UK theme parks from another point of view!

 
Blaze

Re: The Smiler - Speculation

Mon Mar 12, 2012 3:41 pm

The competition winner won't have any direct input. At most, Merlin Studios and Alton will use them for advice, things like "Which name do you prefer?" or "What colour do you think the cars should be?" etc.

Wardley will have some input, but as said, Candy Holland is in charge.
 
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Re: The Smiler - Speculation

Mon Mar 12, 2012 4:59 pm

Blaze wrote:
The competition winner won't have any direct input. At most, Merlin Studios and Alton will use them for advice, things like "Which name do you prefer?" or "What colour do you think the cars should be?" etc.

Wardley will have some input, but as said, Candy Holland is in charge.


And I bet that frustrates the s**t out of him..............Just seems to me he had some brilliant ideas on Th13teen which were never implemented. If he is the 'brains' behind this ride lets hope he is listened to.
 
Adam
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Re: The Smiler - Speculation

Mon Mar 12, 2012 5:02 pm

That "competition" was never anything more than: A) Early Promotion and B) an excuse for more easy promotion nearer to the time...

"Alton Towers hire "fan" to design new worlds first rollercoaster"

...it's only a matter of time before we see this headline in on of the papers...
"It would be spiteful to put Jellyfish in a trifle..."
 
Blaze

Re: The Smiler - Speculation

Mon Mar 12, 2012 5:08 pm

jb19852 wrote:
Just seems to me he had some brilliant ideas on Th13teen which were never implemented

Such as? :?
 
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Re: The Smiler - Speculation

Mon Mar 12, 2012 8:17 pm

Blaze wrote:
jb19852 wrote:
Just seems to me he had some brilliant ideas on Th13teen which were never implemented

Such as? :?


specifically i cannot name any as he has never mentioned anything being cut, i imagine he is not allowed to but i do get the impression that eveything planned was not included in the final product. He talked so pasionately about it throughout the project but towards the end seemed a bit, well, cheesed off!
 
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Re: The Smiler - Speculation

Tue Mar 13, 2012 1:57 am

From what I gather, Wardley didn't hand over anything it was late-Tussauds who gave him the boot.  When Merlin took over, they asked him to come back but he hasn't reprised his role of the leading man.

This is just from what I've pieced together over the years but I'm sure John was always the concept designer, i.e. he came up with the ideas of what the ride should be and its theme, then found the suitable ride systems etc and handed it over to engineers.  Unlike in the old days where he talks about themes and concepts first, at the Th13teen event John showed his original track design and an idea for a worlds first drop section.  That's all it was, so it seems like with that done first it was over to Candy to come up with the concept, theme, effects and so on.

As for SW7, maybe John has put forward ideas for a worlds first section and recommended some manufacturers, but then the rest is up to Candy, her team, and the marketing departments.  That seems to be how it works these days, and perhaps why the rides aren't as entertaining any more.  John had a good understanding of theatrics, and if he isn't doing the "show" element of these rides then he isn't doing what he does best.  :(
Last edited by PeteB on Tue Mar 13, 2012 1:59 am, edited 1 time in total.
 
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Re: The Smiler - Speculation

Tue Mar 13, 2012 3:35 am

Seemed to me John was just another marketing tool for Th13teen. They gave him minimal input so when it came to marketing they could roll him out and say 'Here's John, he designed Nemesis, come ride his new coaster'
Candy didn't get the credit she was due, although I'm sure she won't be too worried by this as long as the pay justifies it.
 
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Re: The Smiler - Speculation

Tue Mar 13, 2012 8:08 am

PeteB wrote:
That seems to be how it works these days, and perhaps why the rides aren't as entertaining any more.  John had a good understanding of theatrics, and if he isn't doing the "show" element of these rides then he isn't doing what he does best.  :(

I wonder how much input Wardley had on Swarm, as that coaster is as entertaining, and has as much show element (if not more in some cases) of any of the fantastic 90s tussauds additions.

Cannot wait to get SW7 in though, it'd prove to me whether swarm is a blip, or a sign of things to come with merlin.
 
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Re: The Smiler - Speculation

Tue Mar 13, 2012 10:18 am

there are a lot of theory's regarding john's lack of input during the late Tussauds era. i remember that he was in charge of development at Thorpe as well, when Tussauds first bought it. That is until part way through the inferior development, it was at this point he seemed to disappear from both Thorpe and Alton.
my personal theory is he moved elsewhere in protest at the way inferior was being developed. Lets face it, there is no way in hell John would have given it the Nemesis name. Also, if you read the various parts of his website, he clearly states that after the vampire, he would never build another coaster that didn't have the station, transfer, safety and service brakes all in one line, and inferior goes against that will. he also doesn't like building rides that die off towards the end, and yet again this one has two crap (albeit forceful) helix's that really suck the excitement out of the end of the ride.

he did't tough any UK parks until saw (apparently it was his input that caused the ride to be shortened from its original application), i think this is when Merlin decided he would make a good consultant.
 
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Re: The Smiler - Speculation

Tue Mar 13, 2012 12:04 pm

It was when JW started getting excited about the throughput of Th13teen, and how there was no delay between the drop and the train reversing that I really started to see him more as a PR man than anything else.  Of course, he also has excellent contacts with ride manufacturers and designers ;)

I also agree that it is his knowledge of 'theatre' that enabled him to create such great rides, and that just seems to be lacking in his later creations.  I think that Th13teen would have been better with a one second delay after the drop, to allow people to be aware of their 'predicament' before escaping backwards - that theatrical aspect again.

