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Worlds of Fun TR 8/30/09


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Warning: There are lots of words and possibly two pictures. This will be boring. And no, I don't sit down and write 3500 word trip reports regularly, but alot of people (TPI) gave me tips on this trip, so I decided to give them a full review of their home park, and compare it to parks which we both had been to (SFSTL). Parts of this report may seem like they were directed towards the certain people or opinions- these are towards the people who gave me tips on TPI, though I tried to edit names-others opinions out.

 

My Visit at Worlds of Fun: OVERVIEW

This was a one day trip where we left St. Louis at 6 AM and arrived that night. We arriving 10 minutes before opening on August 30. I will start with just the order of which we rode the park's rides:

Here is what I did:

 

1st round of the park:

Patriot - back row

Mamba - back, middle and front rows

Boomerang- 3rd to last row

Prowler- 3rd row

Viking Voyager

 

All Stars Grill- Chicken Sandwich

 

2nd Round:

Spinning Dragons

Timberwolf - 3rd row

Thunderhawk

Cyclone Sams

Ride-Op refused me a ride on Wacky Worm

Detonator

Fury of the Nile

Prowler- back row

 

Final Ride:

Patriot- 3rd row

Leave for Oceans of Fun.

 

Part 1: Coaster Ratings

Coaster Rankings (in order of when I rode them):

 

Patriot: This was our first ride of the day, so we did not feel like waiting 10 minutes for the front row, when every other row had open seats. We chose the back row, rumored to have the best ride (the Ride Op gave us this recommendation). In some ways, I wish we had waited for the front then, but my first ride was still great. When people say it’s not as intense as Batman: the Ride, I would agree for the most part. B:TR is non- stop intensity, while Patriot has it moments, and spreads out its elements more. However, I really like the zero g roll on Patriot, and the ride better overall. The spread of the elements gives the ride a nice feeling of speed throughout. It does seem Patriot is missing one more inversion. I think either the tilted helix should have been made a second loop, or an element should have been added to the little uphill stretch leading into the final corkscrew section. My second ride in the third row came through as well, giving a smooth ride. Worlds of Fun really got the colors right on this coaster, it is beautiful. 8/10

 

Mamba: I rode three times, all within twenty minutes (I sat first in back, then middle, then front). The ride in the front row was the best, followed by the ride in the back row, followed by the middle section ride. The back provided the thrill of getting thrown over the first drop, followed by airtime on the second hill. The front provided the hanging sensation on the first drop, also had airtime on the second hill, and gave the best sensation of speed. In all three seats, the first half of the ride was a lot of fun, and very intense. Like others have stated before, I ducked at the end of the helix, which was also a great section of the ride. Then… the brakes gave a nice breather, but I still think I would rather wait to breathe until the end. After the brakes, the coaster’s first half performance dropped off. I am not sure whether this is the layout of the ride, or to much braking, but the bunny hills provided little thrill. I felt some airtime, but not a substantial amount like on the second hill. 8/10

 

Boomerang: After three rides on Mamba, we walked to Boomerang (my first). The last two rows were filled (surprisingly). Also, I was feeling little sick and thirsty before riding. We hopped in line for third to last row. I thought the towing out of the station up the hill was nifty. When I got off the ride, I began to feel somewhat nauseous. It was not so rough though, it just made me a little dizzy. The experience was ok, but the feeling after was not so. 4/10

 

Prowler: I got some water, and headed to Prowler. We sat in the third row after a 5-10 minute wait. It was fun, but did not give as good a ride I expected. I would have given it an 8/10 on the ride, rating it below Evel Knieval but above Kentucky Rumbler. The reason we did not ride again in the morning was that I was hungry and ready for a break. Ride two in the afternoon was different: There was a 20 minute wait for 1 train operation, which was really too bad. I went straight to the back row, for what I had heard was the best ride. The back felt much faster on the first drop than the front (like EK), and felt more intense as the coaster raced through the woods. The track banking was awesome. I may have liked it more because I felt much better in the afternoon as well. I would have ridden again, but the line was 25 minutes and kept growing. Because of ride two, I give it 9/10; instead of 8/10 like the other 2 GCI I have ridden (KR and EK). 9/10

