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Robb & Elissa in Japan - 2015!


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Rob you REALLY need to check out Akihabara. You'd get a great laugh out of it. And check out a maid cafe while you're in Japan. You'd ifnd that hilarious.

We have been there many times. We've been doing Japan trips for over ten years now usually going there once a year.

 

I JUST found out we have a Yakitori restaurant here in South Florida (Boca Raton to be exact!) I must find it!

It's not the same. TRUST ME!!!

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Have you guys ever been to the Robot Restaurant in Tokyo? I've seen that place on dozens of travel shows and various websites and can't tell if it's a legitimate weird and cool Japanese awesomeness or just a tourist trap. Can't rememebr if I've seen you guys ever cover it over the years.

 

Have fun the rest of the trip, always fun to follow along when your in Japan.

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Have you guys ever been to the Robot Restaurant in Tokyo? I've seen that place on dozens of travel shows and various websites and can't tell if it's a legitimate weird and cool Japanese awesomeness or just a tourist trap.

Tourist Trap. It looks very cool and I've walked by it a couple of times, but it's a place that mostly tourists go to get "weird Japanese stuff" but I find it to me more "fabricated" weird Japanese stuff instead of the cool things you see every day while just wandering around the country. I'm sure it's a fun show and I'd like it if I went, but it's just not my thing. I prefer hanging out and doing more "locals" type stuff and blending in with the naturally strange and awesome culture instead of things that are purposely meant to be "weird" if that makes any sense.

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Those faces look familiar...

 

I need to try that game! It looks so awesome! Luckily there is one a Nickelodeon Universe, but I've never tried it...

 

Yet.

 

Does Robb have one of these things at his house? He didn't miss a single hit in that entire game!

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Our next adventure was Nasu Highland Park, which is a couple of hours north of Tokyo by train & taxi in a more mountainous resort area of Tokyo. It snows here during the winter and this is the park that we filmed our famous 'roller coasters in the snow' video at many years ago. We really like this park a lot. It's hard to describe because like a big American park like a Six Flags or Cedar Fair park, it has a lot of big roller coasters, some petty good ones, decent amount of flat rides, a couple of dark rides, and really is a "full day" amusement park. But it doesn't look or feel like any US amusement park. There are things very uniquely Japanese about it and I'll get to some of those in the photos below.

 

There are a couple of coasters here, namely Big Boom and Spin Turn, while they aren't going to break my "top 20" list by any means, they are very SOLID and really fun rides! Some of the better in Japan so that certainly makes this park well worth the visit!

 

Remember, we are live tweeting from Japan so follow us on Twitter @themeparkreview -

 

Onto some photos...

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Shall we start the morning by grabbing a beer from the hotel vending machine? Could you imagine how well that would work in America if hotel vending machines had beer in them? lol

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We have arrived at Nasu Highland!

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Thank you Woopy!

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It's a beautiful day out today, and should be awesome to hang out with some friends at this park!

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They have a lot of random fun collection of rides. Gotta love anything called the "Hello Kitty Pop N Smile" ride!

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Gotta find someone to bring back here later! <3

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First coaster of the day! The Batflyer!

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Or is that the Bat Fryer?

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Hello Elissa & Kristen!

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There are not many Bat Fryer's left in the world! Although I think Japan has two or three of them.

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You can ALMOST fit two "western-sized" adults in the cars!

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Wheeeee!

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The are short rides, low capacity, but they are actually kind of fun!

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Love the super huge pirate ship they have here!

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The lower section of the park, where they have their four bigger coasters just looks like a mess of track with them all built on top of each other.

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And this is BIG BOOM!

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Big Boom is a super funky ride but it's a LOT of fun!

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First off, it has this really steep drop. It's not vertical by any means, but it certainly FEELS like it, and you really are cruising pretty fast when you get to this point and get whipped over that drop!

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Some thumbs up for Big Boom! I personally prefer the crazy airtime you get in the front seat!

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You get some awesome airtime over this hill going into the vertical loop.

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It feels like straight down!

