UK theme parks from another point of view!

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Mattfat1
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Re: The Smiler

Sat Jun 08, 2013 6:17 pm

So today after my first ride last weekend, I headed back to the towers for further correction.

SO the queues, I had 3 rides today, all single rider.

1st ride was not long after opening at 11.45. The queue was a bit of a mash of single riders, fastrack and disabled riders from the bottom of the stairs up to the 3 queue split. This only seemed to effect the fast track as the other 2 queues were already fairly busy. Regardless though the single rider filtered though in 1.05mins which was good IMO.
I jumped straight back into the SR queue at around 1PM and this took about 15mins to get through.
Then the next time at about 1.30PM it took about 25mins.

SUMMARY OF SR QUEUE TIMES:
11.45am / 1.05hrs
13.00pm / 0.15hrs
13.30pm / 0.25hrs

The Ride:

First ride, Back Row. I really enjoyed the back, I was very apprehensive about getting on the after reading about the reported vibrations and the extra roughness of the ride but I have to say it was not that bad at all!! You get the usual back row getting flung through the inversions which was great (apart from the last 3 inversions which just hurt) I experienced the vibrations momentarily on the first half just out of the staff knot before the corkscrew but nowhere else. Very smooth ride! The airtime hills are good at the back!

Second ride, Front Row. WOW this is the place to be on The Smiler. So so so smooth on the track!!! In the same way you get PULLED though the inversions at the back you really get PUSHED into the inversions at the front. The inversions are so tight that you have already straightened up on the track before you get the lag waiting for the rest of the train to catch up so you really don't miss out like you sometimes do on other coasters. The view of the track from the front is incredible, diving down the inversions towards the ground is a huge rush, especially the end of the sea serpent, so close to the walls!!! Also being sat here I FINALLY noticed the marmaliser while riding in the form on the innoculator... Basically you get a bucket of water thrown in your face so its hard not to notice it!!! Airtime hills are better than the back, I actually got lifted from my seat!!

Third ride, second row. BRUTAL ride, It has to be that train, so bumpy, jolty and full of vibrations. Every inversion was a test of physical strength to stay in your seat. On the last of the staffs knot, my head got jolted out of the headrest and stayed out through the heart lines!!!
I had a rough ride on the second row last week but it makes no sense why the second row would be rougher than the back row so it has to be that car. I spoke to a rider who went on the same trains as me on the second and last ride. The last one she was row 3 and also said how much rougher that ride was than the one before where she was second row so this points again to that one train being rough.  I hope this sorts it's self out as it ruins the ride, compared to the other trains it just kills the fun.

Front row is by far the best, if you ask nicely i'm sure you could get a front row ride. The station area before getting on the ride could easily be modified to incorporate a front row only queue. I hope they do this at some point as just like nemesis its worth the extra wait!
 
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Fantasmic
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Re: The Smiler

Sat Jun 08, 2013 7:32 pm

I rode the smiler today, we got to AT at around 8:40 and went straight over to it getting in the queue at about 9:15.... then we waited... and waited!

I really enjoyed the queue, got talking to 2 fellow scouse girls who were coaster enthusiasts too which was nice! The "pit" queue really builds the tension, but it was kinda broke by the cheers as the first train load of riders went up the lift hill! What a buzz!

I really liked the coaster, I am not going to compare it to nemmy as that's like comparing apples to oranges. They're so different. But Smiler really is totally disorientating, the transitions between inversions are perfect, the only criticism I have is that it was rough... rougher than a brand new coaster should ever be. We rode in the 3rd row, maybe it would be better in the front!

My boyfriend LOVED the smiler! Personally I prefer my thrills from a B&M, Although I was buzzing, smiling, exhilarated and thoroughly marmalised when I came off!

Forgot to say.... the harness banged my left collarbone/shoulder, which is now rather hurty!

John Wardley really has created a masterpiece and as I believe he is now retiring, this is a spectacular coaster to bid us farewell with!
Last edited by Fantasmic on Sat Jun 08, 2013 7:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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riley_h96
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Re: The Smiler

Sat Jun 08, 2013 7:55 pm

Last Sunday, I was finally corrected! First Impressions: the station, atmosphere overall queueing experience was fun, the elements of the music and the video was great and the music set an atmosphere which can make you laugh! However, the first ride I wasn't impressed with - it wasn't intense and it just flowed around the track gently. I then went on a second time and it was really intense and it was fantastic! It did give me a headache, but I think that was more the forces rather than the head restraints (lap bars I think would give riders who are aware of headbanging a less anxious ride and just a more free riding experience). Overall, everything about The Smiler is fantastic and I can't wait to visit Alton Towers when it is less busy!!
 
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ing1607
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Re: The Smiler

Sat Jun 08, 2013 9:07 pm

Got corrected today. Omg it is so goood! We joined the queue at 9:30 and it opened around 11:15. We got on for 12:30 so queued for 3 hours. WARNING the queue is really zigzaggy! Never assume you're there! The ride itself is just indescribable. We were on the front row which was was really good. I love how when you go out like it's still all themed; it's really confusing! We went on again single rider at the end of the day and queued just under an hour. This time I was on the back row, it's pretty rough so keep your head back! Also, I thought there weren't fasttracks? Cause in the single rider queue people kept pushing past us and going down the fasttrack line! It was quite annoying.
 
