Moby Dick: Origin of Ahab

This was a project to create a theme park attraction based off of Meliville’s Moby Dick.

October 2016
Design Project

While reading the novel, I was very drawn to the idea of Captain Ahab losing his leg, and what an adventure that day must have been. I wondered why Melville did not elaborate on the event that almost solely shapes Ahab’s character. Moby Dick: Origin of Ahab is designed to expand Ahab's backstory and provide insight into that day.

Ride Tagline: Board a battered whaling vessel and relive the saga of Captain Ahab as you pursue the legendary white whale.

The Facade. The ride facade is designed to be a Nantucket harbor town complete with practical shops and restaurants. Riders board the attraction in the center of town. The queue wraps in and out of the buildings and ends with guests boarding the Pequod voyager (left) and descending into the bowels of the ship.

Loading Area. The load area is below the decks of the Pequod in the ship’s storage area. Guests find and board an out of commission whaling boat, the ride vehicle for the attraction

Ride Vehicle. The whaling vessel seats eight to twelve riders per car. It is on a coaster track with a center axle so that the car can rotate during the attraction to focus the guests' attentions on key scenes.

Ride Layout. The attraction is combination dark and thrill ride. The beginning has key scenes, and there is a mid-ride backwards launch into the thrill portion of the attraction.

Scene 1, Captain’s Quarters. Animatronic Ahab addresses the stopped vehicle, stating “This whale is, without doubt, the largest inhabitant of the globe; the most formidable of all whales to encounter; the most majestic in aspect; and by far the most brutal in battle. T’was an encounter like no other, and one I’ll keep with me as long as I walk the decks. I know ye come here on a journey, so let me tell ye the tale”

Scene 2, Whale Sighting. The vehicle passes by the Pequod as Stubb spots a white whale. We join the other whaling ships as they go to it. Crewmen shout “There she blows! There! There! She blows! She blows!”
“Where away?”
“On the lee-beam, bout’ a fraction mile off, an albino one!”
“All ready there?”
“Aye” “Aye” “Aye”

Scene 3, Moby Dick Interaction. Our vehicle stops in front of some harpooners waiting to strike. Suddenly Moby Dick’s enormous fluke emerges from the water below and flings forward to splash the vehicle. This scene includes the rides launch.
“Spread yourselves, give way for all four boats”
“Pull, pull my fine hearts, pull!”
“Aye mind the flukes, men!! Prepare yourselves!!!”

The Launch. The force of the splash by Moby Dick’s tail is enough to send our boat flying backwards. At this point the ride is launched into its thrill portion, set underwater after the boat capsizes after the splash. After launch the vehicle spirals through twists and turns while avoiding underwater life, pieces of broken ship, and Moby Dick himself.

The Finale. After the adrenaline rush of the thrill section, the ride takes a dip while avoiding the massive jaws of the white whale.

POV view of finale.

After the finale, the ride then enters a cool down period, moving at a slow pace in complete darkness. The voice of Ahab returns to address the riders, “So you see, tis true. Twas’ Moby Dick that dismantled me, twas’ he that brought me to this dead stump I stand on now. But I tell ye ye’d make a fine whaler, join me next time, t’will be a journey ye’ll never forget.”