Attraction Supplier News
---- THE LATEST INDUSTRY NEWS ----
(5/7/21) Skyline Attractions - Busy Working On Lots Of Things You Never Knew (MORE...)
(4/28/21) B&M Coasters - New Track Spotted (MORE...)
(4/26/21) ProSlide Opens New MammothBLAST Slide In Dubai (MORE...)
(4/26/21) Zamperla Shows Off New Super Flume Ride Concept (MORE...)
(4/25/21) Bill Kitchen Shows Off New Skyscreamer Ride Concept for US ThrilLRides (MORE...)
(4/17/21) ProSlide Opens New Attraction At Dubai's Atlantis Aquaventure (MORE...)
American Wave Machines - (12/1/20) According to a report on American Wave Machines, the plans to build a huge new PerfectSwell surf park at the Thermal Beach Club in Palm Springs has been unanimously approved. The Thermal Beach Club is a new project set on a 240 acre undeveloped site and is not affiliated with the previously announced plans to transform the former Wet ‘n’ Wild Palm Springs waterpark into the Palm Springs Surf Club.
Plans for a second PerfectSwell wave pool was also approved as part of the master plan for the Ocean Gate Commerce Center in New Smyrna Beach, Florida.
B&M - (4/28/21) A new batch of unpainted track and supports can now be found at the Clermont Steel Fabrication plant in Ohio where all the B&M Track is made. You can find pictures on Facebook at the Amusement Park Portal page.
(1/29/21) A B&M made Batman: The Ride inverted coaster clone has hit the used ride marketplace it seems. The coaster is actually the former Lightning coaster from Entertainment City in Kuwait which was closed back in 2016 and the park demolished in 2020. You don’t see used B&M coasters hit the market too often, so if it is still in good condition, I imagine someone will buy this up pretty quick.
(9/28/20) I’m not sure how much of a market for this there is, but according to a detailed post at Coaster101 B&M has filed for a new patent for a new form of restraint to be used on roller coasters that are ridden standing up. To date B&M only made 7 Stand-Up coasters, and only four of them still run as Stand-Up coasters, after three of them were converted into Floorless coaster designs (Patriot at California’s Great America, Rougarou at Cedar Point and Firebird at Six Flags America).
The new restraint design seeks to make the stand-up ride experience more comfortable for the riders it seems. And before you ask the obvious question that will come to any man’s mind… they are NOT removing the uncomfortable quasi-seat from the crotch area. Instead the redesign is focused entirely on the upper half of the restraint, removing the more traditional B&M overhead padded bars that would often “box” riders ears repeatedly during the ride, and replacing that system with what looks like a copy of the same restraint system used on the B&M Wing coasters. This restraint system moves the OTS grips away from the riders head, allowing for a more open viewing experience, but also uses that thick padded “vest” as well.
I’ve discovered I have a bit of a dislike for the vest during my last ride on Wild Eagle at Dollywood where it suddenly made me feel very “squeezed in” and made me so claustrophobic that I was seconds away from begging the ride ops to let me out. This was a strange reaction from me, considering that I’m not claustrophobic at all, so the brief feeling of terror came out of nowhere, before I realized I could tuck my thumbs into the vest near the shoulders and pull it forward to provide much needed breathing room. I know B&M uses a similar vest system on their Flyer coasters as well, but I’ve never had a problem with that one.
According to Coaster101, they believe B&M may be getting ready to add a new generation stand-up coaster to their line-up in the near future, with the first one possibly going to SeaWorld Orlando at some point in the future. I guess we’ll have to stay tuned and see what happens. Unfortunately the first three B&M coasters ever built were stand-up coasters starting in 1990, and this was followed by a brief resurgence of four more in the late 90s, but after that… I think the market lost their design for new Stand-Up coasters. This begs the question… if the world ready to buy more of these machines from B&M, or is this something B&M is using to target more specific international markets that were not around during the 90s, such as China.
CAVU Designwerks - (11/20/20) CAVU has announced ‘Quest’, a new attraction concept they are calling “Themed Entertainment’s First Walkthrough Ride”. Visit CAVU’s website to see the video introduction to the concept, which can be customized to fit a variety of location spaces and experiences. Think of it as part escape room and part themed walk-through experience, with lots of options to be used to tell a variety of stories and reflect a mix of themes. .
Dynamic Attractions - (3/3/21) Dynamic Attractions has announced that Jerry Pierson has now been appointed as President and Chief Operating Officer of the company as of this week. “Jerry has over 25 years in the themed attraction business and has been leading Dynamic’s organization in the US , based out of Orlando, for the past three years in addition to managing the controls department for the Company. “Controls integration and mechatronics technology and the associated intellectual property have become a core competency and forms the nucleus of the Dynamic’s IP,” stated Guy Nelson, Executive Chairman and CEO. “Our pivot as a Company to leveraging the intrinsic value of our IP, makes Jerry the perfect person to assume the President and COO position for Dynamic Technologies Group.” This promotion includes being President and COO of Dynamic Attractions, Dynamic Entertainment and Dynamic Structures.”
