UK theme parks from another point of view!

 
AstroDan

More rides than you can manage?

Sun Feb 18, 2007 12:51 am

Some parks in the world have more rides than you can feasibly manage in one - or perhaps even two - days.

Alton Towers probably has about the right number of rides to fill an average park stay in average season of 9 hours.

If Alton Towers had double the number of coasters, and 10 more other family and thrill attractions, do you think this would be a benefit or more a hindrance to an enjoyable day out?

As in, the question is - would you rather a park had more rides than you could manage in one day, or not?

Thoughts.
 
Thomas
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Sun Feb 18, 2007 1:02 am

Well to do everything at Alton as it is & to take the experience in you could easy take it over one day, maybe not two whole days but 1 & a half then its sorted also if you make two days of it at the hotels the other half of the day you get to go in CC 'YAY'

Some parks with the likes of 10+ coasters like Cedar Point i think how the heck can you manage all them in one day?!

I only find it annoying if i know i am only going to make it once in the season & want to get on everything, then i end up running all day from one end to the other of Alton & is a rate pain if the Sky Ride isn't working

I guess the more the park expands the better but if your only on a one day visit its abit frustrating to get on everything

Thomas
 
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halltd
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Sun Feb 18, 2007 1:07 am

To me, the more rides and attractions the better. Even though I had a total blast when I visited AT, it was on a REALLY busy day (Electric Towers Saturday). Had I visited on a normal day, I would've ridden things a couple times and then been like, "Uh, what now?"

My "home park" was Cedar Point growing up. With sixty-nine rides and seventeen coasters, its impossible to ride EVERYTHING in one day unless you do the VIP experience ($350 per person). But, to me, that's a good thing. With that many rides, there's a ton of diversity. There's coasters, spin and pukes, flats, drops, water rides, shows, restaurants, petting zoos, the beach, parasailing, etc.... And, in each of those categories, there's something for everyone in the family. If you can't stomach Millennium Force, there's Magnum. If Magnum is too big for ya, there's Iron Dragon or Gemini. There's kiddie coasters, two kid sections, shows for the grandparents and water rides for the insane ones who love to get soaked. :)

Not only is the diversity good for attracting more than just one type of guest, its also great at encouraging people to stay in one of the six resorts and come back another day. Oh yeah, there's an indoor AND outdoor water park. Its a vacation destination, not just a park.

You can say the same thing about Disney. More is good. :)

On the flip side though, less is good too. There are a ton of "local parks" in the US. Great for just chilling, having picnics, riding some rides, and just hanging out. Cedar Point definitely has another pace to it because you're always moving. But, you can have a leisurely day there too. Its really all a matter of what you want.

EDIT: If you know what you're doing, you can do EVERY coaster and the "big" flat rides (Power Tower, Skyhawk, maXair, Demon Drop) in one day. This past summer I went on a Saturday in the middle of the summer and was able to do all the coasters, the big flats and repeated the BIG coasters multiple times. Cedar Point is open WAY longer than AT is every day. So, you don't have to run all over the park to get to everything. Plus, parks in the US aren't spread out as much as AT.
"Rita: Queen of Speed. Your best Alton Towers\' ride evAr!"
 
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Con
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Sun Feb 18, 2007 10:21 am

I also went on electric towers on the saturday for my annual trip and usually we do very little, We usually end up having to miss out two coasters (usually Air and spinball) and we have to rush around. But this year we bought a shortcut ticket so the only queue we had to do was Rita so we done that first! We were able to do Nemesis twice, Oblivion 4 times (2 in the dark), Air once and Spinball Whizzer once (no shortcut). But we also got a look around other areas such as ending up shouting at the bookworm and going into the Farm. We evn got rides on duel and enterprise. We'd never have got this before our shortcut.

So to sum up without shortcut on the busieist day at Alton Towers you need a Shortcut to ride everything in one day. But I do think that having too much is good because it will give you a different experience everytime you go their.
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Ryan Kingdaka
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Sun Feb 18, 2007 11:41 am

Well, if a park had way more rides than i could manage in one day, i would imagen that they would open the park in hand, for longer on the busiest days of the year. Alton open up for longer during holidays, and weekends, and during Electric towers they opened even later in to the night. It's 5pm during the week, and 6pm on weekends, bankholidays, good fridays, and school holidays.

If AT were to build another coaster, which they are in 2008, i would expect the park to do what thorpe do with their opening times, and have different colours for diffent times of opening, and closing. E.g. 7pm closing weekdays during summer school holidays, and 8pm on the weekends during summer school holidays. The only real, protencial problem there is the Ropers.
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John
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Sun Feb 18, 2007 11:50 am

I think what people think of this depends on how often they visit.

