UK theme parks from another point of view!

  • 1
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 91
 
User avatar
SIMR
TT Member
TT Member
Posts: 387
Joined: October 2009
Location: Manchester

Re: 2012 Attractions

Sun May 22, 2011 7:30 pm

"Blaze" wrote:
Ripsaw is themed to shrapnel as you say, but it's not doing anything, it's just a reason to justify it's appearance, and it is not used at all in the park, it's just what it is supposed to look like.

A restaurant needs no other purpose other than to provide food. It's fine to have a themed restaurant that fits in, but to give it a story and one that changes the story of the area is just a no-no, especially to tie it in to a ride. Giving Blade a proper story would probably be too far if Thirteen and Rita don't have one. They're just themed rides, they don't need a story. It would be much better to just leave them as they are.



Hate to keep this dragging on, I just want to make my point clear - I didn't suggest the restaurant to be themed, but the ride, and the theme wouldn't change the area story just expand on it. The restaurant would only be referenced in the ride's story. Also, Oblivion being a government facility isn't used in the park, so does that mean it's just supposed to look like that?

I think we've gone off-topic enough now so I'll stop :D
Image
 
User avatar
sheepie
TT Member
TT Member
Posts: 159
Joined: February 2006
Location: Dartford, Kent
Contact:

Re: 2012 Attractions

Sun May 22, 2011 7:49 pm

"Blaze" wrote:
Ripsaw is themed to shrapnel as you say, but it's not doing anything, it's just a reason to justify it's appearance...


I've read several posts from you on your views on what attractions should consist of in terms of their creative stance within the theme park. They're your views, but here's why I disagree with them...

A theme park should be an immersive experience where imagination, creativity and compelling story- telling is a major part of the experience. The audience (guests) are being thrown into themed environments that are unusual and will manipulate the emotions of the audience, just like any film, theatre production, good story.. ect.

To say it's pretentious for a restaurant to have it's own little backstory to help fit in with the canon of its respective themed area, is not a view I'm familiar with.

Of course, every guest will know that they're rides, that exist for our entertainment, but if every theme park took on that view then the theme park industry would be very dull for me. We could wave goodbye to our Expedition Everests, our Haunted House/ Duel type attractions, Bubbleworks (in its original form), Hex... the list goes on. These are all examples of attractions that arguably, are fully realised experiences, with complete stories and backstories. Whether the audience finds out these back stories is another thing, but nevertheless it's there if guests wish to look deeper.

I just can't accept that Alton Towers would build attractions with a theme of being a theme park area or ride that's being taken over by a forest. I'm pretty sure it goes deeper than that, but, using Dark Forest as an example, the area was not creatively executed in the best way it could have been.

To make this relevant to this thread, I hope no matter what we see next year and indeed from then, we see a fully realised, creative concept that's executed well. It's got to have substance, story and go back to basics as to what made some of those past rides and attractions so rich and awesome in the first place.

Enough rambling from me... I'm off to make popcorn! :)
Don't blink; not even for a second, blink and you're dead.
 
User avatar
haydn!
TT Member
TT Member
Posts: 2258
Joined: March 2004

Re: 2012 Attractions

Sun May 22, 2011 8:08 pm

"Nightfall""][quote=""haydn!" wrote:
She just said it was one of the locations being considered for the next SW, but they had other ideas for the Black Hole site if the next SW went somewhere else.
Not from what I recall. They didn't mention anything to do with SW7s location. All they said was that the Black Hole tent development would be either 2012 or after SW7.[/quote]

Yes you're right! My mistake.
Image
 
User avatar
Coke
TT Member
TT Member
Posts: 871
Joined: December 2007
Location: UK

Re: 2012 Attractions

Sun May 22, 2011 8:34 pm

The development plan said 4 medium or large attractions between 2010 and 2014, so if
2010: Large (Th13teen)
2011: Nothing

That means that 2012, 2013 and 2014 must each have a medium or large addition (assuming changes haven't been made) OR more than one medium/large attraction in one year, which would fit with that expenditure document leaked a while ago (if it was genuine), that says
2010: Major investment
2011: Low investment
2012: Medium investment
2013: Major investment
2014: Low investment
This way it would still be possible to have the 4 medium or large attractions if more than one appeared one year.