Hao Wang, who joined the Company’s Dynamic Attractions division in 2017, will be leaving his post as President and COO for personal reasons, and returning to his home in Toronto. “I am pleased to announce that Hao has been appointed to the Board of Directors of the Company effective immediately, which will help to make a smooth transition of leadership to Jerry in managing Dynamic Attractions and the ride manufacturing division,” added Nelson. One of the initiatives that Hao put in place was to develop a strong and cohesive management team in an effective organizational structure with efficient operational processes, as well as a succession plan for the company’s key functions. Hao becoming a member of the Company’s Board of Directors, will further ensure a smooth transition and continuity of processes and momentum that Hao has diligently put in place.
This is an incredibly momentous time for the Company as we will see some of the most technologically complex and exciting rides in the world that we have designed, built and commissioned, come into service in theme parks around the world throughout 2021. It is also a very exciting time to see the flying theatre attraction come into operation this summer in The Island theme park in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee. Dynamic has an option to purchase a 50% interest in this attraction. This foundation uniquely positions the Company for future growth and continued innovation. Our industry, our customers and their guests are about to experience why we do what we do and exactly what we mean when we say, TECHNOLOGY DRIVES THE DYNAMIC DIFFERENCE !
(2/24/21) According to a new press release from Empire Industries, the company behind Dynamic Attractions, Empire will change their main company name to Dynamic Technologies Group Inc., effective March 1st, 2021. According to Guy Nelson, the Exec Chairman and CEO, the name change is reflective of a number of changes and the evolution of the company which includes a pivot “towards creating and leveraging its proprietary technology.”
Currently they are on track for the opening of a co-venture flying theater attraction in Pigeon Forge, TN to take place in Summer 2021. They wish to leverage the company’s proprietary technology to pursue other co-venture opportunities globally. They will also focus on continued R&D on new developments. The company is working on finalizing “the completion and handover” of ride systems in Osaka, Beijing, Kuala Lumpur, Los Angeles and Doha that are all awaiting the pandemic to subside before they can open. They also confirmed that they completed the handover of their first special effects coaster in Abu Dhabi, which seems to confirm that the long awaited Mission Ferrari attraction at Ferrari World should also open in 2021.
Extreme Engineering - (3/22/21) Extreme Engineering, the makers of the Cloud Coaster, have announced the introduction of two new suspended coaster concepts that they are ready to offer.
Sky Tag - Described as a low-cost suspended dark ride concept that would be affordable for smaller parks and FECs. Small two rider suspended coaster cars are outfitted with Laser Tag style guns allowing the riders to shoot at a variety of targets in the themed space below and around them, and in some cases they may be able to shoot at the other coaster cars.
Surfin Tsunami is the second new concept, where riders are asked to stand on a flying surfboard, that will use a unique safety system to keep them safely on the board, that will travel around a suspended roller coaster track.
Gerstlauer - (4/23/21) Ride Entertainment issued an interesting statement yesterday that certainly caught the addition of roller coaster lovers out there. According to the post, Gerstlauer will be building a “one-of-a-kind, record-breaking roller coaster in the United States” that is scheduled to open in May 2022, which will be announced formally in the next few months. Note: If you didn’t know, Ride Entertainment serves as the sales company for Gerstlauer and their installation team will be installing this new creation as well.
“Working with Gerstlauer for over 25 years, I am always astounded by their creativity and ability to innovate no matter what the project is,” said Ed Hiller, CEO of Ride Entertainment. “It is no different with the custom layout and challenging location for this coaster, which is sure to become a showcase attraction known around the world.”
Obviously, this little teaser is open to a lot of speculation, because not only do we not know which park the roller coaster will be going to, but we also don’t have a clue as to which “record” this coaster will be breaking. Height? Speed? Length? Inversions? Best lighting package? Honestly, it’s all up for grabs. And honestly... the marketing concept here is genius, because in all likelihood, the project won't be announced until at least sometime in August, and over the next 4 months roller coaster enthusiasts are going to be posting their own rumors and theories about what it could be, and where it could be going.
With that said… let me provide you with some of my own initial surface speculation on this before we dive deeper down the rabbit hole at a later date.
