Hasbro and Dan Mintz’s Hollywood film studio DMG Entertainment are launching interactive Transformers virtual reality and augmented reality centers in China — a nation where the robots in disguise films have thrived in recent years.
The centers will treat guests to “digital simulation experiences” based on the Transformers universe in both VR and AR. The first center will open in Shanghai this summer, and the companies will add more in other Chinese centers over the next five years.
According to a spokesperson, these will have “VR battle-walk-through experiences, VR/AR rides [such as driving/flying simulators], interactive digital experiences, and more.” These Transformers will be based on the beloved Generation One designs of the original 1980s toy line, TV show, and comics, “but we will be applying a photo-realistic and real-world finish to it. It will resemble the original toys/comics/TV shows more than Bay movies.”
You’ll be able to battle the Decepticons on Cybertron alongside Autobot leader Optimus Prime, or climb behind the wheel of Bumblebee (another beloved Autobot) and drive it.
“We’re pushing the boundaries of creative storytelling by harnessing innovative, immersive and interactive technology that brings fans into the Transformers world like never before,” said Mintz, in a statement.
The Transformers franchise, which began with a toy line more than 30 years ago, has expanded to include comic books, animated series, films, video games and consumer products. The most recent Transformers film, 2014’s Transformers: Age of Extinction, earned more than $850 million internationally. But the experience won’t use the designs of those bots.
Transformers: The Last Knight opens in theaters on June 21 with additional sequels planned for release in 2018 and 2019.
“We’re very excited to work with DMG as we launch into the rapidly growing space of VR, AR and other mixed reality experiences,” said Simon Waters, a senior vice president at Hasbro, in a statement. “The Transformers digital simulation centers will offer fans an incredibly immersive experience.”
DMG, in collaboration with S2BN, is also in development on a Transformers Live show. DMG Entertainment is a media and entertainment company valued at more than $6 billion. It made films such as Looper and Iron Man 3.
GamesBeat managing editor Jason Wilson contributed to this report.