Monday, April 21, 2008

Amusement Parks Today

The amusement park visitor of today is vastly different than the visitor of yesteryear. Visitors, especially the younger generations, are expecting more and more customized entertainment experiences. The days of the passive viewer are over. Today is all about interaction and choices. The quickening pace of daily living combined with advance in personal technology and the rapidly changing media landscape all contribute to reshape what guests are expecting out of amusement parks. There’s an erosion of patience. People’s tolerance for waiting in lines is decreasing at a rapid rate. To address shifting tastes, the broader amusement park industry will have to rewrite its operating rules.

Guests of amusement parks today want instant gratification, personalization, and interaction. They want to add their own input to an attraction. Disney has already come up with some attractions to cater to these needs: Toy Story Mania, Monster’s Inc. Laugh Floor, and Turtle Talk with Crush. Toy Story Mania is so advanced its computers will accommodate riders of various skill levels. Some parks may not be able to afford such costly attractions. Alternatives: Mack Splash Battle, Sally interactive rides, Hydro-fighter coasters, Kuka Robotic Arm rides.

You could write another article on the different queue systems to reduce waiting times. Another solution is merely to build higher capacity rides. There has also been more stress recently on quality over quantity. Guests nowadays are more interested in riding a ‘fun’ ride, not a record break that lasts less than 20 seconds.

What is the cause of this? Personal technology. Video games such as the Wii. When you have such an interactive game at home, visitors at parks expect games that are at the very least just as advanced, if not more so.


Anonymous said...

As a theme park industry veteran of 12 years who specializes in producing interactive attractions at the major league level, you are 100% correct.

Guests want to know, "what do I get to do?"

Nicholas Tucker said...

Thanks, it is really refreshing to get feedback, good or bad. If you don't mind me asking, what specific interactive attractions do you produce?