In recent years special effects technology has taken giant leaps forward. No big blockbuster is complete without its fair share of special effects. So it’s no wonder that this passion for a big effect has taken hold of the theme park world.
It seems now that no park is complete without rides that push the boundaries of technology deliver a ride experience that can truly take you into another world, or at least make it feel that way.
One of the earliest examples of this type of attraction is the recently revamped “Amazing Adventures of Spiderman” at Universal Islands of Adventure. Just pop on your 3D glasses and get transported into the world of the Marvel hero.
You are taken around a track but the real thrills come from the special effects which include shooting up to the top of a skyscraper while trying to help Spidey save the city. The great thing about this ride is that it is suitable for a younger audience and a great way to get them used to this kind of virtual experience.
Another one of these rides that is great for the kids is the relatively new Despicable Me attraction at Universal Studios “Minion Mayhem”. In the spring of 2012 it replaced what was once the Jimmy Neutron ride.
In this ride you are seated in pods in an auditorium. You are then “transformed” into one of the brilliantly funny “minions” who then lead you on a minion training course that of course goes wrong and results in chaos.
This ride really is a fantastic example of how technology can really bring a ride to life and is funny rather than scary and both adults and kids are sure to love it. Another added bonus is that you get to have a dance party with the characters as you leave the ride which provides a great photo opportunity.
Of Course you can’t talk about Simulator rides without mentioning the hugely successful “Forbidden Journey” ride in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Islands of Adventure. This ride takes this type of ride technology to a whole new level, incorporating all the special effects that you would expect from a Potter movie.
On this ride you are riding an enchanted school classroom bench which then takes you on a magical journey through the grounds of Hogwarts and onto the Quidditch pitch. This one is not for the feint hearted though especially if you are particularly scared of spiders or Dementors.
Although, don’t let that put you off joining the queue just to take a tour of the truly remarkable Hogwarts which pays amazing attention to detail and is definitely worth a wander through regardless of whether you and your younger visitors want to ride.
At Universal Studios there is also the fantastic Simpsons Ride which is another one that truly transforms the world around you into the world of the much-loved TV family.
As you descend into the hilarious and chaotic world of animation you begin to realize that anything can happen. This ride also has a little something extra in the form of a smell which really adds to the whole feeling of really being transported to a new world.
Although other parks are also delving into the world of the Simulator it seems that it is the Universal parks that have really embraced the use of the new technology to really take their ride experiences to a new level. It makes for an exciting wait to find out what they will come up with next.
Josh Whiten writes on behalf of Top Villas, who specialize in luxury Orlando vacation homes. Find the perfect accommodation for your next Florida vacation.