If you can only get to a park once a year then you're going to be disappointed if you can't get on all the rides in one day, on the other hand annual pass holders will probably want a lot more variety so they don't end up doing the same rides in the same order every time they visit.
 
Lauzi
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Sun Feb 18, 2007 2:06 pm

I can see both sides of the debate, but I think AT has the perfect amount of rides/attractions.

For the people who can only make it down there once or twice a year, they would be pretty disappointed if they couldn't get on all of the major rides and it could put a downer on their day. Although there is Shortcut tickets etc. to combat this problem, they might not have enough money for each of the family.

However, as Duckman said a lot of us visit AT numerous times a year, some of us up to 20-40 times. We are always grateful for new attractions as it is a new thing for us to experience.

As I said before, AT has the perfect amount as as long as you are not visiting for fireworks/halloween then you can easily get on all of the popular rides in one day. Of course I love new rides, but I don't think many more are needed unless other rides are removed as a lot of the rides such as Nemesis and Air have reride factors, people get off and automatically think, 'I want to go on that again before the end of the day' so they don't end up getting bored.
 
Matt 125
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Sun Feb 18, 2007 3:15 pm

I always go for two consecutive days as I feel I will not be able to fit everything in and be too tired to travel back and forth the same day.

I feel AT has the right amount but it never hurts to have more than that as people want choice. I know I do repeat rides, not because there's nothing left to do but because I want to.

AT has the right amount but I feel they could get more and everyone will be happy if it is themed, and the right sorta thing. :)

Matt :D
 
iriderides101
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Sun Feb 18, 2007 4:28 pm

Six Flags magic mountain had tooo many rides to do in a day.
 
Nathan
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Sun Feb 18, 2007 5:12 pm

More rides would also mean cutting queue times on other attractions because guests would be dispersed more. So, you could even possibly end up getting more rides!
 
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halltd
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Mon Feb 19, 2007 3:41 am

I totally agree with Mackem. Like I said, at Cedar Point, you can easily do every coaster in one day, and usually get a couple more than once. With more queues, the lines end up being shorter. Had I not purchased shortcuts and speeding tickets for Electric Towers, I would have never wanted to go back to AT. And, its not like they have a LOT of rides. Its really a catch 22 situation.
"Rita: Queen of Speed. Your best Alton Towers\' ride evAr!"
 
Kaycee

Mon Feb 19, 2007 1:41 pm

I'm sure in Alton's case, building up their attractions so you HAVE to spread them over two days would sort of be in line with becoming a resort, it would encourage people to stay over. I'm not sure how effective it is, but I think the more rides and attractions, the better.
 
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Lauren
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Mon Feb 19, 2007 1:46 pm

Alton gathers the public from all round the UK so geting them to stay overnight would be twice as better. With more rides, theres more fun and your not just riding the same rides over and over again. On the other hand, us as enthusiasts tend to allways go for coasters and thrill rides whereas families do family rides and stay over in cariba creek.
Ive been to alton many 'a times and not ridden all the rides i wanted too.
For example on Firework day i neer got a ride on spinball or rita, due to the ques. but it realy depends on when you go and how busy it is.
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AstroDan

Mon Feb 19, 2007 1:51 pm

"halltd" wrote:
I totally agree with Mackem. Like I said, at Cedar Point, you can easily do every coaster in one day, and usually get a couple more than once. With more queues, the lines end up being shorter. Had I not purchased shortcuts and speeding tickets for Electric Towers, I would have never wanted to go back to AT. And, its not like they have a LOT of rides. Its really a catch 22 situation.


True, but you did attend on the busiest weekend of the entire open season. If you attend the Towers most of the time, you can do all the rides and do repeat rides at the end of your day.

However, I haven't really posted my views yet - so here goes!

I think that Alton Towers could use slightly more rides, however I would have no particular desire to see a sudden emergence of a dozen new rollercoasters. Parks such as Cedar Point and Magic Mountain, who have a lot of rollercoasters, do not spend a great budget on theming and landscaping. At Alton Towers, aside from Rita - Queen of Speed and Spinball Whizzer, all the coasters built between 1992 and 2002 had a high landscaping cost, and for the most part, a decent theming cost too. Think of Runaway Mine Train's theming and tunnel extension excavation, Nemesis' pit, Oblivion's hole and Air's tunnels. John Wardley is quoted as saying the Americans thought it was 'mad' that Alton spent 1/2 Oblivion's budget on the hole.

I could envisage that with a sudden mass of new attractions, that the attention to detail would be lost - and we would see more Rita/Spinball-esque rides coming through. No offence to Cedar Point, whilst their attractions are undoubtedly some of the most, if not THE most, thrilling on the planet, looking at some of the pictures, they don't always take visuals too seriously - but then again, that isn't what they are about.

