My husband rode the Dueling Dragons before the transformation and recalls it was similar to the Kraken at SeaWorld. Is it pretty much the same ride just with Harry Potter theming?
If the Forbidden Journey was closed we wouldn’t even consider going but I’m just wondering how big of a deal Dragon Challene is in the scheme of things?
I don’t know how anyone could confuse a coaster like Kraken with a coaster like Dueling Dragons (sorry, I’m not going to use the new name), they are two very different animals and each coaster is the only one of its kind in Orlando. In fact, last I looked, Kraken was the only one of its kind within a 600 mile radius (the nearest are in Va and Tx). Kraken is floorless with the train and track below you. Dueling Dragons is an inverted with ski lift style seats and the track above you.
All that aside, they haven’t changed a blessed thing other than the name and perhaps colors. I did not notice any new theming, Harry Potter or otherwise. It still is the only one of its kind, a dueling, racing inverted (designed by the grand master Werner Stengel for Disney’s Animal Kingdom and there’s even a hidden Mickey in the queue!).
In my opinion, Harry Potter World was a big letdown. There was only one new ride, albet one of the greatest theme park rides in the world and one of a kind, the rest is two coasters that have been in the park since it opened (DD in 1999 and Flying Unicorn in 2000) and a bunch of Hogwarts atmosphere.
Of course, we’re talking about just one of the six islands of adventure and HP World is only a small part. There’s still Marvel Superhero Island with Spiderman and the Hulk coaster as well as the Dr Doom slingshots, there’s still Dr. Suess Island, there’s still Jurassic Park, there’s still the Cartoon Landing with the wet rides.
And then there’s Universal Studios with the Rip Ride Rocket coaster (which was down the only time we’ve been there since it was built), the Simpsons where Back to the Future originally was, Men In Black (which utterly destroys Buzz Lightyear’s similar attraction), the Terminator 3D show and a bunch of other stuff.
For comparison, I’ve only been to Disneyland twice. The first time Matterhorn was down in deep refurb and the second time Space Mountain had just been rebuilt but they weren’t opening it back up until Disneyland’s 50th birthday (7/17/2005), which was a month after I had gone home. Twice I’ve been to Cedar Point, the first time, Top Thrill Dragster never ran and the second, it was only by a last minute miracle that Millenium Force was able to run for the first time in two weeks while we were there because the part finally arrived from Switzerland, though it still took all day to install and ride test before anyone was allowed on.