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Special Feature www.parkworld-online.com


Richard Wechsler, director of design, Entertainment Design Corporation


We live in a world that has been radically changed by a digital


technology revolution, especially in the field of entertainment, social media and communication. This revolution is embraced and native to a millennial and Gen X population that has grown up on video games and ‘App-timazation,’ the ability to adapt their experience of the world to their own interests.


These changes impact the evolution of Theme


Park and attraction design which must now appeal to a younger demographic that is at home with all kinds of digital technology, from computers to smart phones and gaming devices. Theme Parks depend on popular intellectual


properties (IPs) to leverage and insure an emotional connection with their guests when they contemplate the expense of a new themed ride or attraction. In the past, IPs, most famously Harry Potter at


Universal Studios, have come from books and movies, but in our view, the next iteration of the theme park experience will be as qualitatively different from the Disney/Universal template as the


original Disneyland was from the iron ride amusement parks of the 40s and 50s. “Guests at theme parks don’t want to take a


vacation from video games.” (John Gaudiosi, Fortune media analyst) We anticipate a trend towards immersive guest


experiences inspired by different genres of Video Game IP-narratives. This trend towards VGIP-based entertainment is


already happening. VGIP-based attractions are being integrated into traditional theme parks like Disney, Universal and Futurescope, while video game (eSports) venues are starting to pop up in urban centers like Orange County, Oakland and Las Vegas.


Media critic, Jay Rosen, coined the term ‘The


People Formerly Known as the Audience’ to describe this new demographic, hungry for narrative experiences that give them an active role to play through new technologies—from virtual-, augmented-, and mixed reality to haptics, facial recognition and eye-tracking—that put guests at the centre of their story experiences.


Entertainment Design Corporation (EDC) has


been recognised as a leader in designing and producing award-winning attractions that combine art and cutting-edge technology all over the world. Over the last decade, EDC has created themed


attractions for Integrated Resorts (Resorts World Sentosa and Galaxy Macau), Themeparks (Motiongate Dubai) as well as Video Game-related shows (Video Games Live) and activations (Call of Duty World Championship).


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