Website: Busch Gardens Williamsburg Homepage
Ride Type: Steel Coaster
Ride Status: Running
Average Rating: 4.4348
TPC Overall Rank: #59 out of 2933 rides.
Reviews: 29
Last Review: 8/6/2012 5:46:00 PM
In User Top 10: 32 times.
User Tracker Count: 42 times.

Me on Griffon
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5 Rating
+1 Rating Rate Down Rate Up T-Rex on 12/6/2007 6:02:00 PM
Better than SheiKra. The feeling of staring at the ground while over 200ft up is still very terrifying and the drop was very thrilling and provided good air in the back, just as the shorter second drop did too. Both immelmans were fast and provided good forces, but SheiKras was better. I found the water splash again pointless, but the two bunny hills were a plus and gave good air time.

5 Rating
+3 Rating Rate Down Rate Up coaster05 on 10/14/2007 10:32:00 AM
This was one of my most anticipated new ride of the year and it did not dissapoint. APPEARANCE-9 It is very awe inspiring, but didnt look quite as cool as the one in Tampa. It is hard to say why, but it just didnt work as well. CAPACITY-10 It just eats up people. I do like the double station better on Sheikra, but compared to most rides this still just destroys them. RIDE QUALITY-9 A little short but silky smooth, had great elements, and a wonderful drop. FUN-10 My mom loved it, every ride was a fun as the last, and just a great time from load til unload. I really enjoy this type of coaster. RERIDE-10 The distance from my house means nothing to me when you talk about BGE. this is my favorite non Disney park and I could easily visit twice a year. OVERALL-48 AVG-9.6 I am going with the 10. Simply another amazing attraction at an amazing park. I feel they did just as good of job as Sheikra although I like the Tampa one just a touch better.

4 Rating
+3 Rating Rate Down Rate Up B&M Fan on 8/10/2007 6:36:00 PM
When going to this park, I honestly was not looking all that forward to riding this ride. I have been on Sheikra many times and was thinking that Griffon was going to basically be another ride on Sheikra. Got to the park right when it opened and was on one of the first 5 trains. Pretty Cool. One thing that I was surprised by was the fact that Sheikra has a double loading system and Griffon only has a single. Made loading and unloading much slower than Sheikra. The station is not nearly as nice as Sheikras is either. I loved the 10 across trains but the floorless aspect, (especially from the back row, and the front looked the same) did not add anything or make it any better than what Sheikra was before the floorless aspect. The ride itself I believe is a little better than Sheikra but still not worthy of a 10. The first half is exactly the same, but the second half has the second immlemen and was pretty good. The water splash is stupid looking from the side and on the ride. It is basically concrete painted blue whereas Sheikra is fully themed and looks a lot better. Overall these rides are similar but because of asthetic appeal and logistical purposes, Sheikra probably has the edge. I also hate how they are advertising this as the tallest floorless dive coaster because Sheikra is exactly the same height.

4 Rating
+3 Rating Rate Down Rate Up CoastrGlxy on 8/6/2007 9:10:00 PM
I was nervous when my favorite park announced it was installing its own dive coaster that was to be very similar to SheiKra. I rode SheiKra days after it opened last year and was underwhelmed. My 7 was attacked for, well for being too low. Luckily, BGE has pulled through once again with a great roller coaster.

As usual Busch Gardens has done an excellent job integrating the new roller coaster into the park. You wouldnt know that Griffon had only opened about a month ago. When I visited, the station, landscaping, and shops of New France were all complete. I arrived at the park as it was opening on a Tuesday morning. My first ride was in the farthest to the right seat of the second of the three 10 seat rows. I only waited about 10 minutes. I boarded the floorless trains, that boasted stadium-style seating so riders in the second and third rows had improved views.

