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Legoland's upcoming New York park has an attraction that makes riders feel like they've shrunk down to the size of a Lego brick

INSIDER logoINSIDER 8/16/2020 insider@insider.com (Tarah Chieffi)
a person standing in front of a store: The Lego Factory Adventure ride will make riders feel like they've been shrunken down to the size of a Lego brick. Legoland New York Resort © Legoland New York Resort The Lego Factory Adventure ride will make riders feel like they've been shrunken down to the size of a Lego brick. Legoland New York Resort
  • Legoland New York Resort, which is expected to open in spring 2021, will debut its first Lego Factory Adventure ride.
  • The attraction is said to make riders feel as though they've shrunk down to the size of a Lego.
  • The ride will use on-ride motion tracking and facial-detection technology to turn guests into their own personalized Lego Minifigures, complete with customized hairstyles, shirt colors, and more.
  • The new technology from Legoland, experiential design company Holovis, and ride manufacturer ETF Ride Systems makes each Lego Minifigure look like the rider and mimic their movements.
  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

When Legoland New York Resort opens in New York's Hudson Valley in spring 2021, the Lego Factory Adventure ride will use new technology to transform riders into Lego Minifigures that look and move just like they do.

Legoland theme parks in Florida and California offer a walking Lego Factory Tour where guests can learn the history of Lego and how Lego bricks are made. But the Lego Factory Adventure attraction at Legoland's upcoming New York location is said to be the first ride-on "tour" of its kind. 

Though the park's July 4, 2020, opening was delayed due to COVID-19, Legoland debuted the ride's first-of-its-kind technology at the 2019 International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions Expo in Orlando, Florida.

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The Lego Factory Adventure ride takes guests through the entire process of Lego creation

When guests board the Lego Factory Adventure ride, they will get a "brick's eye view" of how Lego bricks are made, Legoland New York Resort Public Relations Manager Matt Besterman told Insider.

The host for this journey is Professor Brick, who Besterman described as a "really fun mad scientist character." 

While the ride is similar to the walking Lego Factory Tour in some ways, Besterman says Professor Brick does things a bit differently than other tour guides.  

"You'll get the details of how Lego bricks are actually made but in a more imaginative fantastical way," Besterman said. For instance, there may be a fire-breathing dragon melting down the pellets that are used to make Lego bricks, but of course that's not how it's really done.

According to Besterman, at one point while traveling through Professor Brick's factory, the ride vehicle will appear to transform into Lego elements and as riders move past a Lego box, they will see themselves on that box as Minifigures.

By the ride's end, "you're packed into a box and the box then opens up into a kid's bedroom where Lego bricks are ready to be played with," Besterman added. "It's just a really cool experience."

The Lego Factory Adventure ride vehicles are made to look like those used in real Lego factories. Legoland New York Resort © Provided by INSIDER The Lego Factory Adventure ride vehicles are made to look like those used in real Lego factories. Legoland New York Resort

Legoland partnered with other themed entertainment giants to bring the ride to life


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The Lego Factory Adventure ride is the result of a collaboration between Merlin Entertainments (which owns the Legoland parks), experiential design company Holovis, and ride manufacturer ETF Ride Systems

ETF, based in the Netherlands, designed and built the ride vehicles to look like the Automated Guided Vehicles that are used in real Lego factories, while Holovis is debuting a new HoloTrac technology that it says will offer guests personalized adventures "where they can interact with the space and experience a nonlinear narrative."

To do that, the visitor attractions resource Blooloop reports that Holovis will implement the world's first use of on-ride tracking technology to identify various physical attributes of each rider while also mapping their position in the virtual space. This information will be quickly compiled – in less than half a second, according to InPark Magazine – to create a Lego Minifigure that is personalized to each rider. 

The possible combinations for each Lego Minifigure are nearly endless

According to an InPark Magazine article from November 2019, the HoloTrac technology — powered by "deep neural-network-based facial detection and recognition algorithms" — will analyze various attributes of each rider to perform the Minifigure transformation. 

Besterman told Insider there are more than 100 million possible combinations. 

"It's based on characteristics like hair color, hair style, whether you're wearing glasses, and your shirt color," he said of the technology. 

"When you think about how many brick combinations you can make with six standard Lego bricks, it's more than 100 million," he added. "The technology really is so robust."

According to Besterman, each personalized Minifigure can also mimic certain movements by smiling, waving, or raising its hands along with the rider.

a woman wearing a costume: If a rider wears glasses, so will their Minifigure. Legoland New York Resort © Legoland New York Resort If a rider wears glasses, so will their Minifigure. Legoland New York Resort

The technology used to create the Lego Factory Adventure doesn't require riders to wear 3D glasses

Unlike many screen-based or 3D rides, the Lego Factory Adventure ride does not require riders to wear glasses to experience the special effects. 

"There's a number of different technologies working in tandem to make you feel like you're immersed in this experience," Besterman said. "No glasses needed."

Legoland New York Resort is set to open in spring of 2021. The Lego Factory Adventure ride will be located in the Bricktopia section of the park.

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