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This article is about the inverted roller coaster by B&M. You may be looking for the 4D Free Fly coaster by S&S

and the Suspended Looping Coaster by Vekoma.

Batman: The Ride is a steel inverted roller coaster based thematically on the 1989 film Batman and found at Six Flags Great America, Six Flags Great Adventure, Six Flags Magic Mountain, Six Flags St. Louis, Six Flags Over Georgia and Six Flags Over Texas. The ride was also formerly at Six Flags New Orleans.

The rides were manufactured by Bolliger & Mabillard and feature a height of roughly 109 feet and reach speeds of 50 miles per hour. The original coaster at Six Flags Great America was the first inverted roller coaster in the world when it opened on May 9, 1992 and has since been awarded Coaster Landmark status by the American Coaster Enthusiasts and partially devised by the park's general manager Jim Wintrode. Although the full cost of the ride was never disclosed, it was the single biggest investment made by Six Flags Great America on one attraction.

In 1993, Six Flags AstroWorld opened Batman: The Escape, an Intamin Stand Up Coaster. The Park closed on October 30, 2005. On April 14, 2000, Batman: The Ride, a Vekoma Suspended Looping Coaster opened at Six Flags Mexico. In April 2002, Batman: The Dark Knight, a Bolliger & Mabillard Floorless Coaster opened at Six Flags New England. In 2008, The Dark Knight Coaster, a Mack Rides Indoor Wild Mouse opened at Six Flags Great America and Six Flags Great Adventure. The plans to open The Dark knight at Six Flags New England were scrapped, so it moved to Six Flags Mexico in 2009. The Three Coasters are based on The Dark Knight Movie. On May 23, 2015, Batman: The Ride, a Free Spin Coaster opened at Six Flags Fiesta Texas. In 2019, Batman: The Ride is scheduled to open at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom. The Great America Version opened the same year as Batman Returns, The St. Louis Version opened the same year as Batman Forever and The Over Georgia Version opened the same year as Batman & Robin.

The Batmobile is always shown when Batman: The Ride is nearby.

The Building for Batman: The Ride is Gotham Public Works, which is a Power Plant.

In 2002, La Ronde amusement park, Montreal, opened a clone of the ride under the name Le Vampire (The Vampire), and Warner Bros. Movie World Madrid, under the name Batman: La Fuga (Batman: The Escape). As La Ronde is not a branded Six Flags park, the licensing agreement with Warner Bros. and DC Comics for the name Batman: The Ride was not allowed. The La Ronde ride was expected to become Batman: The Ride when the park was scheduled to be converted to a Six Flags-branded park in the mid-2000s, however, these changes were never initiated.

Other non-Six Flags parks that installed Batman: The Ride clones are Diavlo at Himeji Central Park in Japan (1994), The Great White at SeaWorld in San Antonio, Texas (1997), and Lightning at Entertainment City in Kuwait (2004).

History

Design

The concept of an inverted roller coaster with inversions was developed by Jim Wintrode, the general manager of Six Flags Great America, in the 1990s. To develop the idea, Wintrode worked with Walter Bolliger and Claude Mabillard from the Swiss roller coaster manufacturer Bolliger & Mabillard and engineer Robert Mampe. The ride soft opened to the public on May 2, 1992, with an official opening one week later On May 9, 1992. Although the full cost of the ride has never been disclosed, it was the single biggest investment made by Six Flags Great America on one attraction at the time it opened.

Queue Soundtrack

The Batman Music Soundtracks that play in the queue line are:

  • Batman Main Theme - Danny Elfman
  • Descent Into Mystery - Danny Elfman (drain tunnel & batcave)
  • Mask of the Phantasm main theme - Shirley Walker (drain tunnel & batcave)
  • First Love - Shirley Walker (drain tunnel & batcave)
  • The Passenger - Michael Hutchence (drain tunnel & batcave) 
  • Partyman - Prince (drain tunnel & batcave) Electric Chair - Prince (drain tunnel & batcave)
  • In My Memory Gabriel & Dresden Remix - DJ Tiesto (drain tunnel & batcave)
  • Hold Me Thrill Me Kiss Me Kill Me - U2 (drain tunnel & batcave)
  • Kissed From a Rose - Seal (drain tunnel & batcave)
  • Trust - Prince (streets of Gotham)
  • Waltz to the Death - Danny Elfman (Gotham City Park / streets of Gotham)
  • Arms of Orion - Prince (Gotham City Park)

Experience

Six Flags designers' decorative theme attempts to capture the spirit of Batman's world for those queuing to board the ride. The Queue Line for Great America, Great Adventure And Magic Mountain are The Same, while St. Louis, Over Georgia And Over Texas are Different. The Exit Path is a long ramp down to the ground. There is only one Batman: The Ride Coaster that has a Single Rider Entrance, which is Six Flags Over Georgia.