The steep climb was slow and foreboding. The view was amazing. A large body of water I didnt remember seeing from other lifts was easily visible in the distance. As was Alpengeists ridiculously high peak, down below! The train crept around the tall summit and then came to an abrupt halt. Then it slowly pulled over the edge and locked in place. Riders screamed in fear at the sight of the ground 20-some stories below. After a long five seconds, the train was released and the ensuing drop was enormous. (I found it fun in the middle row, but much better in the back row.) The train plummeted down 205 feet at 90-degrees offering a lift of air on the way down. Onlookers offered "oohs","aahs", and all kinds of expletives as they watched the strange-looking mass of 30 screaming riders take the ultra-steep plunge. At the bottom of the drop, the train dove into a trench that passed under a walking bridge packed with people gawking at the sight.

On the other side, the train climbs up an immelmann. I prefer SheiKras extra-large 145 immelmann, but Griffons is still fun. After leaving the loop, the train screeched around a corner and up into the brake run. After passing through the short brake run and the train crept towards the second 90-degree drop. Its much shorter (140), but still fun and offers a little bit of air. The following immelmann is smaller and tighter than the first and is more like the fighter jet maneuver the inversion was named after.

After exiting the loop a short bunny hill offers some good floater air as the train charges into the water splash section. Its very cool to look at as a bystander, but it has little effect on the actual ride, other than slowing the trains down. Riders in the back may get sprinkled lightly, but thats about it. Kids love waiting in the nearby walking path so they can be soaked by the resulting deluge of water. After the splash, theres a banked turn to the left followed by another bunny hill. This short hill offers a last moment of air as riders face an structure that creates a headchopper effect. After safely passing under the structure, the train enters the station brakes and the ride is over.

All-in-all Griffon is a great addition to Busch Gardens Europes already stellar lineup. Its not the Second Coming, but it does meet the high standard of the parks other world-class roller coasters. Even if it is on the short side. Final Rating - 8.5 (Great Approaching Excellent)

5 Rating
-3 Rating Rate Down Rate Up jonfin826 on 7/14/2007 1:25:00 PM
best. coaster. ever.

4 Rating
+4 Rating Rate Down Rate Up shag9004 on 7/4/2007 12:26:00 PM
Date Ridden : 6-24-2007 Times Ridden : 2 including front row far left (the best seat on the train I think) and back row far left.

This was the final stop of our Golden Ticket Top 10 Steel Coaster Tour. When we planned this trip out in late 2006 we knew BGE was necessary due to Apollos Chariot. We had already knocked out Montu at BGA, Goliath at SFOG, Nitro at Great Adventure, Superman ROS at Agawam, Millie, Maggie and TTD at CP, and Phantoms Revenge at Kennywood. Alas GeForce overseas will have to wait until later. Getting Griffon was a bonus, particularly for me since I loved Shiekra down in Florida.

First, by all means, if it is operating use the single rider line. When we were there the regular line was backed up to about a 1 hour wait. We rode twice in 15 minutes using the SRL!! The first time we sat right beside each other on the front row in the two far left seats. The second time we were on the same train again and my buddy got the front row far left seat that I got the first time. I was placed in the back row far left seat. Using the single rider line you are virtually guaranteed a seat in the outside part of the train since most people just get on and board all the way down whatever row they are in. Use the single rider line to your advantage to get on quicker and in a better seat.

Like Shiekra, Girffon is smooth as silk. I absolutely love the feeling of hanging over the side and looking straight down 205 feet. I know these rides are short, but for some reason they are extreme thrills for me and I always leave them with my adrenaline pumping. AC and Alpie are probably better overall coasters here, but they just do not pump me up the way Griffon does once the ride is over. It was the same way for me with Montu being a better ride down in Florida but Shiekra really being my favorite of the two.

How does the coaster rank? It gets a 9 from me (you’ll see lots of 9’s and 8’s in my reviews…..only 4 coasters deserve a 10 in my opinion…I’ll get to them later or you can check out my top 10). Dive machines are heavily critiqued as gimmick rides but if dropping me straight down at a 90 degree angle 205 feet is the gimmick then I guess it gets me. Griffon is a great ride but will probably lose out to Maverick for best new ride of 2007. That takes nothing from a great experience. I hope to get back up there and get a couple of more laps on later this year. Just remember to use the single rider line!!! 

