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Six Flags Darien Lake (SFDL) Discussion Thread


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So I decided to check out the park and all of the great changes (HA) that they had in store. Let's just say this was the most disappointing visit I have ever had at Darien Lake.

As soon as I arrive, I see the daunting list of ride closures, and some rides not even close to ready for the year (Blast Off in particular, with no ride vehicle). I also notice the horribly cracked blacktop, far worse than years past, and the lack of paint on rides and buildings that DESPERATELY need it.

 

It all starts out at RoS. Seems like all is good, until I realize that the ops were the slowest ops I've ever seen, and they decided to full blown staple everybody to the point where it was painful. Buuuuut, they did get new seatbelts....."yay"?

 

Then I try getting food with my dining pass. The food stands were a joke.....crazily understaffed, no menu boards are on so you have no clue what you can and cannot get, and the line moved at about a person every 10 minutes. Ridiculous. Later in the day, as I'm in line to use my dinner pass, I'm randomly told, at 5:20 (park closed at 6), that the place was closed, AS I WAS IN THE MIDDLE OF THE LINE!

 

I then made my way to Viper, with an absurdly long line, but of course two train ops is crazy talk at DL, and on top of that, as I was waiting for the front row, get held up THREE TIMES for "skip the line pass" people, and I'll tell you, people were getting quite angry about that situation.

 

As I head to Tantrum, I notice Mind Eraser's horrendous paint job, but it gets better, now the train looks like hot trash too. Cars 1, 2 and 8 are red, while 3-7 are blue. Honestly looks flat out embarrassing for the park. As I am in line for Tantrum, I notice trains 1 and 3 running, while Train 2 is sitting on the ground, ALREADY attacked for parts. Wow. Only took one year to cannibalize a train.

 

I then decided to just leave along with many other people, all pissed off about how rough of shape the park was in. I was hoping for at least SOME improvement this year, but it honestly looks like the place is even more of a mess under Six Flags management.

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New Sign, not any other positives to show

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Ride of Steel still with that "lovely" paint job. Might as well call it the Cotton Candy Coaster at this point

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Forgot to add, another thing I noticed was the lack of security and metal detectors. At this point in our world, it’s becoming a necessity. Frontier City added them this year, why not Darien??

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Forgot to add, another thing I noticed was the lack of security and metal detectors. At this point in our world, it’s becoming a necessity. Frontier City added them this year, why not Darien??

Everyone in WNY is taking Six Flags as a blessing, get used to them not being the best, In a few months all the kinks will be worked out but come on people it’s opening weekend with a new operator. Six Flags is notorious for having horrible opening weekends

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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Forgot to add, another thing I noticed was the lack of security and metal detectors. At this point in our world, it’s becoming a necessity. Frontier City added them this year, why not Darien??

 

Wait, wait, wait... so in one post you complain about unimaginable incompetence and long lines that never move because of hilarious inefficiency and in the next post you want a Six Flags security line with metal detectors?

 

Please stop, my sides hurt and I may suffocate from laughing so hard.

 

I’m sure you’ll get a Six Flags security line soon. If Great Adventure is any indication I suggest you bring a book to read and 3 days with of supplies. You’ll look back and laugh at the day that you ever thought you wanted that.

Edited by coasterbill
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Y’all I have some news for you. It’s more interesting than *GASP* Cuda Falls and, OH MY, Batman: The Escape. Okay... brace yourselves everyone... it’s called.. patience. OH MY!!! Did he just say the “p” word?!?! Yes he did!!! Yeah. We have seasonal theme parks around here. Neither are ever ready for opening day. Like wow, it’s SO shocking isn’t it. Might as well assume Blast Off will never have the seats on it and Mind Eraser will forever have red and blue seats. Guess we can never go to Darien Lake again! Both Fantasy Island and Darien Lake struggle when they first open, to some degree. It’s no secret. Some of these employees have never worked at a theme park until now. Also, employees love to call off on opening day at both parks for some reason. So don’t get mad when people are struggling to get your food or season pass. The people trained to do these specific jobs call off and then new people have to get trained and guests will always get mad. The best thing that literally every single one of you on here can try to do is... ohmygod... UNDERSTAND. Think about circumstances and WHY these things are the way that they are. You know why I’m excited for “Six Flags Darien Lake”? Not because of the opening weekend, or even opening season for that matter. This isn’t a presidents first 100 days. Give it time. Be patient.

