New for the 2015 season, Cedar Point transformed their notoriously painful stand-up coaster, Mantis, into a floorless experience. Named Rougarou, the finished product was themed after a werewolf from French folklore. During my trip to Cedar Point last week, I was eager to try out the supposedly much smoother coaster.
Before I get started, let me say that Rougarou’s color scheme is much better than Mantis’s was and it really fits into the park. The dull orange really stands out from the front of the park. And it’s cool close up too: With the new theme came a fog effect at the bottom of the drop and eerie swamp noises along the midway. Also, Mantis used to be deafeningly loud, but post conversion it is noticeably quieter.
The line for Rougarou was only around 30 minutes long the day I went to the park and I was able to board the coaster in no time. Though the trains still featured traditional OSTRs (over the shoulder restraints), anything was better than the old seats on Mantis. Since Rougarou was my first floorless coaster, I was intrigued with the view of the track below directly in front of me. As the name suggests, there’s literally no floor.
As the train began to ascend the lift hill, I recognized every movement from Mantis, but without the severe jolts. The pre-drop provided a brief view of the “Roller Coaster Capital of the World” before sending the train plunging down into the mist. My stomach dropped the whole way down the 52 degree drop before the train flew through the first inversion. All of the loops were super smooth and intense and the ride was fun overall. One of my favorite parts was the dive loop that sent the train flying around the station.
If I wasn’t concerned about riding the other scream machines at the park before closing, I probably would have ridden Rougarou again. Though Rougarou is obviously not the best coaster at the park, I strongly approve of Cedar Point’s efforts to revive their mediocre stand-up and wish more parks would do similarly with their run down coasters. Overall, I’d give Rougarou 7 out of 10 stars for its smooth yet intense maneuvers.
Watch an on-ride video of Rougarou below:
Have you ridden Rougarou? How would you rate it compared to Mantis?