If it's just a grouper, then I'm all for it. I know it is generally unnecessary for seasoned theme park goers, but having a grouper can dramatically reduce the stress of a guest who's just trying to get on the ride as quickly as possible.
Sounds like a phenomenal roller coaster...definitely high up on my hit list.
I love the return of the loop through the lift hill that was a trademark of early B&M designs, but I'm a little disappointed that the course features a second loop (elements shouldn't repeat in my book). That last slow barrel roll looks pretty awesome, especially with the visual of being so high off the ground. Dorney Park's Hydra with its "Jojo roll" is pretty cool, and I would imagine this slow roll element is equally impressive.
Was the "batwing-esque" element near the end of the course intense at the bottom between the 2 inversions? The inverted batwing is by far my favorite element on B&M inverts (Afterburn and Montu), but Banshee's back-to-back inversion element looks quite different, and not quite intense from the POV.
Also, I'm assuming that the restraints are the same OTSRs B&M has been using on their fliers, minus the ankle clamps.
Yes, there is a guy in the station assigning seats. Not just grouping. With lines like that, you'll definitely need a good song and dance to get the front seat.
Russell, you are correct about the restraints, and the batwing is actually where the ride hits top speed. The second vertical loop doesn't disappoint, even though it repeats. You are so disoriented by then to notice.
Banshee looks amazing, like an inverted version of my favorite steel coaster, Kraken. I cannot wait to ride it later this summer when the Rao Family makes a pilgrimage over to Mason for this delectable delight.
As for the assigned seating, if the lines are insane it makes a whole lot of sense. I wish more parks would implement such crowd control measures when lines are long. Nothing is worse than seats going to waste in a four across coaster. As lines die down, I am sure the assigned seating will be phased out too.
Derek, how does Fastlane work with Banshee (or Fastlane+, I guess)? Is there a separate line all the way to the ride, or does it merge in at the load house? Is it worth the expense? I think it would be better to go to the park two days than to spend the extra for Fastlane+, but you're the KI expert!
Also, what is your suggested touring strategy with Banshee in the mix? Head to Beast and Diamondback early while folks are otherwise occupied with Banshee, or race to Banshee first thing?
Lastly, did you go on a night ride? If so, how was it? All those loops in the dark would be so disorienting!