction, that was unveiled at the Erlebnispark Schloss Thurn theme park in Nuremberg, Germany on April 13th.

The “Steampunk VR Scooter” will take visitors into a Wild West style arena where they will compete against each other riding retro-futuristic steam engines.

Qualisys has delivered a multi-camera Miqus mocap system for the vehicles, involving the low latency tracking of 80 targets with hundreds of markers in the volume.

The company’s partnership with HolodeckVR has solved a long-standing issue around how best to introduce mocap technology into VR attractions. The quality of Qualisys tracking systems, along with its unique “daisy-chain” camera set-up, means many cameras can be connected easily despite the complex and demanding environment of a large-scale VR experience.

HolodeckVR has developed Steampunk VR Scooter alongside German Virtual Reality ride specialists VR Coaster, and together they have taken interactive Virtual Reality to a totally new level. Steampunk is more exciting and more immersive than any driving simulator or video games arcade. The attraction at Erlebnispark Schloss Thurn will make use of all features that VR has to offer: The perceived speed of the vehicles is much faster than real bumper cars, the arena is much bigger and it will lead the drivers past steep cliffs and giant abysses.

Guests will not only compete with each other, but also against giant robotic enemies that will confront the drivers. These can be defeated with teamwork and by taking advantage of the many extras and upgrades that can be picked up by players throughout the game.

Dr Stephan Otto, co-founder of HolodeckVR is excited about the launch: “The vision of VR bumper cars has been in our heads for a long time, and our tests from last year showed what is possible,” he said. “Qualisys mocap technology was the missing piece in the jigsaw. With their support, Steampunk VR Scooters has become a reality and changed the traditional bumper cars experience forever.”

“This is a fantastic achievement for HolodeckVR, VR Coaster and everybody at Erlebnispark Schloss Thurn,” said Martin Holmberg, Senior Motion Capture Specialist at Qualisys. “We are delighted to be a part of this groundbreaking new technology, and it shows that Qualisys continues to make great strides in the entertainment and VR sectors.”

For further information, please contact:

Helene Holmqvist Rydén
Marketing and Communication Manager Qualisys Global

+46 31 336 94 33
+46 703 60 72 25

Pictures and videos:

About Qualisys

Qualisys is a leading provider of motion capture technology and has a long history of supplying research, engineering and sports facilities with high-end camera systems and expertise in capturing and analyzing movements. Now we are entering the Animation market.

Qualisys offers a wide range of products and services and has offices in Gothenburg, Chicago and Shanghai. Qualisys is certified according to ISO 9001:2015, our clinical products are compliant with Medical Device Directive 93/42/EEC and have FDA clearance (K171547), which demonstrates our commitment to provide highest possible quality products and services to our customers. The certifications reflect our ongoing investment in technology, process and people.

About HolodeckVR

HolodeckVR is a location-based virtual reality leader that delivers the highest throughput and player density and the greatest scalability of any free-roam VR provider in the world.

The patented HolodeckVR technology is easy to operate yet offers extremely high user throughput and precise tracking for large areas.

HolodeckVR can map a large number of objects at the same time, in compact spaces as well as areas as large as stadiums. However, only a small percentage of the usual tracking hardware is needed making HolodeckVR the most efficient solution for free-roaming VR installations with high user throughput.


One response to “The world’s first Virtual Reality bumper cars”

  1. natalie chiumento

    I think that using VR for attractions like bumper cars is a great idea. I think especially for places that have attractions like bumper cars many likely feel that the standard bumper car experience is a “been there, done that,” experience, and that many likely don’t revisit the attraction to ride. VR is a genius way to bring the experience to a whole different level, and essentially bring the rider to another world. Not only will the VR experience bring telepresence from the headsets but also through the fact that riders can interact with other cars, because while they are working against each other, they bring an element that they are all fighting against, making the experience more connected. There are a few roller coasters that use VR as the article mentioned, and I think it is going to be exciting to have this technology implemented into non-thrill rides in order to still give the rider an otherworldly experience. I think it is going to be really interesting watching attractions and rides become further equipped with VR to create an ultimate rider experience.

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