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I’m aware of how negative that post was and I am very understanding of the fact of all new management, but come on. My whole experience was flat out ridiculous. They couldn’t even be ready for their opening weekend at all?? I’ve attended many opening weekends, whether it’s at Darien Lake or Fantasy Island and I have never had this low of an experience at any of them. This isn’t Six Flags’s firts rodeo, I expected more from them, and from what I heard being muttered in the lines, it sounds like everybody there expected more. Oh well, hopefully it’ll improve when I go on the 18th for SkyScreamer.

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Let's just say this was the most disappointing visit I have ever had at Darien Lake.
Fright Fest props are still out
Yeah, and the whole having the site up by opening thing fell through as well.
So, i hadn't gone to Darien Lake on opening day in about 10 years. I guess i needed a reminder of why opening day isnt that great.
Darien Lake was a complete mess today.

pop.gif.61c3a79ac77f83d9b21471a9dce9ad5f.gif

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I've never been to this park, I'm planning on going this summer. Yet this thread is probably the most amusing on this site. Case in point, I spent way too much time laughing at the gem quoted below:

 

You make it sound like they're putting it up and quickly taking it back down. Calm down, you'll be able to gaze it as long as you want in just a few days.
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I’m aware of how negative that post was and I am very understanding of the fact of all new management, but come on. My whole experience was flat out ridiculous. They couldn’t even be ready for their opening weekend at all?? I’ve attended many opening weekends, whether it’s at Darien Lake or Fantasy Island and I have never had this low of an experience at any of them. This isn’t Six Flags’s firts rodeo, I expected more from them, and from what I heard being muttered in the lines, it sounds like everybody there expected more. Oh well, hopefully it’ll improve when I go on the 18th for SkyScreamer.

It’s not Six Flags’ first rodeo. But the park has to switch over again. It’s never an easy process. There are a lot of returning employees who are used to a specific way, and only a few new management people in assuming. Everything can’t be implemented right away.

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Okay, time for a more Positive Trip Report :

 

I know almost everything I am about to bring up has already been mentioned, but I will give my opinion anyways. So, I honestly thought they did a better job this year as far as opening days were concerned. I have been on other opening days before and had worse experiences. With that being said, it was not the best it could be either, but it was nice I thought. Okay, on to the main points now from my trip earlier today.

 

 

So, to start, I went to Boomerang first and noticed some of the wheels were new. Boomerang was actually a little smoother today which probably has something to do with the wheel replacements. Also, another odd plus was actually the Mind Eraser train. Now, I know this may be an unpopular opinion, but bear with me. I think doing that to the Mind Eraser train actually made that ride a little bit smoother too. I rode Mind Eraser twice, once in the last row and the other in the third last row and expected the usual rough ride. However, it was not as rough as it used to be weirdly enough. This may be a result of the park taking the better parts of both trains and putting them together as they did. It does not look good exactly, but the ride does feel better when you are on it. So in short, both Vekoma coasters in the park are slightly smoother. Also, back row rides on Mind Eraser are among the most underrated experiences in the park.

 

Ride of Steel was sort of a nice experience. However, the experience became slightly less good because of something I will admit is kinda my fault. I went on the ride with my wallet, and my wallet sat in my pocket right where the lap bar came down on one of my legs. Because of this, the ops had to push the bar down harder leading to my wallet pressing into my leg for almost the whole ride. Ouch! At least it was still a fun ride though.

 

Viper is the same, pretty much. And yah, that's all I got to say about Viper.

 

Skyscreamer does not look as big in person if you are close to it, but when you are further away from it the ride looks taller for some reason. Not sure how that was possible, maybe my eyes are just wierd. lol

 

Tantrum was still the second best ride in the park and very smooth.

 

Motocoaster and Predator were both closed. Probably for staffing reasons, I would have to imagine.

 

Something else that was interesting is how much they pushed the Six Flags brand while still seeing the old logo make appearances. The Six Flags logo was all over the place, but especially all over the front area. Also, a couple of the food stands had Six Flags touches added to them, most notably six metal flags standing up on the Pretzel stand near the entrance.

 

I decided to see what the hype over Fascination Parlor was about, so I tried that for the first time. It was actually really friggin fun. On top of that, you can play four games at Fascination Parlor for a dollar compared to the riduculous prices at the majority of the other games at the park. Also unlike the majority of other games, you get to sit down in a slightly cooler building too. If you want to kill a half hour, I definitely recommend Fascination Parlor.

