Don’t act like you didn’t expect to see anything but expletives here – DC Rivals HyperCoaster, Warner Bros. Movie World’s new ride is a naughty, sinful beast. It’s the first time something you’d see in a park overseas has finally made it back home for us to enjoy and savour. Today I got the chance to ride the front, middle & back and finally take it all in. And so without further adieu, here’s my first thoughts and a few good solid reasons why you need to seriously drop what you’re doing and make plans to come and ride this Goliath.
Immediate first impression – pristine & focussed
Located in the superhero area (shock horror!) you’ll be welcomed by a huge mural of superheroes & super-villains getting ready for battle, with plenty other 3D-esque scenes adorning the queue as you progress. Speaking of queues, the whole space, right up to the station, is very much inspired by its fellow global brethren. Everything’s very smartly laid out and presented, right down to the open station, giving guests a chance to watch how to jump on quickly. It’s small things like this, like the way the seat-belts cleverly unlatch from the restraints, that end up being huge things in the long run – seconds saved are minutes and hours in the long run that guests like you and I don’t have to wait to board what is a helluva kickass ride.
So, is it all it’s hyped up to be?
In a word, yes. In two? Holy f*ck.
To preface this reaction, i’ve ridden more than my fair share of roller-coasters to be able to pick-up on the cues that define a great thrill ride experience, and this has them all in spades. There’s just no way avoiding hyper-bole, if you’ve never been on a roller-coaster outside of Australia, you’re going to shit bricks when you plummet down the first drop. From the moment you hit the lift hill you get an instant sense that this is no ordinary coaster. The 45 degree incline that’s supported by a few whipsey steel supports adds to an immediate longing to clasp the rods on the lap-bar for dear life.
Did I mention there’s no shoulder restraints here? Yup, just a snug little lap-bar is all that keeps you in your seat as the ride tries to tear you out of your seat on that twisting first drop.
It’s from here you start your almost relentless minute-plus journey that you’ll want to do over and over again. It’s clearly designed by folks from both Mack (the ride designer in Germany) and Movie World’s own team who really collectively really give a crap about making the best roller-coaster experience, period.
Great. Airtime. Yes. Every seat is ejector airtime. Winning. Enough said.
This shouldn’t exist. Two decades ago, elements like this were the stuff of dreams. The kind of engineering and design prowess you need to pull something like this requires more than just guess work. Fast forward to 2017, and this signature element is not only a unique experience in every seat, but at no point is uncomfortable or awkwardly paced. It’s just sublime. You get this kind of whiplash where right as you feel like you need to brace for a rough ride, the seat catches you and sends you hurtling forward yet again.
Stengel Turn & Dive Loop
The stengel turn is the only thing that’s a bit forceless, and you know what, i’m okay with that. At over 1.4k’s, having a moment to catch your breath high above the earth at the right moment is a godsend. The dive loop more than makes up for it though, the quick change of direction and intense force is utterly brutal and sets you up nicely for what’s to come.
Twists, turns and hops.
You’re out near the highway and Top Golf and now it’s time to come home. But coasting to the finish line just isn’t this ride’s thing. Instead, we’ve got some insanely relentless twists that take cues from overseas rides like SkyRush and Intimidator 305 that keep you clutching the lap-bar as you eventually get flung into the helix that swirls through the non-inverting loop from earlier. The helix is undulating, it’s not a consistent tour de force, instead it twists and dives around other beams and elements to keep it exciting.
Finally, the magical surprise of the ride is the final few hops as you climb back to the brakes. These humps are small but they’re honestly better than the first air-time hill – they’re so forceful they took you completely by surprise. The best bit? There’s a whole stack of them. It’s just so damn good.
Alright, what’s the verdict?
I’ve been hedging my bets and calling it for months, and i’m happy to say that I was right in saying that DC Rivals HyperCoaster, without a shadow of a doubt, is Australia’s best thrill ride, and definitely Australia’s best roller-coaster. It’s like a classic hits of the very best components of the world’s best coasters, and that makes it a delight that’s greater than the sum of its parts. Every-time I rode it I got lost in the kind of joy and delight i’ve only experienced in rides overseas, and so for us to finally have something this good in our backyard is worth raving about. It’s bloody brilliant. You should share this with your friends to convince them to ride it because doing anything less is frankly ungrateful. DC Rivals HyperCoaster is worth travelling half way across the world for, and Dreamworld should take note, because the bar for what thrill rides should be like in the future has been well and truly set very, very high.