World’s First VR Bumper Cars in Nuremberg, Germany

Bumper Cars have been a staple of theme parks forever. They’ve also remained pretty much unchanged for the past 100 years. That is until now. One theme park in Nuremberg, Germany is combining bumper cars with Virtual Reality to offer up a brand new experience.

It’s called Steampunk VR Scooter and it recently opened at the Erlebnispark Schloss Thurn theme park. The new attraction comes from a combined effort of motion capture company Qualisys, location-based virtual reality leader VR Holodeck and rides developer VR Coaster.

VR Bumper Cars Nuremberg Germany - YellRobot
credit: VR Coaster/Qualisys/HolodeckVR

Steampunk VR Scooter Puts Players in Virtual Arena

In Steampunk VR Scooter, players drive bumper cars in a vast Wild West style virtual arena where the cars appear as steampunk style vehicles. Players can team up with or take on other riders while driving around the virtual environment.

It’s not just other players that have to be contended with. Riders will also encounter robotic enemies and virtual obstacles coming from every direction. They’ll also be able to collect upgrades and special powerups throughout the game.

The perceived speed of the vehicles is much faster than real bumper cars, the arena is much bigger and it will lead the drivers past steep cliffs and giant abysses.

“The vision of VR bumper cars has been in our heads for a long time, and our tests from last year showed what is possible,” said Dr. Stephan Ott, co-founder of HolodeckVR. “Qualisys mocap technology was the missing piece in the jigsaw. With their support, Steampunk VR Scooters has become a reality and changed the traditional bumper cars experience forever.”

Bumper Cars Equipped With Motion Capture Cameras

The VR bumper cars are equipped with sensors and multiple Miqus mocapture cameras which allow tracking of up to 80 targets in the Virtual Reality environment. The tiny Miqus motion capture cameras are designed for ease of use and speed.

“This is a fantastic achievement for HolodeckVR, VR Coaster and everybody at Erlebnispark Schloss Thurn. We are delighted to be a part of this groundbreaking new technology, and it shows that Qualisys continues to make great strides in the entertainment and VR sectors,” said Martin Holmberg, senior motion capture specialist at Qualisys said in a press release.

Check out our articles on a VR Ninja Dojo and an Augmented Reality Rembrandt experience