It’s the largest indoor kart track in the world with 25’ of elevation changes and banked turns. It winds through a 155,000 square foot facility that also has a ropes course/zipline, 120+ arcade games, six VR racing simulators, a two-level laser tag arena, a dark ride, an immersive VR experience, dining…and bowling.
Andretti Indoor Karting & Games, which opened on I-Drive in Orlando last fall, is the latest experience from the Andretti entertainment franchise and it goes farther than ever to combine the adrenaline of physical reality—racing, climbing, laser tag--with the electronic reality of arcade games, VR, and immersion.
Although the Andretti designers didn’t aspire to the aesthetic and storytelling standards of nearby Universal Studios, they are trailblazing in another important way—bringing together time-honored thrills with the latest in AV technology. Most of all, they seem to understand that fun does not have to be passive, that “interactive” can actually be active.
This is an important distinction because while interactive-while-sitting will continue to thrive, people’s appetite for excitement inevitably returns to the physical sensations of running, jumping, climbing, and driving.
One of the integrated attractions is a compact turnkey multiplayer virtual reality system from Hologate. Inside the “gate” players in headsets can fight avatars, and work as a team to escape various perils. The company claims that the high-resolution graphics on the 90fps headset make every motion feel real; no lagging, no buffering, and no motion sickness.
The facility also houses six VR simulator cars with two different vehicles, both the only simulators in commercial US in the country. The CXC Motion Pro II uses a virtual reality Oculus Rift headset and full motion actuators to generate the feeling of driving an actual racecar. The Cruden simulator uses 3D image generation and full motion actuators, and can accommodate up to three people.
In addition to AV-specific attractions like these, the facility is full of digital signage and televisions to provide atmosphere, entertainment and information throughout the building and in specialized applications in the bowling alley, café, and Skybar.
Among the companies who helped bring all this to life, BCI Integrated Solutions contracted directly with Andretti to provide the high-end audio visual, security, and monitoring systems, working with Andretti’s IT team including Joe Jenkins, Director of IT.
Allen Suman, BCI Integrated Solutions’ Vice President of Data Systems, explains.
“We installed about 50 Honeywell security cameras and intrusion detection, plus several other integrated systems for Andretti.” This includes security and fire systems, video management, access control systems, television and video wall systems, data management including network installation, data center build out, and cabling.
For the televisions, RF was chosen for ease of installation “We wired more than 70 different televisions around the facility. Being able to broadcast to every monitor is a cool thing to watch.” iPad control supports also add to the system.
Content is from sources including Vitec EZTV; display includes 10 Vizio videowalls, and an array of LG TVs. Control is via Crestron DM and audio via TesiraFORTE.
PRODUCT AT WORK
The dual-channel modulator with dual hardware scalers accepts content up to 1080p, and allows users to shape VGA signage for edge-to-edge presentation, and compensate for non-broadcast and PAL refresh rates. Able to deliver two HD programs in one channel, the QMOD-HDMI 2 can also output the content as a Multicast or Unicast IPTV stream. Four programs per rack space allows user to mix models to handle HDMI, SDI, Component, RGBHV and NTSC video sources. RF latency to 500 ms and RTP protocol for IP streaming.