Six Flags Great America

Batman: The Ride at Six Flags Great America held its grand opening on May 9, 1992, becoming the first inverted roller coaster. Being the first, Great America's Batman has a few unique features.  For one, it is designed to fit in the narrow strip of space it has in the middle of Yankee Harbor so unlike many of the clones the ride is squeezed into the park and has very little space for queue.  As a result the ride has three entrances, the main one (Gotham City Park), the first overflow queue where the entrance is behind the Jack Snacks stand, and the second overflow entrance was built in Orleans Place next to Cajun Cliffhanger (now Mardi Gras next to Jesters Wild Ride). It was the first Roller Coaster to be themed to a DC Character, as Six Flags purchased Time Warner the same year. The Lobster flat ride was repainted black and purple and renamed to East River Crawler to fit in with the darker more gothic theme because of the proximity to Batman, and because Batman's overflow queue uses East River Crawler's queue house.  As the queue moves through Gotham City Park, the theme becomes more ominous. There is a switchback being past as well as a fountain with a path going around it. Modeled after Anton Furst's award-winning set design for the original Batman film, the atmosphere indicates a crime-ridden and dirty environment, with wrecked cars, discarded pieces of equipment, crumbling concrete, and a Gotham City Police car riddled with bullet holes. There are several switchbacks in the area. The queue then enters the ride structure, which guests go left and go upstairs. The ride passenger loading area is modeled on Batman's Batcave, and features a replica of the Batsuit from the 1989 film. The Height is 100 ft and the Staircase is to the right of the Track.

Queue Seen From A Fence

Queue Seen From A Fence

Batman: The Ride had a black track and black supports. In 2004, the track was repainted yellow and the supports were repainted dark purple. That same year the themed graffiti on the walls in the streets of Gotham area of the queue was removed and the walls were painted a solid black/grey.  A tribute to the people responsible for the creation of the coaster on the wall in Gotham City Park (Jim Wintrode the GM, Bolliger & Mabillard) however this was removed when the cityscape was redone sometime in 2008. The Batmobile had its own photo plaza in front of the ride up 2001 and Whirligig (swing ride) was moved across the midway to make space for Vertical Velocity.  The Batmobile is now in between Batman's entrance and Whirligig. The queue is still original as of right now.

Six Flags Great Adventure

Six Flags Great Adventure's Batman: The Ride opened on May 1, 1993. Guests will walk through Gotham City Park in the queue, which goes around. Then they go through the atmosphere and then the Sewer Tunnel which leads to the Station.

Former Police Car Location In The Queue

Former Police Car Location In The Queue

The track was originally black. In 2004, the track was repainted yellow and the supports were repainted dark purple. That same year, the Police Car was taken out of the queue.

Six Flags Great Adventure had an another Batman Coaster, Batman & Robin: The Chiller, a Premier Rides Launch Coaster which opened in 1998 and closed in 2007. It was replaced by Justice League: Battle for Metropolis, which opened a decade later.

Six Flags Magic Mountain

Six Flags Magic Mountain's Batman: The Ride began operations on March 26, 1994. The Park did their part by re-theming an entire area of the park around Batman. Back Street was transformed into Gotham City, with existing rides, stores, and food outlets all taking on new personas related to the world of Batman. Set in the northwest corner of the park, Batman backs up to the park’s Administration building. Guests walk in the queue going through Gotham City Park and then The Atmosphere, which contains graffiti, trash, and bullet-ridden cars. Guests then walk into The Sewer Tunnel, which leads to the Station.  

Streets Section Of The Queue

Streets Section Of The Queue

The coaster had a medium gray track and black supports. In 2010, the track was repainted blue and some of the queue elements were removed, including The Police Car. However, the Police Car moved to the ride area by one of the Corkscrews. 

The Flash Pass line meets up with the regular line where the switchbacks are located in front of the entry tunnel, bypassing the long walk through the park setting. This is likely the most famous one due to its Los Angeles location, it was shot in many TV specials when Batman was a new ride. 

