Virtual Reality Coaster where ‘Steel’ gets ‘Reel’

UPPER MARLBORO, Md. — It begins as a leisurely tour of the city of Metropolis, but, of course things became much less leisurely on Six Flags America’s SUPERMAN: Ride of Steel Virtual Reality Coaster.

The popular roller coaster at Six Flags America has been upgraded to include virtual reality headsets, and WTOP was there to test it out. The experience begins 15 or so stories in the air at a virtual train station. The headset enables 360-degree views, which lets riders get a few moments to take in their surroundings. Riders can even look down at their own virtual bodies.

Once the roller coaster begins moving, its climbs and drops are coordinated with graphics — a depicted battle between Superman and Lex Luthor, who creates chaos throughout the city by manipulating gravity.

Riders see the virtual train, along with cars and trucks, begin to float upward, as the actual coaster climbs. As the coaster descends sharply, riders can see the city street approaching fast before the train is caught by Superman. From there, the virtual train is guided by Superman over buildings and is, sometimes, hijacked and pulled by Luthor.

Latest VR video features WTOP’s John Aaron on the upgraded coaster’s ride-along.

Sources: WTOP and Six Flags America
Photo: Six Flags New England via AP