New for 2019
Arriving only 2 years after a 4D Free-Spin clone titled “The Joker”, Six Flags has continued investing in Great America by adding Maxx Force, a record breaking air launch coaster. Although I can definitely recognize that Great America did not need this addition, I am still incredibly satisfied with my home park getting a new coaster. I mean who wouldn’t be? Also, since Great America receives heavier crowds than most Six Flags parks and didn’t have a full-circuit launch coaster, I guess the addition is kind of justified. Anyways, Maxx Force boasts a record breaking 0-78 mph launch in 1.8 seconds, making it the fastest accelerating coaster in North America. It also manages to pack in 5 inversions in only a 23 second duration. If that isn’t impressive, I don’t know what is. Stats aren’t everything though, so lets dissect the ride experience a bit more to see if this new for 2019 coaster is a must-do or a bust.
An Unpleasant Wait
I won’t spend too much time talking about the off-ride experience, since it doesn’t matter that much, but I would like to touch on how uncomfortable waiting for Maxx Force is. I’m definitely not going to complain about the long lines, since those are to be expected. In fact, I’d say the ride operators were doing a pretty good job at dispatching the trains relatively quickly. The problem is the actual queue you’re waiting in. Most queues at Great America receive at least partial shade from either trees or awnings, but Maxx Force has absolutely nothing to shield guests from the sun. It seems like the queue (and even the station) was a complete afterthought for the park, as it is just the bare minimum of concrete and metal switchbacks. I can’t imagine waiting more than an hour in that line on a hot day or in the rain. It really is a shame that they couldn’t even put some sort of tarp up.
Best 23 Seconds Ever
Okay, maybe that’s a little exaggerated. That said, I seriously have nothing but good things to say about Maxx Force from here on out. Though it may be a short ride, it still packs a huge punch. The launch is quite possibly the best I’ve ever experienced on any launch coaster I’ve ridden. It’s so forceful and smooth. The double inversion did look to be a bit slow and underwhelming off-ride, but on it you get an unbelievable amount of hang time. After that comes a barrel roll that you fly through at over 60 mph, making it the fastest inversion in the world. There is so much whip to this thing, and it might be my favorite inversion on the whole ride. Then you soar into two more quick rolls before falling back into the station. Yes, there are trim brakes on the final drop, but I wouldn’t say it ruins the ride like it does on Full Throttle at Magic Mountain. The short yet action packed layout is the definition of re-rideable, which makes me very excited for when the line dies down in the next few years and re-rides are actually possible.
Maxx Force is an unnecessary yet delightful addition to Great America. Aside from a poor queue experience and a short duration, the ride is practically flawless. Even the duration is hard to complain about. After all, rides like Top Thrill Dragster and Xcelerator are praised despite their short ride times, so why shouldn’t Maxx Force be praised as well? Personally, I’d rank it just below Goliath as the second best ride in the park. Six Flags Great America really has a winner on their hands in 2019.
Coaster Grade: 8/10
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