When it comes to the more standard “Records” held by Gertstlauer roller coasters, there are currently two areas of focus that come to mind: Steepest Drop and Most Inversions. World records of things like height and speed are typically far beyond anything we’ve seen produced from Gerstlauer in the past, so these are unlikely to happen. However the world’s steepest drop on a roller coaster is currently held by TMNT Shellraiser in the Nickelodeon Universe theme park in the America Dream mall, which drops riders at an amazing 121.5º. Yes, that is 31.5º past vertical. Shellraiser actually took the record from another Gerstlauer coaster, Takabisha at Fuji-Q Highland in Japan, which has a 121º drop, with Shellraiser’s layout being very similar to Takabisha. With that in mind, it wouldn’t be a huge stretch to think that Gerstlauer could push that angle at least another half-degree at nearly any park in the nation.
As for the other record Gerslauter is known for, that would be for creating the coaster with the most inversions, which is Smiler at Alton Towers which sends riders through a mind-blowing 14 inversions during the course of the layout. Created back in 2013, the ride’s layout features a maximum drop of 98.4ft and a top speed of only 52.8mph, and all fit into a very compact layout that only adds to the twisted nature of the ride’s theme. Currently the highest number of inversions on a roller coaster in the US right now is Steel Curtain at Kennywood with 8 inversions. Given that by the wording of the announcement that the new coaster really only needs to break the US record and not the world record, it wouldn’t be hard to believe that any number of parks in the US could fit a coaster with 9 or even 10 inversions.
So now we’re essentially back to square-one for the moment, where just about every park able to build a coaster for the 2022 season could be suspect. Or at least until we can find ways to narrow the field a bit.
More to come as we ponder which parks would fit the “challenging location” clue.
Great Coasters International - (11/8/20) According to this article Great Coasters International (GCI) is now seeing a patent for a new kind of track system they’ve designed called Titan Track. According to the description, Titan Track is a new steel track system that has no welds. “The track is a full rivet based system that allows for less maintenance, less need for frequent testing, and easy replacement of the rivets when needed”. The track also allows for inversions as well as for use with launched coaster systems.
In addition to being able to build full roller coasters from the ground up with Titan Track, they can also use Titan Track as a track replacement technology to replace “high-stress” segments of track on existing rides, or allowing them to re-track older rides to add modern new elements like inversions. If this sounds familiar, I believe this is now the official name for the “hybrid” style track GCI first put on display at a private event at IAAPA 2019 at Fun Spot America in Orlando. We mentioned not long ago that a segment of this new track system was being tested on Fun Spot’s White Lightning wooden coaster. Another US coaster will also soon have Titan Track, click here to find out where.
The article also mentions GCI’s roller coaster trains being offering, the existing and well known Millenium Flying Trains, the Mini-llenium Trains for the junior coasters and now the Infinity Flyer Trains described as “a class 5 modern age train capable of taking on the most extreme coaster elements”. The new Titan Track was designed to work with the new Infinity Flyer Trains. Please note that the Infinity Flyer trains were actually first shown off as a new concept at IAAPA in 2018 but I’m not sure if they’ve actually been put to use on any operating coaster to date. (If I’m wrong, please do let me know!)
GCI has confirmed they are currently working on four coaster projects: One in Dubai (Bollywood Dubai), one in Vietnam and two in China. Beyond that they say they have proposals out for up to 8 new coasters in China, 3 in Europe and 2 in the US.
(11/22/19) GCI made a surprise announcement this week at IAAPA… one that should worry RMC a little bit. GCI introduced their own Hybrid track system on Wednesday night at a special event held at Fun Spot America.
HOLOGATE - (10/24/20) We’ve seen HOLOGATE bring their own take on VR attractions to many locations over the past few years, and from the one or two I’ve been able to try myself, I found them to be fun experiences. How HOLOGATE is said to have partnered with ARVI VR to add a series of virtual Escape Room experiences to the HOLOGATE brand. The first line of HOLOGATE VR Escape Room experiences will include three themed experiences: Cyberpunk (a high tech heist), Mission Sigma (secret service themed), and The Prison (a prisonbreak experience).
Intamin - (3/7/21) It has been awhile, but Intamin has finally opened another “Twist & Twist” Impulse Coaster, this time in China, called Legendary Twin Dragon at Chongqing Sunac Land. Previously I believe the only other similar Impulse from Intamin was Wicked Twister at Cedar Point which RCDB lists as a “Twist & Twist (66m)”. The new version is listed as a 70m version, so it is bigger and faster, hitting a top speed of 73.9mph with twisted spikes on the end standing 229.6 feet tall.
You can catch a POV video of Legendary Twin Dragon below.
(7/26/20) Intamin has made more interesting posts to their YouTube channel, this time showing off four brand new ride concepts (see below) from the company… though I can’t help but think that these all feel very familiar. Up first is the Intamin Ultra Splash, which immediately appears to be a near-clone of the Mack Power Splash ride, but they’ve changed the track style used here to something that looks like a massive RMC style mono-rail system and opted out of even trying to feature a turn-table station for increased capacity.
