Islands of Adventure
NBC Universal / Comcast
---- THE LATEST BUZZ ----
(11/11/2023) Islands of Adventure May Be Planning New Nintendo Themed Concept (MORE...)
(10/5/2023) Water Ride Off-Season Rehab Schedules Released (MORE...)
(7/2/2023) What Happened To The Nightime Lights at Hogwarts Castle? (MORE...)
(5/13/2023) Take a Last Trip Into The Temple of Poseidon (MORE...)
(4/22/2023) How to Incorporate Poseidon's Fury Into The Wizarding World (MORE...)
Ride Rehabs - These dates are not guaranteed to be 100% accurate as refurbishments are subject to change.
Ripsaw Falls - NOW CLOSED through Nov. 17, 2023
Hogwarts Express - Dec. 10 through Dec. 16, 2023
Jurassic Park River Adventure - Jan. 8 through Feb 1, 2023
Popeye & Bluto’s Bilge-Rat Barges - Feb. 5, 2024 through Mar. 8, 2024
Wizarding World of Harry Potter - DIAGON ALLEY Review!
Screamscape Previews Diagon Alley!! We’ve Got All The Details!
Screamscape Review Part II: Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts
Screamscape Review Part III: The Hogwarts Express!
Other Features & Reviews
Skull Island: Reign of Kong (2016)
Volcano Bay (2017)
Christmas in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter (2017)
Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure (2019)
Jurassic World VELOCICOASTER (2021)
General Park News - (10/5/2023) Just a quick heads up, but Dudley Do-Right’s Ripsaw Falls at Islands of Adventure is now closed for annual refurbishment. The log flume attraction is said to be closed from now through to Nov. 17, 2023.
Following the busy Thanksgiving/Christmas break season, the park has already set dates to close and refurbish their other two water rides: Jurassic Park River Adventure (Jan 8 through Feb 1, 2024) and Popeye & Bluto’s Bilge-Ray Barges (Feb. 5 through Mar. 8, 2024)
(5/13/2023) For the record books, InsideUniversal has posted a video shot at the very last performance of the Poseidon’s Fury attraction at the end of May 9th, 2023. Of course the guests in attendance were fully aware of it, as the show was full of cheering fans and a little improv. Love it or not, it is sad to think this is the last time anyone will get to walk through the awesome water vortex effect.
A few fun facts in case anyone was wondering after all this time… the “Professor Baxter” character who is heard but goes unseen in the attraction was named as a fun homage to the famous Disney Imagineer Tony Baxtor. Oh… and the live-actor “Taylor” character? I’m pretty sure this name-dropping was done by Taylor Jeffs, current head of Legacy Entertainment, who worked on the Poseidon’s Fury revision with Gary Goddard back when Legacy was known as “The Goddard Group”. Of course the placement of little ‘Easter Egg’ references by creators isn’t as uncommon as you might think. After all, it has been said that you leave a little piece of yourself in everything you create for others to enjoy.
So let’s take one last trip into the Temple of Poseidon!
(4/22/2023) Listen up…
THIS IS NOT A RUMOR!
THIS IS NOT EVEN SPECULATION!
This isn’t anything that will likely ever happen… it’s just a fun idea I had on my own. Consider this a little example of Armchair-Imagineering if you will indulge me. Ok? Ready?
I just had a crazy idea of my own about a fun idea Universal could do with the former Poseidon’s Fury attraction space. What if it were possible to transform the existing attraction into the Wizarding World’s Azkaban prison? Looking at the Wizarding World lore about the creation of the infamous prison, it was said to have been created as a lair and trap of sorts by the mad wizard Ekrizdis who practiced dark magic and would lure unsuspecting Muggle sailors to it in order to trap and torture them.
Right there alone, this sounds like a fitting concept fit for transporting and trapping Muggle theme park guests into the heart of Azkaban prison, tucked away on the outskirts of the Wizarding World at Islands of Adventure. Taking some inspiration from the concepts of the old Poseidon’s Fury attraction and then mix in some modern cuttiing-edge Escape Room style interactivity, and perhaps borrowing a bit from Galaxy’s Edge our hapless Muggles would be brought into Azkaban, trapped in prison cells and tasked with escaping the dark nightmare of a prison before someone attempts to finish whatever dark works were once started by Ekrizdis.
Ok, I now return you to the real world… and while this will never happen, it does give us a fun little idea to think about what kind of attraction this really could be. Of course the Azkaban concept could also work as a Galactic Starcruiser ultra-themed resort experience, where your price of admission is an overnight adventure trying to escape from the prison through a series of trials and experiences, allowing guests to escape into the theme park at dawn’s light lest they be trapped forever in the bowels of Azkaban.
Either way… just imagine the fun kinds of merchandise Universal could create and sell with an experience like this, especially when ever prisoner goes through an admission’s experience where they take your Wizarding World “mug shot’ with you in chains holding the Azkaban Prison sign.
(5/6/22) According to various reports sent in, Universal Orlando is sending out surveys asking some pretty nifty questions about guest’s current experience with the interactive wands used in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. In addition to just gathering data about their guests current experience with the interactive wand product, they clearly are looking into the possible future of the product.
