I haven't really posted here for a long time (but alwayssss lurking
) so sorry if I do anything wrong in this review!... Anyway, I was in the park today for the opening of "Kärnan", and WOW! It is a *very* intense coaster. The ride opened at noon today and had a steady 1 1/2-2 hour line till the park closed (with all other rides being under 20 minutes) — people were cheering and clapping after nearly each ride, and everyone seemed to absolutely love it. As of now, the queue area theming and on-ride theming is non-existent, but as you all probably know, it will be added next season.
A few main points about the ride, just in my opinion, though! (SPOILERS!):
The first thing I noticed is how great the trains are. The restraints are super comfortable and you have lots of leg room and freedom of movement.
The park had been great at keeping the lift hill backwards vertical drop a secret. I still wasn't completely sure what was going to happen when the ride stopped on the lift hill! It seems to stop about 2/3rds of the way up and drop maybe just 1/3rd of the entire length of the tower, but it is still a nice gimmick. The drop itself is very comfortable and the braking smooth. It is more or less completely dark in the tower (as of now).
First drop = INSANE.
On my first ride, I was in the last row, and you get some very, very strong ejector air during the drop. It literally yanks you into the vertical dive and twist with sustained airtime, and the sense of speed is greatly enchanced due to the 'tunnel'. The first drop seems to me quite perfect and was my favorite part of the ride.
The next element (the butterfly dingy – anyone knows what it is called?) is extremely good as well and offers what I would call 'strong floater' to 'mild ejector' airtime. The combination of airtime and 'twistyness' is just great.
The rest of the ride is mostly about speed, but with three or four quite strong airtime moments thrown in the mix. It just seems to never let up and is full of surprises, although mostly in the first half. A great surprise was, for instance, the transition after the first overbanked turn which offfered a strong boost of ejector airtime. The second half of the ride I found less inspired, but still nice.
The indoor inline roll after the brake run was a nice surprise as well. Good hangtime.
The strongest negative point about the ride is its roughness. I had only two rides during the day (it was my first time in the park so I wanted to ride everything), once in the very back, outer left seat and once in the second-to-last row, inner left seat. Especially in the second half of the coaster there were a few problems. It seemed to be random, but strong jerking rather than a constant rattle, and it was especially noticeable in the outer seat. It was tolerable, but still borderline painful, and would make something like a marathon session quite a... marathon
The second thing is capacity: the ride is very, very long and the trains seat only 16. This obviously makes the line a bit slow, but the park isn't huge yet, so it's not a big problem.
Generally speaking, I think this coaster will land in my top 10. All in all, it is a very intense, very original ride. The roughness is the only negative factor and definitely a nuisance, but it is pretty much made up for by the extreme first drop and the airtime thoughout. Go ride it!
Below a few pictures I snapped one my iPhone.