The VR experience requires schlepping to a mall, and at $29.95, might be a bit pricey. But it approximates the sense of being inside a “Star Wars” movie and helping fans “live out their fantasy,” as the Void’s promotional materials put it, wearing a headset and backpack that allows players to see and feel every part of their environment.
The “feel” part is especially impressive, including heat from the planet’s molten surface and the recoil from blasters as participants walk through in interactive adventure and mow down Stormtroopers. It’s also, notably, a more social endeavor, as groups of four go through the experience.
Interestingly, the appeal of these augmented and virtual permutations also goes beyond the stereotype of hard-core gamers. Lenovo, for example, says that the demographics of its offering are relatively broad — concentrated among consumers age 18-44, with roughly a 60-40 split between men and women.
The bottom line is that those who are invested enough in “Star Wars” to greet people with “May the 4th be with you” have an increasing array of high-tech options designed to let them do much more than just passively absorb it on the couch. While we haven’t entered “Westworld” territory yet, for those whose appetite for George Lucas’ galaxy doesn’t end at the IMAX screen, these just might be the experiences you’re looking for.