5 Rating
0 Rating Rate Down Rate Up thare on 6/18/2007 9:22:00 AM - User's Top Ride #2
This ride is amazing, and is worth any wait. It is a perfect length for a dive machine, and is great the whole way through. I enjoyed this in the morning and in the evening after closing. This ride is amazing at night. So smooth!! Anyone who is is BGE needs to capture the power and speed of the mythical Griffon!

5 Rating
0 Rating Rate Down Rate Up metssuck on 6/17/2007 5:31:00 PM - User's Top Ride #4
Great new addition. I got on first thing in the morning and it was amazing. The view is awesome and the ride is amazingly smooth and thrilling. The splash is huge. It would be my favorite but that spot will always belong to big bad wolf.

4 Rating
+7 Rating Rate Down Rate Up coasterf42 on 6/15/2007 6:19:00 AM - User's Top Ride #9
Griffon was a somewhat unexpected masterpiece. To start with, I promised myself well before Griffon opened that I wouldn’t read one review, opinion, ranking, or video of the coaster until I got the chance to ride it. I usually do not get to ride brand new rides, and because there was a SLIM chance I was going to get the opportunity to conquer the beast in 2007, I decided to refrain from reading or seeing anything about it until the fateful day of my first ride. I kept my promise until this day, and this is even the first day I opened up the “Griffon” page on this Themeparkcritic. I am even writing this review cold, as I have still not read one other person’s opinion on the ride. Alright, now for even MORE of a back-story. This is one ride I never respected. Until yesterday I thought all dive machines were semi-gimmicks, and Griffon was nothing more than an “altered clone” of its Floridian sister. I thought it was basically built to please BGE fanboys and to get a bit of a buzz from the local population in need of a new thrill. My opinion seemed tarnished from the start with this thing, considering its extreme over-hyping, and in my opinion, Busch’s extreme over-butchering of trees in a once highly wooded section. None the less, I traveled to Busch Gardens Europe for the first time in five years yesterday, partly to get a ride on the not-even-a-month-old coaster.

So there I was, staring face to face with the new B&M creation at 11 in the morning. I never imagined the vertical section of the drop being that big. I have seen and been vertical before (HXLC and storm runner), but with that massively thick B&M track simply headed strait to hell right in front of your eyes, I was amazed by the look of the drop from the beginning. We were told that Griffon was down for two hours for maintenance. I wasn’t expecting that, but arrived back three hours later with all the other coasters behind me ready to get in my first dive machine.

The capacity was great. Three trains, loading every seat. The line flew by. Unfortunately, I was slightly disappointed with Griffon’s queue themeing! Considering Busch’s reputation, I was expecting a little more than a small themed building, a few TVs, chandeliers (with lights burnt out already), and cardboard wings hanging from the ceiling! Still, better than nothing, but I would really like Busch to give this ride a more noticable back-story some day.

Now to the ride itself: The lift was steep, and I basically closed my eyes and relaxed on the way up to avoid the sun’s rays. By the time we got to the top, you could tell that Griffon really is the tallest ride in the park. Around the slow bend was fun, and the anticipation started to build. Being locked onto a holding break was extremely terrifying! From the back seat, you couldn’t see the track, and from the front, you could easily see how strait the drop was! Then, the first drop was just incredible. Outstanding airtime, and as expected, the vertical section seemed so long. The best part about Griffon is its speed. I’ve done 80 mph coasters before, but Griffon simply uses speed better than any coaster I’ve ridden. It doesn’t seem to slow down for anything other than the holding breaks, and the amount of wind that gets pushed around, especially in the front is just amazing. Okay, we’re on the first immelmann now, right? Well, it wasn’t too forceful, but it was simply fast and big. The train was then gracefully whisked through a curved upward slope, and held face down for a second time. Like many of Busch’s rides, Grffon was literally split in two parts. I usually complain about things like that, but since Grffon is so face-paced, the hold was all-the-better. The second drop was insane, kind of like a want-to-be of the first. Great airtime and good speed, despite its size. The second immelmann was the most intense part of the ride. I definitely enjoyed the second inversion more than the first. Again, the s

4 Rating
-2 Rating Rate Down Rate Up cprules69 on 6/6/2007 11:36:00 PM
I loved the first drop. Imagine if it was 400 ft instead of 205 ft!

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