Six Flags St. Louis

Shorter Queue Path

Shorter Queue Path

The Six Flags St. Louis Batman: The Ride held its first riders on April 22, 1995. When it opened, the queue line was different from the others. The ride drops to the right and is the only one to have a black track and an original color scheme. In the queue, guests will walk in a long path through Gotham City Park, then go through a short Sewer Tunnel. They will approach a long switchback and pick one of the different paths. The longer path contains more queue props, including The Garden Section, which is the largest garden queue area and several switchbacks. The shorter path goes around the building and is by the train tracks. When the queue paths approach the end, guests will enter a tunnel that leads to the Station upstairs.

Hidden Indoor Queue

Hidden Indoor Queue

The Queue was Many of the theming elements in the queue of the ride were removed around the time of the Mark Shapiro era due to money constraints as the company fell into bankruptcy in 2009. These elements included the Batmobile, fog effects, a GCPD car, as well as banners for Gotham City Park.

The most memorable thing about this Batman is the queue path, as it winds back and forth throughout the garden several times and there is no way to skip any of it. The track and supports are black.

Six Flags Over Georgia

Shortcut Path In The Queue

Sewer Tunnel In The Queue

The Six Flags Over Georgia Batman: The Ride opened for the first time on May 3, 1997. The queue line goes through Gotham City Park, then guests go around the fountain. They can also see the trains of The Mindbender Roller Coaster going above the queue path. Guests will go through a zig-zag portion until they approach a Sewer Tunnel that leads directly to the Power Plant Section, which is the first indoor queue line on a Batman: The Ride Coaster and the largest inner city queue area. Mostly, the longer path is blocked by trash cans. When the shorter and longer queue paths approach the end, guests then go through the Tunnel and go upstairs to the station.

Power Plant Section Of The Queue

Power Plant Section Of The Queue

Batman: The Ride opened with a black track and black supports. The track was repainted blue in 2010. Also in 2010, the Junk in the queue was removed. This is the only Batman: The Ride Coaster to have an indoor Broad Ave. Storm Drain Access Sign. Graffiti can be seen in the queue line and the exit path by the Zero-G-Roll. The Shoulder Restraints are black instead of yellow. Batman is located in the back the edge of the park near the Parking Lot which shows off the layout quite nicely with the other roller coasters. People can see the others in The Queue Paths of the ride in the Parking Lot. Along with the introduction to The Gotham City Section and Batman's opening year, The Mindbender was repainted green to give theming to The Riddler. This is the only Batman: The Ride Version with a Single Rider Entrance. The Exit Path leads to a Gift Shop.

Six Flags Over Texas

Sector 5 Sign In The Garden Section of The Queue

Sector 5 Sign In The Garden Section Of The Queue

Batman: The Ride made its debut at Six Flags Over Texas on May 26, 1999. It was one of the last Batman Clones to be built, the other one being at Six Flags New Orleans. The Building is Wayne Foundation instead of Gotham Public Works. Guests will walk in the queue, going through Gotham City Park. They will approach a switchback and then go through a Sewer Tunnel. Guests will walk outside in The Alley with a Police Car on the right and then go inside Wayne Industries where an office is found straight ahead. Then, Guests will walk past a second switchback and head to the Garden Section Outside. The Batman Symbol, which is on the back of the building can be seen. Guests will then walk into the Tunnel that leads upstairs to the Station. Unlike the others, there are 2 small fans straight ahead when guests enter the tunnel. In the station, guests will see some more props, such as the Batcomputer and The Tesla Coil.

The track is yellow and the supports are black. The colors are original, like St. Louis.

Six Flags New Orleans

On April 12, 2003, Batman: The Ride opened to the public at Six Flags New Orleans. It operated at a Japanese Theme Park as Gambit from 1995 to 2002. Guests will walk through Gotham City Park in the queue. In 2005, Six Flags New Orleans was badly damaged by Hurricane Katrina. It moved to Six Flags Fiesta Texas as Goliath in 2008.

Temporary backwards conversions

Six Flags Great America

On February 21, 2013, Six Flags Great America announced that their Batman: The Ride roller coaster would run backwards for a limited time during the 2013 season.

Six Flags Magic Mountain

On August 29, 2013, Six Flags Magic Mountain officially announced that they would run their installation backwards for a limited time of the 2014 season, along with the ride at the Six Flags Over Texas location.

