Editors’ note: Terminator 2:3D closed on December 31, 2012. This is an archive of the original attraction profile of Terminator while it was in operation.
Picture this: You’ve just been invited into the cold headquarters of Cyberdyne Systems to witness their latest breakthrough: the Terminator autonomous unit, the latest advancement in computerized military and government defense.
However, not all appears well behind this slick public-relations demonstration as a group of individuals manage to infiltrate their headquarters, claiming to be from the future…
Terminator 2:3D Checklist
Duration: 30 minutes
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes, ask for assistance. Special seating is located throughout the theater.
Flash Photography and Video Taping Policy: Not allowed. Terminator is especially strict when it comes this policy.
Height Restriction: No.
Child Switch: Yes, but extremely inconvenient since the show is 30 minutes long.
Child Friendliness: Parents should exercise strong caution. See the intensity chart below for more information.
Chances are, if you’re concerned with this section, your kid’s going to hate this. This show contains extremely loud noises, realistic gun effects and sudden jolts. In other words, think of taking your child to an action movie. If your child can handle that, then he or she should be able to handle this show – but again, be warned that this attraction is both loud and based off an R rated franchise.
So given Terminator’s mature content and special effects, we’ve awarded this a very strong 8.
Terminator Tips & Tricks
Scheduling: During peak seasons, Terminator runs on continuous rotation throughout the day. In other words, we suggest prioritizing time sensitive attractions (WaterWorld, Special Effects Stage) over this show whenever possible. During off peak season, this attraction runs on a specific show schedule.
Queue/Preshow: There are two main standing areas – the actual queue and preshow – so be prepared for a bunch of standing.
Seating: Most seats in the auditorium provide the exact same view, so don’t focus too much on finding that “optimal” seat. Although the rear section offers a more expansive view.
Seating: You’ll be entering the auditorium through the left hand side, so please slide down to the furthest seat as you settle down. This allows the show to start as soon as possible and saves other guests the hassle of finding a seat.
3D Glasses: If you happen to forget your 3D glasses at the gate, there’s a bin located in the preshow room right next to the doors.
3D Motion: Terminator isn’t known for its moving seats, so don’t feel like you’re missing out if you choose stationary seating. In fact, many would argue that the stationary seating area provides the best view of the entire show.
Strollers: Stroller parking is located in a walled off area to the right of the main entrance.
Our Take: From the Editors
Terminator 2:3D is a great – albeit dated – live action show, combining excellent sound, spectacle and special effects in one formidable package. Though it’s always been a favorite among fans and 3D aficionados alike, it’s been surpassed by the likes of Transformers: The Ride and King Kong 360 on the Studio Tour – all of which have taken advantage of the recent advancements in 3D technology. Does its age ultimately hinder the attraction as a whole? Read one to see what our editor has to say!
Jonathan Fu – Inside Universal Editor
Terminator 2: 3D is interesting. At times, it can be an extremely sophisticated mix of live action and 3D effects, but in other instances, it’s simply outdated with 90s era trends and motifs.
Despite it all, Universal preserves this attraction relatively well – for better or worse. Once you ignore the 90s era preshow and queue videos, the show still manages to capture audiences after all these years. Granted, it will never be on par with the sophistication of King Kong 360 or Transformers: The Ride, but again, it’s not supposed to. Not with its age.
But ignoring all that, the show itself is extremely well done – with an excellent integration of both live-action and prerecorded effects. The main auditorium is still very impressive to this day, with archaic Terminators (to keep within the storyline) flanked on either side demonstrating the prowess and sophistication of a highly sought-after defense contractor with a somewhat-malicious intent. And the fact that the original Terminator cast and director have all reprise their roles in the show’s film adds a layer of authenticity to the entire attraction.
Plus, as an added bonus, many consider our version to be superior among the three copies worldwide (Hollywood, Japan and Florida), and based on personal experience, this still remains true.
But really, the show has rapidly aged. When you’re dealing with the “latest defense technologies,” you need to make an effort to update your stuff for the twenty-first century. Universal simply hasn’t done that, and it shows, and that alone makes me hesitant to give this attraction a hearty recommendation.
Though if still you haven’t seen it, I still recommend that you at least check it out. Those that have watched the show can simply skip to something else. Nothing has unfortunately changed over the years.
“Once at the forefront of 3D technology, Terminator’s age is finally starting to show.”
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