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Spider-Man is back! The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man re-opens at Universal Orlando

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Published: March 8, 2012 at 2:10 PM

“The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man was so wonderful before,” said comic book icon, Stan Lee. “But now – with all of the new technology that’s been added – it is indescribably spectacular.” I couldn’t agree with him more. The day has FINALLY arrived that Universal Orlando reopens The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man.

The ride has been down for the last month to allow for the upgrade to a new 4K digital high definition Infitec 3-D projection system, new audio system, new lighting, and upgraded attraction’s sets.

The morning began with a very brief opening ceremony and then it was straight onto the ride. The queue hasn’t changed asides from a few small minor touchups and display upgrades.

Getting closer to the ride, it was time to grab the new 3-D “Spider-Vision” glasses, which are made with new dichroic filtered lenses to allow for vivid colors and clarity. For those familiar with the Star Tours: The Adventure Continues 3-D glasses, the Spider-Man lenses are smaller in comparison and are more limiting in view. The frames themselves look about the same size but are also slightly smaller and not as prescription glasses friendly. They do not fit over the full frame of prescription glasses unlike the Star Tours 3-D frames, which comfortably fit over a set of modern prescription glasses and still allow for a full viewing experience of the ride. In addition the new lens filters make the rest of the sets on the ride look darker.

The vehicles have had their sound system upgraded from 8-channel to 16-channel surround sound making it even more immersive. The ride itself is for the most part the exact same story. Every scene on the ride has been rescored and re-animated to 4K high definition animation including added details of everything in the scenes as well as at least one new element in each scene.

Spider-Man6

Let me just say the new animations look stunning and the audio is clearer than ever. The new animation includes several cameos by Spider-Man co-creator Stan Lee (I managed to find him in two scenes but I heard he appears in three). The details in the images are stunningly crisp and the colors are vivid. Universal has taken what has been an amazing attraction for the past decade and made it even better. The 2002-2005 best attraction winner should now definitely be a strong award contender once again. It is definitely worth going to check out the updated ride.

Update: Here's a video from Universal, with some on-ride footage:

Readers' Opinions

From N B on March 8, 2012 at 2:24 PM
Awesome. Can't wait to go in June. I figured they would use the new glasses that I posted about a few weeks ago. Dichroic polarized lenses will make a huge difference alone. They don't have that dark tint the regular glasses have.
From Eric Malone on March 8, 2012 at 2:40 PM
I had forgotten the ride even went down for the new upgrades. Looking forward to riding it. They were correct that the ride was amazing before, but looking forward to seeing how much better it is now.
From Rob Pastor on March 8, 2012 at 2:44 PM
Great article. The refurbished Amazing Spider-Man is receiving rave reviews on other sites also. I'll be at Universal for 12 days in May & I can't wait to see the upgrade. My opinion was that the previous ride was nearly equal to HP Forbidden Journey (minus the tremendous Forbidden Journey queue). This upgrade may possibly push it back to it's former best attraction status.
From Dominick D on March 8, 2012 at 2:56 PM
I can't wait to ride it this Saturday! Only bad part is the 3D glasses might not fit over my glasses. Quick question though; how bad were the waits?
From Domenik Jost on March 8, 2012 at 4:36 PM
Wait? What waits? ....oh after the Media event. Ahm when I left the media event the time said 30 minutes, but I'm sure that was wrong and was more like 90 minutes.
From Jeffrey H on March 8, 2012 at 7:22 PM
I thought the updated animation was awesome, but the music was glaringly awful. Like "I can't believe someone was paid to compose this music" bad. Whereas the music previously was reminiscent of the 90's Spider-Man cartoon, this one has lots of EuroPop synth "bleepy bloopy" sounding moments and the big musical "gasp" as the Scoop is about to hit the pavement has been removed. I love this ride just as much as I did before, but for me it's kind of 2 steps forward, 2 steps back.

I think this would have been a good opportunity for Universal to change the villain lineup to have each villain have a 4D effect (I'm looking at you Scream). Like maybe Mysterio and have him trick Spider-Man with illusions and fill the room with mist. Something ANYTHING beyond "Oh the humanity, she's swiping her claws at me!"

So in summary: Animation great, music abysmal.

From Dominick D on March 8, 2012 at 7:59 PM
I'm looking for a video just to see how awful the music is.
From Nick Orlando on March 10, 2012 at 7:13 AM
I don't think the music is that bad at all. I have heard speculation that after the sale of Marvel to Disney, Universal would be able to keep the characters they already use in the parks, however they would not be able to add new characters. So a villain shakeup would not be permitted in accordance with their contract. I agree though, Sream is a lame villain.

I rode yesterday and the wait was about 90 minutes, 40 mins for single riders. The new animation is beautiful, but the ending sequence did not seem to have the same intensity as before. The tilt of the ride vehicle seemed far less extream, so Maybe they are breaking the movement in slowly?

From Nick Dakuginow on March 10, 2012 at 2:10 PM
That's me at the 0:53 mark standing with my buddy who talks twice on that video. We were literally the first two people who got on the first ride after the grand ceremony, had a camera crew following us and after the ride, they popped up with cameras and microphones, pretty cool experience. After we left the gift shop, we were brisked to the stage area to do some interviews, about a 3 minute session, truly is a great upgrade to the great ride.
From 97.101.199.125 on March 10, 2012 at 5:48 PM
I rode Spider-Man this past Friday, and while the visual enhancements were a stunning improvement (and long overdue), I found the ride to have been slowed down a bit, possibly due to being able to track the digital 3D better and allow for more clarity during the ride.

As a result, you're able to take in the images onscreen longer (including a few new details and minor scene extensions), but the physical ride itself seems much less 'wild', and, as a result, a bit less fun than it used to be.

It's kind of like adding trim brakes to The Beast. Sure it's still great, but not as great as you once experienced. And yes, the new soundtrack will take some getting used to.

From 99.170.244.202 on March 11, 2012 at 5:03 PM
Per the conditions of my NDA, I can't discuss this ride or the upgrades in detail but I can say that this upgrade has taken a great ride and made it even better.
The projection installed by Thursby and his team is first rate.
"Stinky Pete" did a fantastic job on the on-board audio.
Devin is destroying ride vehicles on a daily basis with the enhanced profile. (I suggest that you ride it before it gets toned down...Potter and Transformers were both hobbled within weeks of opening!)
Jet's fixes and expansion of the RSS makes the operation much more user friendly.
Tim's lights look fantastic (even though the use of LED technology has an interesting effect thru the glasses.)
If you live in Orlando, get in your car and use your annual pass. If you are stuck somewhere else in the US, those airplane things aren't as expensive as they look. Get on this ride ASAP.

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