Sunday, April 23, 2017

Warner Bros. Movie World's New Hyper Coaster Goes Vertical

We still have no official announcement from the park, but we know it's going to be big and pink!  Well, pinkish purple perhaps.

Warner Bros. Movie World in Australia has started vertical construction on their rumored-to-be hypercoaster, with track and supports starting to tower over the park.

The rumored height is right around 200 feet, but the manufacturer, Mack Rides, is confirmed from the construction site.

© Google
Speaking of the construction site, footings for the ride are basically complete and on updated maps (not this one) you can actually see the ride's layout.  It extends quite far along the park's front border, generally in the pink box above.  If you compare that size to other rides in the park you can tell that this ride will have quite a bit of track.

If you want to check out some photos of the newly vertical ride, check out this update from Parkz.  Also, that website's forum is a hotbed of almost daily updates, like this one showing what was completed as of yesterday.

I'm looking forward to seeing all that this ride has to offer!

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Sol Spin - New Thrill Ride at Knott's Berry Farm - Now Open

© Knott's Berry Farm
This is a ride that's only for the brave of heart and the emptiest of stomachs, but it does looks like a ton of fun.  Just opened yesterday at Knott's Berry Farm is Sol Spin, a new-to-the-park thrill ride that spins and inverts passengers at up to 60 feet above the ground.

Located in Fiesta Village, Sol Spin sits in the area that was once occupied by WindSeeker.  Its bright colors fit in with the theme of the vibrant area wonderfully, livening it up considerably as well.  The main arm twists in an elevated circle while the passenger gondolas rotate and flip freely, a dizzying effect.  Here's some video of the ride in action that I noticed on Twitter:

Sol Spin is a "classic" flat ride that came to the park though parent company, Cedar Fair's, efforts to purchase these types of rides from both Europe and Japan.  It is a Mondial Top Scan, which are pretty popular on the European fair circuit.

Knott's adjacent water park, Soak City, will also open a major expansion in a couple months, featuring a brand new family raft ride and a tower with multiple slides including some with a trap-door freefall start.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Dutch Wonderland Close to Vertical Construction of New Family Coaster

© Dutch Wonderland
One new-for-2017 coaster that we haven't heard much on in recent months is Merlin's Mayhem at Dutch Wonderland, though the park has been getting ready for the new ride through the winter.  Just recently the family theme park started to receive track and supports for the inverted ride, seen in recent photos shared by the park.

As depicted in earlier concept art and animations, Merlin's Mayhem will feature cobalt blue supports and gold/yellow track.

© Dutch Wonderland
Dutch Wonderland's parking lot is currently the staging area for the arriving parts, plenty of which are now on site.  I haven't seen photos of the actual construction site, but I would think that the park has footings ready to go, just waiting for track and supports to arrive.

Merlin's Mayhem is a family inverted coaster designed by S&S Worldwide.  It will stand 60 feet tall at the highest point and stretch over 1,300 feet long, ending with a short tunnel before the brakes.  Since Dutch Wonderland is a family park oriented toward kids, the coaster will have a low 39 inch height requirement.

© Dutch Wonderland
Here is some of the coaster's track that is on site.  The colors of Merlin's Mayhem will really stand out at the park, and I believe the coaster is near the main entrance so it will also serve as a nice billboard for the park!

Check out the below animation of the ride to get familiar with it - won't be long until we see it standing at the park!

Thursday, April 20, 2017

World's Tallest Drop Ride to Feature Virtual Reality Experience at Six Flags Great Adventure

Six Flags Great Adventure has announced the addition of virtual reality headsets to the world's tallest and fastest free fall ride, Zumanjaro, creating an all-new experience called the Drop of Doom.

The attraction will open with the new Samsung Gear VR headsets on May 5th and run for a limited time during the 2017 season.  On board the ride visitors will battle "giant, mutant spiders" while plunging down more than 400 feet at speeds of up to 90 miles per hour.

© Six Flags
While on board the Drop of Doom, riders will enter a virtual world where "they become pilots of a futuristic gunship under attack by mutant spiders."  The climb to the top of the tower will send passengers virtually up 100 stories while teetering on the edge of a helicopter.  At the top they will experience 360 degree views above "massive skyscrapers that are under siege by enormous spiders," then move on to a "high-intensity gun battle against a giant arachnid," which spews baby spiders at them that will virtually crawl all over.

Between the fear of heights and the common fear of spiders, Drop of Doom is sure to get everyone's blood pumping!

© Six Flags
After the 90 mile per hour drop, which takes place inbetween tall buildings within the virtual world, there will be a "final showdown with a spider the size of a van, teeth-gnashing and in full attack mode."

“As the leader in innovation, Six Flags launched the very first VR coaster experiences. Now, we are taking virtual reality to the next level with the introduction of the first VR drop rides,” said Neal Thurman, park president. “Drop of Doom VR plays upon two of our greatest fears – extreme heights and spiders – and delivers an entirely new thrill for the spring 2017 season.”

For more on the new Drop of Doom at Six Flags Great Adventure, check out the park's website and also this teaser video:

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

New Multi-Launch Gerstlauer Coaster Now Open in the Netherlands

© Attractiepark Slagharen
Attractiepark Slagharen has officially opened their brand new, custom designed roller coaster, Gold Rush, to eager park visitors.  The compact coaster has been designed by Gerstlauer and features a forward and backward multi-launch system to give the trains their power.

Fully decked out in Wild West theming, Gold Rush packs a lot of ride into a small space, but doesn't go light on the thrills.  At the end of the launch sequence the trains rush out of the station at 56 miles per hour and up to the top of a 108 foot tall twisting top hat.  The first element after the plunge down from the top hat is a sling loop, also one of the ride's two inversions.  A mid-course helix leads to a dive loop that places tracks on the brake run just before the station.

A trip on Gold Rush is over pretty quickly, but that doesn't mean that the coaster doesn't pack a punch!  Take a spin on the new ride with this video from the park:

Monday, April 17, 2017

New Virtual Ride Shows Off Liseberg's New For 2018 B&M Dive Coaster

Back in October Sweden's Liseberg made a big announcement of new rides over their 2017 and 2018 seasons.  New this year is a giant pendulum ride, Loke, which is already standing at the park.  Perhaps more interesting to coaster fans was the announcement of Valkyria, a new B&M dive coaster that will open in 2018.

At the time of the announcement several concept art images and statistics were revealed, but much of the ride was still a mystery.  Now Liseberg has released more details - like the aerial view of the ride above - and an even newer animated point of view video of the coaster.  Care to take a ride?

Valkyria will begin with a steep lift hill that takes trains to 154 feet in the air, followed by a 90 degree right turn to the start of the 164 foot vertical plunge into a tunnel.  The trains will speed at 65 miles per hour up into a giant Immelmann inversion, followed by a sweeping turn to the ride and into the second half of the ride.  Next is a large zero-g roll, a helix and finally a slow and sweeping heartline roll before the turn into the brakes.  When all is said and done riders will have covered 2,296 feet of track.

Liseberg recently premiered a sprawling double-launch Mack coaster, Helix, and was already home to hits like Balder, an intense Intamin wood coaster and Lisebergbanan, a classic terrain Schwarzkopf coaster.  The park is crafting quite a selection of rides!