Universal Studios Hollywood has opened Jurassic World: The Ride for technical rehearsals, also known as a soft opening.
For those unfamiliar, a “Soft Opening” is essentially a technical rehearsal of a new attraction or a final release candidate test for the ride. All the major components are installed and operational but some tweaks, changes, and updates will occur prior to the grand opening.
As of now, Universal has yet to announce an official opening date.
“Soft Openings” are never promised. There is no guarantee the ride will be opening. The ride might only open for a period of time, all day, or not at all depending on any issues or changes. There is no set schedule or guarantee it will be open until it’s officially Grand Opened.
The 9-month refurbishment transitioned the themeing of Jurassic Park to the hit Jurassic World franchise, modernizing the attraction to match the look of the films – including a new color scheme, and adding several new scenes throughout the attraction.
The Jurassic World “mini-land” has debuted new additions little by little over the course of the past month, with Jurassic Outfitters, Jurassic Cafe, and Isla Nu-Bar opening just a few weeks ago. In addition, several new meet & greets opened in the area earlier in the week.
The introduction of the ride now traverses through the Mosasaurs Aquarium, which feels huge – making you feel as if you’re in an actual aquarium. Fans of the original ride will be happy to know that Stegosaurus Cove still remains, with an updated look – but that’s about the extent of what’s leftover from Jurassic Park. The ride has ditched the narrative of your tour boat being “knocked off course”, but now stuck in a dangerous predicament during your tour.
The Indominus Rex is the main threat of the attraction. As your tour makes your way into the new “Predator Cove” area – Jurassic Ops inform guests that several of the predators have escaped, and they cannot evacuate the tour immediately due to safety concerns. Gone is the “Environmental Systems Building” aesthetic, as guests now enter the “Tyrannosaurus Rex Kingdom” habitat for the climax of the attraction before dropping down the 84-foot waterfall.
Without any spoilers, anyone that feared the way that the Jurassic World refurbishment would turn out will be satisfied. The ride features a healthy blend of screens with old and new animatronics that impress. The tone of the ride is very different in comparison to Jurassic Park, with a more serious approach taken to certain scenes – including the Predator Cove breakout; which features some fierce carnage.
With the ride in technical rehearsals, we’re sure some changes and adjustments will be made before the official opening date – so we’ll wait for our full review until then.
Stay tuned to Inside Universal for all the latest on Jurassic World: The Ride and other news around the Universal Parks & Resorts.