How does the pirate ship ride work
Wikipedia's introduction to the pirate ship ride
: A pirate ship is a type of amusement ride based on pirate ships, consisting of an open, seated gondola (usually in the style of a pirate ship) which swings back and forth, subjecting the rider to various levels of angular momentum. A variant where the riders must pull on ropes to swing the ride is known as a swing boat.
The ship swings freely from the pivot and is driven by a roller built into the floor directly below the ship. The operator presses either the clockwise torque button or the counterclockwise torque button to change the motion of the ship.