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Universal Orlando Resort (USO, IOA) Discussion Thread

P. 602: Universal Holidays & Velocicoaster photo report posted!

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People are lining up outside Rockit in hopes that the supposed 6pm Soft Opening is true. Someone looks familiar in this photo..

 

 

[EDIT] - THE CONSTRUCTION WALLS ARE COMIN' DOWN.

 

Dozens of uniformed employees standing about and Park just brought over an iced drink cart.

 

"Here at Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit, all sorts of management standing planning a line formation. I've been told by staff 6 pm!!'"

 

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I like how they build a roller coaster in the same time it took them to built new lockers for Harry Potter.   

On Sunday I ventured out to the Universal Orlando Resort for a chance to see the new holiday offerings at the two parks. This year is a little different thanks to COVID-19, but Universal has still man

^Agreed. I think the newer Intamin lapbars are actually the best steel coaster restraint currently being produced. When comparing overhead lapbars on Taron and Blue Fire, I found the Intamin ones to b

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They are hoping to run at least three trains with the moving sidewalk for a brief period of time between 6:00-7:00 if everything falls in place like hoped for soft openings tonight.

 

EDIT: All walls are down. Three trains are in the station ready to go; a fourth train could be added soon. Wait time is 5 hours.

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Lol, they let the TNA Wrestlers ride just now, before letting the public in.

 

Jeremy Borash one of the guys from TNA said on his twitter that he "Just got to ride the new Hollywood Rip Ride Rocket Rollercoaster at Universal before it opens to the public. Video coming in moments."

 

6:23 - Attractions Magazine guys just got off, they liked it, but liked Manta more, lmao.

 

Rockit's wait is now at a more manageable 2 hours.

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Cool...To bad my season passes were up last week...Saving for Disney now...The ride looks cool...I,m glad the had a soft opening..Good thing to because there a couple storms closing in on Florida later this week...

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I got to ride around 730PM tonight. They called for single riders when I was just about through the first queue house. I was placed in the backseat. What has been rumored before about "shaky" I can confirm, except it was just rough for me. I can handle shaky. Unfortunately I walked off the ride with a pounding headache. There are just moments that it felt like going over a speed bump at 65MPH....quick but hard bumps. Not pleasant. I wanna try again in a different seat.

 

The ride itself, meh. The first drop is great, loop is SOOOO much fun! It isn't really intense, but just a strange sensation while you are going around it. By the time we hit the first block brake though, I already had a headache, so the rest of the ride wasn't that pleasant. The burst through the firehouse was very effective though. I don't "get" the crowd surfer element, for me it did nothing while on the ride. In fact, the entire City Walk portion of the coaster was relatively dull.

 

As I said, I'd like to ride a few more times, especially in the front. Its not a bad ride, really, but it certainly not a personal favorite and by any means no where near being as good as Manta.

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The ride is at a 3 hour wait and they've closed the line for the day. Just so you know, there is a height MAXIMUM. 6 Feet 6 Inches.

We got there just as the line closed They were also telling us 3-4 hours and no clue what will happen tomorrow. We were told by two different employees it may open tomorrow, another "technical rehearsal" or be closed.

 

Guess we are there at opening tomorrow and hoping for the best. It is the last day of our Super Bowl week long tickets.

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Just got back from Uni nd HRRR's first technical rehearsal

The ride exceeded my expectations as it was fast, decently forceful nd had great air time.

I was however disappointed in the lack of video available, but its still in its testin phase but ah well

Waited from 11-till opening

had its advantages as the crew brought me nd two friends to the front of line

Overall 8/10 and cant wait to re-ride!!!!!

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Peeps on Rock-it

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4 hours, please, try waiten 8

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Yay Front of Line!!!:b

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...

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Well today was the first day of general public testing (team member previews have been going on over the last week or so) and I had a chance to finally ride Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit. The experience itself was not anything like I expected, but the ride was fun. I wouldn't call it groundbreaking, nor would I compare it to my newly crowned favorite, Manta, but the ride is certainly a good addition to the park.

 

I got to the park at about 4:00 pm (though I had been there earlier that morning in hopes of an early run) and was quickly told by several team members that I had seen earlier that the ride would hopefully open to the public at 6:00 pm. Team previews were ongoing by the time of my arrival and those finished at about 5:30 pm. The wooden walls blocking the entrance remained tightly closed but were surrounded by barricades, indicating the slightest chance of an opening. Two costumed team members arrived around the same time I did, only to find that the construction wall was surrounded by a sizable crowd insistent to ride the ride after hearing the rumor about a 6:00 pm opening. For nearly an hour, the team members could only tell us that they could neither confirm nor deny the rumors, waiting nearly an hour before telling us that the ride itself would not open for us. The team member on the loudspeaker urged guests to go experience the other attractions, but very few left. Within a half an hour, the crowd had nearly doubled in size as did the number of team members and present security. Leads began to come in and more evidence of a possible opening began to surface. The metal barricades were slowly rearranged to create a narrow line, which a team member could only tell me was the "hypothetical entrance" in the event of a soft opening. As the barricades were placed, a rush of guests moved to the stage side of the Bowl, creating a makeshift line. I grabbed my place, meeting up with some friends (pictured in the on-ride photo) and waited patiently for an opening. The wooden doors of the wall were finally opened (and nailed into place) and soon after, guests were allowed (in staggered groups) into the entrance plaza of the attraction. Before we were given entry, we were warned that everything in our pockets had to be stored in a locker. The lockers were free, so it wasn't too big of an issue--we rushed over and grabbed a space and moved back into the line.