The second ride is another water ride called the Giga Splash, which looks like a re-engineered version of Intamin’s old Mega Splash ride system, which premiered to the world as Perilous Plunge at Knott’s Berry Farm in 2000. This new Giga Splash concept appears to use the same monorail style track structure as the new Ultra Splash system, adding in a fun air-time hill at the bottom before the splashdown. The unique aspect here is that there is no traditional lift hill and turn-around, instead they have created a tower to hold up the drop, with a built in elevator system that will spiral-around giving riders a fun view as they climb to the top and prepare to drop down the 40 meter tall waterfall at an 87º angle.
The third video is for something called the “Vertical LSM Coaster”, which essentially appears to be Intamin’s attempt to create something similar in concept to the popular Premier Ride’s Sky Rocket II coaster system, starting things off with a Triple-Launch that shuttles back and forth through the station before shooting out to the rest of the layout. In this case the train will actually hit the world’s first “Upside-Down Boost” higher up that will shooting riders up to the very peak and into a “Torpedo Dive” element. Again, this is similar to the Skyrocket II spiral concept at the top, except you take it while on a downward hill. You zoom past the station at the bottom and up into another element that Intamin is calling a World’s First called the Zig-Zag Loop. I’m sorry, but I have to call “BS” on that claim, because not only did the Hollywood Rip, Ride Rockit do this first in 2009 at Universal Orlando, but every Premier Ride’s SkyRocket II has the same element as well. According to the Intamin video, this is the “most compact triple launch coaster in the world”, so if that part is true, this will fit in locations where even Premier’s ride was deemed to be too big. Given how many coasters Premier has sold, I’ve got a feeling we’ll see a few of these Intamin rides start to show up in parks very soon.
The final ride concept from Intamin is something called the “Hot Racer”, which is being offered in three different layouts. This one also screams in your brain that you’ve seen this before… twice. Imagine if RMC took their new Raptor single-rail coaster system, and then tried to build a Hot Rod side-by-side racing/dueling themed version with magnetic launches. In other words… just imagine if Six Flags had asked RMC to build a Raptor version of the of the West Coast Racers attraction (from Premier Rides) that just opened at Six Flags Magic Mountain. Ok… got it? Now imagine that Intamin just copied them both and you’ve got Hot Racer. Check it out below.
(7/23/20) For those wondering about the Intamin promotion for a Tourbillon ride, Screamscape sources tell us that Intamin actually did buy ACE Rides a couple of years ago, so they do own ABC’s ride concept now. As an interesting off-note, I’m told that many of the former ABC staff departed the company during the buyout and along with the former founder of ABC Rides, they formed Ride Engineers Switzerland (RES). RES has been making the unique new Roller Ball coasters as well as working on the new Mystic River Falls rapids ride that just opened at Silver Dollar City.
(7/22/20) In an odd move, Intamin has posted a video promoting the “Tourbillon” ride, along with video footage that appears to be of the Cyborg Cyber Spin ride at Six Flags Great Adventure, which was from ABC Rides. So I guess the question is, did Intamin buy ABC Rides, or buy the Tourbillon from ABC Rides, or are they simply working in partnership with ABC Rides to promote and sell future Tourbillon rides? Something similar to the later brings to mind Intamin’s relationship with Giovanola who manufactured a few different rides that were marketed by Intamin in the ‘80s and 90’s, such as the first gen Freefall rides.
Interlink - (11/28/20) Interlink has announced that they have signed a contract to build a new Super Flume ride at a new waterpark project in Qatar’s Qetaifan Island North. The new SuperFlume is said to be a “first ride of its kind” to be installed in Qatar and will have several unique features. Riders will climb aboard 20-passenger themed boats and go on a voyage to see the “history and techniques of oil exploration in the region over the last 100 years.” Along the way riders will encounter various lifts and drops as the story unfolds, passing through different themed zones. The finale comes when the boat enters “the cracking tower” where it slowly rotates and rises up a vertical lift tower along with special effects until it exits into the daylight at the top to drop down a 16m high chute.
IRM Rides - (12/31/20) IRM Rides has announced that they have sold the last ride that was still on the grounds of the former Fun Spot park in Indiana. Fun Spot closed up in 2008 and over the years most of the rides have been sold off and installed into a variety of parks around the country. This includes the park’s coasters including the Allan Herschell Little Dipper sold by IRM to Bell’s Amusement Park in Tulsa in 2013 for “future use”, and the Afterburn (Arrow Shuttle) that was taken apart in 2017 where the train and all the major mechanical parts sold to Frontier City for use on their Diamondback coaster.
The last ride sitting on the grounds for some time was the 1978 Manco Paratrooper, and as a park model, finding a new owner proved more difficult. “IRM is proud to announce the Paratrooper has left the park grounds (now being converted into student athletic fields) and will find a new home at a major park in the US East Coast to extend the lifespan of a classic ride already in the parks lineup.”
