The second park on our California Coaster Kings Texas trip was Six Flags Fiesta Texas. A wonderfully located Six Flags property in San Antonio that features an outstandingly awesome lineup of rides and shows. We had just one day to visit the park, but that full day was plenty of time to ride all the attractions and see some shows. The park features world renowned coasters like Iron Rattler, Superman Krypton Coaster and Batman: The Ride, as well as other awesome coasters like Road Runner Express and Poltergeist! Join us as we take a look around the park in this trip report!
– Recently our images have popped up on other sites and forums, awesome that our coverage spreads, not so awesome that no one mentioned where they got the images from. We are totally fine with our audience using our images, BUT ONLY IF credit is given to californiacoasterkings.com. Thank you! –
Let’s start in the front of the park, with a coaster located oddly far away from all other rides… Goliath is another installation of your standard Batman: The Ride B&M invert that was relocated from the late Six Flags New Orleans. Goliath however has a few key differences from the rest of the clones. It is mirrored, meaning rather than dropping to the left and proceeding with the layout, you drop to the right. It also has seven car trains rather than the standard eight. Lastly, it is named Goliath and painted blue with yellow supports. The change in name means the theming is pretty minimal, but we found Goliath to be one of the smoother and more enjoyable batman clones we have ridden.
All the inversions are snappy yet smooth, and the seven car train makes the whole experience feel a little more brisk. The first vertical loop seems slightly more elevated and was a lot of fun as usually. The Zero G Roll seemed to have a bit of weightlessness to it, as opposed to the punishing forces you experience on most Batman clones. We noticed the last two corkscrews especially felt a lot more natural than those on most Batman clones, which was a pleasant surprise. Overall, it’s the same layout as any other Batman, and it is still a fun, intense, and smooth ride. Two Batman clones down, one more to go.
Right next door to Goliath, also in front of the park is the Zaragoza Theater. Housed in the Zaragoza Theater, just to the left of the park’s entrance, is one of the greatest productions we’ve ever seen at a theme park; The Vinyl Countdown! This journey through time from the 80’s till today is jammed packed with over 50 songs, and although it was free with admission, it was something that we could easily spend 10 to 20 dollars to go and see. The show begins with some pre-show audio in the theater, playing tidbits of songs from the 80s, 90s, and 2000s that aren’t included in the show, with static in between, as if the audience is surfing through radio channels. Finally a countdown ensues leading up to the curtain rising to reveal the live band and performers to the song “The Final Countdown” by Europe. The lights remain dimmed for the short intro of “Mr Roboto” by The Styx, before the lights come up to reveal the faces of all the performers. What must be noted in this show is the incredible talent of the cast, as all the singers and dancers have elaborate choreography in the show, and even the band steps up and performs songs live by themselves.
The opening 80s section is jam packed with 80s hits by artists including Madonna, Aerosmith, and Def Leppard, to name a few. The climactic point of the 80s section of the show is when one of the performers comes out to the audience singing “Never Gonna Give You Up” by Rick Astley, and chooses a young lady in the crowd to stand up and dance with him. Onward to the 90s section of the show, which opens with a tribute to Texas born Selena. The performers then launch into their pop section from the 90s, climaxed with the singing of “Just a Friend” by Biz Markie. This song gets the audience involved by singing and swinging their arms to the beat. After a short tribute to the show “Friends”, the singers go backstage for a costume change before the 2000s section, and the live band steps out to center stage and begins to perform the 90s rock section. This captures the classic punk rock and grunge sound of the 90s, featuring songs by Green Day, The Red Hot Chili Peppers, and Nirvana. Finally, all the performers step back on stage for the 2000s section of the show. The show directors do a great job of integrating both music from the early and late 2000s, featuring music from Britney Spears and The Spice Girls from the former, and Bruno Mars and Maroon 5 from the latter. The show closes with a large, elaborate performance of “Born This Way” by Lady Gaga. This show is not only a must see once, but possibly a-go-back and see-twice kind of show. If you do unfortunately miss these performances, check out “Memphis to Motown” in the Sangerfest Food Court, as the show offers a different type of music, but with the same great performers. As a whole Six Flags Fiesta Texas isn’t messing around when they say world class shows, they have some incredible productions on their hands.
