I never thought I'd see the day when we got a sequel to Blade Runner, let alone a VR and immersive experience at Comic-Con. For those of you who attended the pop culture celebration in San Diego and are obsessed with Ridley Scott's 1982 sci-fi masterpiece—and I know there are many of you—I hope you didn't miss out on the chance to step into the world of Blade Runner in Alcon Entertainment and Johnnie Walker's special event to promote the upcoming release of Warner Bros.' Blade Runner 2049. And, in case you couldn't make it to the event, I have impressions and 50 photos from the experience.
Easily the best activation I've taken part with at any Comic-Con, the Blade Runner 2049 Experience starts with you and your group being seated in D-Box theater seats. You then strap on an Oculus VR headset and seemingly fly through the air in one of the technologically advanced transport vehicles from the Blade Runner films. The D-Box theater seats allow you to feel as well as see the futuristic world around you as you soar among the skyscrapers of Los Angeles circa 2049. After several minutes, though, the VR ride comes to an abrupt halt when your car crashes through a wall.
You lift your headset to find that you no longer need the virtual reality video, because you've been transported to the world of the new movie, as you walk onto a futuristic Los Angeles street bathed in neon light and filled with things to do, things to see, and characters to interact with (and who aren't shy to interact with you). Actors stroll through the space wearing the vibrant fashions that will be featured in the new Blade Runner film. Police officers question bystanders to see if anyone witnessed the car crash, and patrons at the nearby noodle bar (an homage to the place frequented by Harrison Ford in the original film) will strike up a conversation if you take a seat on an open stool.
If you can get past the bouncer, you can enter a special night club where they are serving Johnnie Walker—another nod to the original film—to guests 21 and over. While soaking in the neon-soaked scenery, you might be asked to take a test to see if you're a human or a replicant. But don't worry, you have nothing to worry about... as long as you can prove that you're human, that is.
Even if you are a replicant, though, you can still enjoy the undeniably immersive atmosphere of the Blade Runner 2049 Experience. Although Comic-Con is over, hopefully the positive reception this event received in San Diego will allow this experience to find continued life at other locations, as it's a world that I would love to spend more time in, and it's a must-see for fans of Ridley Scott's 1982 film and those looking forward to Denis Villeneuve's continuation of the Rick Deckard story. In the meantime, you can check out 50 photos from the unique Comic-Con experience below. [Photo Credit: Jordan Smith / Daily Dead]
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