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Cedar Point (CP) Discussion Thread

P. 1989: Wicked Twister's permanent closure announced!

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Question....

 

Why do people fail to understand the theme of Gatekeeper?

I've seen people say that the coaster has no theme at all, and it's just a bird. It's clearly themed to a Griffon, but they can't just call it that since BGW took that name. I just don't understand why people can't clearly see that the coaster is themed to a Griffon. The entrance sign has Griffons on it, and people still think that the ride is just a bird that flies over the gate.

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Question....

 

Why do people fail to understand the theme of Gatekeeper?

I've seen people say that the coaster has no theme at all, and it's just a bird. It's clearly themed to a Griffon, but they can't just call it that since BGW took that name. I just don't understand why people can't clearly see that the coaster is themed to a Griffon. The entrance sign has Griffons on it, and people still think that the ride is just a bird that flies over the gate.

 

Ok so explain exactly what the theming is, how it ties to that area, and what makes it themed to a Griffon.

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^I remember seeing some sort of ties to a griffon. I think Gatekeeper is supposed to a generic "guardian." The guardian is a griffon, of course, but the theme is quite generic. It is supposed to be, it's a "general" theme to set the mood for the park.

 

Would TPR pull pictures taken from the Skyride or Giant Wheel? Technically, CP doesn't allow photography on those, but I don't see why.

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Question....

 

Why do people fail to understand the theme of Gatekeeper?

I've seen people say that the coaster has no theme at all, and it's just a bird. It's clearly themed to a Griffon, but they can't just call it that since BGW took that name. I just don't understand why people can't clearly see that the coaster is themed to a Griffon. The entrance sign has Griffons on it, and people still think that the ride is just a bird that flies over the gate.

 

Ok so explain exactly what the theming is, how it ties to that area, and what makes it themed to a Griffon.

 

um...well he just did. Thats what his whole post you just quoted was about. Im not sure how you missed that.

 

However I dont really see the big deal either way. Cedar Point isnt a theme park. Its about the rides. If people dont know the true Gatekeeper theme, I dont think its a huge deal...it doesnt really significantly affect the ride experience in any way.

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Question....

 

Why do people fail to understand the theme of Gatekeeper?

I've seen people say that the coaster has no theme at all, and it's just a bird. It's clearly themed to a Griffon, but they can't just call it that since BGW took that name. I just don't understand why people can't clearly see that the coaster is themed to a Griffon. The entrance sign has Griffons on it, and people still think that the ride is just a bird that flies over the gate.

 

Ok so explain exactly what the theming is, how it ties to that area, and what makes it themed to a Griffon.

 

um...well he just did. Thats what his whole post you just quoted was about. Im not sure how you missed that.

 

However I dont really see the big deal either way. Cedar Point isnt a theme park. Its about the rides. If people dont know the true Gatekeeper theme, I dont think its a huge deal...it doesnt really significantly affect the ride experience in any way.

 

um...well... I didn't miss anything. He said he didn't understand why people don't get the theme so I wanted HIM to explain what it is, which he did. Since he explained basically what it is in a clear way, that says that the theme is not difficult to understand, which is what I was going for, supporting what he said.

 

Do you understand that?

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Here’s my quick-hit review from a trip the Point on Thursday, 8/7. The weather was great, and crowds were moderate. Lines were about 30-45 minutes for the B&Ms and Magnum, and 1-1.5 hours for the Intamins. I go to Cedar Point every year, and I have a pretty good pulse on how rides are running – this time, a few took me by surprise:

 

Millennium Force – I’ve had rides in the fog during Halloweekends where MF is just hauling, and it gets my #1 coaster slot. Oddly, like during this visit, I’ve also had plenty of *only* good rides on it. The first drop still delivered excellently, but the rest felt a bit pedestrian for reasons I can’t really put my finger on. Still a favorite, though. 8.5/10

 

Dragster – Every time I think I’ve ridden it enough to be familiar with the feeling of the launch, it surprises me and takes my breath away all over again. The hill is almost an afterthought to me: I just love that launch. 9.5/10

 

Magnum – Holy smokes, this was the surprise of the day. Listen, I know the thigh pain and back-thwacking action of Magnum, and while I appreciate the coaster historically, it’s usually not one of my favorites for these reasons. I rode in the middle row of the back car three times (once I find a good seat, I stick to it), and each lap was coaster bliss. Great airtime, unusually smooth, no thigh pain, no back thwacking! Results may vary with Magnum, but it was running superbly – at least in that row. Give it a try there! 9/10

 

Maverick – Another one that took me by positive surprise. I'd ridden Maverick 20+ times coming in, and honestly I never cared much for it. There’s just too much defensive riding for my taste, and my feeling is that any newish coaster that has to post “Take out your earrings” signs isn’t as perfect as enthusiasts want to imagine.

