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Hyde

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Well this is an annoying rumor: http://screamscape.com/html/islands_of_ ... tm#Dragons

Screamscape said:
Remember back when we first learned that Hulk was going to be torn down and rebuilt, we learned soon after that once Hulk was done there was a good chance that the two Dueling Dragons / Dragon Challenge inverted coasters would likely be next. Welll..... about that... according to the latest rumors... that may no longer be the case.

Like Hulk, it seems Universal has determined that the world famous dueling inverted coasters will soon reach the end of their projected lifespan. Unlike Hulk however, it seems that they may have changed their mind about just what to do about it. Several courses of action were apparently considered beyond just rebuilding exact copies of the Fire and Ice dragon layouts... including the idea of altering the new layout to be merged into one seriously extended length coaster, as well as scrapping the entire ride concept in order to reuse the large footprint it sits on to build other new concept attractions going forward.

While I am hoping to god that my sources are wrong on this one, the story being leaked says that before too long Universal Orlando may simply opt for the later option, and retire the Dragons forever and build another unknown new Harry Potter themed attraction instead. In short, I would find that option to be devastating, as the old Dueling Dragons coasters have a very special place not only in my heart, but I also believe them to be world famous icons of Islands of Adventure itself, just as much as Incredible Hulk and the park's iconic lighthouse out front. Removing the Dragons would be such a shame... as it would drop the number of major coasters in the park from 3 down to just 1.

So with that in mind, as you visit the park going forward, do take the time to get plenty of rides in on the old Fire and Ice dragons, and maybe drop by guest services to fill out a comment card about just how much you also enjoy them if you too would like to see them remain in the park's lineup. Plus there is plenty of room to add a new attraction to the Potter lineup right where Poseidon's Fury is sitting, or even where the Eighth Voyage of Sinbad show arena is instead.
 

davidm

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Odd - I hadn't heard this rumour before (or not consciously anyway) but I rode them a couple of weeks ago and as I was walking away down the exit I was thinking "nah, this ride is so done now - bet they rip it out"

Not that that is something I'd be particularly happy with, just that they seemed so out of place and unloved. :(
 

Jamesss

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This is something I have been expecting to be honest and I would be unsurprised to see it happen.

I read that they're not that popular anymore and lots of people (myself included) seem to think that two giant B&Ms break the immersion of the Potter area a bit.
 

Pink Cadillac

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I'm more surprised these have come to the end of their projected lifespan. Even though it feels like a sad decision, the amount of space it'll free up will be immense. Could finally get a forbidden forest <3 Just get rid of the Lost Continent too and make it all Harry Potter <3
 

Chris Brown

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Yeah I'm gonna be honest and say this sceamscape article is a load of bollocks. Not to discredit the rumour itself or the sources of info but the dragons have been punching above their weight for a while now, the axing of the dueling aspect and the bodged potter retheme have really taken their toll on the ride experience. It takes up a significant amount of space which could easily be made into something better and if anyone can improve things then it's universal. I get that the coasters mean a lot to this bloke and I respect that, I just feel the whole negative vibe was a bit unnecessary for a ride way past it times!
 

Pokemaniac

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Indeed, while I think Dragon Challenge is both iconic and very fun, I can understand why they'd take it down. It's a fairly old ride, in the humid and hot climate of Florida, and has withstood quite a bit of wear and tear and exposure. Also, it's absolutely massive. The footprint of the coaster(s) is larger than the rest of the Wizarding World at IoA, or about the same size as the Diagon Alley section of USF - including all the backstage areas. Or roughly the size of the Islands of Adventure Lagoon, see for yourself here:
https://goo.gl/maps/VaWiZYG2Pg42

Dueling Dragons was a really unique ride, and a masterpiece of engineering. As Dragon Challenge, it's still great, and it has one of the best queue lines I've ever seen. But I think that, after so many years, the Universal Studios equivalent of imagineers could put the land to better use. And technology has progressed too. It'd be sad to see the Dragons go, but I'm really curious for what could possibly be next.
 

gavin

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Personal anecdote from one day almost two years ago, so it's obviously a FACT, but when I was there both sides were walk-on all day, while everything else had queues of at least 20 minutes. Yeah, there are two of them, so that will break down any queues even further, but they just didn't seem popular at all.

I enjoyed them a lot more than I thought I would given the generally "meh" reviews they get, but they are, now, grossly misplaced. The entrance and queueline are fine, but then you get on the rides and they're just sitting above a massive slab of concrete, with lovely views of maintenance areas. I get that it's almost impossible to theme something that big, but surely some grass, some rockwork, a waterfall, or something? Since the Harry Potter redevelopment, they now feel plonked in one of the most immersive theme park areas in the world and they really break the whole flow of the area.

