Universal Studios was recently granted a patent for a new “moving puzzle” theater space. Each part of the seating unit can be configured into a new shape, all while the show is happening around guests inside – without them even knowing its happening.

New Universal Studios patents reveal ‘moving puzzle theater’ tech, fueling rumors of more “Harry Potter” attractions.

  • Individual theater “rooms” can move inward and outward, sideways, and even vertically to stack on top of one another. Without realizing how the theater is moving, this could offer quite the shocking reveal for “passengers” when they step outside their room to find the world around them completely altered. It’s not clear yet just what Universal plans to do with this new theater space concept, but it’s rumored that the Dragon Challenge rollercoaster inThe Wizarding World of Harry Potteris going to be replaced by something.


According to the Orlando Business Journal, a second patent was also recently granted for something called the “vehicle transportation room.” This would include a launch room with possible elements such as animatronics figures, fog, and strobe lights. One of the patent images shows a figure in front of a fireplace, which then magically opens to make way for the vehicle. Could this be an entrance into Harry Potter’s Floo Network? With the popularity of the Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts franchises, it seems likely that Universal will be adding some fun new Harry Potter-related attractions – that could also use the moving puzzle theater.Of course, it could be tech for something entirely different. Either way, if this theater is ever built, it looks like it will be part of quite the innovative new attraction.

Universal granted patent on moveable interactive theaters (Conclusion)

Universal Parks and Resorts has recently been granted a permit for a moving puzzle theater. The patent covers theaters used for shows in amusement parks and generally includes areas designated for seating of patrons and areas designated for performances of actors and participants in the shows. Universal knows and recognizes that the fixed nature of the seating in theaters provides patrons with limited views and limited interaction with aspects of related shows. This new type of theater also allows them to have maneuverable seating areas that give patrons the impression that they are entering one completely integral and unified theater, when in fact, each seating section is a separate maneuverable seating area capable of movement relative to the others. The way the maneuverable seating area modules are arranged, patrons may not even realize that the puzzle theater system is enabled to separate and move the maneuverable seating areas. The theater would have the ability for the maneuverable seating areas to be separated from an initial configuration, while remaining connected to a single system, and put back together in a final configuration that may be the same as or different from the initial configuration.

The puzzle theater system can be operated as a puzzle that must be solved by a group of participants to achieve one or more goals throughout the progress of a show being performed. The maneuverable seating areas would be attracted to actuator arms that can provide six degrees of freedom (roll, pitch, yaw, surge, heave, and sway). In addition, the one or more center platforms can be configured to pass over one another during the course of the show.