Sunday, July 21, 2024

Fivestone Studios provides multimedia services to newest interactive experience from The Escape Game

Award-winning immersive multimedia company Fivestone Studios is proud to detail their contributions to Cosmic Crisis, the latest interactive experience from The Escape Game (TEG).

Recently launched at TEG’s popular Opry Mills location in Nashville, this new game will also open soon at more of the company’s 37 retail locations across the country. Entering the thrilling interactive game, up to eight players band together in a deep-space adventure requiring fast thinking and focused cooperation to save the solar system. Guiding each journey is Hermes, an AI sidekick which provides mission-critical analysis and suggestions as the calamities ensue.

“Cosmic Crisis is our most exhilarating escape game yet, and we’re thrilled to unveil it to the world,” said Ben Enos, TEG’s Senior Director of Product Design. “We’ve taken innovation to new heights with this captivating adventure, immersing players in stunning environments, delivering heart-pounding cinematic moments, and offering a fully interactive asteroid-blasting mini game. Fivestone made for an awesome partner on this ambitious project! We can’t wait for our guests to blast off on this stellar new adventure!”

For the talents at Fivestone, this is their latest collaboration with the creators at TEG. Known for resolving giant-sized storytelling challenges using emerging technologies and patent processes, the firm’s multidisciplinary project team consisted of Executive Creative Director Traylor Woodall, Technical Director Kevin Harkness, Director of Innovation Justin Eslinger, Design Director Daniel Petrino, Producer Jennifer Bonior, Unreal Developers Jeff Crouse, Carson Carr, and Victor Petrov, Front End Developer Cody Parnell, and Video Editors Ken Conrad and Christian Whittemore.

From the very first discussions about this project, Enos and TEG’s Game Designer Troy Armstrong were clear about their epic ambitions. The many escape-game firsts on their wish list included interactive real-time graphics, state-of-the-art projection on the screens of the space vessel, the development and seamless integration of an onboard AI character, and unprecedented levels of interaction between the vessel’s physical controls and the digital aspects of the game.

Beginning with the user-experience workflow, under the guidance of Enos and Armstrong, Fivestone created design boards and flow charts to map out the story and user journey. Once this and Fivestone’s styleframes were approved, creation of game assets stepped into high gear.

According to Woodall, “Right away, our team started focusing on developing an interactive application using Epic Games’ Unreal Engine. There, our custom CG visuals would make up what players see through the spaceship’s screens. As they soar through space, dock at a space station, battle incoming asteroids and a black hole, and interact with Hermes, not only would our app deliver cinematic storytelling content, we knew it could also track and report progress in real-time.”

As the work of animators and developers came together, in-depth testing took place, ensuring the application connected successfully with the game’s many real-world elements, including buttons, controllers, other physical aspects of the ship, and puzzle pieces.

“After many years of working together, we have a solid understanding of how Ben, Troy, and their colleagues think, and what it takes to meet and exceed their expectations,” Harkness explained. “Overall, we’re very proud to see how seamlessly this attraction works to deliver thrilling experiences. All high-tech aspects of Cosmic Crisis raise the bar to exciting new levels for players.”

Harkness continued, “Where do we go from here? The sky’s the limit!”

More of Fivestone Studios’ work can be seen November 10 and 13-17 at the Attractions Technology Lab in Orlando.

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