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Everything posted by sirspud

  1. I've never understood this as well, they act as if the park picked you specially to have them, I had the same experience with my sister last year at SFGAm, After dropping almost $220 on a platinum flash pass, I got fed up at one point with the rude and snide remarks and I said back to them, that if they wanted to pay me $220, and trade they were more than welcome to, otherwise shut up and enjoy your hour wait. Way to show those poor people! Who are they to expect an enjoyable park experience when there are people in the park with more money?
  2. Having a fast lane or similar system makes the park worse for everyone who doesn't have the ability to pay for them. Proponents and users of the system want to imagine that having something like that just makes the park a little better for those willing or able to pay for it without affecting anything else, but that's not the case. Every person without fast lane or whatever various parks want to call their equivalent system is having to wait just a little bit longer for likely already long waits because if there are only 6 rows of a ride open to GP instead of 8, that limits the capacity of general admission guests getting through. Many Americans accept that for events like concerts or sporting events, if you can afford them at all, every person has a select seat and the better seats are going to cost more. But it's painful when one more aspect of America goes to a system that rewards more well off people while lessening the enjoyment of people who don't have that much to spend. When I was younger it was pay admission and enjoy the park. Now it's more than you can pay admission, but unless you pay for a special service that is unaffordable you will be held in what feels like a cattle pen in the hot sun while see other, more important people go ahead of you. I can accept long lines if they are organic and that's just because so many people want to ride. It's a bit harder to accept knowing that the line is so long partially because more important people than you are getting priority boarding.
  3. The Phoenix is simply so good that few coasters anywhere can hold up to it. Twister, even if it were phenomenal, would have a hard time beating it. I've been to Knoebel's twice, and I really want to love Twister, but it's just not really near as good of a coaster as one of its size and location should be. When I visited CP, Kennywood, Knoebel's, and Hersheypark in one trip, Twister was somewhere around Mean Streak and the Comet near the bottom of wooden coasters I'd ridden, and I actually remember more fun moments from Mean Streak.
  4. The Starliner is probably the most underrated coaster I've ever ridden. It's airtime was phenomenal, sometimes violent, but that's what made it a blast. There are wooden roller coasters that are engineered more gracefully these days, but for a basic out and back coaster only White Lightning really tops it out of what I have ridden. I can imagine in a better location than Cypress Gardens, where it was crunched right next to the road, it would be a more interesting ride. I think a GCI redesign would be great too, but I wish more people appreciated Florida's original wooden coaster.
  5. Just checked the POV and while the ride sure is fast and the first drop long, it is baffling that it takes 3-4 hills before it actually has an airtime hill.
  6. 1985. A pretty sad era for coasters with longevity, sad to say, but I'll list three notables, only one of which I've ridden. 1. Phoenix- Knoebel's 2. Mindbender (Galaxyland) 3. Monstre - La Ronde
  7. Some people are mentioning spaghetti bowls, which are compact except for the launch and break run which jut to one side. Nobody has mentioned Rock'n'Roller Coaster at Disney Studios, which is certainly the best of this type, all things considered. Scorpion at BGT is an excellent true compact coaster, and still packs a satisfying punch despite its small stature.
  8. It's doubtful that Busch Gardens will ever do away with that space in the middle anything soon without a major, major expansion there. For one, it's where the employee parking lot is located as well as the most easy to use employee entrance (the other is what you see on the train/skyride which is not practical for high volume timeframes such as when the cast and staff arrive for Howl-O-Scream, which is also what I worked as an employee). Second, they use that space right now for the aforementioned event as well as others like concerts. Third, as elongated as it is, there is a distinct loop to the park layout surrounding that section, what makes the layout bad besides just the sheer size of that is the fact that Montu is so darn far from that and going there makes you incredibly far from Sheikra and Kumba. We may see some land added to the center of the park in the future, but I find it more likely another major attraction will be build in the space for Gwazi and the new theming will expand slightly from the present walkways.
