Great American Scream Machine @ Six Flags Great Adventure
Great American Scream Machine is an aging, old steel coaster at the New Jersey Six Flags. Not to be confused with the wooden coaster by the same name at Six Flags Over Georgia. Don’t get me started on how bad of a name ‘Great American Scream Machine’ is or how dumb Six Flags is using it for two different roller coasters. I ranted about bad roller coaster names last year. Anyway, Great Adventure’s GASM is a relic from Arrow mega looper era. In the 80′s and early 90′s parks wanted bragging rights to having the roller coasters with the most loops.
GASM is in the worst setting you could find. It looks like it was plopped down on an old portion of the parking lot and they did nothing to landscape or theme the grounds. At least the entrance and station are decorated with bars and stars in the requisite red, white, and blue. But the ride itself might as well be on the Moon. I’m a HUGE fan of terrain coasters and GASM is the exact opposite.
After a long slow climb, you’re treated to a nice swooping 155′ drop. It’s easily the highlight of the ride. Next, you rise up into the a large loop which is followed up by two smaller loops that are literally back-to-back. Riders experience the typical Arrow head banging. As with most looping coasters, Arrow coasters have horse collar restraints that cover your shoulders and chest. During bumpy loops riders’ heads will bounce side to side off of the hard restraints. Headbanging is common on these type of coasters, but I found it rougher than normal. There was significant headbang during the vertical loops, not just during the transitions.
The three vertical loops are followed by a short brake run. The train immediately drops out of the run and into a batwing boomerang inversion that’s two more inversions. They are the best two loops of the ride, which unfortunately isn’t saying much. After the boomerang, the train putters its way through a rough set of double corkscrews. Luckily, after that the ride’s over.
After a spin on GASM, you thank God B&M is in the roller coaster making business. Medusa, also at Great Adventure, is a great answer to this rough relic. Before I get any angry comments, I have to say that I’m not an Arrow looper hater. I enjoyed Tennessee Tornado (Dollywood) and loved both Demon (Six Flags Great America) and Loch Ness Monster (Busch Gardens Europe). Great American Scream Machine is just way too uninteresting, dated, and rough. Final Rating – 4.0 (Below Average)
This coaster is rated ‘TH’ for Thrilling. It’s a 3 out of 5 on my Thrill Scale because it includes several loops. If you fear going upside-down, then you may want to skip Great American Scream Machine.
What’s Your Take?
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