a.k.a Mega Coaster, Speed Coaster
The Hyper Coaster phrase was coined by Cedar Point and Arrow Development (now Arrow Dynamics) to describe Ron Toomer’s Magnum XL-200 – the first continuous circuit roller coaster to stand more than 200 feet (61m) tall, that opened in 1989 at Cedar Point in Ohio, USA.
Today, a Hyper Coaster or any of its generic variations are used to describe any steel non-inverting out & back or twister roller coaster that stands between 200 feet and 299 feet (91m) tall and sets out to give riders airtime or big drops.
ARROW HYPER COASTER
The inventors of the Hyper Coaster, Arrow Dynamics, ironically produce some of the least impressive examples. While Magnum XL-200 is legendary, follow-up rides, such as The Big One at Blackpool Pleasure Beach in the UK and Desperado in Nevada, USA, were poor and lacked intensity and/or airtime. Arrow has since merged with S&S Worldwide following their bankruptcy, and it is unlikely S&S will resurrect these old dogs in the future.
B&M HYPER COASTER
Bolliger & Mabillard‘s Hyper Coaster is a much-loved experience wherever one is installed. Whether it be the tallest coaster in Europe, Shambhala at PortAventura Park in Spain, or the twister-styled Raging Bull at Six Flags Great America in Illinois, USA, B&M Hyper Coasters thrill millions with their signature floating feel, distinct sound, and silky smoothness all combined with the thrills of original hyper coasters.
INTAMIN MEGA COASTER
Like the B&M Hypers, not every single Intamin Mega Coaster is above the 200 foot (61m) mark. They’re also all widely regarded as the best coasters money can buy, pleasing the masses with their speed, airtime and smoothness. The restraints are perfect, the trains are gorgeous, and the track layout unique. Any park that gets an Intamin Mega Coaster instantly shoots to the top of most thrill seekers’ to-do lists.
GIOVANOLA MEGA COASTER
Only two Hyper Coasters were built by B&M’s European track designer, Giovanola, now G-Tec. Giovanola, however delivered Hyper Coasters that were far more intense than B&M’s. Giovanola’s Hyper Coasters are recognizable with their massive first drops, hammerhead-style turnarounds, and airtime hill, leading up to a mass of twisted and tangled track. The finale of these rides are their 4G helices, considered by many to be the most intense helices in the world. The track layouts of the two Giovanola Hypers are identical, with the exception of the second (Titan at Six Flags Over Texas) containing an extra helix.
MORGAN HYPER COASTER
An often over-looked Hyper Coaster manufacturer is the former D.H Morgan, now Chance-Morgan, who built the then world’s tallest and current world’s longest coaster, Steel Dragon 2000 in Japan (officially a Giga Coaster). Morgan Hyper Coasters are very similar to Arrow’s, however Morgan’s are known to be a lot smoother and usually have better layouts.
S&S HYPER COASTER
While S&S is unlikely to resurrect anything like the original Arrow behemoths they acquired, that doesn’t mean that they have come up with a “Hyper Coaster” of their own. Known for their custom coasters, it came as no surprise that the company jumped on the chance to create a new type of coaster when Kennywood in Pennsylvania asked if they could create a multi-looping coaster unlike anything seen before. Named Steel Curtain and themed after the famous NFL football team, the coaster stands 220 feet (67m) tall and features no fewer than eight inversions.
TOGO HYPER COASTER
People often forget that long before B&M’s Raging Bull or Giovanola’s Goliath/Titan duo, Togo had invented the twisting hyper coaster in 1996. Fujiyama, at Fuji-Q Highlands in Japan, features a compact design that twisted back into itself many times. Togo Hyper Coasters are much-appreciated due to their rarity, despite their roughness.