What’s the best location-based VR option for your entertainment venue?
Virtual reality (VR) is advancing at a fast pace and the demand for the experience from enthusiastic customers is rising. In fact, the location-based virtual reality market is expected to keep growing, making it a promising market in terms of volume and revenue.
But since the amount of companies trying to stake their claim in this “golden era” of VR is rising, operators with the desire to invest and introduce virtual reality into their locations are facing the near-impossible task of knowing which is the right choice for their facility. They find themselves overwhelmed by the staggering amount of systems to choose from and by the challenge of determining which of these companies were legitimate standouts in the space.
This article will tell you what you should take into consideration, give you some helpful insights to find the best attraction for your entertainment venue, and help you maximize its success.
Variety of products and sizes
Your options in virtual reality range from very small attractions like the Virtual Rabbids ride to large free-roam experiences like Zero Latency and many alternatives in between.
With the free roam format, players can maneuver around large areas, while interacting with a large group of players. The experiences are typically linear narrative-driven walking tours and tend to be longer in duration in comparison with other VR games. This format comes with a higher per-game, per-player cost, requires a significant amount of floor space and typically forces the players to wear heavy backpacks that house both the computer and battery pack that power the virtual reality headsets.
With the virtual reality ride format, players don’t really move except for looking around the environment and the attraction allows one, maybe two players at a time. The experiences are typically fast-paced and don’t require much interaction from the player. This format comes with a lower per-game cost, and a space-efficient solution that requires a very small footprint, but the systems normally don’t require an operator which can lead to potential hygiene risks as the ride’s headsets and controls are expected to be cleaned by the player.
In comparison, the HOLOGATE ARENA is a compact, social, multiplayer VR enclosure that sits between these two extremes. Accommodating up to 4 players, with a small 5×5 meter footprint, and without bulky backpacks, players of all ages and VR experience can find immersive, action-filled entertainment with our robust games library, which they can share with their friends and family. With a single attendant, 5-minute games, and a full turnkey system, the HOLOGATE ARENA delivers maximum throughput and replay value.
The proof is in the pudding
To know if a system is right for your space, it is important to test and play it yourself. At first glance, many virtual reality systems look quite similar and operators tend to make their decisions based on costs and descriptions only. But with virtual reality, it really comes down to the overall customer experience and how the games “feel”. Did you enjoy the game? Did the quality meet your expectations? Did you have the urge to jump right back in the game as soon it was over? Was the system easy to operate? Playing the attraction yourself is the only way to truly understand what the experience is like and whether it will work in your location.
The endorsement and adoption by reputable family entertainment centers (FECs), the quantity of systems in the marketplace, and your accessibility to installations is an easy way to determine if a company is established and worthy to be included to your shortlist. If you and your team can’t seem to find the system to experience for yourself, you may want to hold off from purchasing an attraction without kicking the tires first. Although, on the other hand, it could be the case of a great system just not yet reaching your area. You could end up being the first one to install this system and potentially profit as a pioneer, but still, this option is considered riskier.
HOLOGATE has the quantity of systems in the marketplace with more than 300 installations worldwide, and the endorsement and adoption by the leading FECs that have seen over 5 million players to date. We are the global market leader in location-based VR and have the largest network of any virtual reality company. We are confident that you will quickly realize why our experience has resonated with so many.
“Hologate is one of our top VR attractions. It’s reliable, operator friendly, always busy, and people love the experience. It’s worked so well for us we got a second one!”
Brent Bushnell, Two Bit Circus
In addition to being a fun and transformative experience for customers, the attraction must operate at the utmost space-to-profit efficiency.
Start calculating the potential revenue per square meter/foot by identifying the required square footage for each system and determine the number of players you can get through the system per hour.
HOLOGATE ARENA requires 25 square meters / 269 square feet and allows up to 4 people per session. With most of our games being 5 minutes in length, this comes out be approximately 40 players an hour. On average, our clients record 1,700 players per month, charging approximately $6 to $12 per game. This results in a rapid return on investment that typically occurs within a year from the installation.
Furthermore, operational efficiency is crucial for an attraction’s success. An intuitive interface for the employees who operate the system is key to maximizing customer throughput.
HOLOGATE is not only proficient in creating virtual worlds and engineering well thought out systems. We started our careers as operators and understand the challenges that an entertainment venue faces every day. Our attractions are designed to make the lives of owners and operators easier.
“We chose Hologate because it is a great experience. It was very easy to install and did not require a room or walls around it to work. We liked that people around the game can see what the players are doing and how they are interacting with the game. The experience sells itself.”
Eddie Hamann, Andretti Indoor Karting and Games
Having a wide variety of games allows you to target different audiences with your virtual reality attraction. However, quantity alone isn’t enough. The games’ quality and exclusivity to the platform is also a huge consideration.
The number of people owning a VR headset at home is rising. When deciding on a system for your location, it would be wise to choose a system that offers unique games that are exclusive to that system and not also offered to the home VR user. You want to offer a reason for the customer to get off the couch, get out of the house, and come to your space for an experience that only you offer.
HOLOGATE’s exclusive and growing game library of popular game titles and a variety of genres ensures a broad appeal to all audiences and makes customers keep coming back for more.
As the location-based VR industry continues to grow in popularity, we are seeing many new upstart companies attempting to enter the marketplace. But how reliable are they? Can they provide a product that will continue to improve, continue to release new experiences, and most importantly, provide the long-term support and services to ensure that your system is continually working to keep you and your customers happy?
Choose a reliable company with the essential experience and a proven record of success.
HOLOGATE has the fastest growing network in the entire location-based virtual reality ecosystem. This is attributed to our reliable and proficient distribution partners and our world-class technical support team that keeps everything running efficiently and smoothly while being quick to respond to our customer’s needs.
“Hologate does it all – it provides a completely immersive experience, intense gameplay for all ages, and with the ongoing content development, will provide playability for years to come.”
Russ Ray, Fast Lane Entertainment
Before you decide
Remember, “kick the tires” and try the experiences yourself. This is the only surefire way to know if it’s worthy of your facility.
If you wish to learn more about virtual reality and which platform would be the best for you, don’t hesitate to contact us. We’re always glad to help!Contact us