I would like to Alton Towers slowly increased its portfolio, as it did through the 1990's. This way, we can see healthy budgets for both attraction and landscaping/theming. I would much rather see an RMT/Nemesis/Oblivion quality attraction every 4 or 5 years than a new Spinball every 2, for example.

If Alton Towers had 2 more rollercoasters, a couple more flats and perhaps an extra special new dark ride, along with a show or two, I think that the park would certainly have enough for two days. I think the public ENJOY re-rides, re-riding your favourite's is part of the visit.

So all in all, I don't think 20 coasters would ever be of benefit to either the park or the public - operating costs would spiral and the park would have to re-coup this through massively inflated admission charges, above and over what the charges already are. But with a handful more rides, the park would probably seem complete.

:)
 
iriderides101
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Mon Feb 19, 2007 9:07 pm

More rides means a bigger capacity for the park which means ques will be the same. The simple reason attractions are added is to drag the market back to the park due to a new experience or attraction
 
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halltd
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Tue Feb 20, 2007 3:01 am

Dan - You didn't really answer the question you asked. You were asking solely about ride quantity, not quality. So, saying that CP doesn't care about theming because they have so many rides isn't accurate at all. They theme the rides they feel require it and don't theme the other ones. CP has never claimed to be a "theme park" anyways. They've always been an "amusement" park. Either way, I don't think the quantity of rides has anything to do with theme quality. Its a matter of park direction for that.

I would also argue that AT themed Oblivion, Air and Nemesis because they HAD to. There was no other way to get the ride they wanted within the restrictions placed upon the park by the government and neighbors. To prove my point, all you have to do is look at the two newer rides that didn't need a bunch of earthwork to make them possible. How themed are they, huh? Honestly, Nemesis was the only coaster I thought had an extensive amount of theming anyways. Putting a station into the ground like on Air doesn't classify as "theme" to me. Oblivion's tunnel - although VERY cool, is just a tunnel. Again, I think they NEEDED to put that there to get the height they wanted. Yeah, its more themed than Air, but I would argue Maverick is going to have more "theme" than Oblivion does.

Again, for a park to be considered a "destination" like AT and CP both are trying to do, you HAVE to have a nice portfolio of rides and attractions.
"Rita: Queen of Speed. Your best Alton Towers\' ride evAr!"
 
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kingjohno
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Tue Feb 20, 2007 9:00 am

"Ryan Kingdaka" wrote:
Well, if a park had way more rides than i could manage in one day, i would imagen that they would open the park in hand, for longer on the busiest days of the year. Alton open up for longer during holidays, and weekends, and during Electric towers they opened even later in to the night. It's 5pm during the week, and 6pm on weekends, bankholidays, good fridays, and school holidays.

If AT were to build another coaster, which they are in 2008, i would expect the park to do what thorpe do with their opening times, and have different colours for diffent times of opening, and closing. E.g. 7pm closing weekdays during summer school holidays, and 8pm on the weekends during summer school holidays. The only real, protencial problem there is the Ropers.


I'm sure Alton already do that though. In summer the park's open longer and the days on its online booking form go different colours.
 
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leejay
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Tue Feb 20, 2007 6:02 pm

In all fairness, rides such as Nemesis and Oblivion, as great as they are, are themed in conjuction with the laws placed on the park. Then again, im not complaining. I think the whole having to theme rides adds to Altons image, but that is a seperate argument.

It depends how Alton Towers want to take their future as to how many rides they have. They can throw in a load of rollercoasters like Spinball and have shammy quick family rides. This would build up their portfolio and help with the whole 'stay for the night at our hotel' image. However the rides would not be magical or themed. Tragic when you want a resort image! Looking at the bigger picture, a great ride like Nemesis and Oblivion every few years is much better than throwing in Rita (as much of a ride as it is.) A theme park resorts biggest achievemnt, is people re-riding a ride because they want to. They are compelled too.
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Dara
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Tue Feb 20, 2007 6:24 pm

In answer to Astrodan's question, I'd rather a park didn't have more rides than you can manage in one day.

This is because i enjoy repeat riding more than most people.
Alot of people often say that at Thorpe Park you can "do it all by lunchtime" by which they mean that they can have ridden everything once. I don't think like this. I prefer to ride all the good rides more than once, which is why I like smaller parks like Paultons Park so much.

As long as a park has one or two decent rides, I'm entertained for the whole day, hence my love for American Adventure. In 2005 it only had one ride that i liked - The Runaway Train (which for the information of people who never visited AA was a much more intense ride than your standard powered coaster like RMT)

For me Alton actually have too many good rides for one day. Thorpe Park have got it about right, if you go on an off peak day. Having said that, on my last visit, over half the rides were closed but I was still kept happy all day and never got a chance to ride Quantum, which I had planned to.

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