While IRM is sad that a park has closed for good, knowing the rides live on at other locations for generations to come, gives IRM the motivation to source out solutions for owners with classic rides who want to keep them operating for years to come.
(12/1/19) The owner of IRM (International Rides Management), Anthony Rossi, is now selling the company to the current VP of Sales, Samuel Shurgott. With 30 years of experience in the amusement industry, IRM will be focusing primarily on the US market while maintaining connections internationally through IRM partner, Premier Rides. While a new website is being prepared for launch, IRM’s list of current partners include Premier Rides, Sally Dark Rides, Philadelphia Toboggan Coasters, Swannee River Railroad Co, Great Events of Colorado and has now added Pan Amusements, ITAL Resina Rides and Fibrart to the IRM family group.
Katapult - (10/20/20) I’m very curious to know more but Katapult has announced that in collaboration with Simworx they are developing a new attraction called Torchlight. Details are slim to none, other than a basic description that Torchlight will be “a gripping, new horror dark ride experience.” Ok… I’m hooked. Tell me more!
Katapult has also released a couple of pieces of concept art for Torchlight so far (see below), but nothing more, other than a link where you can sign up to be the first to learn all about it when the time is right.
Maurer Rides - (12/31/20) Maurer announced a new concept for their Spike coaster concept, which has been making a lot of headlines as of late as the ride system used for the Bolt coaster on Carnival Cruise Line’s new Mardi Gras vessel. This latest concept for the ride system is called the Spike Signature Tower (ST 30) and will allow for the power-driven coaster concept to use a compact footprint to create a unique layout almost anywhere.
(10/17/19) A reader pointed out an interesting fact to us the other day that could likely mean that two more of Maurer’s Spike coasters may soon traveling around the world’s oceans in the near future. While Dream Cruises just announced that their first coaster would be going onto the Global Dream which should enter service in 2021, a quick search of the company’s fleet of vessels also shows that an unnamed sister ship to the Global Dream just began construction last month and is expected to open to guests about a year after the Global Dream.
By the same token, a search of Carnival Cruise Lines also shows that the new Mardi Gras vessel launching in 2020 will also have a sister ship launching in 2022 that has yet to be named. It is very possible that both of these twin-ships may also feature the powered coaster rides, much like how both of Disney Cruise Line’s second generation ships (Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy) both launched with the AquaDuck water coaster slides.
(10/14/19) While Carnival Cruise Lines will be the first Cruise Line to have a coaster at sea when they open Bolt on the new Mardi Gras vessel in 2020, a second similar coaster was just announced for “Dream Cruises”. According to the release the company’s new “Global Dream” vessel is now under construction in Germany and will launch in early 2021 with “Space Cruiser”, the world’s longest roller coaster at sea. Just like Carnival’s ride, the new Space Cruiser coaster will also be a powered “Spike” coaster from Maurer Rides, but with a 300 meter long track and able to reach speeds of 37mph.
The coaster will be part of an amusement zone on top of the ship that will also feature inflatable attractions, a trampoline park, a ropes course, a surf board simulator, mini karts and even a small flat ride or two.
Oceaneering - (1/25/21) Oceaneering is offering a unique new shuttle concept, one that promises to blur the line between transportation and a themed ride experience. They call it the Revo-GT, a trackless vehicle able to hold up to 8 passengers seated, or 16 standing, that can go just about anywhere. The idea would be to add additional theming to the vehicle to follow along with special storylines that would be told while the vehicle transports guests from one location in a theme park resort to another, even able to drop them off at the door to a specific attraction rather than exiting at a typical shuttle stop outside the main gate. Follow the link to read more about the various possible ways to customize the experience and the technology behind the concept.
Premier Rides - (8/15/20) Premier Rides has announced that their Premier Service division has been awarded their largest service contract to date. According to the press release, the new contract will see the company “producing a new fleet of trains in addition to providing other technology upgrades for a non-Premier Rides existing attraction.” The exact location of this project will be announced by the client when they are ready to do so.
The new trains will incorporate “advanced technology elements used on the Sky Rocket series of attractions”. Jim Seay, President of Premier Rides commented that, ““We are honored to be able to provide a fantastic technical upgrade to a truly iconic roller coaster. Fans will be excited when the location of the effort is announced. The Sky Rocket attractions continue to be recognized for their advanced technology and superior rider comfort, and the Premier team is certain that the addition of these newest generation of trains will take this coaster’s ride experience to the next level.” The plan is to have the new trains ready in time for the 2021 season.
