Ever think being part of an intergalactic battle to save the Earth might be an interesting day’s work? Yes? Well head on over to Universal Studios Florida and help the Autobots fight off invading Decepticons at Transformers: The Ride, now open and ready to recruit your help.
“Transformers is one of the movie industry’s most successful franchises and Universal’s ride offers a four-minute, condensed version of all the action that people loved from those movies,” Robert Niles, editor of Theme Park Insider told NBC News. “It’s just the robots, fighting, with the audience along for the ride – literally.”
Heralded by an elaborate pyrotechnics ceremony, a Transformerssong by the band Cheap Trick and a flyover of private jets, Transformers: The Ride opened last week to kick off the central Florida attractions summer season. Basically, the 4 1/2 minute ride is an interactive battle between the Autobots and Decepticons.The queue for the ride begins at the headquarters of NEST (Nonbiological Extraterrestrial Species Treaty). As the story goes, the evil Decepticons want Allspark, a source of energy nestled in NEST. Using flight simulator technology, movie screens, wind, smoke, heat and other effects, the ride takes guests after Decepticons, including Megatron, Grindor, Devastator, Sideswipe and Bonecrusher. Guests survive explosions, crashes, free falls, missiles and more as good wins out over evil, all in 3D.
Universal has been mum on exactly what maintenance was being performed. The coaster’s German manufacturer – Maurer Sohne – issued a memo on Sept. 2, advising that all coasters similar to the Rip Ride Rockit be shut down immediately because of a flaw in the coupling bar that holds the two trains in the ride cars together.
At the time of the ride’s closure, Universal said that they had already dealt with the manufacturer’s advisory.
The Rip Ride Rockit roller coaster boasts the tallest lift hill in Orlando, at 167 feet. It has a number of unusual design features, including a vertical loop that rolls the ride cars around so that riders are not upside down at the top of it. The coaster officially opened on Aug. 19, 2009.
The ride features individual speakers in each seat and the ability to “choose your own soundtrack,” from a list of 30 songs by artists such as the Black-Eyed Peas, No Doubt, Beastie Boys and Evanescence. There are also a number of hidden tracks for the Rip Ride Rockit that aren’t on the official song list.