But let's take a closer look at that ride vehicle.
SeaWorld said in a press release today that "Antarctica – Empire of the Penguin will include a first-of-its-kind family adventure ride that utilizes new technology for an experience that can change from visit to visit. Designers also revealed that guests will be able to choose the level of thrill they experience on the ride."
Hmmm. Could these be some sort of motion-base cars on a trackless ride system? Groups could select how much the cars move ("choose the level of thrill they experience") and the path through the ride building could vary from trip to trip ("an experience that can change from visit to visit"), in the spirit of Tokyo Disneyland's Winnie the Pooh ride. It's one explanation (and the one I'd love to ride). I don't have any insider scoop here - just looking at the image and release and applying that to what I know is out there as current ride technology.
The attraction will include not just the ride, but also an up-close viewing area, restaurant and gift shop. I'm guessing that the people depicted alongside the ride reference the viewing area in the new ride. SeaWorld said:
"Antarctica – Empire of the Penguin will get SeaWorld’s guests closer than ever - and out among - its colony of penguins including gentoos, rockhoppers, adelies and kings. How close has yet to be detailed, but designers consider the guests’ encounters with the penguins to be the first of their kind in any theme park or zoo in the world."
And yes, it's going to be chilly in there: "Immersing guests in a colony of penguins means Antarctica – Empire of the Penguin will be the coldest theme park attraction in the world. Designers have declined comment on the engineering it will take to place SeaWorld guests among a colony of penguins whose habitat must stay in the low 30 degrees for comfort."
By the way, I love the "hidden penguin" in the image, too. Take a close look at that snow-covered rock work in the top middle of the image.
Update: To clarify, the images above conceptual "photo illustrations" provided by SeaWorld. They are not photos of the actual ride or exhibit, which hasn't been completed yet.Tweet
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