 

Viking Voyager: Later

All Stars Grill: Later

 

Spinning Dragons: A fun ride, like Tony Hawk’s Big Spin. It had no shade though, or as nice a setting as THBS. The ride did have a surprise drop towards the end which was nice. Tony Hawk gets a higher ranking in my book because of the setting, but I give both the same rating out of 10. 7/10

 

Timber Wolf: It was old, painful and slow. There was no airtime, speed or fun. It was just a load of pain. The track is not banked at all. Those unbanked turns hurt bad traveling at 40 mph. At least on Screaming Eagle (also painful) there is good scenery and speed and drops. The best part was hitting the brakes at the end. At least I didn’t have any aches after the ride though. 4/10

 

Thunderhawk: Later

Cyclone Sams: Later

 

Wacky Worm: The ride operator refused me a ride on Wacky Worm. Even when I took the “all the other coasters are too scary” stance, she would not let me on the ride.

 

Detonator: Later

Fury of the Nile: Later

 

 

Part 2: Flat Rides

 

Viking Voyageur – We rode the flume right after Prowler. We arrived at a little after 11:00, so the ride was just opening. This ride is not nearly as good as the SFSTL log flume as 1) no scenery, 2) very short 3) water sometimes seeps in over edge of boats and 4) the last drop sucks. It is crammed in right next to behind the main entryway, so I guess they made good use of the space. Other than this efficient usage of space, this ride is very boring, and the water looks disgusting (like almost other flume I have been on). The final drop gives no splash, but watch out for water to seep over the rim of the boat. 5/10

 

All Stars Grill: Later

 

Thunderhawk: At first, I wondered why the overhead restraints fit so tightly. Then, after the first “inversion”, I quickly realized why they needed such tight restraints. It was very intense. As the premiere flat ride at WOF, it is on the same level, if not better than Excalibur (though not as visually pleasing). One of the best flats I have ridden (I have not ridden many though). 8/10

 

Cyclone Sams: As people have said before, there was no way you could here the preshow sound. The screaming from insider plus the outside noise made it impossible. The ride was very fun though, and the indoor setting made it soooo much more intense. Without the indoor setting, I am not sure whether I would it enjoy the ride. I tried to reach the ceiling but it was difficult to keep your hands because I was sitting on the outside, and my dad was squeezing me. 7/10

 

Detonator: The only rides I honestly compare this to are Liberty Launch (HW) and Tower of Terror. From memory, the ride was more thrilling than Liberty Launch only because I was not expecting the first shoot upwards. After this, the following drops seemed boring. S: TOP in SFSTL looks way more intense on the first drop, as you see all the other people drop around you. I have never ridden S: TOP because of wait times and my lack of interest in drop towers. 6/10

 

Fury of the Nile: After Detonator, we went to Fury of the Nile, and got soaked. It was an ok ride, and the moving table was interesting, but there was nothing to write home about. They did seem to have some theming after the tunnel. I also assume there was some sort of theming in the tunnel, but I couldn’t really tell. I did not enjoy the water falling off the roof the tunnel on a cold 65 degree day. It would be nice on a hot day, but not when I went (it’s also kind of lame that they need a waterfall to soak the riders- that’s what the rapids are for). 6/10

 

 

Food:

 

All Stars Grill:

I got a chicken sandwich with potato chips. The sandwich was good, but a little small to split between two people. They give you a ton of chips though! At first I didn’t like the chips, but then they got very addicting. Also, they had the NYG vs NYJ preseason football game playing, and it was great, with touchdown after touchdown. The restaurant has a great environment and nice windows overlooking the flume. 8.5/10

 

Part 3: Park Comparisons

Setting:

The only other corporate iron ride parks which I have visited in the past two years are SFSTL and SFKK. In general, the park did not give the same corporate feeling as SFKK or SFSTL, maybe because of the missing presence of superhero themed rides and areas. Sections of WOF do feel corporate, the Panda Express, and the area near Mamba which is home to many basketball three-point shot games. Also, the park is cleaner than both SFSTL parks, which adds to the less corporate feeling. SFSTL has some nice areas, like the area near the Mine Train and towards the back of the park. The front of SFTL looks very corporate, and unfortunately, there is spat-out gum piled around the park. SFKK has an interesting setting, which I liked a lot, but there was no theme. Certain stretches of SFKK towards the front of the park felt very corporate as well, but I felt the park was fairly clean. Worlds of Fun had a nicer feel to the park because even some of the trashy areas at least had theme or was not as prominent (the pay-extra attractions at Worlds of Fun not nearly as obvious as the skydive attraction and bungee-bouncer at SFSTL). Though there was no one great example of theming, signs on rides and throughout the park at least correlated to the park section. The children’s area is also not in the middle of a pathway between sections of the park. Worlds of Fun feels much closer to Holiday World or family owned parks than Six Flags. The park may be just an iron-ride park, but it’s a step up from the two Six Flags parks I have been to. 1st/3rd

 

Coasters:

SFSTL and Worlds of Fun have a lot of parallels in their coasters. If Boomerang were to be replaced with a better coaster, and a nice coaster was added (bringing the total to 8), I think the ride selection would blow away SFSTL. In my opinion, WOF needs some sort of legit sitdown looper (whether be a B&M or Intamin or whatever else). Then they would have an B&M inverted, a hyper, looper and great GCI, which would be a great starting lineup for coasters.

 

In quality of coaster (not considering uniqueness/clones)

Spinning Dragons-THBS. + .5 SFSTL

Patriot- Batman +1.5 WOF

Prowler- Evel Knievel +1.5 WOF

Mamba- Mr. Freeze +2.75 WOF

Timber Wolf- Screaming Eagle +2 SFSTL

Boomerang-Ninja +1 SFSTL

Wacky Worm- Mine Train +2 SFSTL

+.25 WOF

 

Add Wild Card: Boss

SFSTL wins

 

Without the Boss, I think WOF and SFSTL would have an even coaster collection, with WOF maybe having a slight advantage. Add in the Boss, and the SFSTL collection is superior. Also, SFSTL has 8 legit coasters, while WOF has 6 (7 minus Wacky Worm). The Worlds of Fun collection is superior to the SFKK collection, though, as SFKK only has two or three quality coasters. 2nd/3rd

 

Flats (everything but coasters):

No park (out of WOF, SFKK, SFSTL) has great flats, with SFKK clearly lacking the other two parks in this department. All three parks have the Enterprise style flat, so I will leave this out when comparing.

I am including S: TOP and Skyliner even though I have not ridden them (based on height, area of park, and watching the ride). More on this later …

 

Worlds of Fun-SFSTL Comparison:

Thunderhawk- Excalibur +.25 WOF

Detonator-S:TOP +1 SFSTL

Fury of the Nile-Thunder River +.5 WOF

Viking Voyageur-Log Flume +1.5 SFSTL

Skyliner-Colossus +2 SFSTL

Cyclone Sam’s- Shazam +3 WOF

+.75 SFSTL

 

It’s tough to include the Ferris Wheels in here, as it gives SFSTL an edge, but our Ferris Wheel is nice and centrally located, and SO much taller than the WOF wheel.

 

Wild Cards: Fjord Fjarlane, Bamboozler, Octopus and Finnish Fling (which I wish I rode) and others…

 

I have rode round-ups and the Octopus ride before, and I didn’t think they were too exciting, but its better than nothing. After Excalibur, SFSTL has no real flat rides. By no flats, that means that it goes from Excalibur, to an Enterprise, to a no-good Scrambler ride. The swings are even broken down! Overall SFSTL gives WOF a run for its money with a very nice Ferris Wheel, Log Flume and seemingly fun S: TOP. The Ferris Wheel and S: TOP give SFSTL a great highway appearance. I know you really can’t rate a ride you haven’t been on S: TOP, but just the huge presence of it in the park might be better than Detonator alone.

