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Escape From Pompeii
Website: Busch Gardens Williamsburg Homepage
Ride Type: Boat Ride
Ride Status: Running
Average Rating: 3.9036
TPC Overall Rank: #197 out of 2933 rides.
Reviews: 94
Last Review: 6/20/2013 7:17:00 PM
In User Top 10: 23 times.
User Tracker Count: 286 times.

Escape from Pompeii

Boat "Escapes" from Pompeii
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4 Rating
0 Rating Rate Down Rate Up thare on 6/18/2007 9:19:00 AM
Not a basic boat ride, and I love the themeing and story. The only reason it gets and eight is because of the effects timing inside the building.

4 Rating
0 Rating Rate Down Rate Up metssuck on 5/16/2007 5:10:00 PM
Great themed water ride. The fire on the ceiling is sweet! If you dont want to get wet ride early or late when no one else rides it.

5 Rating
+2 Rating Rate Down Rate Up Canobie Coaster on 10/9/2006 3:35:00 PM
Intamin is notorious for creating incredibly intense rides that annihilate their competition in the intensity category. B and M can’t come close to matching the intensity of their hyper-coasters. Neither can S and S with their drop towers. And Intamin has completely revolutionized the launched coaster. But one blip that tarnishes Intamin’s flawless intensity record are their relatively tame shoot the chutes. Simply put, their older ones just don’t live up to the Hopkins ones with their slower and weaker plunge (though their newer ones such as Perilous Plunge and Pilgrim’s Plunge probably rectify this blemish). However, there always are exceptions, and this certainly is one of them.

Located in the Italy section of the park, Pompeii’s highly stylized building looks incredible and really looks like the ruins of a once-great ancient city. Not only that, but the landscaping around the attraction is superb as well, highlighted by the beautiful shrubs and rock gardens scattered beside the queue. And speaking of the queue, you may think that lines on a 100 plus degree day would be unbearably long. Well, I thought that too and much to my surprise, it was a walk on! This can most likely be attributed to the attraction’s incredibly high capacity thanks to its incredibly quick working ops and more importantly, and the number of boats Busch had operating was a very pleasant surprise.

Once seated in the nice-looking splash boat, the attraction follows the same path as most shoot-the-chutes- a lift, giant turn, drop, splash, and final turn. Well, Pompeii as you very well know has a unique twist on a classic attraction- the indoor section. Once entering the building, I was absolutely blown away, no pun intended. Themed to the famous eruption that destroyed this classic city, Pompeii dazzled me with its array of pyrotechnic effects ranging from a simple blaze to a raging inferno that probably actually could bring down an entire city. Just the heat generated just has to be experienced and it really captures the sense of peril that Busch intended for. Of all the effects though, the falling column was far and away my favorite. Now I had seen that effect hundreds of times in theme park specials on TV, but it was just so flawlessly executed that it made me jump! It just came so close and was very abrupt since all the fire in each direction distracted me. All of the theming inside was mind-blowing and Disney-quality, and heck, could even be a stand-alone dark ride. Yes it’s just that good!

Just when you don’t think you can withstand the heat anymore, the boat reemerges and is faced with the climatic plunge that is featured on all shoot-the-chutes. As I said earlier, Intamin versions just lack the intense plunge featured on Hopkins ones and unfortunately this one also suffers from the plague. Simply, it’s not nearly as tall or intense, leading to much less enjoyment. That being said though, the drop is still moderately enjoyable, just not intense at all. However, the splashdown, while not awe-inspiring or colossal like the ones on Hopkins versions, was perfect for providing a much needed drenching on a stifling day; it’s just not as visually stunning off or on ride.

Escape From Pompeii simply put, is easily one of the best shoot the chutes I’ve been on. While it lacks the intensity of Hopkins models, Pompeii absolutely blew me away with the pyrotechnic effects featured in the amazing indoor section that allows it to leapfrog over almost all the other shoot the chutes I’ve been on. That being said, I still prefer Tidal Force’s raw intensity over the incredible theming of Busch’s, but Escape From Pompeii is a definite must for anyone visiting Busch Gardens. One final note, unless you’re wearing sandals or sneakers that you don’t care about getting completely soaked, avoid sitting up front because of the mad torrent of water that comes rushing in over the front of the boat following the lift, but wherever you sit, you are sure to get a good drenching that will surly provide some much needed refreshment on a hot, summer day.