I'm not sure how accurate/reliable the leaked document was though, but a lot of the info seems correct, e.g Gardaland Major Ride 2011, Thorpe Park & Alton Towers Large & Medium respectively (which was mentioned by Merlin on the annual pass page) and Chessington Low 2011, but then Heide Park's was wrong at Low for 2011, because Krake must have cost a bit. So I am unsure. :?

I would imagine the Black Hole tent attraction would be next year, possibly along with another ride.
Image

Are you thirsty?
 
CoasterCrazyChris
TT Member
TT Member
Posts: 2884
Joined: July 2008
Location: Bristol

Re: 2012 Attractions

Sun May 22, 2011 8:39 pm

There's so many things the park could do next year:-

-4D cinema in the old ice rink tent (and Storybook/OMFY retheme)
-Black Hole replacement
-Dark Forest flat ride/s
-Children's rollercoaster

I can't help thinking that they may try and get the deal back up and running for Shrek again.. :|

:)
 
Blaze

Re: 2012 Attractions

Sun May 22, 2011 8:44 pm

I'm not saying it's what everyone should do, I'm saying it's what Alton have always done and should continue to do. Nothing at Alton invlolves you in a narrative. Lets look at Nemesis. It's no more than "Hey, we found an alien, it made a big mess, as you can see, but we've tied it down and because we're a theme park we're gonna let you ride along it." You arn't riding along it as it escapes or anything silly like that. It allows you to immerse yourself without having to go too far to pretend something is happening. All you have to do is pretend it isn't steel, but flesh. Take Dark Forest. "We found this haunted building, it set off this curse and everything is getting destoryed, but we're a theme park, so come along anyway." It means that the rides can just be rides. It's why Rita's voiceover fails. You return to the station, you don't escape. Not having a narrative or purpose beyond being rides makes them more 'real'. No support rides have any story or reason. They are just there and made to look like they belong. Hex is different because although it has a narrative, it's limited to the progression of the ride. It simply is to provide an expereience of the curse, not to lift it or anything. It's just "Come have a look round this vault we found...oh look, this machinery still works, lets see what happens"

Parks can still pretend the rides are something more, and tie every last detail into the setting, rather than just let them exist, but it can be pretentious and overdone.

As far as 2012 is concerned, say they put a dark coaster in X-Sector. All it would need is to look like the rest of the area. They can throw in a loose backstory, saying it's a continuation of the Oblivion experiment or whatever, but being a support attraction, it doesn't need one. If it's flats in Dark Forest, all it needs to do is look like a tree and say it's a haunted tre they've got under control, or to look damaged like Rita and not need any story at all, just say it's a ride that's been damaged by the forest.
 
Dormiens-Dave

Re: 2012 Attractions

Sun May 22, 2011 8:57 pm

Erm Nemesis had a back story, you can hear it on the legend recordings, and it is still the best realised SW on park.

I agree with JW that you cannot depend on a backstory to be understood by the guests but i disagree that one isn't needed. Even Oblivion had a well realised back story albeit a much simpler one than Nemesis and again a very well realised theme was established.

Air didn't really have a backstory and its theme does not seem as well established as SW3 and SW4 and Thirteens theme was completely cobbled together by marketing departments which means Thirteen Theme that although good in places, is very sporadic, loosely based and does not seem to enhance the riders experience. We shouldn;t have queueline videos declaring the story on rollercoasters, that is just silly but i think the rest of the world proves JW wrong when it comes to saying story's are not necessary.

Expedition Everest is a classic example, most people only understand "we are going into the mountains to see the yeti" but the story creates a fully immersive theme that even for those who dont fully "get it" still go wow.

In Thirteens queue the fact that "Jez luves c*ck" is far more noticable than the theme because the washy way it was implemented means i get to see a Van with branches and scaffolding from the queue... I could go to my local scrap yard and see most of that.

