Four seconds to drop - "Don't look down"
Already on entering the X-Sector this signature ride
draws attention every 23 seconds: The cries of the lost echo all
over the place, just a noise, and moments later the car reappears
from earth's interior. Just watching Oblivion is quite
spectacular. The massive track vanishes into the depth almost
vertically, directly into darkness. High fences secure the maw.
The visitors who are not scared off by the sole sight of this
attraction at first enter the station that resembles the secret
hideaways of the James Bond movies. Two cars are loaded at
the same time. Each one consists of two protruding rows for eight
riders, resulting in a total of 16 passengers per vehicle. The
gauge of the typical B&M track profile was widened,
but the cars still outshine the track to both sides by far. A
heavy chain lifts the vehicle to height of almost 20 meters after
the restraints were closed.
Another chain guides through a bend to the left. To the right
there is a wonderful view of the Towers, the namegiving
castle ruins of the park. But this view can't be really enjoyed. A
third chain takes over the car and pulls it slowly towards the
drop. Then the vehicle comes to a complete stop as soon as
it reaches a tilt of 45 degrees: Silence, nothing moves and time
seems to stand still. The passengers are positively forced to look
into the black hole that is filled with mist.
The front row enjoys an unrestricted view towards the
ground while the riders in the back perceive mainly the horizon.
Anxious pairs of eyes look up, expectant of what is going to
happen to the experimentees. A subtle view that is emphasized by
three striking words: A stroke on the ground, just above the hole,
states "Don´t look down", and it is also softly
whispered into the riders' ears. A request none of the passengers
really wants to comply with. For a period of four seconds the car
remains in that position. Four seconds that seem like an eternity.
Then there is a jolt slightly shaking the vehicle and you fall...
Cries seem to come from all directions, and especially in the
second row there are lots of airtime. The backbenchers are
literally ejected out of their seats, glad about the
over-the-shoulder restraints that keep them safely inside the car.
A start that surely compensates for the lack of view just an
instant before - the front row is clearly less blessed with
You fall, looking towards the ground. The weight of the heavy
car pulls you into the depth. You are whirling through the fog,
the car disappears and the passengers perceive only one color:
Black. You dive into the depth, positively absorbed by it. Then
the car leaves the extreme, almost vertical segment and turns into
a horizontal position. Forces of 4.5 G press the riders into their
seats, and only an instant later the ascend begins. Fast as an
arrow, reaching a speed of up to 110 kilometers per hour, you head
towards the dazzling daylight. The car tilts into a steep turn and
is safely caught by the final brakes.