I haven't ridden it and am not likely to get to Orlando for another 3 or 4 years at least, so I can't really comment. But from what I've seen the attraction looks like a good solid family addition to SeaWorld's line-up. And if anyone had stopped to THINK about that artwork showing live penguins mixing with moving trackless vehicles they might perhaps have come to the conclusion that it was impossible....
I am not surprised the attraction falls short of the concept art though. I've learned a great deal from all the hoopla surrounding Aquatica. Another SeaWorld let down.
Nothing like I expected due to the concept art. The ride bored me. However, once you get off the ride and are able to view the penguins up close, spectacular! The exhibit itself was awesome, but the ride mediocre at best.
To me the whole experience just means I have to wait several hours to see the penguins. Then the temperatures somewhat force you to move along quickly. I preferred the old experience much better.
Also, I think Sea World should have made a nice waiter service restaurant instead of another cafe. I've heard many online saying the food wasn't very good, which doesn't surprise me. SeaWorld's soft serve ice cream has no flavor to it at all.
To summarize my feelings: I wish they would've done something like Star Tours 2.0 with the Wild Arctic ride or given us an entirely new ride somewhere else (Sea Garden/Stables, it is time to go!)
I was strongly thinking about tacking on a day to my upcoming Orlando trip to spend at SeaWorld when I heard about the trackless technology and the "immersive story telling" that SeaWorld promised. Any thoughts of that went right out the window when I saw the video. I just don't see what the big deal is: You go past some screens which tell a disjointed story, see some pretty icicles and then the ride is over?
The penguin exhibit looks fantastic, but the ride? Huge disappointment, not just because of the hype...just because it looks like a poor ride.
I have a difficult time understanding how that one particular piece of art should have set up so many expectations. I looked at the art and thought "interesting, I wonder what this will be like". Then I read the accompanying release, which stated something like this...
"a first-of-its-kind family adventure ride that will include technology allowing for the experience to change from visit to visit. Guests will also be able to choose the “level of thrill” that they wish to experience inside the 8-passenger car. The attraction will introduce guests to a new SeaWorld character… a young gentoo penguin who will become your guide and lead you through a journey into the dangerous and wondrous beauty of the Antarctic. They’ll experience the mystery and wonder of life on the ice through the eyes of a penguin, sensing the beauty and drama of their often-dangerous habitat. Antarctica – Empire of the Penguin combines closer-then-ever animal connections with state-of-the-art interactive ride technologies"
That sounds exactly like what we got. Is the ride shorter than what some had hoped, sure- however I have heard that it is in fact a FUN ride none the less. Maybe the problem was the labeling of the art as CONCEPT- when it is more like PROMO.
I also feel the need to out that the vehicle in the promo is clearly going through snow and not water- which I believe clued to viewer into the idea that this attraction will be cold!
Maybe SeaWorld's latest press releases focused too much on the ride portion of this new realm instead of the realm as a whole- something that many web sites are also doing. Take TPI for example- we only received a ride review instead of an entire overview of the Antarctica realm.
We are spending one day at Sea World this year, but I can guarantee we won't be waiting hours to see this. I expected so much more from all the hype.
Don't even get me started on the ride. For me it looks like you spend 4 hours in a line where they talk about the "story" of e puck and how you have to live the adventure with him now. However, Puck must have an extremely boring life if all he does is see cool icicles with his face in them, shiny colours, a frozen waterfall and an 'intense' encounter with a sea lion. (Which lasts a total of 20 seconds). The only interesting part me is the ending at the actual exhibit. Its too much to wait in a 4 hour line to be in a 3 minute ride with absolutely no legitimate plot. Waste of time, I will most definitely not be attending. Sorry Seaworld but you missed the boat.
I respond: Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh-men!
I think Robert could be right. That promotional image conjured a journey through slippery majestic ice caverns and caves into a themed world with weather conditions and simulated sky overhead. I wanted to take a journey to a place I'm not likely to see in my own life. I didn't want to watch CGI videos. I expected more than one room with completely fake looking streamers hanging from the ceiling. It's cool in a trippy sort of way, but that part lasts less than a minute. The ride cars are great technology, but when they could have been used to make riders feel as if they're on water or ice, all they do is spin. This isn't supposed to be a thrill ride. Who cares if they spin a little or a lot?
It's a shame, as I really thought this could be one of the best attractions in Florida. Unfortunately, when I finally get a chance to visit Florida and go to SeaWorld Orlando, Antarctica will be going under the "time permitting" list.
Either way, I'll reserve judgement until I see it for myself in the fall.