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Oblividoom
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Re: The Smiler

Sat Jun 08, 2013 10:17 pm

When Alton Towers first announced SW-7, I didn't know what on Earth to expect. When I turned up at the park today, I knew a little what to expect from the discussions/construction/photos/videos. It was nothing like I expected. Following its confusing and frustrating opening schedule, the main question for me was...does it deliver?

Impressions and Atmosphere
The Smiler is an imposing structure. How Gerstlauer and its engineers have managed to drill Wardley's hypnotic layout into such a compact space is somewhat baffling. There's steel everywhere. The X sector has now been dominated by its torturous layout, almost paling Oblivion ironically into oblivion...

The Marmaliser is an impressive structure and adds a little aesthetic 'pazaz' to the whole experience. The effects are fun to watch and the central screen shows some interesting videos with glimpses and quotes to other rides in the park which is a nice little touch from AT. The music in the area is also fantastic. A heart thumping 4-to-the-floor beat really latches on to Wardley's ethos of telling a story and 'getting you in the mood' for the adrenaline rush.

The ride station and queue however are boring. I've never been too keen on the chosen colour schemes for this ride and the yellow pipes and concrete just look tacky and I dread to think how they'll age and last in poor weather conditions.

Queue-line

Today's queues ranged from a minimum 100 minutes to 150 minutes. I recieved my fastrack platinum this morning to be greeted with the welcome surprise that 'The Smiler' was to be included on it today. I got the impression that Gold and Platinum ticket holders had access to the Fast Track queue and this was exceptional - walking straight into the main station building. Many single riders were annoyed at being passed - but Fast Track is expensive and this privilege is paid for. If you can, I'd highly recommend purchasing Gold/Platinum as it makes the whole experience much more enjoyable.

The queue line looks a little like a cattle pen, but it is a thrill to have the trains whizz metres from your head. The indoor sections are little unusual, dark and altogether boring. I don't find hypnotic shapes to be particularly smile inducing. More like a visit to the Tate Modern that I didn't ask for.


Ride Experience

This is a masterpiece of Coaster Construction.

The ride begins with the ominous "Join Us" being blarted out of speakers, a few strobe lights and you're off. Diving into the first drop you quickly rise into a heart-line roll and come to a sharp stop at the bottom of the lift hill. Here you're exposed to a bit of 3D sound and that sinister theme tune.

The first half of the ride is pretty smooth. The flasher is effective and you're journey through the batwing is pretty hairy as the cars have a tendency to slow down slightly. Altogether, you start to become a little disoriented and race along the straight before diving into another inversion and meeting your 'half way corrected point'.

There is a pause at the bottom of the vertical lift hill where there's some rather disturbing image montages shown and the ominous voice returning, this time saying "Half Way Corrected". The vertical lift hill is pretty thrilling in itself, particularly if you're on the front row. 

The second half is much more intense. Not only does the first drop feel faster and steeper, but there is an incredible air time hill leading into the cobra roll. This was where I really noticed the marmaliser effects. The giggler sprays you with a fine mist whilst front row riders can be treated to a significant soaking by the innoculator which certainly made our group smile!

I'd say the last two barrel rolls are the roughest portion of the ride. They're a little uncomfortable, but then you have the joy of thinking you've just done 14 inversions!

This is the only ride in the whole park where I noticed a major difference riding front row. It's an incredible perspective on the track and the ride is a whole lot smoother. I rode in the middle and this was perhaps the most uncomfortable spot with a lot of head bashing. The back row is highly recommended for those who want to experience the inversions to full effect.

Summary

Thrill - 10/10

Themeing - 5/10

Queue - 7/10

Tip: Get fast track! The park is getting wise to groups playing tricks in the single rider line. Be warned.
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Richardio123
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Re: The Smiler

Sun Jun 09, 2013 9:58 am

Well The Smiler. Yesterday. Weather fantastic. It didn't have any down time whatsoever to my knowledge.

Its fantastic. Simple

Queue was amazing expect for that bloody shop!!! It slows the queue down horrendously......
also noticed a speaker on the 1st air time hill had broke and it was dangling

Indoor queue was good except for one the the projectors was not working..  :roll:

Ride experience amazing except for the last 10 seconds its a tad violent !!!
and whats with the small jolt on the vertical lift hill ?? :? :? :?

Ah well all together its a wonderful ride and AT have made a great investment.

The other half who is a die hard Disney fan said WOW the only thing AT are good at is merchandise and their is a lot of it ;)

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Me of the right ;) Other half on the left
Signature Pending.. ;D
 
cactuselves
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Re: The Smiler

Sun Jun 09, 2013 8:51 pm

So, having visited the park on three occasions over the last week or so and having had several rides on The Smiler, I feel that I’m ready to write an objective and fair review.
I didn’t want to write the review too early so that my initial thoughts could become more concrete and to make sure that external influences and experiences on a specific day didn’t have an impact on my overall impression of the ride.