 

Once inside of the queue we moved along quickly, bypassing the huge extended queue that would be filled within the next hour. We waited for about fifteen minutes in the queue as the two-train operation continued to chug along (though they were supposedly adding a third train as we left the park) before we took our seats. Sitting in the second row, I was able to get a good view of the action while noting that the seats are slightly tiered, providing a better view as you move farther back in the train. At least for this preview, choosing seats was not an option except when waiting for the front row. The moving platforms were not actively moving, but it didn't seem necessary considering the fact that riders were loaded at the front of the station.

 

This was my first time in an X-Car, so I wasn't sure what to expect. The ride's waist harness/restraint was incredibly heavy and took a good effort to get in place and seemed to lock me into the point of little breathing room, but I was comfortable otherwise. Embedded in the restraint is a tiny touch screen panel allowing you to choose your song, first by genre and then by specific title and artist. Again, I'll let it be known that I'm not a huge fan of putting slow songs on a fast-moving roller coaster, but I figured I'd let it go. Having always dreamed of a coaster with some Daft Punk music to it, I had to go with Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger (though I feel that there are far better songs in the band's catalog that could have fit, like Aerodynamic, Digital Love, Crescendolls, Superheroes or even One More Time). Once the lift starts, the music goes along, playing like a regular track--the song wasn't edited (at least, not that I could tell) to run on the ride, meaning that it played from start to finish like it would on your iPod.

 

The vertical lift is surprisingly fast, which is nice considering that there really isn't anything to look at besides the rings (though there are some lights attached to the lift that may give the night rides a little more glow). Over the top of the lift, you enter the drop which was surprisingly "nothing." I expected plenty of airtime off of this plummet, but got none. It was like nothing happened from the lift to the bottom of the non-inverting loop, which led my friend Matt and me looking at each other completely confused. The non-inverting loop was an interesting element, though seemingly forceless for me. I did get some strange airtime at the top of the turnout of the loop, but it wasn't much. Moving back into the loop and out again, the train flies back up into a set of brakes, launching you out of your seat for a few milliseconds. Through the brake, you exit again without any air on the descent, hitting the treble clef with a bust-thru of the Ghostbusters firehouse (where the photo is taken). The treble clef was definitely the most forceful element in the ride, and gave the ride a little more bite. Out and into one more brake run, we move into a series of swooping motions behind the Bowl, leading into the "crowd surfer" which provides a fast fling sideways (a perfect "95 degrees!" moment). Once outside of the park's limits, the Citywalk section provides a simple but fun series of swoops into the terrain and an inclined helix (which is forceful as well). From there you get a few more sweeping motions and then the brakes into the station.

 

The ride, though large, flies by all too quickly. The ride does seem to be suffering from a good amount of rattle, but I would by no means call it rough. Overall, the experience is a good one and is family friendly. I have some issues with the song choices, but the quality of the sound and the commodity of the multiple choices certainly give some additional appeal. Universal Orlando has a good new coaster for its lineup, though it isn't an intense beast like Dueling Dragons or the newly opened Manta.

 

Edit: Fluffy fluffy bunnies equal lockable compartments. That darn word filter...

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And to close, the onride photo from our first time on Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit!

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"Bonus helix!"

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"Whee!"

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Prepare for the air!

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A cloud shot to darken the mood...

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Just in case you weren't sure, this is a technical rehearsal.

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The only thing that didn't seem to be functioning was the moving platform in the station. Thats pretty good for the first soft opening...

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More sun shots.

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The money shot.

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Universal has borrowed the Georgia Aquarium's idea of a "fondle tank" and has broken the record. This queue is the world's largest human "fondle tank." Don't you feel special when inside of it?

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More screens to oogle...

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I'm sure we'll see lots of this shot in the coming weeks...

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Nifty little LED screens line the outdoor queue area to entertain the guests while giving them information about their upcoming ride experience.

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Time for some Park Index love!

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I'm fairly proud of this photo...

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It looks so peaceful...

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See? Survey!

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I was asked to take a survey following my ride...

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"Your souls are mine!"

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And away!

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Up!

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Up!

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And a really good view of the lift.

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The ride's exit provides a great view of the ride's largest features...

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You can preview your photos in extra long, landscape and "screen." They were innovative with their delivery on this one.

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Onride videos and DVDs weren't sold today, but photos were flying off of the shelf like seats on Cliffhanger... Oh, wait...

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Good spots in line make me happy. Forgetting to shave doesn't.

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The crowds begin to grow.

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"We can neither confirm nor deny that this ride may or may not open at 6:00 pm today after Team Member previews are over..."

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Down we go! Do we feel it? Nobody knows!

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"95 degrees!!!"

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Up into run #1...

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Prepare for lots of sun-coverage in today's report...

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Welcome to Universal Orlando! Say hello to my giant banner-less tower!

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Good to see they've gotten this thing up and running. I absolutely love to look of the queue under the crowd surfer - that should look amazing at night with all the lights around it. Though I'm not surprised to hear there's not a whole lot of air on the first drop - it still looks like the drop starts to flatten out much to early to provide any sufficient air. Though its good to hear the rest of the ride is fun.

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