Hub Zero – A day out for gamers
Gamers, rejoice! If you are a fan of theme parks and video games, then Hub Zero is definitely for you.
Hub Zero is not only the United Arab Emirates’ but the entire region’s first immersive entertainment hub. It is like a theme park that promises a fully interactive gaming experience from all its attractions. Located in City Walk, Jumeirah, it will not be hard at all to find as it is locatable with most GPS applications. There are also a lot of dining or snacking options to choose from inside, namely Nitro Ice Bytes, Hub Cafe and The Server, and outside Hub Zero, (as usual, theme park price) so finding food and refreshments will not be a problem.
Despite the fact that it is mostly video game themed, you don’t need to be a hardcore video gaming fan to enjoy these attractions with your family or friends or perhaps even on your own.
Ticket price ranges from 95 AED (United Arab Emirates Dirhams) – Child Pass, AED 160 (Master Pass) offers unlimited access to all ground floor attractions, and AED 195 (Hacker Pass) – fast pass and offers unlimited access to ground floor attractions as well. If you visit during weekdays or non-busy days, there isn’t really much of a need for a Hacker Pass since line queue will be short. Since it is summer, there are plenty of promotions on websites like Groupon that you will find and may get you more savings. We availed our tickets through Cobone and got a pretty good discount.
Most of their attractions that you’re going to want to visit are mainly on the ground floor. Hence, the passes sold only offer ground floor access. The upper floor showcases Karaoke booths, Party Halls (Pixel 1, 2 and 3), a hall with pool tables (Lucky Break) and Time Warp Arcade, all of which you can enjoy with a group of friends for a separate fee.
Purchasing any kind of pass, except Child Pass, will give you access to 14 attractions (2 of these are for children or toddlers only) on the ground floor. All of which are grouped into three categories: Shooter, Thriller, and Hyper.
Gears of War: Laser Siege
This attraction is basically a laser tag game embedded with Gears of War elements. The guns and props inside look really amazing and to be honest is the best attraction for me. We had a few more minutes to spare in the park and the first attraction that I want to experience again that came to mind is this. However, possibly due to the time it takes to play, schedule, explain to the players and set up this attraction, you are allowed to play only once. But I swear this doesn’t make the experience unsatisfying, if anything, it makes you want to come back on a different day.
The first thing you need to do when you get inside Hub Zero is going to this booth and set a schedule for your game. Not to worry, the kind staff will inform you of this and assist you. Once you’ve set your schedule, feel free to explore around the park a bit. Make sure that you come back to this attraction a few minutes before your set time to be early. Enjoy the game that will probably get you hooked on laser tag!
This attraction features an immersive 3D shooting game where you play as a sniper who needs to finish off all their enemies, otherwise, they will finish you. You have a special gun with an amazing design that you can use to shoot your in game enemies, and you can even move around in real life to dodge their shots.
Just make sure not to move around too much or else you might pull those VR goggles and real life will collapse on you.
Resident Evil: Bio Terror
This attraction features an interactive 3D dark ride where you can shoot zombies inside the Umbrella Corp lab using the laser guns built in the ride. They also provide special 3D glasses. The more zombies (and bats) you shoot, the higher the score you will get. We went here twice and both times I got the highest score. Not-so-Pro tip: Just keep on shooting!
This attraction boasts of the only wireless virtual reality experience in Dubai. I’m no expert on these, but from what I saw, it is wireless probably because it uses mobile phones and Bluetooth controllers instead of the typical PC set up. Because of this, the freedom of movement with the stunning 3D visuals create a unique and immersive experience.
Battlefield: Armoured Assault
Sadly, this attraction is still in the works and has a huge “Coming Soon!” sign on it.
This attraction is a 4D cinema based on the video game of the same name. If you’re not familiar with 4D, it is like the 3D experience but enhanced with vibrating and moving scenes, complete with water and air effects that are in synchronize with the movie.
Dragon Age: Flight of the Wardens
I would say this is the best attraction among those in the Thriller category and is definitely not for those with a weak heart. This ride is like a roller coaster that is in synchronize with a movie playing in a large curved screen. Another great thing about this attraction is that it only hosts a few people at a time, so the experience becomes exclusive when you are with a group.
Final Fantasy VII: Escape from Midgar
Unfortunately, this attraction was under maintenance when we went to Hub Zero.
Sports Academy featuring PES (Pro Evolution Soccer)
Who says gamers do not do sports? This attraction features a high-tech soccer simulator where you can practice your skills. This boasts the latest Kinect software. If you want more, there is also an option to go on a head-to-head PES tournament.
Hero Zone: Vertical Adventure
The most exhausting attraction as this one tests your physical fitness in different climbing obstacles. These test your abilities beyond the button pressing exercises that video games give you. They have various wall climbing, pole climbing and other kinds of climbing that even I couldn’t name, with safety harnesses, of course.
A laser maze that makes you feel like a top secret spy on an important top secret mission. This attraction tests your agility and flexibility. You must make it through the laser maze on time without breaking through any laser beam. You can play with a friend or go solo. There are also different difficulty levels to choose from if you like a challenge.
Possibly the most impressive racing game set up you’ll ever see. Experience this racing simulator with a stylish moving seat, realistic steering wheels and pedals, and three amazing 42” monitors.
Overall, Hub Zero is a one of a kind experience. It will probably take a long time before they have any competitors in the United Arab Emirates that feature the same concept, as these attractions are quite technologically advanced. I would say that I wish there could be more attractions, considering the amount of fee charged from the passes. Surely, they are developing more attractions to open in the future. But for now, promotions are everywhere and they will give you discounts or bundled with passes for other nearby attractions, you’ll just need to keep your internet eye open for them.
Learn more about Hub Zero here.