  9. When I grew up I had a picture of my dad, who was part of the water ski show for a short time, in front of Collosus at SFMM. This was taken around its first opening, well before rides like Goliath became part of that skyline. It shaped my idea of what a roller coaster should be. The majestic wooden structure, those drops, the massive curves that gave a beautiful symmetry to the coaster.
  10. I love Busch Gardens Tampa, but while the grounds are very nicely landscaped and themed, one starting a park from scratch would certainly want to do anything but emulate this park. It's essentially a very large loop with a spur sticking out to go to Montu, but navigating it is not near as simple because of the variety of attractions. The additions of Sheikra and Cheetah Hunt have balanced the park out a bit more, as Sheikra gave most park goers a reason to finally go to that part of the park (past Stanleyville Falls) and Cheetah Hunt fills a void that used to be glaring between the park entrance and Egypt. Another irksome thing is the the train ride, which could serve effectively as a transport ride and is actually a highlight attraction on its own, is first accessible some distance into the park and only makes sense as a transport ride in the middle of the day, and is entirely useless for those just entering the park. The skyride, only every so slightly more accessible to the park entrance, is again almost irrelevant for those really wanting quick transport to a rear portion of the park. Unfortunately the difficulty in getting to some sections of the park compared to the dramatic ease of others means that attractions like Gwazi and Cheetah Hunt, lower capacity than Kumba and Montu, are also exceptionally quick to become a wait because its impossible to get to other rides without passing these, whereas it's such a trek to get to Kumba and Montu that only those determined to get to them happen upon them.
  11. Any thoughts of taking a quick visit out to Fun Spot to try White Lightning? It's less than 10 minutes from Universal (same distance from Disney) and White Lightning is very worth going out of your way for if you haven't tried it yet. You can also get in and out in less than an hour if that's all you want to do and are in a time crunch.
  12. Back from my visit. Don't have time for all the details but wanted to report that we waited for the front row of Gwazi as the second ride of the day (we hit Cheetah Hunt first) and boy was it a night and day difference in the front row in the morning! I'd actually venture to say it felt like a normal wooden coaster. I barely had a hint of that square wheels feeling in the slightest. I really, really enjoyed it, and it was a great way to send a friend off. Our first ride was in the aqua train. We rode it again in the front row, getting the yellow train some 20 minutes after our first ride, and some of the square wheel feeling returned. The yellow train didn't seem to track as well and maybe just a little later in the day affected it. If anyone else is going to experience this ride before closing, I highly recommend riding it first thing and riding it front row. I know not everyone here has had a pleasant experience even riding front row, but I can verify it's a lot better experience than otherwise. When I rode it several weeks ago it felt like a ride that needed to close. Not so at all today.
  13. I'm planning on going tomorrow to get a last ride on Gwazi. It may be painful but that thing was fun once and I'll ride it for the memories. One of my first wooden coasters.
  14. Knoebel's is the type of place I'd love to have as a home park. The ticketing allows you to do whatever you want to do, and the informal atmosphere of it, easy parking, ample shade, and the classic yet simple rides would be great. My home park (BGT) has a better coaster roster (though Phoenix is up there with anything), but the non-coaster rides and simple pleasures aren't the same.
  15. Once you pay to get into the park you should get the same experience as other paying people. It would be one thing if having a selection of people who can pay for a better experience doesn't hurt others, but with every seat that is set aside for people who pay more, that's longer that everyone else who paid general admission has to wait.
  16. A home park is like a wife. Every ride is predictable because you've done it all before, and you see and know sides of it that casual acquaintances don't get exposed to, and sometimes you wish you could experience other rides. But if it's a good park you'll be kept entertained even if your times with it aren't as sheer exciting back in your first couple of years. My home park, BGT, is fun and is generally quality all around. I'm glad that they never just throw up a ride with sheer disregard for making the area around it complete, like Six Flags would do by throwing up a ride over a parking lot. My only real complaint is that the type of rides I prefer, airtime machines such as hypers and woodies, are only really represented by Sheikra to some extent.
