Feel the ROAR!
Skull Island: Reign of Kong soft opened, last week to very mixed reviews.
“It’s too short.”
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“They spent too much time on the queue and not enough on the ride.”
“It’s just another Universal screen ride.”
I’m here to tell you, none of that is true!
As the ride came to an end, goosebumps slowly fading away, I thought, “Hmm, that seemed short.” And it did. SEEM short. It’s actually the longest ride currently at Universal Orlando! My thought is that guests become so caught up in the action and thrill of the ride that time seems to speed up.
The queue line theming is phenomenal. Right from the entrance where you walk under a giant Kong sculpture!
The natives room, the witch room, the first time you enter into the main building. It’s truly spectacular. I waited for 2 hours to ride Reign of Kong for the first time and other than a couple times outside the queue building, it was hardly noticeable that you were waiting.
Here’s a video we took from our experience. You were only allowed to film the queue line, so no ride spoilers inside.
How can you say though, that they did not spend enough time on the theming of the ride??? Have you seen this door?
And that’s just the entrance! As soon as you go beyond the doors, the theming just gets better and better!
Reign of Kong Spoilers Ahead!
To say it’s another Universal screen ride does a disservice to this ride and it’s creators. The ride includes ride vehicle elements that enhance the story and the experience. Animatronics that will truly give you chills, if you have any human emotion, at all. Themed environments that will blow you away. Oh, and screens. Two of them. On each side of you. Imagine Escape from Gringotts, only with screens on both sides and surrounding you! That’s Reign of Kong.
There’s so much to see inside the ride, itself, that you need multiple run-throughs to catch the full story. That or eyes in the back of your head!
All that being said, we’re not sure this is a ride for kids. After showing my wife a spoiler, full ride POV video, she said, “No way!” So, our kids (10 and 12 years old) will not be riding Reign of Kong any time, soon. There’s some graphic human-animal interactions and some violent animal-animal interactions and some 4D effects that really make it a bit intense for younger riders.
Although not “officially” based on any one King Kong movie, the ride and queue feature elements and story lines that will be familiar to those that have seen some of the more recent Kong feature films, such as Peter Jackson’s 2005 film, “King Kong.”
Overall, the ride is amazing. I can’t wait to ride it, again. This time, though, I need to be on the right side of the vehicle to feel the breath of Kong!
Situated in Islands of Adventure between Jurassic Park and Toon Lagoon, Skull Island: Reign of Kong is the first major addition to the park since the original Wizarding World of Harry Potter: Hogsmeade in 2010. The newer of the two parks at Universal Orlando Resort, it features 6 “islands” around a lagoon and a Port of Entry, including Lost Continent, Seuss Landing, and those mentioned, above.
Reign of Kong will “officially” open this summer, although Universal has made no opening date announcement as of the writing of this post.