Backstory's give inspiration to ride designers and ultimately make our experience 100 times better
 
User avatar
sheepie
TT Member
TT Member
Posts: 159
Joined: February 2006
Location: Dartford, Kent
Contact:

Re: 2012 Attractions

Sun May 22, 2011 9:07 pm

If it's flats in Dark Forest, all it needs to do is look like a tree and say it's a haunted tre they've got under control, or to look damaged like Rita and not need any story at all, just say it's a ride that's been damaged by the forest.


If Alton had a creative concept like that, I'd be very disappointed. I think I'm going to have to agree to disagree with you: that is certainly not how I've portrayed such attractions to be and the very thought of it risks perverting several memories and experiences I've had at the Towers for over 18 years.

It can't just be me who doesn't see these attractions themed to be theme park rides, but rather rich stories (whether prominent or not) that create their own specific narrative.

I'd love to say 2012 was the year Alton Towers returned to form of creating first class, themed entertainment.

Edit: Cheers Dave- you've expressed what I wanted to say better than I could. :)
Don't blink; not even for a second, blink and you're dead.
 
Blaze

Re: 2012 Attractions

Sun May 22, 2011 9:12 pm

"Dormiens-Dave" wrote:
Erm Nemesis had a back story, you can hear it on the legend recordings, and it is still the best realised SW on park.

Yes, but it's nothing more than explaining why the 'alien' got there in the first place. The actual act of riding has no story at all.

"sheepie" wrote:
If Alton had a creative concept like that, I'd be very disappointed. I think I'm going to have to agree to disagree with you: that is certainly not how I've portrayed such attractions to be and the very thought of it risks perverting several memories and experiences I've had at the Towers for over 18 years.

Not having a complex story for everything won't ruin your enjoyment of a ride. Does riding, say, Grand National disapoint you because it doesn't have a theme or story? Of course not.

No flats at Alton have a story, and the headline rides only have one explaining what the ride represents, be it a tied down monster, an experiment, a ride through a haunted forest, whatever, and it's because that's all they need.
 
User avatar
sheepie
TT Member
TT Member
Posts: 159
Joined: February 2006
Location: Dartford, Kent
Contact:

Re: 2012 Attractions

Sun May 22, 2011 9:27 pm

It does affect my enjoyment though, yes! I love to escape and let myself be drawn in by concepts, stories and ideas because that's what I love about theme parks and it's what I need to be able to cope with the general awful nature of my reality.

Purely as an example here, I enjoyed Nash, but it failed to excite me emotionally or have much of a lasting impact. The rides that resonate most with me, and I would say a large spectrum of people, would be rides that have that fantasy element to them.

Stories or themes do not have to be complicated, in fact, the simplest concepts and stories often work the best because you want your audience to invest in the experience.
Don't blink; not even for a second, blink and you're dead.
 
Blaze

Re: 2012 Attractions

Sun May 22, 2011 9:41 pm

But while you're on the ride, does it really matter? Say the idea of moving Blade to DF and giving it that story, would you, while riding it, be thinking "ah yes, this floaty g force relates well to the narrative the designers have dreamt up" or will you just be going "weeeee, this is fun"? It's just a swinging ship ride, it goes up one way, then up the other, it doesn't require a story and that would surely just make it a little bit silly?

I don't need a fantasy element to enjoy the ride or connect to it. Nash has no theming, but it has it's own character and 'personality' that connects with me instead. If any ride at Blackpool had a theme, that would put me right off because then it would not be authentic with what the place is about. The simplest concept is what Alton indeed have always used. Just enough for the idea to work and for the audience to buy it. Not too much that it gets overbearing, not too little that it's not noticable.
 
User avatar
sheepie
TT Member
TT Member
Posts: 159
Joined: February 2006
Location: Dartford, Kent
Contact:

Re: 2012 Attractions

Sun May 22, 2011 9:58 pm

I will stop posting now, I couldn't disagree more with you even if I tried, so that's enough from me as I get the impression this is going to go round in circles.

