Steel Curtain Review - Kennywood


Steel Curtain

Kennywood, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
One of a kind ride with a bit of everything thrown in.
Steelers Country is themed around the Pittsburgh Steelers, with Steel Curtain as the focal point of the area.
Nothing beats the view of approaching Kennywood from Pittsburgh and seeing the new Steel Curtain on the hillside. The massive metal structure perched on the top of the hill across the river is a daunting yet majestic sight. The new proving ground at Kennywood.
Steel Curtain is a coaster with a little of everything. It starts off with an original 3/4 corkscrew into a drop, similar to the defunct Drachen Fire at Busch Gardens, but with a more modern flow to it. The ride then features many rare elements, including a stall and a cutback. It also has a high speed ending that really gets the adrenaline flowing through you just before you head into the final brakes. Does this coaster warrant a trip to the park this season? Yes. Kennywood has a very well-rounded selection of rides, and with this addition it becomes one of our favorite parks.

Score: ➊ ➋ ➌ ➍ ➎ ➏ ➐ ➇ ➈ ➉ 7.1/10

90th Percentile 

Height Requirement: 48" / 122cm
Top Speed: 75mph
Inversions: 9

Where to Sit on Steel Curtain:

Excitement: 8.6/10 The Steel Curtain is thrilling from start to finish. The slow lift accelerating up to full speed builds anticipation perfectly and is exciting each and every time, a great way to start a coaster. The ride gets more intense as the ride continues and seems to gather more speed as you progress through the layout. It's a perfect amount of thrill with all sorts of vertical and lateral forces that are never too uncomfortable.
Steel Curtain towers over everything else in the park and can be seen from miles away! It's an impressive sight.
This element, while looking quite plain, is one of the highlights of the ride. It features nice airtime as you enter and transforms it into hangtime flawlessly. 
Pacing: 8.4/10 The beginning of Steel Curtain starts with an inverting-drop that offers hang-time at 197-feet above the ground, the highest inversion in the World.  It features two high-speed sections mixed in with the first few inversions, and never lets up after that. It looks fast from the ground, and it feels fast while you ride. The final few elements are out-of-control and feature all sorts of forces, from hangtime negative-g's, into high positive g's, and even some laterals. 
Steel Curtain has a fast-but-in-control pace. The flow from the exit of one element to the entry of another go really well together. It speeds through the layout in a flowy-fashion that is really great.
Technicals: 8.0/10 This ride doesn't feel like it has nine inversions, which we consider a good thing. They don't feel like they're thrown in to beat a record, they flow into one another and compliment the ride well, offering a positive experience through each one.  It's a comfortable, different, and smooth coaster that comes with some vibrations during high positive-G moments, but nothing that takes away from the ride; the vibrations aren't noticeable at the front of the train, where we highly recommend sitting. While we feel the ride may not fit in with the historic Kennywood midway, the layout is fresh, the supports are beautiful from a structure point of view, and for the footprint that the track fits into it's a truly effective layout. The lap bars and seats are also super comfortable, free-feeling, and hopefully the norm for future inverting coasters.
Lots of track in a very lanky footprint.
Theming: 2.5/10 The theme of this ride is definitely different, partnering with a NFL team is something that hasn't been done before. The announcing in the station helps with the buildup to the ride, but doesn't really fit a roller coaster. The theming doesn't add to the ride, and we really wish Kennywood would've themed this coaster to the Steel industry, with a dark color scheme and industrial-type buildings instead of the Steelers. How cool would it have been if this structure was dark rust-colored instead of yellow? It would compliment the surrounding city and area so well!
There's no interactions with props or major scenery during the ride, but the views and surrounding landscape are great to look at while heading up the lift hill. The queue is very concrete and plain, but it does offer some nice views of the ride. Overall we just don't understand what exactly the theme is meant to accomplish.
The Steel Curtain has a lot of concrete around it, which makes for nice views of the coaster from every angle, but isn't exactly the look we love to see in a theme park like Kennywood.
Uniqueness: 8.0/10 Steel Curtain is one-of-a-kind. We're not sure what coaster it is comparable to because it is that different. The elements flow great into one another, and it's a super re-rideable roller coaster. The Steel Curtain is different in every way, and we like that. If it had a theme that fit the area and better interactions it could've been one of the best coasters we've been on, but it has a parking-lot feel at the moment, maybe when the surrounding buildings are completed we'll change our mind, but we doubt it.

Score: ➊ ➋ ➌ ➍ ➎ ➏ ➐ ➇ ➈ ➉ 7.10/10 

Placement: 90th percentile among all coasters. (Ranked in the top 10% of coasters worldwide.)

1 comment:

  1. As for theming, it's a Pittsburgh Thing. The rush and intensity of the ride is exactly what the Steel Curtain means to us. It's perfect 10.0/10.0!


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