WePlayVR: Putting the spark back into UK retailtainment


We’re excited to announce our latest partnership in the retail space with Capital and Regional. Together, we’re launching our classic WePlayVR in the heart of Luton’s shopping mall, just five minutes from our global headquarters. Now live, we’re continuing the momentum of bringing VR to the retail shopping experience.

The 900,000 sq.ft Mall in Luton has undergone rapid changes and growth since purchased by Capital and Regional in 2006. It is a primary shopping destination with an average weekly footfall of 382,609 and 158 retailers with an attractive close proximity to Luton Airport. We’re excited to bring WePlayVR to Luton locals and visitors stopping by.

The WePlayVR installation is part of Capital and Regional’s new initiative to transform UK retail and introduce virtual reality for the first time to Luton shoppers. It’s a special activation for us as it’s right in our own backyard by way of a short five-minute drive from our offices. Being so close means we can share WePlayVR not only with the public but also with friends and family who can all enjoy a selection of four unique game titles developed by us here at AiSolve. We are especially excited to share our first multiplayer experience, Star Defence.

Capital and Regional is a UK-focussed property specialist tailored to investing and managing shopping centres in the local communities. With a track record of delivering value in the retail and leisure management space, Capital and Regional is well known for spotting emerging opportunities across a market value of £1billion in the UK.

Diversifying the retail experience

Recent changes in retail has meant visitors to shopping destinations demand more. Consumers want something more unique, a new discovery to make purchasing more about buying into experience over just another transaction.

In this digital world, it’s not enough to have exciting shop window displays- visitors want excitement and engagement that draws them in week after week. In a recent Forbes study, 72% of millennials choose experience over material items. This is the new ‘purchasing happiness’ people want to feel when visiting shopping malls.

Europe is still on the verge of overcoming significant challenges to compete with international retail destinations. Many investors and landlords in Europe are still reluctant to invest into new leisure or retailtainment concepts because it’s not in their initial purpose.

Retailers that diversify their economy and add leisure and entertainment to create attractive destinations raise the bar for bringing in regular and new consumers. They can all agree that leisure is a new anchor in helping to create a more appealing way for shoppers to have a successful mix of experience.

WePlayVR breathes new life back into the retail world that has been lacking innovation within recent years.

Global experiences, local visitors

Our location based VR arena captures the hearts and imaginations of girls, boys, adults and families through every experience, in every destination. WePlayVR connects with each player in different ways, whether they like thrills, exploration or simply experiencing visually captivating worlds as a means of escape. WePlayVR has it all. In our VR attractions, visitors don’t just become players, they become adventurers and heroes.

With a location such as The Mall Luton, the entire family can be engaged and entertained when they step inside the finite space of WePlayVR, only to be transported to infinite dimensions our skilled team at AiSolve have created.

Along with Capital and Regional, we understand with such a diverse and thriving location, having both local residents, international students from the University of Bedfordshire and people stopping by from Luton Airport, we can capture people of all ages, genders and demographics in one place.

Bringing momentum to UK shoppers

After the recent success of Belle Epine shopping mall in France and Centro Colombo and Arrabida Shopping in Portugal, we know WePlayVR will be a perfect fit for UK shoppers as well. WePlayVR brings family fun out of FECs and straight into the mall.

Read our recent blog here about Belle Epine and Portugal.

Luton is already home to The Galaxy, an entertainment zone with Cineworld cinema and Tenpin bowling. However, WePlayVR is a first for Luton, introducing a new concept which coincides nicely with the already popular traditional entertainment spaces.

When visiting WePlayVR, people will have a unique choice of experiences in single player and multiplayer configurations.  After showcasing Star Defence, our fourth WePlayVR title in our gaming catalogue at MAPIC and IAAPA just a couple of weeks ago, we know after a great reception there this would be the perfect fit for The Mall Luton. In Star Defence, players will team up and explore and defend a spaceship under attack by drones.

This latest installation marks a significant time for AiSolve and retailtainment. WePlayVR has not only become a favourite for family entertainment centres and theme parks but is also establishing an innovative approach to everyday shopping experiences.

Additionally, with our games being localised to suit the international market and more titles being added to the library, AiSolve looks forward to helping bring location based VR entertainment to more shopping malls, in more countries and to more families.