 

Rolling Thunder's harness hurts. Moving on.

 

Remember when there was talk about the back area behind Boomerang no longer being part of the park? That didn't happen.

 

I noticed people posting about the food in the park being a problem. I can't exactly speak on that as I ate before and after I went to the park, thus not eating there the whole time.

 

They had some fun looking new games by Mind Eraser. One of them was a bar in which if you hold yourself up on it for two minutes, then you get a Six Flags Darien Lake pillow. Me and the friend I went with had some fun with watching other people try it. Some other people had the same idea, so it was kinda also a new side show at the same time. Right next to it was the soccer darts, but I barely saw anyone play that one as the bar game was clearly more popular for both people playing the game and onlookers. They also have a new area for upcharge Massage Chairs near Fascination Parlor.

 

In general, they did clearly invest a lot into the park this year. If you know where to look, there are subtle differences all over the entire park. It does look rushed too, but at least they did a decent job I thought. The park does have a different vibe to it. It feels more like what I would think a Six Flags would feel like, but mixed with the Darien Lake most of us already knew. What also made this an interesting experience is that this was also technically my first time to a Six Flags branded park at all, and I can't say I don't like it. It fits the park. I just think Six Flags just needs time to work on the park a bit more to make it into something even better. As long as you go in with realistic expectations, then it is a rather fun experience. If you are looking for something like Six Flags New England, then you will inevitably be disappointed. It is a fun park with a slightly new character, and I like where it is going. Six Flags Darien Lake is nice.

 

 

(Edited for typos)

Edited by TheAmericanKnight
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Okay, time for a more Positive Trip Report :

 

I know almost everything I am about to bring up has already been mentioned, but I will give my opinion anyways. So, I honestly thought they did a better job this year as far as opening days were concerned. I have been on other opening days before and had worse experiences. With that being said, it was not the best it could be either, but it was nice I thought. Okay, on to the main points now from my trip earlier today.

 

 

So, to start, I went to Boomerang first and noticed some of the wheels were new. Boomerang was actually a little smoother today which probably has something to do with the wheel replacements. Also, another odd plus was actually the Mind Eraser train. Now, I know this may be an unpopular opinion, but bear with me. I think doing that to the Mind Eraser train actually made that ride a little bit smoother too. I rode Mind Eraser twice, once in the last row and the other in the third last row and expected the usual rough ride. However, it was not as rough as it used to be weirdly enough. This may be a result of the park taking the better parts of both trains and putting them together as they did. It does not look good exactly, but the ride does feel better when you are on it. So in short, both Vekoma coasters in the park are slightly smoother. Also, back row rides on Mind Eraser are among the most underrated experiences in the park.

 

Ride of Steel was sort of a nice experience. However, the experience became slightly less good because of something I will admit is kinda my fault. I went on the ride with my wallet, and my wallet sat in my pocket right where the lap bar came down on one of my legs. Because of this, the ops had to push the bar down harder leading to my wallet pressing into my leg for almost the whole ride. Ouch! At least it was still a fun ride though.

 

Viper is the same, pretty much. And yah, that's all I got to say about Viper.

 

Skyscreamer does not look as big in person if you are close to it, but when you are further away from it the ride looks taller for some reason. Not sure how that was possible, maybe my eyes are just wierd. lol

 

Tantrum was still the second best ride in the park and very smooth.

 

Motocoaster and Predator were both closed. Probably for staffing reasons, I would have to imagine.

 

Something else that was interesting is how much they pushed the Six Flags brand while still seeing the old logo make appearances. The Six Flags logo was all over the place, but especially all over the front area. Also, a couple of the food stands had Six Flags touches added to them, most notibly six metal flags standing up on the Pretzel stand near the entrance.

 

I decided to see what the hype over Fascination Parlor was about, so I tried that for the first time. It was actually really friggin fun. On top of that, you can play four games at Fascination Parlor for a dollar compared to the riduculous prices at the majority of the other games at the park. Also unlike the majority of other games, you get to sit down in a slightly cooler building too. If you want to kill a half hour, I definitely recommend Fascination Parlor.

 

Rolling Thunder's harness hurts. Moving on.

 

Remember when there was talk about the back area behind Boomerang no longer being part of the park? That didn't happen.

