Interview with Hakan Yildirici, Managing Partner of Amega Entertainment
The Brass Ring Awards are the Oscars of the attractions industry. These prizes are presented by the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions to honor excellence in the industry and are by far the most important award an amusement professional can achieve. The ceremony takes place every year during the IAAPA Attractions Expo in Orlando. We are happy to share with you the success of our partner Amega Entertainment, that was awarded a Brass Ring in the “Best New Product” category during the latest edition of the trade show. The Turkish manufacturer amazed the audience with a futuristic and eye-catching motion simulator named Cinecoaster 360 VR. The attraction combines virtual reality and rider experiences: the hardware allows 300-degree rotation and implements true-to-life sensory effects. Last but not least, Cinecoaster 360 VR uses the movies designed by us. We’re very proud to have contributed to the success of such a popular attraction, but this is also a testament to the fact that hardware and software have to work together in order to deliver authentic thrills. We’ve reached Hakan Yildirici, Managing Partner of Amega Entertainment, to discuss the secrets behind Cinecoaster 360 VR and its success. You are now a member of the Brass Ring winners’ club. What was your first thought when they told you about the award? I think our product really deserves this. Besides, we cared so much about this award and we really wanted to win. Every year the competition grows more and it becomes even harder to be among the best ones. Taking full account of this, we wanted to apply when we thought we were ready for this award. While we were preparing for the application, we were confident that we would have received this award and we felt this excitement at every stage of our preparation. Can you please tell us how Cinecoaster 360 VR was born? What are the features that make it stand out and made this achievement possible? Great question! As you may understand from its name, Cinecoster 360 VR is a hybrid product that combines roller coaster and visual content. We came up with the idea of a way to easily get roller coasters, which is the most successful and popular product ever made in the entertainment industry, to people. Investing in a roller coaster is very expensive and the area involved in its construction has to be extremely large. At the end of all this investment and production, it is the excitement and joy that matters. Starting exactly from this point, we have tried to seize this joy and excitement. Even if we couldn’t reach the same level as a roller coaster, we thought that we produced a better product when it is scaled. We strove until we got the best result, combining a motion system that simulates roller coaster movements in the best possible way and a visual experience with virtual reality.

The Brass Ring Award won by AMEGA Entertainment in front of the Cinecoaster 360 VR, which can simulate the most realistic roller coaster movements.

  Video content specifically designed for the attractions industry is what allows great hardware to shine. Tell us why you decided to use the movies designed by Red Raion to power your flagship attraction. That’s exactly what I wanted to tell you. I want to answer this question as a continuation of my previous response. One of the most important parameters of ensuring that the product is close to reality is to ensure that its content is good. No matter how good your movement system is, if the image and sound are not good enough, the audience can’t become involved in the experience and can’t feel that excitement. We had to work with the best companies to ensure this. We acted in the same sense of quality in all mechanical and electronic manufacturing parts. We didn’t use parts of poor quality in the manufacturing and we did not compromise on quality. We tried to use the best products developed in the industry in all the equipment we needed and used in the project. We have been following Red Raion’s products closely and we thought that it would have been the ideal VR content supplier for us. Luckily we were right and we are getting very good returns. Amega Entertainment is an engineering company specialized in motion control technology. How did this experience help you creating a futuristic virtual reality experience? I can say that we have been working very hard on simulators as a company specialized in the production of machines and simulators with nearly 20 years of engineering experience. With this experience, we have a mission to produce new generation toys oriented to the entertainment industry by developing technology day by day. Especially the evolution of VR and AR in recent years and the intensive demand from people have led us to be more interested in this matter. So we decided to shift our research and development in this direction. You can see the result. When did you realize that VR would have completely changed the attractions industry? As a matter of fact, we have been aware of VR since the first years of its appearance. But until the last few years, I believed that head-mounted displays and contents developed for virtual reality were not ready yet. For many years we only settled to follow. But in recent years I started following people's curiosity about VR and began to think that this could be a very important element in the future of new products. And in a short time, very successful hardware and great contents showed up. Before we were too late, we combined this technology with motion technology, which we are experts in, to produce this wonderful product. With Cinecoaster 360 VR you’ve created the futuristic attraction amusement professionals have been looking for. What are your future plans? Are you already focused on building the next big thing in the industry? Of course, we are. Every major success entails a much greater responsibility. We are a brand that produces very unique products in the industry and can be considered as leaders in our own sector. Therefore, we already felt such responsibility and we accepted our company mission. Furthermore, we will continue to work hard and develop new products in order to repeat this success in the future and protect our position in the industry of fun. We will not give up on our journey to work with the best amusement professionals.

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