Chris Brown said:
I get that the coasters mean a lot to this bloke and I respect that, I just feel the whole negative vibe was a bit unnecessary for a ride way past it times!
Off-topic, but I agree with you. It's been a pet peeve of mine with that site for ages. It's great for news, and over the last few years has become a lot more accurate for that, but nobody goes there for the opinion of the writer. It jars with a "news" site and really has no place. Maybe it's the English teacher in me, but when I read a news story with "I think" in it, and full of personal opinions, it bugs the s**t out of me.
 

Ian

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Maybe Oakwood will buy them?
 

Lofty

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Yeah, if they go - I won't be overly sad. Just hope the land is used for a worthwhile attraction or two and not just more streets with interactive wand experiences.
 

SilverArrow

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Lofty said:
Yeah, if they go - I won't be overly sad. Just hope the land is used for a worthwhile attraction or two and not just more streets with interactive wand experiences.
This.

I would personally prefer a replacement coaster but we'd probably be lucky to get another dark ride and not just a themed area. *controversial opinion alert* I prefer DG to the two dark rides so my opinion is probably invalid anyway haha.

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spicy

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Yea as others have said this doesn't come as much as a surprise, it's clear this opens up a huge amount of land for more Potter. Think their days were numbered as soon as Potter was announced for that area really. They really are 'in the way'.

The fact they don't even duel anymore, the huge popularity of the Hogsmeade area yet these coasters are always walk on has probably been the nail in the coffin. Universal Orlando is becoming Potter World though, they must be hoping the new Fantastic Beast movies keep the IP going for many years to come.

It also leaves Hulk as the only thrilling coaster in the park and leaves a huge gap in the coaster line up. Shame they can't move them elsewhere rather than scrap them, these are still far superior coasters to Battlestar Galactica at Universal Singapore.
 

Crazycoaster

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Meh. Guess it just means that Universal will have just one not very good B&M instead of three. Rode them when I was here in september, they were very much a do once and done, despite having a 5 minute queue. Once you've had a go round on each side, you then have to do locker faff because of Universal's Burdenous loose items policy, and they're just not worth that faff a second time around.

I mean, it would be a different story if it was still Dueling Dragons, when it had the incredible queueline, and actually dueled, but it's so watered down and pointless now. Plus the SeaWorld and Busch B&M's are much better.

I do wonder though, what else could they do with the Harry Potter IP in that big space?
 

Hyde

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Crazycoaster said:
I do wonder though, what else could they do with the Harry Potter IP in that big space?
A big Quidditch stadium-themed ride could do wonders there actually. Or even playing around with the Forbidden Forest as a concept.
 

davidm

Well-Known Member
^ thought that whilst mulling over the "what big Potter areas could they put there" (but not being a Potter-fan didn't come up with anything else), but since Forbidden Journey has a lot of Quidditch in that might not work.
 

Jamesss

Member
Always thought it was a shame they didn't make a larger scale Hogwarts where you could actually go inside the great hall and stuff.

A Forbidden Forest area would make sense story-wise. There's a cool sequence in the second film where they ride the flying Ford Anglia through the forest. That could make a good ride.


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Pokemaniac

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Crazycoaster said:
I do wonder though, what else could they do with the Harry Potter IP in that big space?
The first that springs to mind is the Fantastic Beasts sub-franchise, which will be made into at least a trilogy. Might as well build the rides while the movies are in theatres, to get the best synergy effect.

Failing that, I guess Quidditch is a good bet. Or anything Hagrid would be fond of. Or something completely new and different. The remarkable thing about the Harry Potter franchise is that the locations and lore work just as well if you remove Harry Potter from it entirely. As long as the tone is kept and the spirit is followed, the possibilities are endless.
 

Ben

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The Forbidden Forest is a great idea that'd be amazing.

I can't believe I'm excited about two B&Ms potentially getting spited.
 

peep

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Pokemaniac said:
Crazycoaster said:
I do wonder though, what else could they do with the Harry Potter IP in that big space?
The first that springs to mind is the Fantastic Beasts sub-franchise, which will be made into at least a trilogy. Might as well build the rides while the movies are in theatres, to get the best synergy effect.

Failing that, I guess Quidditch is a good bet. Or anything Hagrid would be fond of. Or something completely new and different. The remarkable thing about the Harry Potter franchise is that the locations and lore work just as well if you remove Harry Potter from it entirely. As long as the tone is kept and the spirit is followed, the possibilities are endless.

If rumours are to be believed then Fantastic Beasts will be reserved for the new park that's apparently in development.
As already mentioned Quiddich is part of the Forbidden Journey ride so it would be weird to feature it in two attractions.

I think the Forbidden forest is sounding like the most solid idea. Or maybe they'll take the Dragon Challenge theme but create a more cohesive experience for it. Totally agree that tonally you can pretty much do anything with the franchise (as long as J.K. approves!).
 
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