Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Is the New Universal Patent Showing a Tower Ride System For a Wizarding World Floo Network Attraction ?

Blooloop has found that Universal Studios recently filed two new patents for two different tower rides, one with interactive features, and one with rooms stacked up a tower with a rotating lift system. In this article i'll talk only about what kind of attraction the second patent could be related to, so please jump to Blooloop HERE for the patent about the interactive ride.

So, the second patent - drawings above and below - describes “a plurality of rooms stacked atop one another with the ride vehicles being able to go in and out of the rooms and rotate and twist and ascend and descend the tower. The ride system allows for flexibility in the path taken by the ride vehicle, thereby enabling a number of different potential experiences for the guests".

All the question of course is: for what kind of themed attraction would Universal use this new patent? Well, according to a D&M reader "this is the Floo Network dark ride /puzzle theater for Epic Universe, Universal Orlando's new theme park announced last week and opening in 2023 or so. It will be themed to the Ministry of Magic and it is supposed to be the large show building in the Fantastic Beasts land on the top right corner of the Epic Universe concept art", this one below.

Now, what is this "Floo Network", you ask? We can learn more about it on the Harry Potter Wiki page HERE:
"The Floo Network is a mode of wizarding transportation in which a witch or wizard goes from one place to another by means of Floo Powder and a fireplace. Many fireplaces are connected in the Floo Network, and the traveller need only speak the desired fireplace they wish to arrive very clearly as they stand in the emerald green flames.
The British network is governed by the Floo Network Authority, a section of the Department of Magical Transportation of the Ministry of Magic. This department is located on Level Six of the Ministry. The Floo Network Authority controls which fireplaces are connected to the Floo Network, which requires specialised magic. Travelling by way of the Floo Network can be done without specialised magic, and can be preferable for wizards too young to Apparate or those without access to other forms of transportation, such as broomsticks."

Interestingly, it seems that Universal started to develop a ride on a theme of the Ministry of Magic Floo Network years ago, and In 2017 they announced they were making a Floo Network ride for Universal Orlando. The 2017 drawings showed smaller cars - picture above - but the artworks from the new patent shows that the concept has expanded with may be even a drop at the end like at Tower of Terror.

IF - and that's a big "if" - the ride will be indeed themed on the Floo Network - which, again, allow wizards to travel quickly from one place to another - from what we can see on the patent drawings my guess is that the ride will start like the first drawing at the top of this article, with all guests in the Ministry of Magic placed in cross looking at each other and then each of the platforms on which they are seated will turn rapidly, eventually move up or down to enter another place at another floor.  The bet here is not 100% sure but i think there is enough elements to bet on this new patent being for the Floo Network ride, though until an official announcement from Universal you may still consider it as a rumor.

Pictures: copyright Universal Studios

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