OK, so it’s a pendulum ride. Let’s try to contain our excitement. I say this only because of a dismissive comment about a pendulum ride made by a
TPI reader on an unrelated topic. Whatever your opinion of pendulum rides, they’re an integral component of theme/amusement parks.
Advertised as the world’s tallest pendulum ride, Wonder Woman Lasso of Truth just opened at Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson, NJ. It’s appropriately situated near other rides themed after DC Comics superheroes: i.e., The Dark Knight, Justice League: Battle for Metropolis, Cyborg Cyber Spin and Batman: The Ride. Standing 17 stories tall, it seats 40 riders in a gondola and purportedly reaches a maximum speed of 75 mph. That’s faster than the park’s most critically acclaimed ride, TPI’s award-winning roller coaster El Toro.
The ride begins with the gondola swinging gently from side to side before gaining momentum. The swings get incrementally higher until the disk, which spins riders in counterclockwise circles, reaches its maximum height of 172 feet. At that point things become pretty intense.
This is a really, really fun ride! The sense of freedom during the highest swings is exhilarating and the moments of hang time – which I hadn’t anticipated - enhance the ride experience. I would go as far as to call this ride thrilling. There is just one caveat: publicity from the park mentions a “dizzying journey to extreme heights” and I found that “dizzying” is the operative word. Although I got a kick out of the ride, toward the end I began to feel dizzy. My advice to those such as myself who are prone to motion sickness is to take a Dramamine or oil that can be rubbed behind the ears prior to riding. No motion sickness? No worries; this ride will be a blast from start to finish.
Zamperla does an excellent job with rides of this genre and Wonder Woman Lasso of Truth is no exception. It’s a good fit for the park, both thematically and in terms of the available space.Tweet
When SFMM opened the former "world's tallest pendulum" last year, I initially thought it would be something I'd do once and forget about. However, I think I've ridden it on every visit since it opened (provided the ride was operating). For whatever reason, supersizing these rides makes them a whole lot better, and while not a must ride they are very solid second-tier attractions and among the best flat rides out there. Given that CraZanity is consistently the longest wait at a park with 18 roller coasters, it's clear the public loves these things as well.
I've ridden a few of these including Delirium at Kings Dominion and Maxx Air at Cedar Point. When operated efficiently, they're a good diversion and solid second tier attraction for parks that need to augment options around top tier coasters. These take up very little space, are relatively reliable, and quite accessible because they don't go upside down while still offering a pretty intense experience.
However, what drives me crazy about rides like this is that parks approach them like second tier rides and staff them as such, which leads to long load times and lines that move unnecessarily slow. The first few weeks will see plenty of staff to cycle a ride this size every 4-5 minutes, but after a month it's like the park no longer cares, and only has 3 employees managing a ride that requires the checking of dozens of restraints. What started out as 4-5 minute cycle times quickly grows to 10 minutes. I rarely hop in line for rides like this where there appears to be more than 1-2 cycle's-worth of people in the queue. I'd much rather spend my time riding something unique than a flat ride that can be found virtually everywhere in the US (even if it's bigger).
Although I normally flock to these rides in general, it depends on the park. I've found some parks keep the ride duration down to a minimum such as Delirium at KD vs Maxx Air at CP which has a ride time of like 3 minutes. Delirium, and WW from when I went two weeks ago, provided 2 good swings, barely 2 minutes, before its over.
These are great rides. I took my first 'spin' on one of these Giant Discoveries in 2016 when SFoT added 'Riddler's Revenge. Now I am thrilled my home park (SFoG)has added one of these (called "Pandemonium" here) and it is a must ride on every visit.
Sure these rides are off-the-shelf flat rides but so what? They are popular and reliable - unlike the new / unique *prototype rides everyone seems to want in their park. This type of ride was on my 'wish list' and now that it has arrived I have nothing but good things to say.
Hopefully next year I will make my way to one of the parks with a 'super size' version of the Giant Discovery.
We have the exact same thing at our Six Flags park, La Ronde in Montreal. Here it`s called Titan. Fun ride, just make sure you do it on an empty stomach.
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Nice review and well written... But I think I'd be in the dismissive crowd as far as the ride goes... is it offering a new experience, or is it just big? It just strikes me as a flat ride with a cheap WW overlay.