Friday, December 8, 2023

Alterface’s first Popcorn Revenge Erratic Ride opens at Walibi Belgium

Alterface presents the world’s first Erratic® Ride featuring its proprietary Popcorn Revenge® IP in a ground-breaking attraction at Walibi Belgium, a park owned by the French entertainment group Compagnie des Alpes.

Compagnie des Alpes owns and operates a range of successful parks across Europe, which requires constant innovation. Alterface and its advanced interactive rides have been on the group’s radar so they did not hesitate when the team presented this new Erratic concept, combined with the powerful Popcorn IP.

The Popcorn Revenge® Erratic® Ride in Walibi Belgium is the first member of a new family of “visitor-centric” experiences. This compact version can accommodate attractions within a small space of 400 square meters. Larger parks requiring higher throughput can turn to the XXL version. The concept can also be applied to dueling rides or other interactive attractions, featuring diverse characters and themes.

The Erratic® Ride contains a number of projection techniques, video mapping, 3D shooting and special effects, as already demonstrated in many Alterface signature rides around the world. Combined with a unique touch of “choreography”, the Erratic® Ride turns transitions between scenes into fun experiences, instead of as in more traditional solutions, where these transitions can be rather cumbersome and disruptive.

Benoit Cornet, CEO & Founder of Alterface explains: “Non-linear ride considerations have been on our mind for a long time, but this particular concept came to life as we were disappointed with existing platform-based solutions. It was time for a higher capacity yet compact ride. The traditional ‘turntable’ system was weak on gameplay with problematic transitions and movements. So we combined our powerful SaltoTM show control engine with interactive technology and trackless vehicles, resulting in a totally new concept.”

The Popcorn Revenge® attraction is part of Walibi’s new Karma World, themed to the Bollywood Indian movie industry in classy, stylish decors. The park has chosen Popcorn Revenge® for three reasons. First, anyone can easily shoot without training or explanation, and still experience challenging gameplay. Second, young and old can have fun together, as a family or amongst friends. And finally, the indoor aspect makes this very appealing. As Belgium’s weather conditions are not always ideal, it is an asset for the park to have strong indoor attractions.

Jean-Christophe Parent, Managing Director of Walibi Belgium, says: “Our request to Alterface was to create an exciting cinema world with an innovative touch in terms of ride experience. They have met and even exceeded these expectations — there is currently no such attraction on the market in any other park. The popcorn expressions and gags are universal and appeal to all ages, with unsurpassed image rendering and projection quality! The new Erratic® Ride obviously involved some technical challenges but we managed to get it all right and work smoothly together with Alterface teams and expert partners. Seeing the unique jewel that we produced, we can now celebrate and enjoy it!”

The new popcorn IP is fully-owned and patented by Alterface, which opens a world of opportunities. The creative studio worked for years to pre-design a broad range of characters that can fit any movie theme such as pirate, space, horror, magic, and superhero. However, every show or attraction is as dynamic as the movie business: new and additional characters can be created and integrated into the game and environment. The characters are very versatile and can easily adapt to market & cultural preferences, or even geographic features.

The intention is to make the IP evolve so that, besides the cinema & studio world, it can fit any type of environment to ‘invade’: museum, restaurant, shopping mall, and many more. As universal IP, it will be developed into further attractions, while offering plenty of opportunities for merchandising, shooting game stations, mobile games, emoji/meme/gif, etc. Further development of the IP will be shared with Alterface partners in a very open and free manner.

“We are very excited to see the popcorn characters come to life and bring the new Erratic® Ride concept in practice. The user experience was the starting point of our erratic vision, Popcorn Revenge® in Walibi Belgium demonstrates that it is definitely the way forward. We have been rewriting the rules of visitor-centric attractions!” concludes Benoit Cornet.

Joe Kleiman
Joe Kleiman
Raised in San Diego on theme parks, zoos, and IMAX films, InPark's Senior Correspondent Joe Kleiman would expand his childhood loves into two decades as a projectionist and theater director within the giant screen industry. In addition to his work in commercial and museum operations, Joe has volunteered his time to animal husbandry at leading facilities in California and Texas and has played a leading management role for a number of performing arts companies. Joe previously served as News Editor and has remained a contributing author to InPark Magazine since 2011. HIs writing has also appeared in Sound & Communications, LF Examiner, Jim Hill Media, The Planetarian, Behind the Thrills, and MiceChat His blog, takes an unconventional look at the attractions industry. Follow on twitter @ThemesRenewed Joe lives in Sacramento, California with his wife, dog, and a ghost.

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