 

Six Flags Kentucky Kingdom has one decent flat (Breakdance), one interactive motion picture (Thrill Park Theater), and one good rapid ride (Penguin’s Blizzard River). Breakdance is somewhere between Shazam and Cyclone Sam’s in ranking for me. The Thrill Park theater’s show storyline is a little shaky, but still a fun ride. The Blizzard River is better than either Rapid Rides at WOF or SFSTL. Other than the Enterprise and the Ferris Wheel, the flat ride depth at SFKK is even worse than SFSTL. Even if many of Worlds of Fun’s flats are “circa 1975”, it is better than no flat rides at all. Overall WOF takes the crown since it has a much deeper lineup of legitimate flat rides. 1st/3rd

 

Part 4: Oceans of Fun and Comparison:

Oceans of Fun:

The slide collection at SFSTL in some ways is similar to that at Ocean of Fun. Oceans of Fun has four slide towers (Aruba Tuba, Typhoon, Diamond Head and Hurricane Falls), with 2 tube slides, 5 body slides and one group raft slide. SFSTL has four tube slides, three body slides and one group raft slide. Also, SFSTL has the very fun Tornado ride and Wahoo Racer.

Tube slides were fine, about the same caliber as SFSTL. Like the rest of the park, they were colored blue and white.

 

Typhoon slides were fun. Not near the caliber of the SFSTL body speed slides, but still fun. Again, they were of white and blue color.

 

Diamond Head slides were the most intense and probably most fun at WOF. Still not near the intensity of Tornado or the body speed slides at SFSTL. Part of the intensity was that the turns were so rough, and it felt like you were sliding on concrete. The last turn on the end of the slide really bounced me around. Because they were sort of located on a hill, they don’t give the same impression of the 7 story tall SFSTL speed slides.

 

Hurricane Falls was very similar to the Big Kahuna raft slide at SFSTL. The Big Kahuna however is more pleasant to look at, as it is colored red. Both are fun family slides, and very comparable.

 

Lazy River: Not themed at all like SFSTL, and because it was 65 degrees, we did not venture into the water.

Buccaneer Bay seemed fun and creative as you could try kayaking or canoeing, but on a cold day, it did not seem appealing.

 

Wave Pool: Though it seemed good size, it did not have the same appeal as SFSTL’s pool with a Volcano at one end.

 

From somebody who is used to an all inclusive Hurricane Harbor, Oceans of Fun was a disappointment. If I was a season pass holder, I could see why you would check out the water park every now and then, and if I had young kids, I could see why you would go more often. However, Hurricane Harbor has a lot more to offer. Even if it’s a lame attempt, it has some theme (even if it’s not unique to SFSTL), the rides are appealing to look at, and much more thrilling. I would not wait for any slide at Oceans of Fun (and I didn’t since it was 65 degrees outside). It was 65 degrees out which may have affected my view of the park slightly, but I don’t think by much. At SFSTL, I would be fine waiting for the body slides and Tornado. Since I really like waterparks, its hard to give it such a bad review, but this one was pretty weak.

 

SFKK’s water park and Hurricane Harbor are more comparable. SFKK has 3 tube slides, 1 body slide, a tornado slide, 1 bowl slide and a water coaster. The tube slides at SFKK are equal to those at SFSTL, and while the one body slide is fun, it doesn’t match the three at SFSTL. Both parks have the Tornado (awesome), but SFKK has the bowl slide (awesome) and the water coaster (awesome). SFKK doesn’t have a matt racing slide (like Wahoo Racer) or a raft slide, but the water coaster and bowl slide easily make of for this. While OoF may not be exactly part of WOF, Hurricane Harbor really adds a reason to go to SFSTL for me, and is an integral part of the park. Oceans of Fun is definitely behind these two water parks. 3rd/3rd

 

Closing: I had a great time at Worlds of Fun, and due to light crowds, was able to, for the most part, fully tour the park. I wish I had to opportunity to stay until night as the Prowler and Mamba night rides were rumoured (by many) to be fun. Just like SFSTL, I would have trouble spending an entire day from opening to close at the park. It’s on par with SFSTL. I would not make the trip to KC just for WOF again, which should be expected. If by chance I spend a few days in KC, and they had a good 25-30 dollar deal, I would go back. As earlier stated, the park would do well for itself by adding a good sit-down looping coaster and a good family coaster.