As far as the comments about SAW are concerned - go ride 'Fluch von Novgorod' at Hansa Park or 'Mystery Mine' at Dollywood, if you want to see what could have been done.

Will SW7 bring back that theatre?  Or was that just associated with the days of magic?  We will just have to wait and see
 
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Re: The Smiler - Speculation

Tue Mar 13, 2012 2:11 pm

bradpeet wrote:
It was when JW started getting excited about the throughput of Th13teen, and how there was no delay between the drop and the train reversing that I really started to see him more as a PR man than anything else.  Of course, he also has excellent contacts with ride manufacturers and designers ;)

I also agree that it is his knowledge of 'theatre' that enabled him to create such great rides, and that just seems to be lacking in his later creations.  I think that Th13teen would have been better with a one second delay after the drop, to allow people to be aware of their 'predicament' before escaping backwards - that theatrical aspect again.


You see I have to disagree with most the points you’ve made. His excitement about throughput is not what I'd call PR. In fact he made it very clear it was for theatrical reasons that he pushed the throughput so much, which is why I claim Th13teen is actually the most theatrical roller coaster except maybe Oblivion.

Sometimes it's theatrical to give a pause but other times you want everything to be quick so that the guest has barely enough time to take everything in. This is exactly why he was obsessing over throughput. While describing it to us he kept referring to Expedition Everest and how he felt the reverse section took way too long to activate and drew out the dramatic suspense too much. That’s why Th13teens trains are much lighter and take only a second to engage rather than 10 so that things can happen suddenly. Improved throughput was a bonus.

As such I think a second longer to view the crypt would have allowed the rider to take too much in and spoilt the abruptness of the drop, stop and reverse sequence. Pausing works best when building suspense which is why the ride pre-drops to make you realise something is about to happen. If you can’t class the pre-drop combined with the blast of air as a theatrical element then I don’t know what is.

Sure Th13teen could have included more theatrical elements and been a proper Psychoaster. But what is there definitely has theatrical elements.
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Re: The Smiler - Speculation

Tue Mar 13, 2012 3:13 pm

Nightfall wrote:
bradpeet wrote:
It was when JW started getting excited about the throughput of Th13teen, and how there was no delay between the drop and the train reversing that I really started to see him more as a PR man than anything else.  Of course, he also has excellent contacts with ride manufacturers and designers ;)

I also agree that it is his knowledge of 'theatre' that enabled him to create such great rides, and that just seems to be lacking in his later creations.  I think that Th13teen would have been better with a one second delay after the drop, to allow people to be aware of their 'predicament' before escaping backwards - that theatrical aspect again.

Sure Th13teen could have included more theatrical elements and been a proper Psychoaster. But what is there definitely has theatrical elements.


You called?  ;)
 
formula1fan

Re: The Smiler - Speculation

Thu Mar 15, 2012 12:27 pm

I've just had a look at the documentation details online, and the standard consultations finish today. The 'Target Determination Date', which I am assuming is the decision date, is not today - it is Tuesday 20th March. It looks like we're going to have to wait for another five days before a decision on SW7 is made. Sorry to disappoint those of you who thought that the decision was going to be made today.
 
Chris W
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Re: The Smiler - Speculation

Thu Mar 15, 2012 1:15 pm

Well it goes before the planning comittee today, and as far as I'm aware the application will get voted on at some point this afternoon.

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formula1fan

Re: The Smiler - Speculation

Thu Mar 15, 2012 1:25 pm

Maybe I was wrong, then. Slightly confused.  :?
 
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John
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Re: The Smiler - Speculation

Thu Mar 15, 2012 4:41 pm

Apparently it's been approved 10 votes to 1 :D
 
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Re: The Smiler - Speculation

Thu Mar 15, 2012 4:43 pm

John wrote:
Apparently it's been approved 10 votes to 1 :D


Any conditions?
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Re: The Smiler - Speculation

Thu Mar 15, 2012 4:46 pm

No idea, all I've got to go on is a post by Stephen Ellis on facebook
 
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Re: The Smiler - Speculation

Thu Mar 15, 2012 5:31 pm

TowersTimes have been contacted with the following statement from Alton Towers, confirming that SW7 has indeed had planning permission granted!
Alton Towers Resort is delighted to confirm that their World-first new attraction for 2013 has today been given the go ahead by Staffordshire Moorlands District Council.

The steel rollercoaster will be constructed in the X-Sector area of the Theme Park, replacing the Black Hole which was decommissioned in 2005.

“This is fabulous news for us,” said Mark Kerrigan, Operations and Development Director, “as it means we can now start the development process properly to ensure that this magnificent new addition to our already world-class stable of thrill rides is ready for the start of our 2013 season!

“Continued investment in high quality, innovative new rides and attractions is vital to us if we are to maintain our position as the UK’s leading Resort Theme Park and in turn contribute to the long term economic stability that we bring to the surrounding area.

“This new rollercoaster will continue to diversify the range of attractions available at the Resort, which will enhance our visitor offer even more and ensure we continue to attract visitors. It will also allow us to dedicate funding to Staffordshire Highways and into the important historic gardens and listed buildings.

“We hope that with the introduction of such an amazing new attraction, we will have a truly momentous season next year!”
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Re: The Smiler - Speculation

Thu Mar 15, 2012 5:43 pm

Saw that pop up on TowersTimes twitter! So glad this is going through, Bring on SW7!
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