Be honest: You want a dragon.
Who doesn’t? Ever since the first concept of scaly, fire-breathing, winged beasts who fly through the air and eat… well, whatever they want, humans have been terrified and enthralled by the mythical creatures. It’s one of the reasons why the DreamWorks’ How to Train Your Dragon series of films and TV shows have done so well – we all want a large, scaly, fire-breathing (and, somehow, cat-like) dragon as a pet. Well, now you get to ride one.
In DreamWorks Dragons Flight Academy, an immersive virtual reality (VR) experience from Dreamscape located at the Westfield Century City mall, you and up to seven of your friends can choose avatars and get enlisted by Hiccup and Astrid (and their dragons, Toothless and Stormfly) into the Dragons Flight Academy to partake in a twelve-minute rescue mission to the Hidden World!
And what a ride it is! The adventure begins in Berk, the same cliff-top North Sea island from the movies and TV show, where Vikings and dragons now live side by side. After joining the Dragons Flight Academy, you and your fellow recruits practice flying over rough seas, past vicious monsters, through gorgeous colorful caves, underwater, and through ice caverns. Your mission – and the only way to earn your “dragon wings” – is to save a cadre of dragon eggs from poachers deep in the North Sea caves.
You wait to climb onto your new reptilian steed in an antechamber with maps of Flying Courses, masks of the avatar choices, and even a framed window looking into a pen where friendly dragons snort and nod at you. Once inside, you and your team hop onto bikes, don your VR gear, fist bump your new avatar buddies, and start the experience. The immersive visuals are film quality and the action is non-stop. In fact, if there is a quibble to be had with the experience, it’s that the visuals in some sections are so breathtaking, but you’re so caught up in the excitement that you don’t get a chance to savor them! The runtime is perfect – long enough to really feel sated, but short enough that you want to hop back on immediately! It’s a great experience to share with friends, kids, family, or even if you just need to take some time for yourself and feel the wind rush past you.
DreamWorks Dragons Flight Academy is a triumph. One expects immersive productions like this at the big parks owned by companies which boast talking mice or wizard towns, but Dreamscape Immersive gives you that experience without the need for an extended stay or expensive price tag. The quality is unsurprising, considering Dreamscape is backed by successful Hollywood studios and talent such as 21st Century Fox, WarnerMedia, Viacom, Steven Spielberg, and Hans Zimmer. The company aims to combine powerful Hollywood storytelling with the visceral excitement of theme park rides to create experiences that “push the limits of virtual reality.” With DreamWorks Dragons Flight Academy, they’re off to a high-flying start!