Now… while Premier isn’t saying anything about which coaster this is going to be for, the first one to come to my mind is Mindbender at Six Flags over Georgia. The park has already announced that the classic Schwarzkopf coaster would be closed for the entire 2020 season, they’ve been working on track update and were even spotted with a borrowed train from the Revolution at SIx Flags Magic Mountain on site earlier this year, which to me says that they were in the market for new trains anyway. When the ride is to reopen in 2021, the park has already announced that it will be officially renamed as The Riddler Mindbender and themed after the comic book Villain. I could be wrong, but for now I’m putting my money on the Mindbender.
ProSlide - (4/26/21) ProSlide has announced the creation of a new family rafting water coaster experience called “MammothBLAST”. The first example of this new attraction has just opened at the Atlantis Aquaventure waterpark in Dubai that combined a newly designed family raft with ProSlides existing water BLAST technology. The new rafts have higher side-walls and can seat up to five guests at a time inside the new raft design that features a low center of gravity and cushioned seats.
I found a POV of the new slide in Dubai where it has been named Shockwave that you can see in the video below. They have also added a pair of side-by-side racing two-passenger raft BLAST slides as well that you can see at the very start of the video as well, if you wish to rewind.
(4/17/21) According to BlooLoop ProSlide has opened a new KidzADVENTURE Tower attraction at the Atlantis Aquaventure waterpark in Dubai this month. According to the description, the concept was to build a collection of slides that were essentially “larger versions of the company’s KIDZ rides for a graduated ride experience”.
The new tower is set in the park’s Splasher’s Cove area and features scaled up versions of the ProSlides’ KIDZ PIPEline, KIDZ ProRACER, KIDZ BOWL and KIDZ RallyRACER attractions.
(12/31/20) In an interesting development it seems the world’s two top waterslide designers may end up battling things out in the courtroom. According to the Orlando SentinelRide Entertainment - (2/5/20) Funtime and Ride Entertainment have announced the launch of a new attraction concept called the Booster Unhinged, a revamp of the classic Booster ride concept. The world’s first Booster Unhinged opened at Prater Park in Spring 2019 under the name ‘King Size’ and now it is available to all comers.
“Booster Unhinged takes the proven extreme concept of the original Booster and revs up the adrenaline to another level. Riders experience three separate motions all at once: the rotation of the main boom, powered rotation of the seating rigs, and the free-flipping gravitational motion of each individual seat.”
Riders are placed into unique individual seats that allow for an unobstructed view as they arc their way through the sky, “not knowing which way is up.” The prototype at Prater Park (seen in the video below) has seating for 8 riders at a time (4 on each end of the boom), but Funtime is offering larger scale versions with 16 and 32-seat configurations. ProSlide has now accused rival designer, WhiteWater, of stealing patented designs for slide projects used at Aquatica Orlando, Adventure Island in Tampa and elsewhere. The lawsuit is asking for unspecified damages and to have WhiteWater pay ProSlide for the profits they earned for a few specific WhiteWater projects that they believe came from ProSlide technology, including Ray Rush at Aquatica Orlando. More on this story as it develops.
Ride Entertainment - (2/5/20) Funtime and Ride Entertainment have announced the launch of a new attraction concept called the Booster Unhinged, a revamp of the classic Booster ride concept. The world’s first Booster Unhinged opened at Prater Park in Spring 2019 under the name ‘King Size’ and now it is available to all comers.
“Booster Unhinged takes the proven extreme concept of the original Booster and revs up the adrenaline to another level. Riders experience three separate motions all at once: the rotation of the main boom, powered rotation of the seating rigs, and the free-flipping gravitational motion of each individual seat.”
Riders are placed into unique individual seats that allow for an unobstructed view as they arc their way through the sky, “not knowing which way is up.” The prototype at Prater Park (seen in the video below) has seating for 8 riders at a time (4 on each end of the boom), but Funtime is offering larger scale versions with 16 and 32-seat configurations.
S&S - Sansei - (3/22/21) According to an article at AmusementToday, S&S is building a new Air Launched coaster to open at the Window of the World park in Changsha, China. The new coaster is said to launch riders at 60mph and stand 131 feet tall. It will feature a fairly compact layout of twists and turns, as well as three inversions and they hope to have it open by late Summer if possible.
(10/27/20) Last week S&S announced their new Spin Shot Tower concept and now we get a look at the new ride concept in action in this video from S&S.
(10/20/20) S&S - Sansei has announced a new tower creation that they are calling the “Spin Shot Tower”. According to the description the Spin Shot Tower takes the thrills of the S&S 4D Free Spin coaster seat by adding them to a classic S&S shot tower ride experience. The good news is that any park with an S&S tower can opt to have the new Spin Shot Tower seats retrofitted to work on the existing tower rides as well.
“Custom ride profiles can be programmed to orient the rider, face-up, face-down or even upside down during the tower ride sequence! This thrilling experience will be mechanically controlled to ensure maximum safety and thrills for all riders.”