 

Well, THANK YOU to whoever wrote the advice of holding onto the horse-collar near the head and pushing up during the transitions (I know I read it from someone here). Again, I don’t like the idea that there’s a right and wrong way to ride, but it DID made the experience much more palatable, and I really appreciated the elements this time without being physically battered. The only draw still against the ride for me is that this type of seat (same with Fahrenheit) gives me butt stapling! That’s right, butt stapling. It feels like my tailbone is getting ground into the bottom of the seat as the restraint clamps down throughout the ride. With some train modifications, this would be near the top of my coaster list. 8.5/10

 

Wicked Twister – Going up the rear spike in the last row is one of my favorite coaster moments. There’s still an innate part of me thinking in fun, “Uh-oh, what if this is going too high!?” The launch is pretty aggressive, too. I think the upward transitions are intense and a smidge too tight, leaving me feeling a bit exhausted afterwards, so usually one ride per visit is enough for me. I still like it overall. 8/10

 

Gatekeeper – A very beautiful coaster. I kept taking pictures of it throughout the day to keep as candidate photos for my computer background. Unfortunately, that’s the best aspect of the ride. As for the ride experience, it’s a vanilla dud. The train moves lethargically through the elements, and it’s a bit bumpy, too. That airtime hill does not deliver, and I think a Hair Raiser-style airtime bump in its place would’ve been more effective and could’ve tremendously helped with the overall pacing. It’s smoother and has a nice feeling of wind in the front, but I don’t think any part of the coaster is particularly thrilling. 6/10

 

Raptor – I ended up stuck on the ride at the end of the night for 30 minutes and got some exit passes for another date for the trouble. I’ve had some awesome and smooth rides on Raptor, but it was running a bit violently on Thursday. I like the old school snappiness, but the cobra roll and a few other notable spots were just rough. Speaking of, can they not modify 10 feet of track to eliminate the harsh transition into the brakes? It feels like an unnecessarily sloppy conclusion to an otherwise typically-solid ride. 7/10

 

Mantis – It's fun through the dive loop, and then it’s a positive G clinic and head-banger’s ball to the end. I actually love the current color scheme, but I’m in favor of a revise. 5/10

 

Mean Streak – It’s the Eeyore of Cedar Point’s collection. It really isn’t the worst ride in the world, but it under-delivers for its size to the point that I feel sorry for Summers & Dinn, the park, and everyone who rides it. I will be astonished if it doesn’t get RMC treatment within the next 2-3 years. If it does, it’ll be hilarious if Mean Streak starts outranking Millennium Force and Maverick in polls. 4/10

 

Gemini – Only one side was operating, and it kept going down throughout the day. I snagged one ride on it, and it was not bad. I think the first drop is fun and unexpectedly steep, but there are a few bumps in that Arrow mine train sort-of-way along the course. 6.5/10

 

Blue Streak – A fun out-run with nice airtime, but after the turnaround the train started bobbing and bouncing all over the place on the return. Not the best, not the worst. 6.5/10

 

Power Tower – I enjoy the space shot side and its pop of air at the apex of the first thrust, but both tower types are less thrilling to me than an Intamin drop. I think the ride’s presence disqualifies the park from pursuing an attached drop ride on Dragster, so I guess we’ll have to continue appreciating it for what it is. 6.5/10

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On the topic of Mantis, One of the things I kept thinking about with the floorless conversion rumors is that floorless trains would require the floor drop mechanism to be retrofitted into the station. I don't know how hard/easy that would be, but it just seems a little impractical when a just as good option would be to use the open-air sit-down trains like those on Wildfire. They appear to sit just as high as the floorless trains, but they wouldn't require the dropping floor in the station, so the transition from stand-up to sit-down would be a bit more practical and seamless.

sdc100.jpg.9c70287e45ade8a51947b80f8f052e1e.jpg

Photo taken from the TPR Index.

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On the topic of Mantis, One of the things I kept thinking about with the floorless conversion rumors is that floorless trains would require the floor drop mechanism to be retrofitted into the station. I don't know how hard/easy that would be, but it just seems a little impractical when a just as good option would be to use the open-air sit-down trains like those on Wildfire. They appear to sit just as high as the floorless trains, but they wouldn't require the dropping floor in the station, so the transition from stand-up to sit-down would be a bit more practical and seamless.

We think that the floorless conversion is possible because it has once happened before on Sheikra. Example:

 

Before:

 

After:

And the Wiki article for Sheikra said that the station was modified so people can board the floorless trains. So if Cedar Point can modify a station, they can make Mantis a floorless coaster.

