PHOTOS: Full ride breakdown of the new “Skull Island: Reign of Kong” at Universal Orlando

in Entertainment, Islands of Adventure, Park Secrets, Theme Parks, Universal Orlando

The closer we get to the release of Skull Island: Reign of Kong at Universal Orlando’s Islands of Adventure theme park, the more amazing information is being released on what guests can expect from the return of the iconic, three-story tall beast.

Fortunately for big-ape fans all over the world, USA Today has released a detailed preview of the ride, with all new exclusive images! Like this one:

Courtesy of USA Today

Seriously, who the hell is that guy? And how did his teeth get so sparkly white? Or how about this one:

Courtesy of USA Today

Nightmare fuel. Plain and simple. All I know is that this dude shops at the same outlet mall as the other guy — similar wardrobe.

As far as highlights from the attraction go, I’m not about to copy entire articles over to Inside the Magic, so I’ve grabbed the juiciest information from USA Today’s lovely write-up and compiled them here. Check it out:

  • For starters, you are surrounded by 150,000 square feet of rock work. In the distance, huge temple doors are set among a rugged landscape full of craggy peaks and dense jungle.
  • The nearly 6-minute-long experience is a feast for the eyes. It features a trackless ride system (a first for Universal Orlando), an interactive queue (yes, hostile natives are lurking around the corners) and an almost three-story-tall mechanical figure of the furry one himself.
  • Among the piles of skulls a very lifelike native is peeking out. Better yet, actors dressed as not-so-friendly natives pop out from dark corners to scare the beejeebees out of you, Halloween-Horror-Nights style.
  • Each vehicle seats 72 people and comes with an expedition guide. With five guides altogether, each guide narrates the story in a different way.
  • The first thing you see are the remnants of a Kong species skeleton on the left. You pass the terapusmordax bats as they try to attack the vehicle. Now you’re in a deep cavernous space with lots of creepy things. The truck starts rocking as more creatures attack.
  • Kong comes crashing through to battle the dinosaurs. The ride vehicle lowers, but Kong catches it. He pounds on his chest.
  • As you come around the corner, the piece de resistance: About eight feet away from the truck is Kong in all his glory. With a head the size of a car, he’s so close you can feel his breath. He even expresses human emotion like scrunching down his eyebrows in anger or contorting his face in surprise.

Here are some more pictures from the clearly unforgettable experience:

Courtesy of USA Today
Courtesy of USA Today
Courtesy of USA Today
Courtesy of USA Today
Courtesy of USA Today
Courtesy of USA Today
Courtesy of USA Today
Courtesy of USA Today

I don’t know about you guys, but we at Inside the Magic absolutely can’t wait to try this out for ourselves. The immersion sounds unrivaled, the world sounds fleshed out and creepy, and it looks like guests are in for an adventure of a lifetime!

To read the full article, head on over to USA Today.


  1. Ralph

    Meh. Less that I expected. Looks like a crappy imitation of Indiana Jones at DLR.

    1. Jeff

      Lol. Gotta love the Disney fanatics. This is 100x anything Disney has ever done.

      1. Rob

        Oh, you’ve already experienced the ride? Please, tell us all about it!

        1. Jeff

          The queu alone is an experience. The ride blends physicals sets and animitronics seamlessly with screens. Must ride

          1. Rob

            Now that I’ve been on it, no, it’s not 100x anything Disney has done. It’s not even 100x anything Universal has done.

      2. Ralph

        Not a Disney fanatic at all. Just stating my opinion. Also, saying this is 100x anything Disney has ever done is either blatant bias or grotesque ignorance.

    2. Jake

      Geez. Snort much pixie dust? LOL

  2. Greg

    My guess is, they will not follow the new Disney trend of eracing – in this case, casting white actors as some of the natives.

  3. EricJ

    “As far as highlights from the attraction go, I’m not about to copy entire articles over to Inside the Magic (that’s just bad form…and plagiarism)”
    Someone’s a little sensitive lately… 😉

    As for “Who is that guy?”, I’m guessing a lot of the, quote, “Skull Island” ride was made to synergize next year’s Legendary Pictures movie being shot at the same time to “link-universe” with Godzilla ’14 sequels, so they took Peter Jackson’s earlier scary mud-covered natives and turned them up to 11. (Given that most of the “Kong: Skull Island” movie seems to be taken from abandoned Peter Jackson script ideas in the first place.)
    Being Universal, it seems to be a hybrid between the ’05 movie they do own, and the upcoming Legendary movie they were hired to promote. That’s the problem of making attractions around movies we don’t know yet (and Disney lost a lot of would-be attraction ideas that way).

  4. Norman

    Not a fan of things jumping out at you. This is not Halloween Horror Night. And thats why I don’t go to Horror Nights.

    1. Derek

      I agree 100%…I wish they had a separate queue for people who don’t care to have mild heart attacks by people jumping out at them.

  5. Peggy Jeffries

    I’m wondering how they’re going to get mobility impaired folk into that ride vehicle.

    1. John

      Peggy, the vehicle floor is level with the loading platform and has a seat that can fold up to make room for a wheelchair or transfer.

  6. Really wanted to tell you I am lucky I came onto your web page!.

  7. Hey Guys I just got off Skull Island Reign of Kong and let me just start with the que. The que was a little bit disappointing because there was only one scare actor and not as many anamotronics as I thought there were going to be. Bit once I got on the ride it beyond blew my expectations away. The ride was so much better than I thought it was going to be. I usually don’t like rides with screens but this one was amazing and perfectly used. And OMG the Kong anamotronic was fantastic! I hope you found this comment helpful!

  8. Thanks for your post! Even with the mixed reviews, I’m still excited to check this out myself!

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