Next up was the nearby launch coaster behind the theater. After riding Mr. Freeze a few hours North, it was time for the third Premier Rides coaster on the trip, the Spaghetti Bowl: Poltergeist. Poltergeist looks very impressive, being a very compact and chaotic looking coaster, but the experience didn’t exactly blow us away. Nonetheless, we still loved the ride. The line of the ride is a bit basic and the station is themed to an old mansion,appropriately. On the ride itself there are some outstanding parts and some underwhelming parts. One of the underwhelming parts is the launch. The launch felt weak, not intense at all, and merely felt like accelerating in a car, not on a launch coaster. Luckily this is quickly made up for by the first three inversions. The train reaches a speed of 60 miles per hour before quickly flying through a Cobra Roll and Sidewinder element, which totally disoriented us. But that’s about it for being disoriented, as the train then slowly creeps through the course for a bit, feeling unimpressive and forceless. It isn’t till the train starts picking up speed and navigates through quick transitions that the ride becomes good again. The ride makes another couple of fast turns before flying through a Corkscrew and then elevates into the final brake-run. The ride, by default, has its looks in its favor. It’s enjoyable, but we went in expecting mayhem, and got a bit less of that. It also didn’t help that this rather long ride only operated with one train during our visit, making the line move slowly. Nonetheless it was fun to ride a Spaghetti Bowl coaster from Premier, they’re fun and disorienting at times. If you just ride it to have a good time, not to have your socks knocked off, you’ll enjoy this ride a lot.
Right next to Poltergeist we find the newest coaster at the park! Batman: The Ride is an S&S 4D Free Fly model, and is the most recent coaster to be added to the park. Those who have ridden the similar Green Lantern: First Flight at Six Flags Magic Mountain may have their reservations about this ride, just as we did. However designer Alan Schilke and the S&S team clearly put a lot of thought into this ride and how he could make it a comfortable yet intense ride experience, and that’s just what it is. We were pretty blown away by our experiences on Batman: The Ride.
From the moment the train disengages the vertical lift, the magnetic fins propel the individual two person cars into an absolute whirlpool of inversions. You’re flipping non-stop, both forward and backwards, as the train traverses a variety of small hills and dips. The train then drops beyond vertically to the next level providing some incredibly forces, ranging from weightlessness to intense ejector depending on the position you’re facing in. After a few more hills dips with more insane inversions, you drop once again with equally incredible force, before, rising into a brake run, and then dropping into the station, providing one last forceful thrill. Batman: The Ride is by no means breaking any records in the length department, but in all honesty, it doesn’t need to due to its intense nature. Batman: The Ride is masterfully designed, with an axis of spinning that actually goes through the riders.
Riders sit in sets of twos, and each two people spin individually. On Green Lantern, the axis of spinning is in the middle of the car where no one is sitting, but rather there are two people on each side. This makes Green Lantern a far less comfortable ride than Batman. In addition, the magnetic fins on Batman assure the cars spin as they were intended to, and boy do they spin. This ride is delightfully disorienting and incredibly intense while not being too nauseating, and that is an accomplishment to be marveled. It might not be the longest ride, but it packs a punch that few other rides can rival.
The entrance to Batman: The Ride is located in the Rockville section of the park, which has a very smooth 50’s theme to it. There are old school diners, and a generic high school, it’s filled to the brim with 50’s nostalgia.
In this area you can find Scream!, the S&S 200 ft tall shot and drop. Similar to Superman: Tower of Power at Six Flags Over Texas, you are launched to the top, bounce for abit, brought back up, and shot back down. The major difference between these two attractions is the height, as Scream! Is only 200 ft tall, the building limit for the park. Scream! Is still a very fun ride that has good airtime in both the shot and drop, and the views of the park are spectacular. If you get a chance, give it a ride!
The first coaster we’re discussing that’s located on and around the park’s unique quarry wall is one of the highlight coasters of our trip: Superman Krypton Coaster. This ride just blew us away. Obviously the setting is promising, but once you’re actually riding this awesome coaster and enjoy the setting it’s in, it becomes a very clear winner. The ride is butter smooth to begin with, and has a lovely layout. The ride has a pretty generic B&M pre-lift, followed by the lift hill that takes the train to the top of the canyon, the train then rolls off the lift, and is close to the ground. Close to the ground on top of the canyon that is. The train makes a quick turn to the right and instantly turns into a diving drop off the quarry wall. Instant winner? YES.
The train then enters a significantly tall loop, a 145 foot tall to be precise, at speeds of 70 miles per hour. After the loop, the train swoops back up to the top of the canyon to navigate through a helix low to the ground, optimally using the terrain, which is really makes this coaster so particularly great.
