Dear haters: the Six Flags dark ride is here, and you can cut your moaning and groaning because it’s really, really good.
Six Flags Over Texas just opened their all new Justice League: Battle for Metropolis “3D Interactive Dark Ride Experience” and media in attendance were in for a treat. Despite the skepticism theme park fans had towards the ride since it’s announcement, Six Flags has been persistent in proving that it’s serious about producing quality dark rides. This dark ride and it’s cousin at Six Flags St Louis are a force to be reckoned with in the regional theme park market, and the day one reviews prove it:
Justice League offers a blend of thrills, narrative and game play that should place it among the world’s elite dark rides. – Robert Niles Theme Park Insider
This is First Class Attraction! – Coaster Crew Twitter
[Justice League: Battle for Metropolis] is AMAZING!! Great interaction and top notch animation! – Twitter User 24chadster
Regional parks have been going nuts with dark rides lately, with Six Flags appropriately choosing to deploy their popular DC Comics characters to create this pair of amazing dark rides, and partnered with some of the industry’s most respected manufacturers to produce everything from special effects, animatronics, ride vehicles and custom animation for the ride. Nobody knows how much the ride(s) cost to build, but they have to have a big budget to produce rides of this caliber.
All I can say is wow. The internet coaster community is gushing over this ride. The entrance plaza and facade look great. The queue is a perfect balance between simplicity and themed elements along with the now famous Cyborg animatronic delivering backstory to new “Justice League Reserve Team” volunteers. The ride vehicles by famed manufacturer Oceaneering are amazing, and provide Universal/Disney level of immersion at regional park budgets.
The interactivity and projection are top notch, and blend in perfectly with their surroundings. The shooting elements make sense and are balanced by practical story elements in between the 3-D screens. The special effects work really well, and shouldn’t be too difficult to maintain. (The truck gag is classic!) Not to mention the fact that this ride uses effects lighting masterfully, with spinning and moving lights of all shapes and colours in every scene to convey the sense of emergency the story requires.
All things considered, this ride is everything I’d hoped for and so much more. It strikes a balance between dark ride basics and Disney/Universal level of effects and theming. The shooting elements balance the story elements, (which is something even the big guys could learn a thing about.) Capacity might be an issue, as is with all smaller dark rides, but this is a home run for Six Flags and I know I’m not the only one pining for them to roll this attraction out to more parks in the future.