 

I noticed people posting about the food in the park being a problem. I can't exactly speak on that as I eat before and after I went to the park, thus not eating there the whole time.

 

They had some fun looking new games by Mind Eraser. One of them was a bar in which if you hold yourself up on it for two minutes, then you get a Six Flags Darien Lake pillow. Me and the friend I went with had some fun with watching other people try it. Some other people had the same idea, so it was kinda also a new side show at the same time. Right next to it was the soccer darts, but I barely saw anyone play that one as the bar game was clearly more popular for both people playing the game and onlookers. They also have a new area for upcharge Massage Chairs near Fascination Parlor.

 

In general, they did clearly invest a lot into the park this year. If you know where to look, there are subtle differences all over the entire park. It does look rushed too, but at least they did a decent job I thought. The park does have a different vibe to it. It feels more like what I would think a Six Flags would feel like, but mixed with the Darien Lake most of us already knew. What also made this an interesting experience is that this was also technically my first time to a Six Flags branded park at all, and I can't say I don't like it. It fits the park. I just think Six Flags just needs time to work on the park a bit more to make it into something even better. As long as you go in with realistic expectations, then it is a rather fun experience. If you are looking for something like Six Flags New England, then you will inevitably be disappointed. It is a fun park with a slightly new character, and I like where it is going. Six Flags Darien Lake is nice.

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I went both days. Saturday, opening day was among the worst visits I’ve ever had to a park that I could remember. I’ve been to other Six Flags opening days and I get there’s always hiccups, but what a nightmare. Probably half of the rides down for most of the day, horrendous operations and food lines, computers systems going down. There were some good parts, such as the opening ceremony and enjoying some rides, but overall I did not enjoy myself, which is very rare for me at a park. Today was much much much better. Still some hiccups, but overall a very enjoyable day. Darien has a great staff and great management and they’re clearly working hard to provide a good experience; I enjoy talking to many of them about the park. I don’t understand why individual rows can’t be unlocked on ROS, this slows down the already one train operations considerably. I also was disappointed that simple things like painting handrails, gardening, etc weren’t done. The park looked a lot worse than last season, especially the pavement. I also couldn’t believe one of the columns in the Mind Eraser station still has “666 die” carved into it. How could they not paint over it? One of the most noticeable things was the dead silence in the park. Not one of the speakers was either turned on or working. I hope they fix this quick, or change over the sound system to the speakers other SF parks have. You don’t realize how much the music contributes to the atmosphere until it’s dead silent. I’m sure Six Flags will continue to make improvements, and I’m hoping they’re just a bit behind schedule.

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What he said is pretty much it, if you know where to look there are differences. This opening day is no different than other Darien ones so I didn't expect much minus the website/app (That they are advertising in the park) my season pass stuff still worked on it so that's fine.

 

Tantrum has different wheels or something because it's roaring and you can hear it through the park.

Rolling Thunder operates in the rain now. Tantrum doesn't and I rode Ride of Steel in the drizzle.

 

Predator's retracking is on the straightaway near the path, and the last turn (also reprofiled.)

 

Vipers orange train is gone but blue train is hauling and the trims before the corkscrew arn't bringing you to a stop anymore.

 

Mind Eraser is also hauling but the first half is still rough. I hated Boomerang but it's boomerang so.

 

Motocoasters Flywheel was on like someone else mentioned but no one was in the operator booth.

 

There were mechanics in RoS's transfer track area and the server room was open showing off all the computers running the ride.

 

The food registers were down Saturday but fine today.

 

I spent two days at the park and both were pretty good, I was impressed with Six Flags and the way they're treating the park.

Also worth noting is they were testing new lights for Ignite the Night, the drinking fountains are literal fountains, and the real one is dyed blue.

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Noticed the same thing with the sound system while I was there, dead quiet. Also, I couldn’t connect to the in-park wifi whatsoever. Didn’t even appear as a wifi option.

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Yeah the music thing was odd, but it was nice near the hotel path because it was dead quiet and you could hear every single ride doing it's thing. Also note now you can't hear the rides PA Systems from the other side of the park.

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Also did anyone else notice the brand new seatbelts on Rode of Steel and Tantrum? A nice touch since I remember some of RoS’s belts being in pretty rough shape by the end of the season. Tantrums new belts seem to be easier for the GP to understand how to open them, identical to the ones seen on RoS last year. RoS’s new ones are a bit different but similar.

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