  17. It's news to me the Sky Rocket is skippable. It's not as intense as a Maverick or anything but it's a lot of fun. It combines the way a wild mouse gives you that twisted feeling with inversions. It's a well done ride. One thing I should have mentioned about staying near Kennywood. Pittsburgh is a near impossible to navigate city if you don't know the area. The road signs are inadequate, roads that a GPS want to take you on can sometimes be either non-existant or near impossible to traverse due to inclines, and the multitude of hills and mountains can mean missing a hard to spot turn will mean twenty minutes or more to get back where you were going. I never could have imagined what it was like but apparently its a secret that Pittsburgh simply learn to navigate by feel because their road system is so inadequate.
  18. I did a similar trip on my honeymoon, which was a couple years ago. Kennywood was by far the most fun my wife and I had even though it is a small park. Cedar Point overall had the best coasters and Hershey had more of them, but Kennywood was just so darn fun. Phantom's Revenge is also a unique ride out there and out of every coaster out there, it's the one I'd chose to ride again if given the chance. I was actually really disappointed in Hersheypark overall, though its worth noting I went there before their wing coaster was installed. For an historic park it had a very corporate feel, and while a lot of coasters there were decent enough, the only one that was really exceptional was Lightning Racer. I'm sure others have better opinions of Farenheit and Stormrunner, but I found Kennywood had far more worth going out of the way for amongst their small but historic and unique collection of coasters along with their great flat rides. My time was much more enjoyable at Knoebel's. At any rate I found a good strategy for Hershey was to bust it all the way to the back of the park and work my way forward. The park is very linear and rides like Wildcat and LR will have almost no wait early in the day. Farenheit's capacity is terrible, so expect to wait a while for that no matter when you go. You may try hitting that first and then going to the back, it's on the way anyway. My wife and I stayed in Harrisburg, just about 15 minutes I think from the park. There were some affordable hotels right off the interstate on the exit to Hershey.
  19. Intaminloopers with their short trains are maddening in their capacity for major coasters. The line is usually double that of other coasters of their type.
  20. I've never ridden a B&M even close to lumbering so I find it odd that you have encountered so many. B&M's biggest fault is that their rides were so well engineered they revolutionized and for a while pretty much monopolized steel roller coasters, so there are so darn many of them these days that one can practically feel the ride just by watching it. At this point they are a victim of their own success. A B&M inverted these days is only unremarkable to me because I've ridden a dozen or more of them so it's hard for a new one to provide something different. But I am very, very excited to ride a B&M giga, a slate of B&M hypers, and a couple wing coasters because I know that with a B&M comes a level of quality that Intamin is not a sure bet to match. I've only very very rarely encountered headbanging on a B&M while my head was bashed violently by rides like Maverick. I've never had to wait over an hour for a B&M because it's max capacity is scarcely half that of most large coasters.
  21. If this is a ride that ends up being solely about that drop, then so be it. Millennium Force is nothing but the drop and a whole lot of speed, but it's a top coaster because of that drop. There's no doubt in my mind that B&M doing a drop like that instead of Intamin is going to be one of the most out of this world experiences available.
  22. First coaster - Thunder Mountain Railroad, MAgic Kingdom First steel coaster- same First Woodie- Hurler, Carowinds First 100 ft coaster- Montu, BGT First 200 ft coaster- Raging Bull, SFGam First looping coaster- Scorpion, BGT First B&M- Montu- BGT First Intamin- American Eagle, SFGAm First actual steel Intamin - MF, CP First GCI- Gwazi, BGT First BM invert- Montu @ BGT First Launched coaster- Rock'n'Rollercoaster, Disney Studios First Standup- Vortex, Carowinds First Flyer- Manta, Sea World Orlando First Giga - MF, CP First Floorless - Kraken, Sea World Orlando
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