Monday, May 23, 2011
Mr. X's Roller Coaster Road Trip Part 3
The last part. Yay, I'm finally done! Of course, it's not like anybody actually gives a shit or even read it but oh well.
Part 3 photos here
Part 3 glossary follows...
The Who and the What Now? - Cedar Fair
Cedar Fair is a company that owns many different amusement parks around the country including Cedar Point and ValleyFair! (the two parks that make up its name), Knott's Berry Farm in California, Carowinds on the North and South Carolina border, Kings Dominion in Virginia, and much much more. They are most known for adding major coasters to a few of their parks and snubbing the rest, filling their parks with trash cans, and not too bad operations and staff.
The Who and the What Now? - Premier Rides Spaghetti Bowl with an LIM launch? What?
Premier Rides specializes in roller coasters with LIM launches. LIMs are magnets that propel the train forward with a fairly great amount of acceleration. This ride launches riders into a very compact layout full of twists and turns that resembles a bowl of spaghetti, hence spaghetti bowl coaster.
Ride Review - Flight of Fear
Flight of Fear is a great ride with lots of intensity. However, it has one big flaw: The ride slams on the brakes halfway through. Normally, these brakes are only supposed to slightly affect the ride during normal operation and only slam on the brakes and stop the ride in case of emergency. However, they slam on the brakes all of the time here, which leads me to believe it's the park's fault. 8/10
The Who and the What Now? - Arg, the Flying Dutchman and the curse of Vekoma!
A flying dutchman is a roller coaster model made by Vekoma. Riders are lowered into a laying position before being sent out of the station. It's called a lay-down roller coaster in Roller Coaster Tycoon 2. This absolutely sucks because it forces all blood to rush to your head. The company that makes it, Vekoma, is notorious for really rough roller coasters as a later ride in the trip will reaffirm.
Coaster Review - Firehawk
The actual ride is fine, but the extended amounts of time spent in the laying position in the station and after the brake run really cause blood to rush to your head. It's just really really uncomfortable. 6/10.
The Who and the What Now? Arrow Dynamics
Arrow Dynamics is an ex-roller coaster company that is known for being the pioneers of the modern steel coaster. They teamed up with Disney to make the first tubular railed steel coaster, the Matterhorn, in Disneyland which instantly became the industry standard for steel coasters. During the 90s, up and coming companies took steel coasters to the next level, and Arrow could never quite catch up with the youngsters. They were bought out by S&S Power in the early 2000s.
The Who and the What Now? - Grayout
Graying out is an early form of blackout and comes from either exposure to really intense g-forces or prolonged exposure to mildly intense g-forces. Blood begins rushing from your head, causing your vision to become distorted. In my case, my vision began to lose color and I saw black spots for about half a second. After the event, I was perfectly fine.
Coaster Review - Backlot Stunt Coaster
Backlot Stunt Coaster (formerly known as The Italian Job Stunt Track) is a great family coaster with surprising intensity in the first helix/spiral. There's some fun special effects and a quick pop of airtime at the end. 8/10.
Coaster Review - The Beast
My official review is summed up by my brother's quote: "It's long and in the woods." The first two thirds are just fast and in the woods. While this is nice, I wish it did a bit more as it just gets boring after a while. Luckily, the ride ends with a helix that is probably as intense as a wooden coaster can get. It's a decent ride with several rough patches. 7/10.
Coaster Review - Diamondback
Diamondback is a B&M Hyper coaster. There's a lot of hills filled with airtime which automatically makes the ride great. However, the layout leaves much to be desired. It's pretty much a bunch of hills, a turn, a bunch more hills, a turn, more hills, the ride's over. It gets really repetitive, especially since the turns have almost no positive g-forces like they should. The ride also vibrates horribly at the bottom of each hill, which is not supposed to happen. 9/10 but barely.
The Who and the What Now? - B&M Hyper whata?
B&M is short for Bolliger and Mabillard, which is pretty much like the Cadillac of roller coasters: you are almost guaranteed a great ride, although they play it safe so they are rarely exceptional. A coaster is a hyper coaster if it is between 200 and 299 feet. It's giga if it's between 300 and 399 feet and it's strata if it's above 400 feet (nothing has surpassed 500 feet...yet).
The Who and the What Now - Suspended Coasters and the Irony of Flight Deck
A suspended coaster is a coaster in which riders ride in a ride vehicle that is suspended below a track. The ride vehicle is free to swing from side to side throughout the ride. The first prototype suspended coaster was the Bat, which opened in...Kings Island. However, due to many many many maintenance problems, the ride was removed after just three years. As a "sorry for the **** up", Arrow basically gave Kings Island Vortex. Many years later, Kings Island built Top Gun, which was the last suspended coaster Arrow ever made. That means Kings Island was home to both the first and last suspended coasters.
Coaster Review - Flight Deck
Flight Deck has a surprising amount of intensity, especially since suspended coasters are known for mostly being pieces of crap. There's lots of optical illusions where it looks like you're going to hit stuff. I really like it. 8/10.
Coaster Review - Adventure Express
What could be a decent family ride is ruined by jerky transitions and a laughably bad ending. 5/10.
Coaster Review - Vortex
Vortex has really jerky transitions and is just mediocre overall. 5/10.
Coaster Review - Flying Ace Aerial Chase
It exists. It's surprisingly rough for a kiddy coaster. 5/10.
The Who and the What Now? - The coaster that doesn't exist
The large roller coaster that doesn't exist isn't just any roller coaster: it's the tallest wooden coaster in the world. Son of Beast opened as the tallest and fastest wooden coaster in the world and the only wooden coaster with a loop. However, after two accidents involving structural problems, the ride's loop was removed and the trains were switched out for lighter ones. However, that didn't stop the ride's reputation for being both one of the most boring and roughest roller coasters out there. It was so rough that it spawned several injuries that led to lawsuits. Midway through the 2009 season after yet another lawsuit, the ride closed and has been standing but not operating ever since. This year, Kings Island's map was redrawn and any traces of Son of Beast have been removed, hence the ride that doesn't exist.
Coaster Review - Woodstock Express
It's a faster than expected kiddy coaster. Nothing special. 5/10.
Coaster Review - The Racer
The Racer is a decent coaster that would have a quite a bit of airtime had we sat in the back. It's really smooth despite its age. In fact, it's the smoothest wooden coaster in the park. 7/10.
Coaster Review - Invertigo
Invertigo sucks. It left my collar bone, shoulders, and feet hurting for an hour afterwards. My brother's back hurt for a few days afterwards. Do not ride. 3/10. Sadly, there are two rides I've been on that are worse than it.