While the survey does try to gain an opinion on the concept of just selling non-interactive replica wands, it also asks for opinions on a number of possible upgrades to the program. This includes revising the current wand stations, adding more station, adding a possible light option to the wand, or adding haptic feedback (vibration) to the wand. What really seemed cool was the idea of adding the ability for the whole system to recognize either the wand or the wizard, track your progress, and even increase the ‘power’ or the spells you can cast based on your level of mastery. Other ideas are also briefly floated about, including a wand dueling area, final battles or quests being added to the system, or custom spellcasting ability or effects based on the wizard’s Hogwards “house”.
Keep in mind this is just a survey, but enough options and neat sounding ideas are being included in the various surveys going out that it does seem to show that Universal Creative is taking a seriously long and hard look at this popular interactive guest activity.
2023 - Nothing new is expected this year...
2024 - New Nighttime Hogwarts Castle Show - Rumor - (7/2/2023) A few readers have asked me if I knew why the popular “Nighttime Lights at Hogwarts Castle” projection show in Islands of Adventure had been closed this summer. After all, the same show has been currently running at Universal Studios Hollywood, so why not in Orlando?
There is a good reason for this, as the Orlando site is being used to create an all new Wizarding World themed projection show experience. Currently Universal has three different projection shows in their vault that they can show, the original Nighttime Lights show, the Magic of Christmas at Hogwarts Castle show which is reserved for the holiday season, and the latest was the Dark Arts at Hogwarts Castle show which originally may have been meant more for a Fall or Halloween season, but has since been shown throughout the year (other than at Christmas) at the various parks.
I don’t have a timeline as to when this new show might be ready, but the early rumors suggest it might not be ready until early 2024. As such, I suspect Islands of Adventure will likely see the return of the Christmas show before we see the premier of the new show. The rumored theme of the new show is thought to involve the Ministry of Magic, and perhaps serve as a sort of thematic preview for the upcoming Wizarding World attraction opening at the Epic Universe theme park in 2025 which is expected to revolve around a battle with Dolores Umbridge.
2026/2027 - The Legend of Zelda - Rumor - (11/11/2023) Screamscape sources tell us that Universal Creative is indeed working on concepts to bring an attraction themed to The Legend of Zelda to Islands of Adventure. Nothing has been locked down yet apparently, not the attraction style, size, or scope of the location, but we’ve got some ideas. With the Poseidon’s Fury just sitting there closed and theater for the former Eighth Voyage of Sindbad Stunt Show also sitting closed right next door for the past few years, what is left of the original “Lost Continent” section of the park would allow for an entire “Zelda” themed land. Just don’t look for anything to happen until they finish with Epic Universe in 2025.
(4/12/2023) After being closed for a long period of time during COVID, only to reopen after a lengthy rehab as well… Universal Orlando shocked many today when they announced via an internal employee email that the Poseidon’s Fury attraction would be closing for good at the end of May 9th, 2023 to make room for something new at Islands of Adventure.
So what is on the horizon? No one knows for sure, but when The Eighth Voyage of Sindbad stunt show closed in 2018, I figured that Poseidon’s Fury was likely to be living on borrowed time. It’s also fair to assume that The Lost Contient island in general will also be lost to the sands of time, as after May 10th, both of the remaining attractions that made up the themed zone will be no more, leaving just a random assortment of gift shops, food stands and a foul tempered fountain. Oh, and Mythos… the park’s premier dining restaurant.
It would be interesting if Mythos was also shut down, but so far nothing has been said about that. Even if Mythos stays, the combined land used by the closed Sindbad and Poseideon attractions, along with the connecting shops is almost comparable in size to the land used for the Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure attraction. I’m not saying this will happen yet, but if Universal was willing to do so, they could level this entire space to the ground and be able to repurpose it for just about anything… a new major attraction to a whole land with several smaller attractions.
Universal seems to have something in mind however, as the email mentioned sharing more details about what might replace Poseidon’s Fury in the future. So it is also entirely possible that they could just reskin the existing Poseidon’s Fury attraction to create another similar walk-through adventure. I know at one point, many years ago, a concept was pitched to turn Posideon into a Legend of Zelda attraction, but those plans were never approved. Plus, from what I understand, the basic layout and effects gags from Poseidon would have remained intact, including the water vortex, the only change would be the story and theme of everything, so it makes sense why Universal never went through with it.
Screamscape Reviews the VELOCICOASTER!
(6/14/21) I’ve just posted the official Screamscape review of the Jurassic World VelociCoaster, which just may be one of the best coasters on the planet, and most certainly to be considered the best in all North America. A few days ahead of the grand opening, I journeyed down to Orlando on my own with the family and took on this insane beast of a ride. But I’m not just going to tell you about it, I’m going to show it to you as well in an all new Screamscape video all about the VelociCoaster and and one other epic new attraction at Universal Orlando.
(5/28/21) Universal has released the official POV video for the new Jurassic World VelociCoaster. While watching all the insanity take place, keep in mind that the entire runtime of the video is just 90 seconds, with the first launch kicking off around the 7 second mark and the train doesn’t stop until it hits the second set of brakes around 80 seconds later. I’ll say that again… 80 seconds!
80 seconds of non-stop, pedal to the metal, high speed, velociraptor screaching in your face utter chaos! It’s a beautiful thing! Check it out!