After a few minutes, the colors of the light fixtures around the lobby area will change, revealing the color of the next group that will be able to head to the next pre-show area. Once technical rehearsals are over, we expect to see Team Members checking Guests' return time tickets and then directing them to the second floor.
We personally enjoyed this first part of our experience. While we had very little time to explore the first floor, time went by fairly quickly thanks to the exhibit and the details that can be seen around the building. Not having to stand in line definitely feels like a breath of fresh air in the theme park world. That's why FastPass+ and Express are so popular with Guests. Now, with Race Through New York, all park Guests will be able to experience at least one attraction that doesn't involve waiting in a never-ending queue.
- A large seating area with USB ports to charge electronic devices;
- A meet & greet with the playful Hashtag the Panda;
- Interactive games that are themed after The Tonight Show;
- Multiple video screens showing some of the funniest Jimmy Fallon moments;
- Live performances of the Ragtime Gals (very similar to the Dapper Dans);
- A "view" of the New York City skyline that includes some interesting details.
What we found to be incredibly wrong is the way Team members have to check restraints. You see, this is one of the very rare cases in which a Universal attraction uses seat belts instead of lap bars. Not having any room to walk between rows, Team Members have to lean forward inside the ride vehicle and check each restraint from either end of the platform using a small flashlight. For about ten minutes we heard them calling Guests and telling them to pull the red strap to check that the seat belt is fastened correctly. Poor design, indeed.
Once the ride starts, we find ourselves racing against Jimmy Fallon, starting from the studio of The Tonight Show (sadly, we never felt like we were actually inside a studio due to the look of the theater). What follows is an incredibly silly race through the streets of New York (and... the moon?!) that includes encounters with funny characters (all portrayed by Jimmy Fallon and other famous people) and special effects (yes, including the ever-present water effect).
The moving platform is amazingly smooth, making it the tamest simulator on property. That said, there's a portion that feels quite thrilling toward the end of the ride. We have to say that we enjoyed it, but we understand why some feel like it's an underwhelming attraction. The story is very cheesy, but so is the feel that we get when watching some portions of The Tonight Show. Also, we happen to like Jimmy Fallon's humor, so that may make a difference in the way we "feel" toward the experience.
Will we ride it every single time we visit the park? Probably not, but it's a new offering that we will definitely want to enjoy much more often than other attractions like Shrek 4-D. Now, what about you? Feel free to share your thoughts and opinions about this brand-new Universal Studios Florida attraction.
Universal has been my preferred choice of park for the last 15-20 years, but as you have mentioned alot of the park rides now involve screens, which I understand are cheaper to make and use less space, however they all start to blend in and become much the same.
Also has universal ever thought about people with motion sickness as screens is a major problem for friends of mine, might only be a low percentage of people but it's still lost revenue.
Starting to worry as Nintendo land is also expected to be screen based so I'm hearing, need to add a coaster ride somewhere in the park.
Agreed, my dad can't ride anything because he gets motion sickness and he doesn't want to visit the park because there's not enough for him to do anymore.
Is it possible that the ride could be easily re-themed to something more interesting in the future? (Like how Back to the Future was to The Simpsons Ride)
IF THERE GOING TO STICK WITH THIS 3D IDEA CAN'T THEY MAKE IT LIVE SPIDERMAN WHERE your actually moving and it feels like a ride. I got a feeling that this fast and furious ride is a screen simulator. Probably the same crapy ride that's at Hollywood universal. Just like King Kong. All they did was take the film from Hollywood.
I do appreciate the revolutionary new queue. Everyone should adopt this method for major attractions.
I totally agree. This theme park is moving way too much into the 3 d simulated rides. I miss twister. It had substance. A real set with a lot of mechanics.
I went on it twice the other day--once just to experience it, and the second time I paid more attention to the subtleties. As you said, the lobby is WAY better than the line queue. The ride itself is good but not great. It's kind of like The Simpsons ride, where it's good to at least experience once just to see what it is, but it's probably not something that I'll go on every time I go to Universal, unless maybe it's a slow day. Even with the lobby, I still had to wait the second time I went in there about 25 minutes. Don't get me wrong, the lobby's better than a line, but I still wouldn't want to wait in there for very long to get to the ride.
The ride will probably get old soon, but it's better than Twister. As others have said, they need to quit with these 3D simulation rides and think about putting in another coaster. They should consider taking out MIB and Fear Factor (which are beyond old at this point) and use that space for another coaster (maybe a VR coaster).