Ubisoft to open a theme park in Kuala Lumpur

No, it's not April 1st. This is actually happening.

It seems that Ubisoft are a company with their fingers in all the digital pies. A company at the forefront of console games, one of the leaders in developing their games for VR technology, as well as having their own in-house film studio to manage their recent forays into Hollywood, Ubisoft have today announced that they’re planning to enter the world of theme parks.

In partnership with RSG, a Malaysian developer specialising in theme parks, Ubisoft plan to open the park in Kuala Lumpur in 2020. With 10,000 square metres to play with we wonder how Ubisoft plan to make use of this space; just how much will they dedicate to sprawling rollercoasters, or will the focus be on creating immersive replicas of the in-game worlds? An abundance of physical rollercoasters seems unlikely, considering Ubisoft’s well-known interest in developing VR software and the success of 3D simulator rides which are able to offer a larger than life experience in a smaller space. It seems much more likely that the rides will utilise much of the VR research Ubisoft have been undertaking.

There’s currently no information on which franchises Ubisoft will be using in the park, but a fairly obvious one would be the Assassin’s Creed series. The ever-expanding series, now with a movie slated for release in December 2016, has a plethora of possible ride ideas and a several in-game worlds players would love to be able to explore. We can imagine a free-run virtual simulator ride, allowing guests to explore the city skyline of their choice, real climbing walls for assassin training, various historical eras built up to explore. So many merch opportunities.

Considering the tropical location, another franchise contender could be the Far Cry series; it’s easy to envision an island adventure park, with paint-ball style shooting areas and VR flights over the area.

A likely part of the park is the Raving Rabbids series, which would be a needed family-friendly portion of the park focussing on the rabbit Rayman offshoots who already have their own Nickelodeon series. These raving rabbits could quite easily have several chaos-based rides from bumper cars, to a log flume, to a virtual 3D adventure similar to the Despicable Me: Minion Mayhem ride based in Universal Florida.

Ubisoft have several other franchises which would be interesting to see included in the park including the Tom Clancy series, Prince of Persia, Watch Dogs, even Just Dance.

Ubisoft aren’t the only games company showing an interest in in the world of theme parks, with Nintendo signing a deal with Universal not long ago. It seems that Nintendo have a set of playful, larger-than-life franchises that are much more suited and easily transferable to a theme park world, but clearly Ubisoft have a plan of action and it will be interesting to discover more of what it is as more news is released. We know we’ve already checked the price of flights to Kuala Lumpur and we’d best start saving now.

Main Image: Flickr © Andy Cull