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Loop-de-Loop!

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Gotta love the crazy amount of tires they use to stop the trains at the end of the ride!

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It had rained a bit during our visit, so the ride op was out there blow drying the tracks to get the ride re-opened sooner! I love Japan!

Here's a video of Big Boom we shot in 2011 to get an idea of what the ride is like:

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Spin Turn is another really crazy ride!

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So at the start, it goes kind of slow...but if the cars are balanced just wrong...by the end of it you will spin more than on almost any other spinning coaster! It's crazy!

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Camel Coaster is pretty much your typical Japanese "Jet Coaster..."

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Which kind of means it's really big, really long, but doesn't do anything that special. It's sort of like a really big mine train.

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The section has this bizarre USA 1950s theme to it...

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...with a decent collection of cars!

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Hmmm...Selfie Sticks or Frozen? I wonder which I'll choose?

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WE ARE ON A LOG FLUME! Check out our new video! It really pissed a bunch of people off so that means it must be AWESOME! lol

And of course VIDEO of "We Are On A Log Flume..."

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"They are on a log flume..."

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So the park has a Vekoma SLC....

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With an unhealthy amount of head padding...

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I have no idea what they did to this one, but it really is one of the ROUGHEST SLC's I've been on. It's like T2 bad. The extra padding DID help, but WOW! It was brutal!

Here's the POV of Nasu's SLC. As you can see, this version is... um... "Not Good!" lol

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You cannot bring ice cream on the SLC...just in case you were wondering.

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Nasu Highland has this amazing food option....

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You can rent a stick or a fishing pole, go to the river and catch a fish, then they will cook it for you right on the grill! So insane!

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Instead of catching a fish, we opted for the "Itarian Corner" for some food...

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Um...well, actually maybe we'll just stick to the Japanese corner...

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I pretty much live off Katsu Curry and Yakitori when in Japan. I don't think there is anything wrong with that!

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This place also had "Gyoza Curry" which was delicious!

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Yin even found a "Green Tea Churro!" Yummu!

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There really are a lot of double-decker carousels in Japan. Tokyo DisneySea has an amazing one that we will see later in the trip.

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Kristen had some good luck at the claw machine and will be bringing "Fluff" home a few new friends.

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The park had this indoor "kids discovery" center and one of the exhibits was all about roller coasters.

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This was seriously amazing as it showed different tracks, one of them that actually worked, and the other two that didn't. You would roll the balls down the track and one of them would make it and two of them would not.

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It was kind of like a real-life RCT!

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Especially since there was an area where you could build your own coaster track!

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Joe was very sad that the rain closed down the powered coaster...maybe next time, Joe.

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Oh, the park had one of these awesome safari shooting rides!

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You get in a little jeep, pull out your gun...

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...and then start shooting animals! It's so un-PC it's awesome!

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And of course no Japanese park would be complete without a huge Ferris Wheel...

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Yesterday's Ferris Wheel was theme to cheese...this one is themed to fruit...of course!

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Two of the cars on this wheel were specially designed for "lovers."

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So of course I took Jack into one of them! =)

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"Hey baby! Those are some cute rodents on your shoulder!"

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The lovers car was amazing! It had speakers so you can plug in your own iPod to get a groovy lovers mix playing. Stuffed animals, and even a mirror. If you're gonna have sex on a Ferris Wheel, might as well do it in STYLE!

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"Come a bit closer, honey!"

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I'm not sure what this is, but I'm assuming that says something like "Pay an extra amount and you'll get a key to this box which includes even MORE weird lovers stuff!"

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The view of the park from the top of the Ferris Wheel...AMAZING!

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This maze was new for this year...

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...it's this crazy multi-level maze filled with different challenges. It was actually really awesome!

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They have one of these weird Togo-made half paratrooper/half-enterprise wheels where they seats lock half way around to flip you upside down. It's weird, but fun.

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YES!!!! The powered coaster re-opened!

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This made Joe VERY happy!

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Thanks again Nasu for another fun day! We will be back!

