Inside The Void in a galaxy far, far away


I WAS a Stormtrooper for 15 minutes and the experience blew me away, literally.

I had the chance to be part of a hyper-reality battle scene in Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire, utilising high-end technology such as head-mounted displays and sensory vest.

The multi-sensory immersive experience was unlike anything I had encountered before; it is available in Malaysia for the first time at The Void, Skytropolis Funland, Resorts World Genting.

The head-mounted display provided a 360-degree experience as I stepped inside a spaceship – a world I had only seen in Star Wars movies.

What I witnessed was truly breathtaking. Other Stormtroopers and I were given the chance to battle large monsters in a surreal landscape.

The virtual reality production by ILMxLAB were so believable there were moments when I smelled smoke.

I managed to move comfortably despite wearing such high-end gear as there were no wires attached.

I am no gamer, neither do I enjoy battle scenes in movies, but it was really exciting.

Although at the back of my mind I knew what I was experiencing was make-believe and the bullets that hit me could not kill, the battle gave me an adrenaline rush and I was really frightened at some points.

The vest allowed me to feel the heat each time a bullet landed. At one point during the battle I even ducked to avoid being shot.

However, I went on the offensive soon enough, with guns blazing against my enemy.

Fans will be pleased to know that Darth Vader, R2-D2 and the other iconic characters were all there in my virtual world.

I will not spoil it for those planning to experience this first-of-its-kind production in Asia by sharing too many details.

Suffice to say, if you have not thought of a gift for your loved ones this Christmas or New Year, The Void would be great for those who like adventure and are game for a new experience.

Each session can take a maximum of four participants and only those above the age of 10 are allowed.

Members of the media were given the opportunity to try it out for themselves at the launch of The Void here – the biggest outside the United States and the first in Asia.

Present at the launch were The Void chairman and chief executive officer Craig Watson, The Void Asia chief executive officer John D. Watkins Jr as well as Resorts World Genting Leisure and Hospitality executive vice-president Datuk Edward Holloway.

Also present were Genting Malaysia Bhd executive director and chief information officer Hui Lim, Genting Malaysia strategies and operations head Lee Thiam Kit and Genting Malaysia Theme Park senior vice-president Brian Machamer.

“Genting strives to partner with global leaders in their fields and when it comes to virtual reality, The Void represents the success of technology in extending the frontiers of hyper reality.

“We are honoured to be The Void’s first location in their expansion plan in Asia,” said Holloway.

The Void uses custom VR technology along with physical stages to create immersive experiences. Its proprietary designed equipment allows sensory effects to be felt from multiple points.

Also available is Ralph Breaks VR, an original hyper-reality experience based on the hit film Ralph Breaks the Internet.

Tickets are available for pre-order on www.rwgenting.com


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