Coventry edge game company reveals exciting plans for virtual reality sites
A tech company on the outskirts of Coventry is planning to open its own virtual reality rooms after supplying international entertainment giants for more than 15 years.
If the plans come to fruition, it would allow people to experience safaris, alien invasions and dinosaurs in virtual worlds – and more.
Hollywood Gaming, based in Meriden, has become a market leader in delivering effects using its hardware and software solutions in collaboration with Hasbro, Paramount Pictures, Sony and EA on games distributed by Sega Amusements to theaters. arcade and family entertainment centers around the world.
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The company is run by directors Malcolm Barnes and Mark Evans and employs a handful of people who help bring the experiences to life.
Now, having been supported by the Business Ready program at the University of Warwick Science Park, the company is developing a new area of ââbusiness, Immersive Hollywood, where it will open its own venues and provide unique multisensory experiences for visitors.
Business Ready is a program that provides support to growing businesses and is managed by the University of Warwick Science Park Business Support Team.
It is funded by the European Regional Development Fund and Warwickshire County Council under the CW Business: Start, Grow & Scale program.
Seeks to raise Â£ 800,000
The company, which was founded in 2005, is currently planning this expansion and will be looking to raise around Â£ 800,000 in investment to get this aspect of the business off the ground and are already looking for locations where it could open its own site experiences.
Hollywood Gaming is working with a team of writers to help create the narratives of the new experiences, which Malcolm says will cost around Â£ 30 per person to play.
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The experiences currently being traced are a safari, an alien invasion and a world of dinosaurs.
Each would use the same physical props but, by adapting virtual reality and other 4D elements such as scent, movement and wind, each experience would be different despite taking place in the same place.
An excellent platform to create your own places
Malcolm said, âWe believe our experience and skills in this area provide us with a great platform to build our own sites and experiences.
âThe plan would be to make them interchangeable – so you could have a horror game for a group of visitors and then change it to be something kid friendly using the same props but with a different narrative. and different reality experiences.
âIn addition to extended reality, our games will come to life with accessories and also harness other senses such as touch and smell, which sets them apart from ordinary virtual reality experiences.
âThis kind of experience is normally reserved for big cities like London, but we want to bring it to the masses both by location and by our prices, which makes it much more accessible for people.
âIt won’t just be a 30 minute experience, the story will begin even before visitors arrive and make for a great day out for family and friends.â
The company intends to expand into strategic locations in the UK before expanding into Europe and North America.
Gaynor Matthews, a Business Ready Advisor, worked with Hollywood Gaming on how to position itself in the market and better explain what it does to different groups – be it business to business or business. to consumer for its new sites.
âGaynor has been very helpful,â said Malcolm. âWe approached Business Ready around August 2020 and in addition to supporting us in how we can market ourselves, she has been very supportive from a business mentoring standpoint.
âI am a strong believer in harnessing the specialized knowledge and skills of other people and Gaynor has been great in introducing us to other mentors for support which has helped us get to this stage.
âWe are grateful for the help we received from Business Ready in getting us here and we are looking forward to launching our first site. “
Gaynor said, âWe are delighted to have supported the Hollywood Gaming team as they embark on their expansion.
âBusiness Ready is here to help businesses that are ready to grow and take the next step. Hollywood Gaming is a prime example.
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