Twilight Saga: Midnight Ride
- Client: Lionsgate
- Location: Lionsgate Entertainment World, Zhuhai, China
- Concept Development + Refinement
- Project + Production Management
- Technical, Lighting + Audio Design
- Schematic Design
- Design Development
- Interactive Technologies
- Graphic Design + Wayfinding
- Media Production
- In-Field Art Direction
- Implementation + Production Supervision
- IP Management + Quality Control
Twilight Saga: Midnight Ride is a first-of-its-kind attraction combining Virtual Reality (VR) with simulator technology and a dynamic, real-time game engine that invites guests to hop onto a dirt bike and race through the moon-lit forests alongside Jacob and the Black Pack.
Although the design team had experience with each of the individual mechanics that went into the attraction, including the interactive controls, three-hundred and sixty degrees of real-time generated content, and a custom 6-DOF (degrees of freedom) motorcycle motion platform, there were still questions about what the guest experience would be like once all these components were added together. As development progressed, Thinkwell discovered three principles that would determine the success of this never-before-attempted project. First, it could not simply feel like an elaborate arcade game. Second, it had to be a communal experience. Third, it had to tell a story.
With those principles agreed upon, Thinkwell collaborated closely with the attraction engineers at CAVU Designwerks, game developers at DreamCraft Attractions and the multimedia specialists at Framestore. Through months of iterative development, the team was able to satisfy the first principle by letting guests embody and control their own character within the virtual Twilight universe, including how fast they accelerate and which direction they steer. The second principle was solved with a point-source onboard audio solution, providing a rich binaural soundscape during the ride without covering guests’ ears with headphones so they could still hear their friends and family laugh, yell and cheer. Lastly, story remains king. Using real-time characters plus timed story beats, guests enjoy the unexpected, while also experiencing a holistic story that extends the canon of the Twilight Saga.