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Preview - November 2016

Six Flags to Offer New Coasters, Dark Rides, More in 2017

by Keith Miller

Six Flags Entertainment Corporation has another big year of new attractions in store for 2017, spread across its 19 theme and water parks in North America, including its new water park, Hurricane Harbor Oaxtepec in Mexico.

Three Six Flags theme parks are opening a sophisticated interactive dark ride, three are rolling out a new roller coaster, another three are getting extreme swing rides, and one is turning out a massive spinning-disc ride. The company’s water parks are getting in on the action, as well, with one launching North America’s first rocket blast water coaster and another dropping in dueling water slides.

More ‘Justice League’ Dark Rides on the Way

The next generation of the popular interactive dark ride, “Justice League: Battle for Metropolis,” will debut at three parks—Six Flags Magic Mountain in California, Six Flags Great Adventure in New Jersey, and as part of the 50th anniversary celebration at Six Flags Over Georgia near Atlanta. The ride’s initial version opened at four Six Flags parks in 2015 and 2016 through a collaborative effort between Six Flags, Sally Corp., and Oceaneering.

Riders become members of the Justice League Reserve Team and join Batman, Superman, and other superheroes battling Lex Luthor and The Joker to save Metropolis. The Joker’s felonious accomplice, Harley Quinn, joins the villainous clan at Six Flags Magic Mountain. Six Flags says this new edition of the ride features the most advanced dark-ride technology available.

New Coasters

The park chain’s three new roller coasters will appear at Six Flags Over Texas in Arlington, Six Flags Great America in Illinois, and Six Flags New England in Massachusetts, in the form of 4D Free Spin coasters from S&S-Sansei Technologies. The ride lifts guests straight up to the top of a 12-story hill, then sends them swooping along a multi-level horizontal track while experiencing half a dozen head-over-heels flips as they dive from one level to the next on winged seats. These coasters have previously opened to rave reviews at two other Six Flags parks.

“Wonder Woman Lasso of Truth” will swoop into both Six Flags Discovery Kingdom in California, and Six Flags America in Maryland, but each park will receive a completely different type of extreme swing ride. The version at Six Flags America, made by Funtime, spins guests seated two abreast in a 98-foot circle at 40 mph atop a 24-story tower. The thrill ride at Discovery Kingdom is an oversized pendulum made by Zamperla that swings 40 riders back and forth at 70 mph while rotating counterclockwise as it climbs progressively higher, reaching 147 feet. The latter ride will also open at La Ronde, the Six Flags park in Montreal, but bearing the name “Titan.”

Rounding out the new offerings is “Spinsanity” at Six Flags St. Louis in Missoui, and “The New Revolution” at Six Flags Mexico in Mexico City. “Spinsanity,” made by Zamperla, is a massive disc that first spins in one direction and then another while tilting from side to side; 40 guests swirl around at 14 revolutions per minute as the disc whirls along the 51-foot-high half-pipe track, all while perched on motorcycle-style seating facing outwards.

“The New Revolution” brings Six Flags’ fully integrated virtual reality (VR) roller coaster to Six Flags Mexico. The storytelling and high-definition imagery will sync with the track elements of the “Medusa Steel Coaster” as riders serve as co-pilots seated in a fighter jet and fly through a futuristic city, battling to protect the planet from alien invaders.

Water Park Enhancements

Among Six Flags water parks, the headline news is the debut of Hurricane Harbor Oaxtepec in the state of Morelos, Mexico. Opening February 2017, the 67-acre park will feature an innovative new hybrid water slide, a multi-level water play structure, a wave pool, and a lazy river.

Celebrating its 25th anniversary, the Six Flags Fiesta Texas water park in San Antonio will offer “Thunder Rapids.” Part coaster, part water slide, the ProSlide water coaster uses a custom-designed inline raft and water propulsion jets to whisk guests up and down the hilly circuit, with four high-banked flying-saucer turns mixed into the 924-foot-long ride. This design features water jets all the way up the hill.

Closing out the new Six Flags attractions for 2017 are the “Bonzai Pipelines” by ProSlide—dueling, twisting water slides at Six Flags’ The Great Escape and Splashwater Kingdom in New York that offer nearly 300 feet of body slides.