|Entrance the Thrill 5-D Theater|
Carnival Breeze, the newest Carnival ship set to debut this summer in Europe, will feature what has been dubbed the "Thrill 5-D Theater" - a cinematic experience that goes beyond 3-D or even 4-D (whatever that may be). The 5-D experience features three-dimension visuals along with moving chairs (um, perhaps the fourth D stands for dyspepsia) along with sensory experiences like brushes whisking your ankles, bursts of air on the tiny hairs of your neck and pokers in the seatbacks to give you jolt when you least expect it.
I am pretty sure I experienced something similar to this when I visited Costa Deliziosa in 2010. That ship has a small cinema that offers, at the very least, a 4-D experience with short films, just as the Carnival Breeze "Thrill 5-D Theater" will do. If you have ever seen the movie based on "Honey, I Shrunk the Kids," at Disney's Epcot Center you also know what the "5-D" experience is like.
This is a truly fun thing, but if Costa is any indication, expect the theater itself to be small (about 150 seats) with a screen to match, the features to be short (five to ten minutes) and the cost to see just one of these short 5-D treats to be between five and ten dollars per person.
More FunShip 2.0
The new Thrill 5-D theater is just one aspect of the $500-million FunShip 2.0 initiative set forth by Carnival to add a new dimension of shipboard experience to the entire Carnival lineup, starting with Carnival Breeze first and then added to the rest of the fleet one ship at a time.
The rest of FunShip 2.0 includes new production shows of just 30 minutes in length where Carnival hopes to dazzle the audience with sound, lights, singing and dancing to hit songs. Another new feature is live versions of vintage television games shows all based on already popular board games from hit toymaker Hasbro. Together, these new production shows and the game shows will comprise most of the evening entertainment in the main show lounge onboard.
The six new game shows to be featured include: SORRY! SLIDERS, which involves a giant shuffleboard court; SIMON FLASH, where two teams of four guests wear giant light-up color boxes and must shuffle themselves quickly to repeat a color sequence; YAHTZEE BOWLING, with a giant ball and larger-than-life-sized bowling pins; OPERATION SAM DUNK, which is set up like a Skee-ball board where contestants try to get the balls into different slots on the "patient's" body, and CONNECT 4 BASKETBALL, which uses a basketball setup rather than the traditional checkers to play.
Now, I don't know about you, but that sounds like quite a mashup of games to me. A "mashup" is a new musical style where one hit song is simultaneously superimposed over another one in order to discover areas of synergy that would have otherwise gone unnoticed, probably forever. I don't recall Yahtzee having bowling balls or checkers having basketballs. But I'm not the game maker, and I don't have kids or play video games so I am not the best judge.
One of the key changes is that shipboard entertainment will no longer be "two shows per night, one for each dinner seating." The new format will have the production shows interspersed with the game shows, any one of them showing day or nighttime, several times during each cruise.
The rest of FunShip 2.0 revolves includes a deeper venture into shipboard comedy clubs, featuring a new personality for Carnival - George Lopez, popular late-night talk show host and comedian who will become Carnival's official "Curator of Comedy." The line says Lopez will be filming special features for the stateroom televisions, and will aid in finding comedic talent for the new "Punchliner Comedy Club Presented by George Lopez" onboard Carnival ships. The recorded voice of Lopez will open the comedy shows aboard the ships.
FunShip 2.0 also means Disk Jockeys on Carnival Breeze, and other Carnival ships in the future, will be trained under the new "DJ IRIE Spin'iversity" led by the award-winning DJ IRIE, a highly talented disc jockey widely known in Miami and Las Vegas. Then there is Guy's Burger Joint, offering custom-created burgers by the renowned Food Network star chef Guy Fieri. Red Frog Pub will feature Carnival's own private-label draft beer - ThirstyFrog Red. The Cucina del Capitano is a new family-style Italian eatery.
I now expect other new announcements about FunShip 2.0 will follow since the "Thrill 5-D Movie" experience was announced after the initial news of FunShip 2.0. Only time will tell what else Carnival has in store for us.