 

Final Comparison with SFSTL: Earlier, I rated WOF as having a better setting and flat rides, with SFSTL having better coasters and water park. In the end, I am personally glad SFSTL is my home park. The good water park makes up for lack of flat rides, and the steady improvements of the park get me excited to go back every April. Again, this is coming from a 15 year old, who is 1) am used to a corporate park, and 2) I don’t put such a big emphasis on the setting as I would on the water park. Better flat rides at SFSTL would keep me in the park longer, but WOF flats are not so much better that I would give the edge to them over SFSTL’s coasters. WOF is worth driving to if they have deals that they had when we went and if you check out other KC attractions.

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Posted Images

I didn't bring my camera into the park because the day was cloudy and threatened rain. Plus, I didn't need pictures for myself (one picture is all I need) or others (pictures are in others TR's or sailing across the net). So I only took two pictures, but of the most photogenic things at WOF on August 30.

1117777200_WorldsofFUn002resize.jpg.e0ec93fbf7f92283a48006c2008001ea.jpg

Some teenager plus the baloon- the second most photogenic thing at WOF.

1690472797_WorldsofFUn001resize.jpg.7563a3c44773b60c6c92a4b6e91697f8.jpg

The most photogenic thing at WOF.

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I don't really think it's fair to compare River King to Wacky Worm, do you? I mean, really.

 

If you had ridden Prowler again at night, it would have shot up even more. The ride gets better and better and better as the day goes on, and it is absolutely relentless at night.

 

As far as I'm concerned, the ultra-long queues at SFSL are enough to put it behind WoF, but I think the collection of rides is better as well (at WoF). That's just me, though. Actually, I would put Freeze ahead of Mamba.

 

I like how SFKK doesn't even factor in to the comparisons.

 

SFSL is a nice SF park. And WoF is certainly an entertaining way to spend the afternoon. But SDC trumps them both by a lot.

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I don't really think it's fair to compare River King to Wacky Worm, do you? I mean, really.

 

If you had ridden Prowler again at night, it would have shot up even more. The ride gets better and better and better as the day goes on, and it is absolutely relentless at night.

 

As far as I'm concerned, the ultra-long queues at SFSL are enough to put it behind WoF, but I think the collection of rides is better as well (at WoF). That's just me, though. Actually, I would put Freeze ahead of Mamba.

 

I like how SFKK doesn't even factor in to the comparisons.

 

SFSL is a nice SF park. And WoF is certainly an entertaining way to spend the afternoon. But SDC trumps them both by a lot.

 

The reason I put Mamba so far ahead of Freeze is that Mamba is my first and only Hyper Coaster. I was looking forward to Mamba so much, and though I rank them both at 8/10, I would rather have Mamba in a park due to length of ride. Freeze is so short and sometimes experiences downtime as well, though it used to be more prevalent. And I agree, Wacky Worm cannot really be compared to anything but the gum tunnel on Batman, as it is sh*t. I compared based on category, though (ie. Freeze is the parks premiere sit down steel coaster, like Mamba). Therefore, the two most "family" oriented coasters besides the spinning coasters are River King Mine Train and Wacky Worm. This is also why I gave the mine train such a higher grade. I think as I ride more Hyper Coasters my view of Mamba will decrease.

 

Yes, the ride collection I think is close in quality. Again, the reason I like SFSTL more is solely due to the Water Park. The queues can be a pain on Boss and Batman, but I enjoy walking the Mr. Freeze queue as you can watch the coasters.

 

SFKK does not factor in- except in terms of their water park and setting.

And I agree, SDC trumps both parks (though I have not been there since Powder Keg opened).

 

What makes you like the ride collection better (I would assume either Prowler or Patriot, as you said you like Freeze over Mamba)?

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First post!

 

Anyways, you should have stuck around for a night ride on Prowler. It takes the ride to a whole new level, after the camera flash you go blind until the turn around. Amazing. The wife and I go over about once a week just to get in a couple night rides.

