In an attempt to turn around its fortunes and recover from the damaging effects of the 2008 documentary BlackFish, Sea World started adding rides to its parks at an incredible rate. Attempting to turn the parks from MArine Attraction parks into fully-fledged theme parks. It has added some seriously impressive rides, and at San Diego, we rate the Electric Eel very highly and have great expectations for the upcoming B&M Emporer Dive Coaster, but not all rides are destined to be great.
In 2019 SeaWorld San Doeg unveiled Tidal Twister, a much-anticipated dueling Coaster that appeared to be straight out of the future. However, some people feel the coaster did not live up to the hype, that SeaWorld has been sold a dud, and even questioning how long the ride will last. Well, our Tidal Twister SeaWorld San Diego Review takes a look at the new ride to see if the ride is worthy of your time and if the tide really has already gone out on this new attraction.
- Type – Unique figure of 8 looping coaster
- Duration – 2:00 Secs
- Height Restriction – 48 In
- Average Queue time – 5 mins – 40 Mins
- Skip The Line – Yes $14.99
- Additional Info – Dissapointing Flat Ride, up to 8 inversions, often broken
Tidal Twister, SeaWorld San Diego
What is Tidal Twister
Tidal Twister was billed as a revolutionary new Coaster Design, a Dueling Coaster that appeared to be a cross between a coaster, Monorail, and Maglev Train. Running on what appeared to be an electrified rail the ride was like nothing we had seen before. Well, almost Nothing.
What arrived was, well frankly, rubbish. This was the second Coaster made by the upcoming new Manufacturer Skyline Attractions. Their first ride was the Harley Quinn Crazy Coaster at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom. An infamous ride that rattled and clanged its way to breaking down, before being unceremoniously canned by Six Flaggs.
Hopes were higher for Tidal Twister, but alas things did not go well, the ride has been through several temporary shutdowns and a couple of incidents of trapped riders, all in its short lifetime, not to mention the unfortunate timing of the Pandemic. It’s a pretty sad story, but what about the ride?
The Queue area is about as dull as one gets, winding around a queue pen outside the ride, rather like a fairground ride. You are going to get a theme here, and it’s not the one SeaWorld wanted!
The only positive about the queue is you get to see the ride operate in its full glory while you wait. Don’t wait too long though, unless you really have nothing better to do anything more than 10-15mins queueing for this is too long! That’s assuming it’s not broken down.
The overall experience is anything but what you expect from a class Roller Coaster. This has all the air and graces of a fairground Flat Ride. And really that is the biggest issue, it’s not that it is a bad ride, it’s just that it’s not the futuristic Roller Coaster that was promised.
When all the hyper bowl and promotion had died down we should be left we a fairly decent Flat ride that does provide 8 inversions per ride, which is pretty good going!
The Ride is comprised of a short figure of 8 track, 320ft long. Attached to this are two Trains that are linked together. When the ride starts the TRains roll backward and forwards until they attain enough velocity to get over the central hump. They then zip around the track, one forwards and one back over the two central elements and around the banked turns.
At the top of the crossover is a slight hill that provides a little airtime, and under that is a Zero-G Roll. The Ride passes each of these elements 4 times per Cycle. However, only one car can be loaded and unloaded per cycle, meaning you get to cycles per ride one forwards and one backward, so 8 Zero-G Rolls per ride!
The Cycles are pretty slow and despite all the inversions not particularly exciting. The ride is also really noisy. The TRains clatter and bang around the track and it really detracts from the futuristic appearance and feels more and more like a portable fairground ride.
Then there is the issue of the repeated breakdowns and closures. The ride has been closed more than it’s been open and after only a few months operating (over a number of years…covid), it is down for an extended renovation!
Overall it is just a really disappointing ride. Not everything can work out and we do really wonder if SeaWorld has been as conned as the fans! This is only the Manufacturers’s second coaster so we do not want to damn them too fiercely, the concept of both this and Harley Quinn was pretty radical, but it’s just not worked out. We hope future rides will be much freer and full.
The Beauty of Coaster is the rush of the open track, the boundless feeling (despite being very bound) of rampaging over the park’s skylines, twisting turning, and looping away. The Tidal Twister has you stuck in a small corner of the park doing tiny laps on a clattery track. It’s just not what coasters are meant to be!
We really would not be surprised if the decision is made to remove the ride. If Skyline cannot overcome the design issues that are resulting in the costly downtime and repairs then we really see SeaWorld’s patience running out. This could be a death knell for Skyline so we hope they can sort the ride out. The experience may be far less than we expected but it’s still a fun ride and at least it’s pretty unique. Judged solely as a flat ride we think it’s ok, but the breakdowns are simply intolerable!
The Ride has done very little for SeaWorld’s attractiveness as a ThemePark. But there is still so much to see and do at the park it’s still one of our favorite things to do in the City. If the Queue is low it’s well worth a ride but, it is far from something to seek out.
Have Your Say
Let us know your thoughts on the Tidal Twister? Have we got it right in your opinion or are we being overly harsh? Maybe you think we are being too kind? Whatever you think just let us know in the comments and if you have any questions just fire away. Check our Best Rides at SeaWorld San Diego to find out which rides we prefer at the park.