The latest interactive 4D attraction was launched this Summer at the Bioscope park in France. Mission Océan is a sea safari based on the principle of CinemAction, developed exclusively by Alterface. For the first time ever in a single collective game, it combines the three-dimensional aspect of images with sound, moving seats, special effects and lights. What is more, these features are included in an amusing and educational interactive game.
Alterface, a Belgian company that leads the global market for interactive attractions, has created, in collaboration with La Compagnie des Alpes, a sea safari in four dimensions for its Bioscope park, located in Ungersheim, France. Mission Océan opened its doors in July 2008 and notched up a 100% satisfaction score, in a Summer study of visitors to the park.
Seated on the moving ecoscooters, visitors are immersed in an ocean of 3D images. Their mission is to photograph the most attractive fish. Thanks to the movements, the depth of the images, the 4.1 sound and the special effects, they are plunged into a colorful and enchanting world – yet one that is also true to life. This sea safari aims to be both entertaining and educational. The most beautiful images taken by the visitors are awarded points. Almost as soon as children have gone through the exit door, they usually want to return to try and beat their best score!
As renowned specialist in interactivity, Alterface has yet again underlined its creative force by extending the concept of CinemAction, which now also includes 3D images and special effects. “Our goal is simple: we want to entertain the visitor, ” says Benoît Cornet, CEO of Alterface. “To do that, we make use of every resource at our disposal. Our exclusive technology has time and again proven its ability to provide interactivity for groups of players, among friends or with the family. We have now added new dimensions, thanks to a host of special effects in the screening room and astonishingly realistic 3D images. Nowadays, theme park visitors often own very sophisticated and powerful video systems. When they come to a park, they want to see more and to experience amazing adventures there. CinemAction offers them this unique combination, by stimulating people’s eyes, ears and their sense of touch – and all this during a first-class scenario with which they can interact for real. We take a whole group into a world of sensations in which they will be involved in friendly competition. Those who do best in the competition ‘pass through the image’ and see themselves projected prominently on the screen. We call on very high-quality technology to provide a platform for an essential, immediate and universal pleasure: playing.”
Visitors are guided to the first room, surrounded by a highly accurate recreation of the scenery of a marine base built by the Bioscope’s production team. There, via a videoconference, the editor-in-chief of a magazine gives them a mission. They will become undersea photo-reporters, tasked with taking the most beautiful photos of the rarest fish. After this two-minute introduction, the group heads for the immersion room. Here two new hosts welcome them: the friendly but slightly grumpy mechanic and Kookie, the robot-camera. Kookie will guide the photo-reporters, perched on their moving ecoscooters, over the bottom of the sea. During the five minutes of visual and audio immersion in this 3D world, the bottom of the sea changes and the most extraordinary creatures appear in front of the players’ cameras. Since this is entertainment in the form of a competition, each photo is awarded points. Photos are scored on the rarity of the fish and how good the photos look. At the end, the best reporter is projected on the screen – captured in full action and the editor-in-chief then congratulates him or her.
While the fun aspect is very important, the educational side is not forgotten, as the fish represented here do actually exist. The content has been developed in collaboration with three subsidiaries of La Compagnie des Alpes: the Bioscope, the Parks Production team, and the St Malo aquarium, whom scientists carefully selected species that live in an ecosystem, which is itself representative of an ecosystem found in nature.
Mission Océan opened its doors in July 2008 at the Bioscope park, based in Ungersheim, France. The Compagnie des Alpes conducted a satisfaction survey among its Summer visitors. The new attraction developed by Alterface achieved a notable score of 100%!
”As a park focused on sustainable development and respect for the environment, we did not want a shooting gallery”, explains Christian Douchement, CEO of the Bioscope. “So Yves Valente’s idea (Art Director of the Parks Production team) of shooting with a photographic camera was very much in keeping with our philosophy”.
An exportable success
This sea safari can be set up in any traditional building, whatever its size and spatial arrangement. The entire technical infrastructure is provided and installed by the Alterface teams. According to the space available, from 5 to 40 people can be accommodated on the automated scooters, which are connected to the cameras and provide feedback when a photo is taken. An integrated counter informs the player how the score is progressing. Wearing the special glasses, the players can fully enjoy the impact of the 3D images shown on a screen giant in high definition. The sound system generates a model in 4.1. The air cannons, mist sprayers and light effects create the special effects, adding to the system and creating an overall feeling that is truly sensational. In a 40-seat configuration, the attraction can accommodate up to 320 people an hour. The attraction is for families, is well adapted to groups, and accessible for children over the age of six. It is also fine for people with limited mobility.
The quality of the installation, its reliability and safety all help to create a moment of amusement that will stimulate the senses. The roll of honor helps to create friendly competition and the atmosphere in the screening room is always excellent. The flexibility and ease with which the system can be set up facilitate content diversification, upgrades or changes. When the project is started, the client can vary the balance between the entertainment and educational aspects. As an alternative to the undersea scenery, clients could select scenery for a traditional safari, with jungle animals or tropical birds. They can also add a teaching room for visitors who, after leaving the projection room, want to find out more about the species they have photographed. A sales system for those photos taken on the spot can also be added, to further increase the profitability of this CinemAction.
In France, it took little more than six months for the project led by Alterface, the Compagnie des Alpes and written by Philippe Vidal to go from launch to the point of putting a broad smile on the faces of the first visitors.
For more information, illustrations in high definition or an interview with Benoit Cornet, CEO of Alterface, contact Olivier on +32/477.33.15.02 or by email: email@example.com
To see an demo video of Mission Océan, visit our Website: alterface.com (Interactive Theaters/Sea Safari/Medias – High Definition, be patient…)
Founded in 2001, Alterface develops, markets and implements interactive entertainment and/or education solutions. Initially a spin-off from the Université catholique de Louvain (Louvain-la-Neuve), Alterface today has 25 employees at its site in Belgium and has an office in Los Angeles (USA). Its exclusive technology and expertise enable Alterface to position itself as a key contact for its many clients, theme parks and museums, located all over the world. Discover Alterface’s know-how by visiting its website: www.alterface.com
About La Compagnie des Alpes
With more than 27 million visitors greeted in 2007, in its 38 sites, Compagnie des Alpes (CDA) is major player in the European Leisure industry.
Worldwide leader in the ski areas where it operates 17 key domains in the Alps (among which Tignes, Val d’Isère, les Arcs, la Plagne, les Menuires, Méribel, Chamonix ), its Leisure Parks activity has become in five years a leading player in the European Theme Park sector, each year welcoming almost 10 million visitors at its 21 sites in six European countries (France, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Switzerland and United Kingdom).
Compagnie des Alpes – Leisure Parks is also a portfolio of emblematic brands including Parc Astérix, Walibi, Grévin or le Bioscope and Grand Aquarium de Saint Malo, a combination of theme parks, nature and animal parks and tourist attractions.
Its is number 1 of the sector in its category in France, Belgium and number 2 in the Netherlands.
Consolidated sales reached Euro 505.7 million for the financial year ending September 30, 2007, with Group net profit of Euro 28.1 million.
For more information: compagniedesalpes.com