Pixel Artworks, the immersive experience studio, working in partnership with Aircards has created ‘The Butterfly Trail,’ a mixed reality experience that has multiple world-first technology features and is due to launch on 5 September 2023 at Outernet London, the immersive entertainment district in the heart of London, near Tottenham Court Road. The Butterfly Trail will guide visitors through intrepid explorer Professor Peter Pelegrin’s Botanical Workshop and into his Glass House, where they can interact with the experience without the need for a special device, headset or downloaded mobile app – just the browser on their smartphone.
The Butterfly Trail, which opens to the public on 5th September, contains several world-first, mixed-reality moments that push the boundaries of immersive design. The first is part of the interactive ‘Metamorphosis Machine’ experience which starts with a skills-based slingshot game, built in partnership with Aircards on 8th Wall’s WebAR platform. The experience launches from within Outernet’s 25K native resolution ‘Now Building’, which features the most advanced wrap around screens in the world spanning 23,000 sq feet.
The audience are immersed in a spectacular mix of rendered and real-time animated content. After successfully releasing magical AR butterflies from their chrysalises, the audience can activate the Metamorphosis Machine with their smartphone, triggering real-time animations on the machine displayed on the screens. Pixel Artworks created the rendered and real-time Unreal animations as well as the first of its kind communications interface between Unreal and the AR experience, developed in partnership with Aircards.
A second ground-breaking first feature developed by Aircards is a new WebAR hand-tracking feature which enables the audience to hold a magical butterfly in the palm of their hand or on their finger. With on-device image and video capture of the hand-holding moment, the audience can download and share their experience online or direct to their camera roll.
Professor Pelegrin’s Botanical Workshop and The Glass House spaces both feature a 32-channel spatial audio mix which was created in partnership with Gramercy Park Studios. This is the most complex spatial mix yet to be deployed at Outernet and provides an intriguing, complimentary soundscape for the visual experience.
Lastly, Pixel Artworks further support the mission to create magical and measurable experiences by collaborating with Aircards to deploy Metalitix, an innovative spatial analytics platform that measures visitor interactions in both the virtual and physical environment. The results gathered will help our understanding of how people engage with the experience and will influence the future of how immersive experiences are created.
Tom Burch, Managing Director at Pixel Artworks, said: “It’s wonderous to think you can step into nature in the heart of London and hold butterflies in your hand! Launching The Butterfly Trail at Outernet, one of the UK’s most visited attractions, with such innovative experiential technology helps us break creative boundaries with audiences looking for new, exciting immersive experiences. This is the next generation of experiential entertainment, demonstrating the potential of AR when seamlessly integrated with imagined, immersive worlds - elevating our everyday experiences to new heights.”
Lewis Collins, Chief Commercial Officer at Aircards, commented: “We were absolutely thrilled to collaborate with Pixel Artworks on this innovative project. It features genuinely groundbreaking features, including the deployment of our own brand-new analytics platform, Metalitix. This tool enables us to analyse visitor interaction in the virtual world like never before. By mapping those virtual interactions against the real-world location, we can build a truly cutting edge visualisation of an experience that is both virtual and physical.”
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Established in 2005, Pixel Artworks have pioneered the use of light & pixel technology to develop magical & measurable shared experiences for the world’s largest retailers, brands and entertainment venues. Their epic, immersive artworks offer the unique opportunity for physical and digital interaction together - creating unforgettable memories and building hugely valuable, long-lasting emotional connections with people.
Aircards is a UK based production studio specialising in the development of Web-based Augmented and Virtual Reality experiences, with a highly talented in-house team of WebAR/VR developers, 3D artists, project managers and creatives.
They provide an end-to-end service that includes consulting, ideation, design, development, hosting and analytics. Aircards is dedicated to providing innovative solutions to create engaging experiences that enhance brand awareness and drive engagement.
Aircards is the creator of Metalitix, a cutting edge spatial analytics platform that enables the analysis of user behaviour, interaction and engagement within 3D environments
Aircards is trusted by top global brands including PepsiCo, Samsung, Yahoo!, Warner Bros, Disney & many more. Learn more at www.aircards.co and www.metalitix.com.
Outernet London is the immersive entertainment district designed to provide experiences for entertainment and brands the likes of which have never been seen before. Outernet features the world’s first of its kind space- The Now Building - containing an immense digital canvas: a 4-storey high, floor to ceiling, 360 degree, 16k screen surface – the most advanced of its kind in the world. London will kick off a global roll out with sites planned in New York, LA and Europe. Outernet’s latest visitor figures which show that the The Now Building was averaging weekly visitor numbers of 123K. Based on this yearly reach will be 6.3 million putting The Now Building on track to be ahead of the current Top 3 attractions in the UK - The Crown Estate, Natural History Museum and The British Museum.
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