 

I'm going to have to give SFStl a shot to ride Kneival.

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^I wish I could have, but the park closed early on the Sunday, and we had to be home as soon as we could (school the next day, my dad had work to do).

 

You won't be disappointed with Kneival, it is on the same level as Prowler, though maybe not quite as good. The night ride really doesn't add so much to EK, so you are not missing much if you leave early (though riding the Mine Train, SE, Boss at night enhance the rides greatly) .

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^Night rides on Prowler are awesome, you definitely need to check that out.

In regards to Timberwolf though, that definitely game some wicked air time for me when I sent in June. Like so much airtime the seat belt would be floating next to you. Did you ride in the front or back, cause the front is way better and way smoother.

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^3rd row. I was not going to wait 15 extra minutes with one train operation for the front row. The straight sections of the track were bearable, but the unbanked turns just hurt, and every possible "airtime hill" was followed by a hard turn. Whatever airtime that there was just was ruined by excessive lateral g's and roughness on the following section. I came in expecting a terrible ride, which may have changed my opinion of the ride just a bit.

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^Though I have been to 15 parks with coasters (not alot), Mamba is my first hypercoaster. As earlier stated, I think that after riding more hypercoasters, my view of Mamba will go down.

 

Other than that though, here is why I feel Mamba is a better coaster:

-much more reridable than Freeze

-Much longer than Freeze (would not want to wait 45 minutes for a coaster, especially one that is a mere 40 seconds long)

-great feeling of speed on Mamba through whole first half, something you only get at the start of Freeze

-Mamba's first and second drop is better than anything on Freeze

-Mamba has twice the capacity of Freeze if both are running maximum # trains

-lift hill gives view downtown KC, and gives the park an intimidating coaster which looms over everything

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I agree with Mamba being better than Mr. Freeze. I have ridden a few hypers and Mamba still gives me some great airtime on the second hill, usually don't hit my seat until the bottom. I rode freeze a long time ago, the year after it opened, and I just wasn't that impressed.

 

Backing up my earlier comments and others' comments, if you have not ridden Prowler, it is a must. It is my top wood coaster by far. Night rides are unlike any coaster experience I've ever had.

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^^I'm talking about Prowler and EK, not Mamba and Freeze. I can see how you would enjoy Mamba more. It isn't far behind Freeze for me.

 

Ryerson has a good point - night rides on Prowler are very, very comparable to night rides on Voyage, if a little shorter and smoother.

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OMG I did not want to get into this again.

 

PROWLER IS NOT A FAMILY-RATED COASTER.

I cannot understand why that is so difficult to comprehend.

 

EDIT: I should be clearer.

You have not ridden Prowler. You have no basis for that statement. You are in no position to judge.

Families can ride Prowler together, yes, just like every other GCI and almost all wooden coasters period (even including Voyage). That does not mean that it is mild or in any way less intense than any other coaster. Prowler, once it's warmed up, is easily among the most exciting and fast-paced coasters I have ever ridden, wood or steel, and at night, that excitement only increases.

I am NOT a fanboy, I am NOT an idiot, and I DO know what I'm talking about comparing Prowler to Voyage.

Don't want to attack you. You aren't stupid. But you are giving this ride a reputation that is not really true.

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^^I'm talking about Prowler and EK, not Mamba and Freeze. I can see how you would enjoy Mamba more. It isn't far behind Freeze for me.

 

I left my CPU on the post screen for a few minutes, and in the mean time you posted. I was talking to the person who posted directly before you.

 

IMHO, Evel Kneival has a much better first drop then Prowler, even if the stats are similar. Prowler is a unique GCI coaster, but they really don't go the whole way with the "race in the woods" theme. I mean, there is a a big gravel pile you can see throughout the ride. The Voyage really goes out there- and is not 45 seconds long. They are both fun, and though I rate both 9/10, Voyage was much more intense due to the length, drops and tunnels. Honestly though, if you called Prowler a family coaster, many many coasters could be considered family coasters. It really depends on what you consider "a family coaster". This is definitely no Roller Skater, but no Voyage either.

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