The train then dives into another airtime filled drop off the canyon wall and hurls through a Zero-G-Roll, which feels similar to the one on Medusa at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom. Quick, but not too intense or snappy. The train then enters a crazy smooth and fast paced Cobra Roll, another element that doesn’t make or break the ride experience, but was a very smooth section of the ride. You then swerve up through a stretched-out S-turn approaching the wall and hit the mid-course brake run.
The train then dives into a right-turn drop over the swampy lake into an elevated, smooth and nicely paced, Interlocking Corkscrews before diving through an elevated dive-like turn in the opposite direction to speed into the last hill for some airtime as you hit the ride’s magnetic brake run. Overall, this is a highlight ride at the park. The setting allowed for a very unique layout. Combining both layout and setting created a marvelous ride experience that surpasses that of many other rides. The park’s setting adds an edge to the rides it has, and Superman Krypton Coaster is the prime example of such a ride.
The virtual reality version of this ride was a nice change, for two reasons. First off, the scenery of the DC universe was nice to look at, as we are very used to the New Revolution universe, and secondly, it was cool to experience the VR on B&M floorless, as we had only experienced it on Schwarzkopf loopers. The VR begins with riders on a Metropolis Sky Tour. The tour begins on the lift hill, but Lex Luthor and his Lexbots cut your cable. You then begin to plummet towards the ground, but Superman saves and pushes you through the ride up until the mid course brake run, where he drops you off on top of a building. This is until Lex Luthor throws you off the building, and you are held in the air from falling by Superman as he battles Luthor. Finally, after the second corkscrew, Superman vanquishes Luthor, and you return to the station both literally and in the VR world. Although we did enjoy this VR, the picture was still somewhat laggy and inconsistent. On one of our rides, one of our headsets broke, presenting nothing but a night sky with blue stars. We really hope that Six Flags is able to work out the kinks of the VR coasters, because we believe it has great potential for the theme park industry’s future. To wrap up that thought, we prefer riding the ride without VR, because the setting is just magnificent. So if you have to choose, ride without VR first.
Another ride sort of interacting with the quarry wall is another Sky Screamer. It is hard to say anything bad about these wonderful inventions by Funtime, so let’s talk about what makes this version, of the 200 ft variety, great. Unlike its taller neighbor to the north in Arlington, this ride features a different ride cycle, as it gets to the top of its tower,descends slightly, and then returns to the top, before descending all the way down. And how could we forget to mention that it is built right next to Fiesta Texas’s picturesque quarry wall. Not only does this ride crest the wall, giving impressive views over the wall, as well as down below of the surrounding park, but the black and white color scheme of the tower really works to stand out right next to the wall. This ride, as we have said for all Sky Screamers, is a must-ride.
Let’s continue the quarry wall ride fest! The Rattler was infamous for being a rough, poorly paced, unpleasant and non-thrilling coaster that hardly anyone enjoyed at all. What better candidate to become a Rocky Mountain Construction hybrid coaster is there than that? After the success of New Texas Giant in 2011, RMC went back to work to cook up one their next masterpiece, and man did they ever deliver. The striking 100 ft limestone quarry wall that surrounds the park is the perfect setting for good looking and just plain good coasters.
The terrain the Rattler interacted with was probably the only good thing about the ride, and the incredible Iron Rattler uses it to perfection. After leaving the station, your rattlesnake themed train steadily climbs the massive 179 ft tall lift, right on top of the quarry wall. When the train reaches the top of the lift it slows to a crawl, letting you admire the sheer height. Suddenly you are yanked over the 81 degree drop while also banking quickly to the left, narrowly avoiding the wall. There is tremendous ejector airtime on this drop, especially towards the back of the train. The breathtaking setting and the surprisingly forceful lateral banking really help to make this drop one of the best you’ve ever experienced.
The train bottoms out at 70 miles per hour, before rising up into an airtime filled hop on top of the wall. A steep overbanked turn follow, which provides good laterals. With hardly a second the breath, you quickly bank again and dive back over the wall at a highly banked angle, nearly missing a tree and picking up tremendous speed.
You then rise into the wonderful Zero G Roll which provides absolute weightlessness, riders simply float upside down as the world passes you by. The roll spits you out on top of the wall where you enter a fun airtime hill, once again ejecting riders into their restraints. Although this section on top of the wall can feel a bit sluggish sometimes, if the ride is warmed up, it flies right through it. After two more reversing overbanked turns, you hop over one small hill for some decent air, which sets you up perfectly for what comes next, a steep, long drop over the quarry wall.