Six Flags Great Adventure

Six Flags Great Adventure ran backwards in 2015.

Six Flags St Louis

Six Flags St Louis ran their installation backwards from March 25, 2018 until May.

Characteristics

Structure

The original installation of the ride at Six Flags Great America featured a maximum height of while the installations to follow reached 105 ft. Each installation of Batman: The Ride has a track length of approximately 2,700 feet. The rides reach a top speed of 50 mph and exert up to four times the force of gravity.

Batman: The Ride clones operate with two steel and fiberglass trains, each containing eight cars. Each car seats four riders in a single row for a total of 32 riders per train.

Ride layout

The ride's layout was specifically designed to fit in the Yankee Harbor themed area at Six Flags Great America, although the layout for each successive attraction is identical or a mirror image of the original.

Train Going Through The Zero-G-Roll On The Great America Batman

Train Going Through The Zero-G-Roll On The Great America Batman

Batman: The Ride begins with the track floor descending. The train moves out of the station and up a chain lift hill. At the top of the hill the train dips down through a Bolliger & Mabillard "pre-drop", coasts down a 180-degree swoop to the left, and drops into the first 360-degree vertical loop. It then flips through a zero-g roll to the right, followed by another vertical loop. The train then travels upward around a tight helix to the left, then through a wider turn to the right, drops slightly, and quickly turns through the first wingover element, also known as a flat spin or corkscrew. Following this is a tight right turn and another wingover, then a tight left turnaround before the train enters the final brake run.

Color scheme

Many changes have been made to the color schemes to match different eras of the Batman comics.

Some Batman: The Ride clones opened with dark blue track and supports, reminiscent of Batman's blue batsuit in the 1970s, while others featured gray and yellow, which resembled his more well-known black and yellow appearances. Some of the colors remained the same, while others changed.

The original ride at Six Flags Great America retained the original black color scheme to match the theme of Tim Burton's Batman until 2004, when the track was painted yellow, and supports dark purple.

Great America Version's Yellow Track And Dark Purple Supports

Great America Version's Yellow Track And Dark Purple Supports

Six Flags Great Adventure's version of Batman: The Ride, while also being themed to Tim Burton's Batman, varied from the other versions since it originally featured a black color scheme with yellow rails until 2004, when the track was repainted yellow.

For the 2010 season, Six Flags Magic Mountain's version was repainted from it's light gray track and black supports to medium blue with black supports.

Incidents

On May 26, 2002, 58-year-old park employee Samuel Milton Guyton of Atlanta was killed in a danger zone under the path of Batman: The Ride at Six Flags Over Georgia by being struck on the head by the dangling leg of a 14-year-old girl on the front car of the ride. The girl was hospitalized with a leg injury.

On June 28, 2008, a 17-year-old South Carolina teenager was decapitated after being struck by Batman: The Ride at Six Flags Over Georgia. The teen, who was on a trip to the park with his church's youth group, scaled two fences with a friend into a restricted area and walked into the ride's path. Although witnesses stated he was trying to retrieve his hat, a Cobb County police spokesman reported the teens were attempting to take a shortcut back into the park after having finished lunch.

Awards

In Amusement Today's Golden Ticket Awards for Best Steel Roller Coasters, the original installation at Six Flags Great America was ranked 23 and 25 in 1998 and 1999, before returning in 2005 at position 45. In 1998, the Six Flags Great Adventure and Six Flags St. Louis installations ranked 19 and 21, respectively.

Golden Ticket Awards: Best Steel Roller Coasters
Year 1998 1999 2005
Batman: The Ride (Six Flags Great America) 23 25 45
Batman: The Ride (Six Flags Great Adventure) 19 N/A N/A
Batman: The Ride (Six Flags St. Louis) 21 N/A N/A

In Mitch Hawker's Best Roller Coaster Poll, Batman: The Ride peaked at position 21 in 1999 (the first year of the poll). The ride's ranking continued to fluctuate downwards in subsequent polls

Mitch Hawker's Best Roller Coaster Poll: Best Steel-Tracked Roller Coaster
Year 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013
Ranking
21
N/A
30
39
35
40
39
59
49
56
61
76
N/A
77

Gallery

Six Flags Great America

Six Flags Great Adventure

Six Flags St. Louis

Six Flags Over Georgia

Six Flags Over Texas