For a limited time only, Six Flags Great America has enhanced its classic Giant Drop with VR. And in case you’re skeptical, WCG can confirm that adding the headpiece and immersive experience changes the experience completely.
Sam Rhodes, director of design for Six Flags, said, “This is probably the best marriage of virtual reality and an attraction that we’ve ever done. There’s a fine balance of too much, or not enough – this one is a perfect balance. It’s really incredible.”
So what is the ride like now? Well, it involves spiders. And a giant robot. And a VR drop that makes the actual 227 ft. drop appear much steeper and faster – but doesn’t clench your stomach the way it does without the VR to distract you.
But why spiders? Rhodes: “Why not spiders?” He said, “We wanted to try to see what we could do to up the fear. It’s not that the drop tower’s not scary enough. Let’s just do two fears in one – you’re bound to catch everybody.”
He notes that the giant robot was added to the storyline to make sense, and to allow riders to battle something other than just helicopters. The project was a collaboration with VR Coasters, a market leader in integrating virtual reality with thrill rides.
If you’re interested in checking out the VR Drop of Doom, though, you’re going to have to hurry to Six Flags Great America. The ride is going to be outfitted with VR just through Memorial Day, because Six Flags is getting ready to unveil its “free-fly” roller coaster, The Joker, with swiveling cars to provide weightless flips and free-fall raven drops. Yikes.
For more information on Six Flags Great America, located in Gurnee, including spring open hours and ticket prices, visit www.sixflags.com/greatamerica. please note, you’ll have to pick up reservation tickets at the attraction entrance to ride the VR Drop of Doom, and you must be 13 or over.