This is an incredible moment both for its setting, and the fact, that it is one of the single most intense and sustained moments of airtime out there towards the back of the train. The train dives into a tunnel in the quarry wall with incredible speed, before hopping up out of the tunnel, into the breaks for one last pop of air. Whew, what a ride. Now, are there issues with the ride?
Yeah a few. First off, it isn’t very long, from the top of the lift to brakes it’s about 40 seconds long. Secondly, if this ride isn’t warmed up, the section on top of the wall can feel a bit slow and pace killing. However, the setting and insane elements of this ride as well as it’s near hypercoaster like stats, Iron Rattler is one phenomenal ride. And when it’s warmed up towards the end of the day? It may just be your favorite ride in Texas.
Located right next to Iron Rattler is another amazing quarry wall coaster, the family mine train attraction: Road Runner Express. This ride is the last Arrow mine train created, and it actually blew us away. The ride looks minuscule next to Iron Rattler, but it sure packs a punch! The former themed elements are either no longer functioning or no longer there, but the ride itself is still amazing. The first drop is quite intense, offering some air before leading into a strong positive g turn at the bottom.
The ride then flies back up, offering a bit more air on the top of the hill before moving into the next element. Which is a quick transition to the left, while going downhill, before entering a fast turn to the right which leads into the ride’s second lift hill.
The second half of the ride is less about air and more about laterals around the terrain. The train starts off taking a sharp left turn, coasts around a bit and then dives into a giant horizontal figure-8, which is pretty much a helix to the right followed by one to the left. Coming out of these rather forceful elements, the ride has a lot of speed and dives down through a building next to the station to hit the brakes at full speed. Finishing the ride off powerful. Overall the looks of this ride are deceiving. You expect a mild family attraction, but really it throws in some hyper-quality movements. (For a ride of its size, of course). The station and line itself are old-west feeling and all wooden, and the ride perfectly navigates with the landscape for it to be a solid stand-alone attraction at the park. It’s often overlooked, but we highly recommend you ride it when at the park. It’s a very fun ride for families and thrill-seekers alike.
Nearby these two coasters there’s also a train station. Take a relaxing journey around the park on the Fiesta Texas Railroad. Traveling between Spassburg and Crackaxle Canyon, this ride offers great views of rides such as Superman: Krypton Coaster and Iron Rattler on one side, and of the towering quarry wall on the other. The ride even goes through a tunnel cut right through the quarry. Gorgeous scenery aside, the train offers a great way for thrillseekers for get from point A to point B in the park, and a nice relaxing mild ride for some of those non adrenaline junkies, or future thrill seekers waiting for that growth spurt.
Ever wanted to soar like a Screamin’ Eagle? Well for the small fee of $15 a person, or $10 for season pass holders, you can have that incredible experience, both forward and backwards. Riders take their seats and are first lifted up vertically, then shot backwards, soaring over Superman: Krypton Coaster, and up above the quarry wall. Then, after a few brief moments to take in the view of the park, they start their descent back downward, back over Superman, and if riders are lucky, as we were, they get some sweet interaction with the coaster.
Truly, the most scary part of this ride is approaching the station at the end. You approach with quite some speed, and no clue how you’re going to brake, however, the braking does a fantastic job of slowing riders down in the little space it has with compressed air. After all of us rode this ride with the upcharge, we came upon one general consensus… Though it’s a bit overpriced, it’s definitely a wonderful experience worth paying for! (Yes, both pictures feature CCK team members).
Near the front of the park, we find the most sold coaster model ever created… the Vekoma Boomerang! Just like the one at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom, it’s named Boomerang Coast to Coaster. The ride, just like most boomerangs using the Vekoma 1200 trains, is pretty smooth but has several rough jerks, but really not anything to complain about. It’s by no means a headliner, but it packs a strategic punch in a small footprint. The line was short, and thus we hopped on. (May as well). The ride felt well maintained and was definitely nothing special as you may know. So ride it if you have spare time, but the park has better and more unique attractions to experience.
