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Skull Island Reign of Kong

Theme Park Insider Reader Rating: 8 out of 10

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King Kong returned to the Universal Orlando Resort in June 2016 with a ride blending the 3D, 360-degree imagery of Universal Studios Hollywood's Studio Tour Kong encounter with the immense animatronic of Universal's previous "Kongfrontation" attractions.


This is quite a bit better than I thought it would be. In fact, I think this is an underrated ride for IOA. The queue is possibly the best in the country. I still prefer Indiana Jones and the HP rides, but this ride fires on all cylinders. The ride itself has some great screen-based segments that really are full of suspense I felt. The movements the vehicle provided really were so fluid and great. Oddly enough, my biggest issue was actually the Kong AA. After it being built up as so great, it ends up being just alright. The fact that Kong was just beating up T-Rexes, but he is now just staring at you for a full minute bored is just odd. The animatronic itself isn't that fantastic either. The biggest issue I have though it that they just put the head in a tiny corner. Kong's body does not seem like it is below that head. Anyway, I actually do really love this ride. Really surprised me. 8/10
I have heard some put this attraction down stating it is a clone of the Hollywood experience...well, I have never been to Hollywood, and having experienced this today, I thought it was fantastic. The queue is an attraction itself, with some impressive animitronics and a very creepy, ominous feel. The attraction itself is great fun and the Kong animitronic is awesome. Overall, an excellent new attraction.
The queue and fortress around the ride are pretty incredibly designed. But the ride itself feels lackluster. It ends very abruptly after just a little bit of bumping around. You get crammed in a giant cart with 72 other people. It can be hard to see if you're in the center. You can't use a fast pass on it, and it's not worth waiting an hour to ride. It's a ride it once and you're done type of ride.
More and more Universal is starting to tell the story in the queue. That sucks when you are in a wheelchair because most of the time you pass the queue. That said, if you would do the queue you are pulled more and more into the story of the island and it's inhabitants. The queue even has life "scare actors" but they hardly scare you. Them being there though makes the feeling something is wrong bigger. The AA's are top notch and being in the queue it give you time to appreciate them.
When you board the vehicle you get one of 5 AA drivers who all tell a different story adding to the reride value. There are 2 ways to start your journey to find the lost crew and that is outside via a jungle setting or inside skipping the outside portion. This is clever due to thunderstorms and heavy rainfalls in the summer. Rides that go outside need to be closed for safety but Kong can continue entertaining guests. I only did the outside portion and I would love to do that again at night with all the fire. Entering you begin with AA bats but most of the ride is used by 3D screens. Yes people complain a lot about screens but it's done very well and I have no idea how they could create the story with AA's. In the end you meet a huge AA Kong (or at least it's head), it's stunning. Universal created another strong 6 minute long ride. There is no shop, no photo opportunity. As stated this ride could be to intense for small kids.
Great queue, impressive AAs and the 360 scene is great. Too short though, and too much reliance on screens.

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