Turns out you don't have to storm-chase to be thrust into a raging, deadly tornado.
Warner Bros. brought out the big virtual guns to promote the tornado flick Into the Storm with an Oculus Rift virtual reality headset experience that brought users directly into the film's climatic tornado scene.
Yep, right into the storm drain with the mother-lode of tornadoes coming on, virtually that is.
The experience requires users to enter a glass booth and don heavy Oculus Rift goggles and ear phones to enter the virtual world. The 360-degree experience shows the action in whatever direction the user moves his or her head — on the bad side, either direction features a deadly oncoming tornado or the effects of said tornado.
"We wanted to give people an emotional connection to the film by putting them in the film," says Suzy Ryoo of Ignition Factory, the company which designed the experience.
This 4-D experience is aided by four directional wind fans which rise in level to match the oncoming tornado's virtual fury, and rumbling ButtKicker seats which literally rumble the sitting body.
The experience was unveiled at Comic-Con this July, part of an emerging trend of film marketing with the new technology. Then the Into the Storm experience shouldered major marketing duty in cities like Los Angeles and Atlanta. After its solid opening weekend in U.S. theaters, it's now headed out on the international tour to the likes of London, Paris, and Barcelona.