We obviously see very different things in Alton, those traits you have described give the impression of an amusement park's ethos in terms of a loose theme and a basic stylised "look". That is not what Alton is to me and should always strive to be the best.

I could go on to discuss and debate, in depth, but I shall refrain because we're risking veering this thread into the off topic-ness of doom. Thank you anyway, I've enjoyed debating with you. :)
Don't blink; not even for a second, blink and you're dead.
 
Dormiens-Dave

Re: 2012 Attractions

Sun May 22, 2011 10:21 pm

I think you are not fully understanding the point i was making so i will try and simplify it a bit.

1) The riders DONT have to get the story

2) But a backstory DOES improve the overall ride quality because it enhances the theme and gives coherence even if the rider doesn't understand it.

3) Complex backstories will fail but Thirteen proves that lack of backstory provides an underwhelming themed environment.

Take the general overview of how people vote the themed coasters at alton towers based on things like Mitch Hawker and the consensus is that:

1) Nemesis
2) Oblivion
3) air
4) Thirteen

(excluding RITA as its not in my book a themed rollercoaster)

Nemesis - Well informed back story, not given to the rider but allowed for a fully realised theme
Oblivion - Simple but well formed back story, fully realised theme (Before Fanta)
Air - No real backstory, questionable realised theme#
Thirteen - No backstory, marketing based themed approach... gobledegook theme that doesn't enhance the queueing experience much

I think however this is getting slightly off topic, so will cease arguing :D
 
AstroDan

Re: 2012 Attractions

Sun May 22, 2011 11:35 pm

People need only look at the likes of Efteling's Die Vliegende Hollander and Hansa-Park's Fluch von Novgorod to see just how a story based approach captivates the audience beyond track and train.

Sensational. Anything developed to this depth at Alton Towers would be incredible.

Sent from my HTC Desire using Tapatalk
 
Blaze

Re: 2012 Attractions

Mon May 23, 2011 6:21 pm

[quote=""Dormiens-Dave"Take the general overview of how people vote the themed coasters at alton towers based on things like Mitch Hawker and the consensus is that:

1) Nemesis
2) Oblivion
3) air
4) Thirteen[/quote"]
Before I give up my side of the argument, can I just point out that Mitch Hawker famously ignores theming and story telling, as the shockingly low position SM:M2 recieves year on year. Nemesis was as high as it was because it's by far the best ride, not because they developed it's backstory more.

And you don't understand where I'm coming from. Backstories for rides are great. Stories involving things like restaurants and linking them to rides in an ongoing narrative isn't, and neither is giving a ride a conclusive narrative because it ignores the fact it's a ride and means repeat rides don't make sense.

Anyway, if no one wants to discuss anymore, I'll give up as well.
 
AstroDan

Re: 2012 Attractions

Mon May 23, 2011 6:29 pm

People do wish to discuss, I am rather enjoying this debate! Please, carry on!

:)

Sent from my HTC Desire using Tapatalk
 
User avatar
sheepie
TT Member
TT Member
Posts: 159
Joined: February 2006
Location: Dartford, Kent
Contact:

Re: 2012 Attractions

Mon May 23, 2011 7:00 pm

Stories involving things like restaurants and linking them to rides in an ongoing narrative isn't, and neither is giving a ride a conclusive narrative because it ignores the fact it's a ride and means repeat rides don't make sense.


I'm going to use an extreme example here: Kilimanjaro Safaris, Animal Kingdom. Now I understand the sheer scale of this attraction cannot be compared to anything in this country, but let's assume budget wasn't an issue and you had full creative control.

This is a fully realised attraction. Guests know it's a ride in a theme park in Orlando. However this is not once mentioned in either the queueline for the safari or anywhere else around the area of the theme park. A fictional African village is created for Animal Kingdom, with its own narrative, everything there exists for a purpose and is faithful to the story that the Imagineers are trying to tell.

Restaurants, gift shops, snack stalls... everything... it's all designed to immerse you in their fictional village and it exists comfortably in its own individual narrative.

