Japanese theme parks are usually in a league of their own when it comes to their attractions, and the new Godzilla ride at Seibu-en Amusement Park is no exception to the rule as it throws thrill seekers into a mega monster smackdown straight from the movies.
Godzilla the Ride: Climactic Giant Monster Battle has opened in a new themed section of the year-round amusement park, which is located near Japanese capital, Tokyo. Since the end of last season, the venue has undergone a huge redesign and expansion before the arrival of its 2021 season. As well as the monster movie attraction, the park updates include a Showa-era based marketplace and a new children's area inspired by the work of Osamu Tezuka.
In a video posted on YouTube, one can see the entire ride, from the experience of walking up to the kiosk to finding out just what it is like to be caught in the crossfire of two god-like monsters, which as it turns out is an equally exhilarating and terrifying tour-de-force of visual effects that could have been lifted direct from the big screen. The experience, which uses curved video screens to put riders right in the centre of the action, starts with a frantic ride through a city under siege from King Ghidorah, and its not long before buildings are crumbling, fires are burning and a familiar dark shape rises from the debris and lets loose with an iconic roar.
From here on out, a ferocious battle royal ensues with explosions, aerial acrobatics and all out destruction that leads to the frantic final moments of snapping jaws and a triumphant Godzilla standing tall over the wreckage. Similar in style to Universal's current King Kong attraction and parts of the Jurassic World ride, the immersive experience is nothing short of spectacular from start to finish.
There is a very good reason why the ride is so theatrical and breath-taking. The visuals were created under guidance of two-time Japanese Academy Award winning director Takashi Yamazaki, who is a self-confessed fan of the prehistoric monster franchise and once included a dream sequence in his movie Always: Sunset On Third Street 2 which featured Godzilla. With so many different Godzilla designs to choose from, Yamazaki has clearly gone for one of the more recent incarnations, with the primary basis being Legendary's Godzilla.
This is not the first time the popular character has been used in theme park attractions, as much like his current sparring partner, King Kong, Godzilla is such an iconic movie monster that it is hard to think there is anyone out there who hasn't heard of him. Most recently, the currently Godzilla design from Shin Godzilla has been featured in Godzilla: The Real 4D and Godzilla vs Evangelion at Universal Studios, and Awaji Island's Nijigen no Mori Theme Park has the "Godzilla Interception Operation Awaji zipline ride. The new ride at Seibu-en will be the third theme park to install a Godzilla-themed experience in the last five years.