Quatro_[R]_Real.nlpack

The Missile_[R]_(Real).nlpack

Edited by robbalvey
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Will we see a Yokohama Cosmoworld variant of the song this trip?

 

We are on a log flume.... we are on a log flume.... we are on a log flume and getting air-time.... we are on a log flume.

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Nasu Highland looks like a very fun park. I love how all the rollercoasters just looks to be thrown together on top of each other. Oh, and I'm sure Jack enjoyed that ferris wheel ride very much...

 

And this of course was awesome on so many levels!

 

The Norwegian Viking approves of this game! (and definitely the screenshot for the video )

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I want to hop on a plane so bad and see Japan. What an awesome trip you are having. BEER VENDING MACHINES. .......... what a great society. The people in Japan seem so..... well, just GREAT. I'm following this trip report very hard so I can learn how to be a GOOD American when I visit. Have fun guys. Dang that place looks amaze balls

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Will we see a Yokohama Cosmoworld variant of the song this trip?

 

We are on a log flume.... we are on a log flume.... we are on a log flume and getting air-time.... we are on a log flume.

I'm thinking once a year this song will surface and it has to be pretty spontaneous. This one just kind of happened! But the airtime log flume is certainly a future contender.

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We are live tweeting about our adventures in Japan so follow along on Twitter @themeparkreview -

 

The next part of our adventure took us to Space World on the southern island of Tokyo, Kyushu. About 1,100km from Tokyo! So, it's far! We started by spending our last days in Tokyo hanging out, wandering around, shopping, and eating before boarding 6 hours worth of bullet trains heading to Fukuoka to visit some parts in the south! Traveling 1,100 miles by train in 6 hours doing about 180mph is a pretty damn awesome way to travel!

 

Space World really is a great park. It has three decent "big coasters" - Venus, Zaturn, and Titan. Venus being that sort weird "Space Shuttle Coaster" that was designed by Anton Schwarzkopf and built by Maurer. Titan is that "Fourth Arrow Hyper Coaster" built around the same time as Desperado and Pepsi Max and up until just this year had trains that looked almost exactly like Magnum's. (New trains by S&S/Sansei with music system in them.) And Zaturn is an Intamin launched coaster, and IMO, the best coaster in the park!

 

Our day at Space World was cut a little short due to weather, but thankfully we had some free time and those who missed stuff (or cared) could easily come back when the weather had improved.

 

Anyway, onto some photos & video...

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Wandering around Tokyo checking out the lights of Shinjuku!

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This area of Tokyo is one of my favorites. Fantastic looking at night with some amazing food, shops, arcades, and more!

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And when we say "food" we really mean Yakitori! ;)

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So much awesome in here!

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Next day we took a trip to Harajuku where we found a stroller of cats! lol

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Yes, we are at "takeashit" street! lol

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And of course at "takeashit" street you can find the Sushi Ninja Toilet! Of course! Duh!!!!

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We also found some amazing fresh crepes! OMG! Sooooo good!

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Kristen got one filled with Japanese love!

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Harajuku is the girls fashion district of Tokyo.

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You can find all kinds of trendy clothes, cosplay costumes, and just some awesome stuff.

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I don't even know what to make of this!

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Ahh, yes, the infamous "upskirt girls" capsule machines. These are tiny action figures of young girls where you can *just* see up their skirts. SERIOUSLY! This is a thing!!!

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Now THIS is my kind of store!

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We put these signs up on TPR, and people get pissed at us. They put them up in Tokyo, and people respect them!

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More random Japanese stuff you can buy in Harajuku. (I bought like ten of these outfits for myself!)

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We decided to eat at this Italian place for two reasons: 1. We wanted to see how the Japanese do Italian food and 2. There are boobs. Mostly #2.

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Caprese salad was absolutely legit and fantastic!

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This was a "fondue cheese spaghetti bolognese" and OMG it was double orgasmic.

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Cheese pizza was also totally legit!

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Yes, Tamagotchi is still very much a thing in Japan to the point where it has it's own department store!

