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Air New Zealand debuts Magic Leap virtual reality game

Air New Zealand has ventured into the world of virtual reality marketing with its Fact or Fantasy concept game that features a world where people witness a giant kauri tree grow, meet a grumpy Hobbit and and have a bird’s eye view of a helicopter bungee jump.

The game premiered at Magic Leap’s inaugural L.E.A.P conference in Los Angeles, where selected partners showcased products on the virtual reality platform.

Magic Leap has been one of the most heavily funded startups in history. The conference comes as the company faces scrutiny for never having shipped a product despite having raised $2.3bn from investors since it was founded in 2010.

Developed by British visual effects company Framestore, The Fact or Fantasy Game of New Zealand sees players wear a Magic Leap One to view a physical 3D map of the country that takes them to a magical world where players witness various scenes and answer quiz questions to compete for golden eggs.

Air New Zealand’s general manager of global brand and content marketing, Jodi Williams, said: “By getting in early and being both a developer and creator we have been able to test and learn, creating an incredible platform from which to explore the potential of this technology as part of our Future Aircraft Cabin Experience programme including concepts such as being able to reframe customers’ perceptions of the physical cabin environment.

“This first concept stemmed from the idea of getting together to play a board game when travelling with family and friends. From this creative inspiration, we developed a multiplayer game where up to four players are immersed in a mixed reality world that brings New Zealand to life to both inspire and educate travellers.”

Framestore CEO Sir William Sargent said: “We are storytellers at Framestore, first and foremost; innovation courses in our veins. The promise of mixed reality excites us enormously, and we are delighted that this project with Air New Zealand and Magic Leap provides us with the chance to show the world the extraordinary potential of this new medium, as we experiment with new ways to share narratives.”

In other AI projects, the airline has recently experimented with an AI human ambassador, as well as various virtual reality applications and more recently included an augmented reality virtual doorway as part of an outdoor activation in Chicago.

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