The basic story for the safari is that you're going on a two week safari around the different environments of the reserve which gets cut short after certain events take place, in true Disney fashion. Every single detail has been thought of.

This is how I see attractions like Hex, which takes you on a journey of the legend of the towers, not once does it break the fourth wall and declare itself a theme park ride; as well all know, the climax of the ride is within the vault, where the fallen branch resides. The attraction videos all talk about the fictitious aspect of Hex and not once does it imply that you're on a ride.

Wild Asia at Chessington. This area is fully realised, too. There was an interview a good while back with some of the park managers who described the backstory they had for the area and its attractions. I seem to remember specifically saying that they believe all attractions they build should have a rich story, they even had marketing on the website that suggested this with various diary entries from explorers. Unfortunately, I can't find that interview for the life of me, so if anyone could help, that'd be awesome. I think it was with Graham McGrath.

I believe I have lost sight as to what I'm actually debating in the first place. As a theme park enthusiast, I struggle to come to terms with how someone else wouldn't "get" the idea of an immersive, totally themed experience. Please forgive any minor spelling mistakes and I hope this makes sense... I've been up for nearly 30 hours! :P
Don't blink; not even for a second, blink and you're dead.
 
Dormiens-Dave

Re: 2012 Attractions

Mon May 23, 2011 7:10 pm

I don't understand why a restaurant or shop cannot broadly speaking follow the theme que's of a Back Story. There is no need again for the guests eating in the resteraunt to get the story but the general mis-en-scen created from a story that is at least known to the designers would enhance the experience.

Top Quality international parks treat their rides, resteraunts, shops and side shows as an extension of the areas they are linked to and theme them accordingly. Its a shame Towers doesn;t always do this aswell

And Mitch Hawker doesn't ask about theme but if you think theme doesn't effect experience which is what you mark the ride on then which planet are you on. Would Nemesis be in the top 5 in the world without the associated theme and landscaping... probably not
 
Blaze

Re: 2012 Attractions

Mon May 23, 2011 7:18 pm

Thing is, the Animal Kingdom thing doesn't stand up for me because you know you're visiting a theme park. You can pretend all you like you're really on holliday on safari, but once these 'events' come into it, it turns silly because you just know it's not happening. It also means that repeat rides don't make sense because ypu've already concluded the narrative.

Hex on the otherhand never needs to break the fourth wall because it accnowledges that it is what it is from the start. The concluding vault isn't set as if the vault is a surprise that happens to the guests. It's set from the start as a conclusion to the eductaional pretext of the attraction. From the start it teaches guests about the curse and the branch, and then at the end lets guests experience the curse. It's not set out that suddenly something goes wrong and then at the last minute something comes along to save the day. Because it simply presents itself as an attraction to simply visit something and see what it's like, repeat rides make sense because all you're doing is allowing the branch to make the room spin because the machinery is turned on by the operator. It is self aware. It's isn't pretending to be some far out, unbelievable story with a begining, conflict and resolution.

I am a theme park enthusiast, but at the same time as liking fully reasilsed, well thought out ideas, they have to make sense, otherwise they feel completely false and might as well not have bothered doing the story and would have been better off just giving it a basic themed appearance. Stories and themes should only be expanded when they work. The simpler you can make something without compromising it, the better.
 
Dormiens-Dave

Re: 2012 Attractions

Mon May 23, 2011 8:00 pm

Erm Hex does try and involve you in the story, its tagged as "the ride that ends on the other side" the fact the voiceover gets cut out suddenly by the "mysterious events" in the vault prove that the dramatic envirnment intends that this is a tour that has gone wrong. Its not aimed as a woo lets see what would happen if the curse took over. Your meant to be experiencing it.

The point about themeparks is to let guests suspend their disbelief for one or two days. Let them feel that they are in an african camp, or a post apocolyptic world or the creepy government installation. Otherwise why bother theming at all.

And guests do this all the time, the best example is a scaremaze, Everyone knows theres no real murderer or evil demon thing in the attraction... yet people still scream, why? because the let the imagination run wild which is the whole damn point.
  • 1
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 91

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 82 guests