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You can totally bling out your Tamagotchi!

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Everything you need for your Tamagotchi world lives here!

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And you can even EAT them, too!

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This is probably my favorite arcade in Tokyo. Five floors of all sorts of games with a "girls only" floor on the top!

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These "pods" are super popular in Japan now. I've seen them in a few arcades in the states, but they are everywhere here now.

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The BEST THING EVER!!! They have Frozen songs on the drum game now!!! Best of BOTH worlds!!!! (Says Hannah Montana)

I'm sure you'll recognize some of the characters from this game!

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Whatever game this is, I'm totally buying it!

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We had the chance to get everyone together to hang out for a meal at the top of our hotel looking out over Tokyo!

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Megan sits in the corner because that's where she belongs!

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Here is the view from the top of the Shingawa Prince! Fantastic!

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I love looking down at the train station and watching the Shinkansen go through!

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And at night Tokyo looks even more awesome!

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It's time to go 180mph for the next 6 hours down to Fukuoka!

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Our first stop in Fukuoka was the awesome Yodobashi store so the camera geeks can have lens envy over all the cool stuff they have here!

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They also have rows and rows of capsule machines!

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In the arcade, they had the AWESOME Super Mario Bros coin pushing machine!

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This game is just as cool as playing an actual SMB game!

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You go through different levels and boss battles, the machine drops coins, balls, and all kind of crazy stuff happens!

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We filled up on Mister Donut every morning. Another failed US business that still lives on in Japan!

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Hooray! We made it to Space World!

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The mascots from the park came out to greet us!

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They have ever seen so many freakishly weird Westerners in their life! ;)

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They were awesome though, they had so much fun with our group!

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This is the most action Thad is going to get this entire trip!

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And when one giant Godzilla-sided American isn't good enough for this bird, why not have two? =)

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There is Titan, that "other" Arrow hyper coaster that people have heard of, but not many coaster geeks have ridden.

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The new trains feature a soundtrack system where you can choose the song. I of course chose "Naked!" =)

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The new trains are awesome looking! Very much like the ones you see on El Loco coasters!

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And with a 48" height restrictions even smaller kids can ride!

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Next up, Zaturn! This ride gets a huge thumbs up from the group!

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It's basically "Japanese Stealth" - Short, quick ride, but a LOT of fun!

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Nice floater air over the hill into the brakes!

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Ready for another run?

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Up and away they go!

Here's a POV of Zaturn we shot from our last visit:

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"Hey, Chris! Look! We found a REAL Space Shuttle!!!"

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I fully endorse this way of thinking! ;)

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While we waited for Venus to open, we took a ride on Space World's indoor coaster!

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Venus was closed due to rain...

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...but they were doing everything they could to get it open for us!

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It really is just a twisted mess of track. Thank you, Anton! =)

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Yay! We managed to get some of us on the coaster, but then they had to close it again due to weather. Thankfully, those that needed to ride it (or knew they might not be back to the park anytime soon) got back to it to get their ride in!

Here's a POV of Venus we shot from our last visit:

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I'm not sure what is going on here, but I'm pretty sure it's like sumo dating action figures or something... YES... once again this is a "thing."

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And when we are hungry where do we go? Yakitori!

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This place in Fukuoko is my favorite Yakitori I've had in Japan! Soooooo good! It's just outside the Hataka station, down the street to the right, and down the stairs. Amazing!

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Yes. That is BACON WRAPPED CHEESE and it is AMAZING!!!

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This is a capsule machine that are action figures of "girls squished by random stuff."

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Yes...this is a "thing" here in Japan! lol

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Because the world needs tiny action figures of girls squished by random stuff!

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And then there is this. I'm not sure why it exists, but it does.

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This is pretty kick ass.

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And for the coaster geeks that need to watch our POVs 24/7 - this is for you!

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And we will end this report with this... Because after this... There isn't anything else to say! lol

 

POST YOUR COMMENTS!!!!

Rebel_[R]_(Real).nlpack

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...and VERY elaborate fountains!

Edited by robbalvey
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