S&S recognizes the current market challenges and the limited capital expense budgets most parks now face. Executive Director of Sales & Marketing, Josh Hays said, “Our CEO, Tim Timco, challenged us to develop an exciting attraction that parks could offer their customers at a modest budget. We believe our talented engineering team has met that goal. Parks want to offer their guests new and exciting experiences every year. That is a difficult task right now, but we believe our new Spin Shot Tower will allow parks with existing tower rides to reward their guests with a thrilling experience that doesn’t break the bank.”
I like the sound of this myself, as it reminds me of a throw-back S&S ride experience that never got the chance to make it big… the Sky Sling. The Sky Sling was a redesigned version of a previous S&S creation as well once known as the “Insane”. The old Sky Sling features the same concept of programmable seats able to provide unique ride experiences by rotating the riders forwards and back during the shot ride experience, which at the time was a capsule that was attached to three towers by cables and shot up into the sky. (Follow this link to see my review of the old Sky Sling ride from 2002 when we went out to S&S HQ in Utah to try out all their latest creations at the time, the Sky Swatter, Screaming Squirrel, Sky Sling and the infamous “Tilt Seats” that I don’t think ever really made it into full production beyond a prototype tower or two)
So from what I’m getting here, the new Spin Shot Tower is taking the programmable seat spin concept from the Sky Sling, but adding it to a traditional S&S Space Shot style tower ride instead. Sounds like a wonderful idea to me, so I can’t wait to see one in action.
Sally Corporation - (12/4/20) Congratulations to our friends at Sally Dark Rides as the Sesame Street: Street Mission dark ride they produced with PortAventura in Spain received a Thea Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Attractions category by the Themed Entertainment Association. To go along with this, Sally has posted a five-minute long 360º View video of the Sesame Street: Street Mission dark ride experience you can enjoy below!
SimWorx - (1/16/21) While we don’t know what project this is for, SimWorx has posted pictures of some very decorated motion base ride vehicles on their Twitter that they are preparing for a future attraction. Any ideas what these may be for?
Skyline Attractions - (5/7/21) While most of what we know about Skyline Attractions is from their more recent ride projects like the first two Skywarp coasters, Coaster101 has posted a nice in-depth article to show off a whole bunch of other projects Skyline has been involved with over the past several years that you probably never even knew about.
(11/16/20) Skyline Attractions has posted a concept video of a new Skywarp Orbit ride model that would only run a single train on the layout. The single train makes for easier loading and allows some room to add theming elements to the attraction layout as well.
Triotech - (10/20/20) Triotech has announced they are building a major new attraction of Fabland Xiangyang in Hubei, China. The new attraction is described as a “double walkthrough attraction” that will serve as an immersive and interactive experience for the park guests themed around the world of Space Pirates and interstellar Bounty Hunters. According to Triotech the concept will add a “dark ride” style attraction to the park without the need for an expensive ride system.
US ThrillRides - (4/25/21) Bill Kitchen, the original inventor of the Skycoaster, is back with an all new creation, but with a familiar concept. Kitchen came up with the concept of the original Skycoaster upcharge attraction back in the early 90s and it spread like wildfire throughout US theme parks for the rest of the decade. By 1998 Bill Kitchen had sold his patents and the company formed to sell and support the Skycoaster business to ThrillTime Entertainment for $12 million, which was then later re-sold in 2005 to current owner, Ride Entertainment.
Now through his US ThrillRides company, Bill Kitchen is back with what looks to be a new evolution on the concept called the Skyscreamer. The Skyscreamer appears to take the idea of the original creation, but has plus-sized everything to make this a full scale ride for all park guests to ride in large groups instead of just being an upcharge attraction concept. I’m sure smaller capacity models will still be used as upcharge-attractions in some locations, but the larger capacity versions seem primed for the big parks to bring the thrill to everyone.
Skyscreamer will use a similar set-up of three huge pylon towers attached to a disk-shaped ride vehicle frame that can hold anywhere from 6 to 24 rides at once, each held in with traditional thrill-ride style seats with over-the-shoulder safety harnesses that is seated on the ground between two of the ride’s towers. Once loaded, the rider pod is raised vertically into the air several feet before a cable attached to the third tower begins to pull the rider pod up towards the top of the huge swinging-arch that can be anywhere from 200 to 350 feet in height.
As with the Skycoaster, the riders will plunge from their lofty heights after a few moments of anticipation, and enjoy the wild soaring and rotating swing action. A new feature here is a “patented pendulum damper” device at the top of the arch towers that will quickly “reduce the swing arc” motion and bring the rider pod to a gentle stop before it lowers to the ground for unloading.
You can see an animated video of the concept posted by Orlando’s News 6 on a Facebook Live post, but you can see a clearer video along with several still renderings posted to the US ThrillRides website as well.
