"Man, you shouldn't be out here. With Doc Oc on the loose this could be the most dangerous night of my life -- and yours. Be careful!"
Yes, it's true, at an estimated cost of $200 million this is the most expensive park attraction ever built. Imagine Terminator 2:3D, Back to the Future and Animal Kingdom's Countdown to Extinction, all rolled up into one ride experience -- and then taken to the next extreme level.
Your adventure begins as you snake through The Daily Bugle. As you walk past empty offices, darkrooms and desks, the reporters are nowhere to be found. That is because Dr. Octopus and his Sinister Syndicate band of villains have just swiped the Statue of Liberty. Throughout the queue overhead monitors, and even the computer terminals on reporter desks explain the breakthrough "scoop" newsrover vehicle you are about to board -- and the urgency of New York City going awry.
In a Stan Lee tribute to comic books everywhere the props you will encounter are all broadbrushed in limited palates. The trenchcoats are ALL light blue. A tray of cookies and brownies are all draped in inedible gray.
Then, it's your turn! You board your twelve passenger scoop in three rows of four. The side doors fully enclose the riders. This is deliberate. Not only is a lot of the wraparound audio contained in these side walls but it also forces your perspective to the front -- and that is where this ride truly excels.
Now, these cars don't just rock around like most simulator rides. From the moment you turn to see the Spider-Man light signal, only to spin around and barely dodge a dumptruck, hold on! These cars go on a nearly undetectable track. They will spin out. You will navigate through the villain's warehouse before the real fireworks begin. The gem here is that all during the ride you are wearing polarised 3D glasses for enhanced monitor displays throughout the ride. What is real? What is projected? All the way to a simulated freefall conclusion, and yes the New York City skyline plunge is only simulated (you never do leave the ground), the ride will keep you guessing.
The projection screens are perfectly framed with actual building props. It's hard to not to wonder how an animated Spider-Man jumps onto a real fire escape ledge, which teeters in perfect sync, and then onto the hood of your car -- which leans forward with a thud. This ride put the awe in awesome. I think you will agree. As an interesting insider bonus, check out the abandoned movie theater's phone number on the marquee, 224-1783. When the ride first opened, calls to that number with the local 407 area code found an answering machine message explaining how the theater is closed due to the Sinister Syndicate and will remain that way until Spider-Man remedies the situation. These days you will be treated to a secret message about Spidey and Doctor Octopus. For Spidey and ride-related merchandise check out the Spidey Store. (You must be 40 inches tall to ride)
Baby Swap -- This is another cozy switching point. This room is located between the loading and unloading areas. Unfortunately, you won't be able to see either station. The room is cozy with plenty of seats and a Spider-Man cartoon playing on the monitor. You can get there through the regular line, then heading off to your left when you get to the boarding station. On the way out it's important for the first riders not to follow the herd into the gift shop. They have to turn left right after the 3D glass deposit bins and it's the first room they will find. There's always one -- if not two -- attendants in the unloading area. Ask them where to find the Baby Swap room if it's not clear.
Stay onsite at Portofino Bay Hotel
Stay onsite at Hard Rock Hotel
Stay onsite at Royal Pacific Resort
By booking your stay at one of the three onsite resorts you will not only be staying a short walk or complimentary boat ride from the park -- you will also receive the Universal Express Front-of-the-Line benefit to avoid long lines and get on your favorite rides like this one quickly.
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