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^Yeah, I honestly don't think that the heartlining thing would be much of an issue as some say. I think the opposite (going from a sitting coaster to a standup) would, but not really this.

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Wouldn't it be cool if cedar point decided to put in an S&S polar coaster? They could have the first coaster over 200, 300, 400, and 500 feet, it would solve their tight land problem, add another coaster, add more shops and restaurants, and also, since they just got rid of their observation tower, the polar coaster has an observation tower on the top. I am still almost positive on the whole mantis conversion, and it looks like it will improve the ride a lot, but I would really like to see this at the park next year, even if it's unlikely.

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Wouldn't it be cool if cedar point decided to put in an S&S polar coaster? They could have the first coaster over 200, 300, 400, and 500 feet, it would solve their tight land problem, add another coaster, add more shops and restaurants, and also, since they just got rid of their observation tower, the polar coaster has an observation tower on the top. I am still almost positive on the whole mantis conversion, and it looks like it will improve the ride a lot, but I would really like to see this at the park next year, even if it's unlikely.

 

I think CP would want to see how the concept goes first. The one in Florida for 2016 is over 500 feet, I think.

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Really quick TR...

 

I went on Sunday, and it was a a warm, sunny day...General observations:

-The overall feel of the park wasn't as "nice" as in the past. Maybe it was just the sun getting to me, but I found the lack of shade over many parts of the lines rather absurd, and a few spots where the cooling fans had been removed made me scratch my head. And it looked like just about every coaster could use some fresh paint...everything just looked faded and worn.

- Ride ops were definitely not on their game. Other than Maverick, most of the folks working seemed bored and uninterested. Gatekeeper and Millennium Force were both consistently stacking the trains throughout the day.

- What happened to the DJs playing music in the queues for Raptor and MF? I recall there being live DJs there last year, and it made the waits slightly more enjoyabe (or at least suck slightly less).

- Guests seem to get worse and worse each year that I go I've never seen guests so inconsiderate of others, and thinking that the rules don't apply to them before. This may have contributed to my earlier point, as I watched numerous folks on Gatekeeper seem to think that the ops weren't talking to them about putting hats in the bins, phones away, etc. Seriously, people...

 

Ride observations:

-Millennium Force is getting rough (or I'm just getting old). Rode twice, and both rides (one red train, one yellow train) felt like the wheels were square (maybe octagonal, at best) instead of round. But it was definitely not the smooth experience I recall from visits on previous years.

-Magnum is still a lot of fun. Maybe I cut it some slack knowing it's an Arrow, but I sat in the front row, and had a really enjoyable ride. I'm a decent sized guy (5'8" 180lbs), and didn't have any of the thigh abuse other people mentioned.

-Top Thrill is still a great kick in the pants. Finally snagged a front row ride, which I thought was a whole different experience than anywhere else in the train.

- I still like Raptor, but that horrible transition into the brakes always ruins the rest of the experience for me. And I think that it consistently had the longest lines in the park - 2 hours for most of the day.

- Gatekeeper - I found this surprisingly rough last year, riding in the middle and back. This year I rode in the front row on both sides, and it was a much smoother ride. I agree that it may not be as "intense" as some of the other coasters, but not every coaster has to be engineered at the limits of what the human body can handle. I think the twist at the top of the drop is a great start, and the overall rhythm of the coaster is enjoyable.

- Maverick was being moody, being down a few times over the course of the day. But when it was running, it was definitely running. This is probably one of the most intense coasters I've ever ridden, and I can appreciate it in that way, but I'm not able to ride it more than a couple of times without needing a recovery period. I think this one was designed to push the limits a bit, and I think it would have benefited from a bit more design time, as I find the brake at the top of the hill in the second half (post-launch) to be a bit of a buzzkill, and is indicative that someone didn't do their homework (as originally evidenced by the removal of the barrel roll element between the rocks).

- Blue Streak is great, if you like classic woodies. Having been a ride op on The Racer at Kings Island, I do have an appreciation for a good wooden coaster, but I can't say I necessarily enjoy them.

 

In summary, I think CP needs to review the overall guest experience, as I feel it's degraded over the past few years. I won't bore everyone with a tirade against the FastLane system, but I do feel that implementing it may have helped the park bring in quite a bit of extra $, but at the expense of customer satisfaction. Guests who don't get it are penalized for not getting it, and some of the guests who do get it have an entitled attitude that the other rules don't apply. I'd love to see CP work to develop (or at least catch up with) innovative ways to improve the experience for everyone - displays showing wait times for the rides, more shade, fastpass for everyone (a la disney), etc. Or maybe I'm just getting old and grumpy...but as my children are approaching an age where they'll be able to enjoy CP, I just hope that there's an experience there for them to enjoy.

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