So what do you think? Would you ride this if your favorite park or attraction were to buy one? As an official Skycoaster “chicken”, as I’ve remained hesitant to put my body into a Skycoaster all these years, there is something a little more comforting about this version. Maybe it is just the addition of a traditional ride seat/restraint system, as I will willingly climb on board any roller coaster I can find, but something about Skycoasters has always kinda freaked me out. Maybe it was the interactivity of having a rip-cord to pull, or maybe it was just the idea of lying down and being lobbed across the sky by a cable attached to my back. Heck, Wave Swingers make me nervous enough to the point that I’ve also never tried a Star Flyer or Windseeker yet (sorry to disappoint) just because I know I would start to flip-out a little bit. A ride on a Condor was thrilling enough for me, as I just have a “weird thing” about heights I’ve never been able to explain. I have no problem with the “height” itself, as I love roller coasters, observation towers, sky rides, etc… it’s all about my perception of safety and if I might fall. Put me two feet up on a very wobbly ladder and I’m begging to get down, but I’ve got zero issues being launched to 120mph and soaring 425 feet up and down again on Top Thrill Dragster, so go figure. Just the way I’m wired… so while I still think the idea of the Skyscreamer would freak me out, I’m not saying this in a definite “nope” for me just yet until I see one in action. How about you?
Vekoma - (1/22/20) Want to see an amazing themed coaster under construction? Then check out the tweet below from Roller Coaster Dream who posted a picture from Vekoma showing off one of the latest launched roller coasters surrounded by a mountain of theming at World Fairytale Land Hainan. Take one look at that picture and try not to imagine what Disneyland’s Matterhorn would look like if it featured a 62mph launch into a mountain cave only to emerge near the top of the mountain for a beyond vertical first drop down into another cave and into darkness.
They say that this will be a Vekoma Firestorm style coaster, so if you want to see what the rest of the layout would look like if it were unthemed, or a real life POV version of the first Firestorm model built, then check out the videos below.
Wiegand - (9/4/20) Wiegand, who is perhaps mostly well known in the attraction’s industry for their amazing Alpine Coaster attractions have come up with an all new creation: the CoasterKart. Based on the concept of the Alpine Coaster, the CoasterKart will feature a two-passenger vehicle, but with side-by-side seating, not unlike a car. The track will be wider and the speed of the Kart will be controlled by a foot pedal and gain speed boats via magnetic LIM motors. Even better, the idea for the CoasterKart is to combine two side-by-side tracks to allow guests to race against the car next to them.
You can see footage from the prototype track Wiegand built below, but the first official CoasterKart attraction is now set to open later this year in Pigeon Forge at the Rowdy Bear Ridge Adventure Park.
wiegand.waterrides - (2/13/21) Wiegand.waterrides has developed a new full-face VR snorkeling mask for use as a new attraction concept. Unlike a typical snorkel device that the wearer holds in their mouth, these all-in-one face masks allow the users to comfortably breathe through their mouth and nose within the mask, without putting anything in your mouth, making them both easier to breathe through and providing a more hygienic experience. In the video provided, users are also seen wearing water-proof earphones as well to provide a complete audio and video sensory experience.
Anyone know if they have an installation for this experience open or coming in the near future somewhere?
Zamperla - (4/26/21) Zamperla has posted details about a new attraction concept they call “Super Flume Ride”. It takes the experience of a classic Shoot-the-Chute ride, but doubles the action and the drops, align with a bit of gentle flume time between the two plunges and with more flume like boats, seating passengers just two-across, rather than the wider 3-5 across style boats you normally see on Shoot-the-Chutes.
(4/2/21) Zamperla posted a new video to their YouTube channel showing off their newest creation, Gryphon, a new and interesting circular flat ride that seems perfectly designed for the COVID era, as the riders pods consist of all individual solo-rider seat units that swing upward and drop as the whole ride spins around.
Zamperla is also launching some new social media channels focused directly on their Roller Coasters. You can find new Zamperla Coaster feeds on Facebook and Instagram. I’m told that Zamperla’s Roller Coaster division has a lot of big new ideas they want to share with the world this year, so be sure to follow along to keep up with all their latest announcements starting with a peek at the new Dragon’s Apprentice coaster at Legoland New York making a test run.
(1/16/21) Zamperla Rides has announced that Antonio Zamperla Jr., the grandson of the company’s founder, Antonio Zamperla, and son of current President Alberto Zamperla, has now been appointed as the company’s new CEO.
The company has also announced that Valerio Ferrari has retuned will be taking on the role of Chief Sales Officer. Valerio previously worked for Zamperla from 1991 to 2018 and left to serve as Co-CEO for Intamin before returning back to Zamperla this year.
Meanwhile a brand new addition to the company can be found with the addition of Adam Sandy (formerly of Ride Entertainment) to be their new Sales & Marketing Director for the company’s roller coaster division. Congratulations to all!