3 Rating
0 Rating Rate Down Rate Up sowinski on 9/19/2006 10:24:00 PM
I liked the theming and special effects on this ride. However, the ride does not deliver on ride quality. The ride looks like you will get a good soaking if you watch people coming down the drop, but in the boat it is a different situation. Noone on my boat got anything more than a misting. Its too bad, a good drenching would be a godsend on these hot summer Virginia days!

4 Rating
+1 Rating Rate Down Rate Up surfergirl on 8/7/2006 4:56:00 PM
The firery effects are awesome. If you go during the day and its really hot (like in the 90s) the fire effects will be turned down. But if you go during June or July when its not too hot the effect are amazing. The ride is a theme ride and is great if you do not want to get soaked. You can get soaked though if your in the first two seats or the boat is full. If you ride it during the week at night, there is practically no wait and you will not get that wet. The ride has three turns in the building and then splashes into a pool of water. When you are coming down the hill, it takes your picture. The drop is not that bad if you sit in the back.

4 Rating
+1 Rating Rate Down Rate Up coasterf42 on 7/5/2006 1:49:00 PM
Usually my feeling of shoot the chute rides is something like “good, but...” However, this outstanding Busch Gardens Europe attraction takes the average splash down ride into a different universe. Riders start up the lift hill in a familiar, rubbery, shoot-the-chute fashion. Suddenly, instead of a simple turnaround into the waterfall, the boat enters a giant building and is greeted by shaking walls, dramatic music, statues falling all over the place, and quite a bit of fire effects! This "dark ride" part of the ride is simply wonderfully put together and almost makes the ride worthy of a ten by itself. The fire effects just seem to last forever. It really does get hot in the building, certainly enough to get your blood pumping with adrenaline! Then, the boat enter daylight after the unforgettable dark-ride section. What comes next completely surprised me. Down the waterfall hill, my butt flew off the seat more than it seemed to do on Pompeiis B&M hypercoaster neighbor! What a plus! The airtime down the hill alone would make the ride worth riding. As of this point, the ride is basically perfect in my mind. The ONLY thing disappointing about it is what seemingly every other splashdown carries out so easily: the splash! I was barely sprinkled on my 2007 ride! I know that it is a bit luck-of-the-draw, as a few people on my boat needed a change of clothes, but still, half the boat was dry. I don’t expect a Mile High Falls sort of effect, but consistent splashing is preferred on a boat ride. Still, I appreciated the sprinkle I got from an attraction that was literally so good, had the splash been a bit larger I would have to think about it being my number one ride!

5 Rating
0 Rating Rate Down Rate Up coasterwom on 5/10/2006 12:38:00 AM
This ride has great theming. The line was short in the beginning of the day. Escape From Pompeii brings you back in time through the ruins of an ancient city. I really liked the fire effects and the pillars falling around the boat inside the building. It gets hot up there inside the building because of the fake fire flames and the water feels refreshing. It is average speed, fun, rerideable, it has a large capacity, and a long duration.

3 Rating
-1 Rating Rate Down Rate Up Fedor on 5/5/2006 8:45:00 PM
Kinda dissapointing. I just saw fire a couple of times and then a drop. I thought it would be a cool water ride. Its ok.

5 Rating
0 Rating Rate Down Rate Up Pasch on 3/23/2006 4:40:00 PM
Makes you forget you are about to fall 60 feet into a lake!

3 Rating
+1 Rating Rate Down Rate Up Animan1 on 1/11/2006 5:50:00 PM
I rode Escape from Pompeii fairly early in the day, since it was already steaming hot by about 10:30 (probably in the mid-80s). To compare this to other rides in its genre, the biggest name raft ride Ive been on is IoAs Jurassic Park River Adventure, but I have also ridden BGTs Tanganyika Tidal Wave and Splashwater Falls @ SFGAm. Overall, this ride matches up pretty well with Tanganyika and SF, but it doesnt come anywhere close to Jurassic Park when it comes to the ride itself. The drop is much smaller, the ride is a lot shorter, and the theme itself, while good (I love the whole saga that is Pompeii, btw), cant quite touch a ride based off of a blockbuster motion picture. To the rides credit, the theming is pulled off quite well, with some good special effects, especially with the fire, and the final drop is fun and refreshing, just not on the same level of JPRA. By no means a bad ride though, and definitely worth a moderate wait on a hot day.

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