Not too far away is one of the park’s most popular water rides. Bugs Bunny White Water rapids is Six Flags Fiesta Texas’ resident log flume, themed of course to Bugs Bunny and the rest of the Looney Tunes crew who have time traveled to medieval England. The queue is set in a castle and has some decent medieval theming, including a snoring Dragon, who we’ll come back to later. The ride starts with some fun turns and straight aways that are taken with decent speed, before climbing a small lift. After reaching the top, you drop into a fun little double down, before bottoming out into some more turns, during which you can see Bugs and Yosemite Sam having a sword fight. Although these are just statues and not animatronics, the Dragon is an animatronic and annoyingly he squirts water over the whole boat. It really takes you by surprise, and as a result our team even came up with an unflattering nickname for him. You then climb a second lift that leads into a few more elevated turns. Finally you climb the last lift up and go down the final drop, at the bottom of which the whole boat gets a good bit of spray from their splashdown. Overall, Bugs Bunny White Water Rapids is a fun log ride with decent theming for a Six Flags park, and most importantly, it’s a good way to beat the Texas heat, even if by a water spitting Dragon.
Scooby Doo: Ghostblasters is another personal favorite of ours, this original Sally shooter, with no screens, but rather all real sets. The shooting aspect brings out the competitive side of every rider to get the high score. The incredible part about this ride is that almost every target corresponds with the movement of a set piece when hit, similar to the new Shooting Gallery in the Ghost Town Section of Knott’s Berry Farm, but in a ride. We find this ride to be one of the two gems of the Boardwalk, along with Pandemonium, as it almost has a classic boardwalk haunted house kind of feel. Although some of the set pieces could use a fresh coat of paint, this is quite an entertaining ride, that is enjoyed by riders of all ages.
Located near Scooby Doo is Pandemonium. After riding the identical clone at Six Flags Over Texas, we weren’t initially planning on riding the one at Six Flags Fiesta Texas, but since Pandemonium had no line in part because of its continuous boarding system, the line moved quick and we jumped right on! The ride also features a variety of airtime hills, which while spinning felt out-of-control. The ride is not really a headliner at the park, but it’s a fun experience nonetheless. It’s comfortable, family friendly, and a great ride to catch when you’re at the park and have time to spare. The setting is wonderful yet a bit odd. It feels weird being on the end of the boardwalk on a grass field, yet clearly a bit away from the quarry wall. Overall it’s a good family attraction in a nice family section of the park (Fiesta Boardwalk). We enjoyed the ride, just like the same version a few hours North.
Let’s move to another water ride in the park, a stunningly awesome looking one at that. Gully Washer is an Intamin rapids ride that meanders through a lush area right next to the quarry wall and just across a small pond from Iron Rattler. This ride is a lot of fun due to its beautiful surroundings, and it provides great views and photo opportunities of Iron Rattler. The rapids are a lot of fun and the raft navigates them at a decent clip, but for the most part riders don’t get too wet. Even though you may not get the most wet from the actual rapids sections of the ride, there are some other ways you may just walk off soaked. The park has sprinkled some water cannons around to make sure everyone gets at least a little damp, and non-riders can also pay to blast boats with water. And of course, towards the very end of the ride is the waterfall that will leave about half the raft drenched. Which half? Who knows, as the rafts spins nearer and nearer you’ll be it isn’t you, although depending on how hot it is, you might be hoping for it. Overall, Gully Washer is a fun rapids ride with a great setting, just remember to look out for that waterfall. And here’s Iron Rattler, towering over the ride river streaming below.
As the park closes, and the sun sets, everyone left at the park can be found on the grass at Lone Star Lil’s Amphitheater facing the quarry wall for the nighttime extravaganza that is Lone Star Nights. The show begins with a projection of space on the wall, zooming past planets until earth is reached. The projection then zooms in on Texas and the show begins by highlighting San Antonio. The projection of city landmarks is accompanied by music, laser projections to either side of the video images, and fireworks being shot off from the top of the quarry. After the highlights of San Antonio, similar highlight videos are shown of Austin, Dallas, and Houston respectively.
Next comes a tribute to the four branches of the US military (army, navy, air force, and coast guard) as San Antonio is deemed Military Town, USA. The screen shows our service men and women followed by a tribute to our country to the song “It’s America” by Rodney Atkins. Finally, the impressive fireworks finale hits, with the name of the show projected on the wall, marking the end of another magical day at Six Flags Fiesta Texas.
Overall, we had a fantastic time at Six Flags Fiesta Texas and that’s really because it’s a fantastic park. There is a wonderful balance between thrilling coasters like Iron Rattler and Superman, cool flat and dark rides like SkyScreamer and Scooby Doo, and wonderful shows such as the unforgettable Vinyl Countdown and Lone Star Nights. Moreover, these all take place in such a beautiful park surrounded by the massive quarry wall. If you ever have a chance to visit, make sure you take a trip out to Six Flags Fiesta Texas, you won’t regret it!