Invadr conquers the family coaster market at Busch Gardens

Invadr is not only a great successor to the Big Bad Wolf, but is also a very capable wooden coaster in it's own right

Tyler Grobman, Reporter

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Ever since The Big Bad Wolf was closed down in mid-2009, roller coaster enthusiasts at Busch Gardens Williamsburg have been waiting for a worthy successor to the acclaimed family coaster. Even after Busch Gardens released Verbolten in 2012 and Tempesto in 201, many fans have still been waiting for the . Now that Invadr has opened in the Old France area of the park and I’ve gotten a chance to ride the chrome colossus, I can safely say that Invadr is not only a great successor to the Big Bad Wolf, but is also a very capable wooden coaster in it’s own right.

Besides serving as the new defacto wooden coaster for the park, Invadr is also notable due to it’s status as the first wood-steel hybrid coaster at the park. After disembarking from the station, the vehicle ascends a lift hill overlooking the well-themed viking queue for the coaster. After reaching the zenith of the lift hill, the vehicle builds speed and plummets down a 75 foot drop encased in a massive crate. After being propelled after the initial drop, riders explode through a series of sharp turns and small lift hills at more than 48 miles per hour,  almost akin to a luge participant. After a litany of turns and small drops longer than Morgan Freeman’s movie career, the vehicle eventually turns back into the station, prepared to plunder the wallets of customers oncemore .

Besides the high quality of the physical coaster, Invadr also deserves praise for the incredible theming and how well the Vikings vs. Villagers narrative is expressed throughout the entire queue, ride, and station. My main complaint in regards to the queue is how compact the physical station is. Even though each vehicle compromises 8 rows of two, the physical space inside the station is so small that it feels like you have to pass through the New York subway at rush hour to get to the row that you want to occupy. I’d also like to commend the park for doing such a good job with the service and maintenance of the ride, even though it’s only just been open to the public. The staff was very courteous and fast about loading people on and off the ride and was also very quick at addressing minor mechanical issues.

In conclusion, Invadr proves to be a well-needed and insanely powerful yet small coaster that not only lives up to the hype and legacy, but that also manifests it’s own identity through its design, theming, and thrills more intense than the “Who shot J.R” TV event. Invadr is very well done in many ways and will be a fan favorite for many years to come.

 

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