I’ll stick to the norm and write this in a few sections as I think that there are definitive parts of the whole experience that can be written about;

Overall Ride Area / Themeing

The Marmaliser dominates the central area of the queue line and is the central thrust of the outdoor theming for the ride (much like the Nemesis monster) but unlike the Nemesis monster it doesn’t feel as central to the overall theme as the ride experience itself, which is actually quite clever when you experience it. The Smiler is definitely the best themed rollercoaster on the Park and the ‘Wacky’ nature of the area music sets off the Marmaliser and other random effects perfectly (such as screens, 3D projection imagery on supports, cameras). Unlike many others, I think that the best part of the Marmaliser is the Tickler, it looks particularly wacky and I think fits the theme perfectly in that it is a little bit off the wall; I’ve also never seen anything quite like it at any other theme park in the world. The other Marmaliser effects are alright, with the ‘hypnotiser’ being the best of the rest.

Whilst in wow factor the Smiler is miles from being the best themed coaster on the planet, it is definitely immersive and very tongue in cheek, which for me works very well.

The main queue is a cattle pen and can actually get very frustrating, but I can’t see what else the park could have done given that the main service road runs through the woods behind. Some of the themeing is a little cheap looking and the main building could really do with something else to stop it from looking so drab.

Having said all of the above, whilst queuing for the ride you actually pay very little attention to the themeing as the coaster is constantly twisting and turning above you. My personal highlight of the outdoor area being the single rider queue which runs along the edge of the main pit and *very* close to some sections of track. It’s a pleasure pausing out here and watching the ride soar past in several different directions. On Saturday in particular, the ride was looking very impressive and making a wonderful noise, it actually left me a little bit awestruck which I wasn’t expecting from a Gerst.

When you first enter the station building it is very dark and I’ve got to be honest I wasn’t particularly impressed with the projection mapping, the main block of which (in the far right corner of the room ) was either not working at all or flickering on and off on all of my visits. This for me is the weakest area of the ride, however it is still better than queuing in a car park and I’ve noticed that a bit of anticipation can build up amongst park guests as the queue winds through the darkness.

The bag drop of area is good but the walk up stairs and into the station is not really worth mentioning. I really liked the station itself, its clinical nature and the ‘medical’ lights that flicker as the car is about to leave are plus points for me, again the ride feels totally wacky and the theme is preserved throughout.

The lighting on the indoor section of the ride was always on, on all three occasions that I visited, which was a little disappointing.

Ride

Forget everything above, it doesn’t really matter as it is the ride experience itself that counts and I have to say, it is incredible. For me, Nemesis and Texas Giant have finally been eclipsed as my favourite coasters.

I’ll explain the experience as well as I can.

The first drop out of the station packs a punch and comes as bit of a surprise even when you’ve ridden it a couple of times before and the indoor inversion feels really strange, you almost think that you are flat and you continue to twist. When the ride does straighten out it is with a bit of a bang. The ‘pre lift’ waiting area is funny as the ride laughs at you, before spewing you out into daylight and on the first lift hill.
Immense views of the towers are short lived, before you race around the bend and into the first inversion, this is closely followed by the two dive loops, the first bunny hop, the batwing and corkscrew – the elements aren’t taken at breakneck speed, the pace varies from element to element however the flow of elements is especially good and very good fun indeed.

There is absolutely no feeling of nausea as you glide into the brake run before the vertical lift. The last part of the batwing seemed to be taken at different speeds on each occasion that I rode, however it is always the slowest part of the ride and gives great hang time which is a different feeling to the preceding elements and actually quite cool (It is much better at the front.) The mid course vertical lift, for me is an absolute masterstroke, you feel like you have ridden an amazing coaster and have that ‘buzz’ that you want to do it all over again and then remember that you are about to …but on an even more insane layout. The second half of the ride contains the best back to back combination of elements I’ve ever experienced on a ride (and I’ve been on many), the (faster than the first) inverted drop, sea serpent and air time hill. Wow is all I can say, it is a relentless yet varied experience and each part is more fun than the last.  The cobra roll is ok, (with a real shuddering bang on the second half) however the final two inversions are sublime and intense. On each occasion, everyone around me on the ride was ecstatic by the end of the circuit and I heard one person describe it as ‘the complete ride’ – that’s how it feels at the end, you have no desire to race around and ride it again because it has given you all that you need.

Exit and Shop

Great, can’t fault it again in keeping with the theme completely wacky and fun. Particularly like the augmented reality mirrors in the shop an unneeded yet fantastic touch.

Rating (You probably guessed) 10/10
 
jb19852
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Re: The Smiler

Sun Jun 09, 2013 9:20 pm

First ride today, and pre-ride i thought about this huge review i was going to ride.

I then rode this...................Its simply epic!

There are gripes but they go out the window completely due to the excellance of the ride itself. 10/10 well done AT!
 
ucozade6
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Re: The Smiler

Sun Jun 09, 2013 11:28 pm

I am really sorry to disagree with most on here but, IMHO I think this this is one of the worst "Big" new coasters I have ever been on.

I hope it is a bad train that I keep getting but, so far I have no idea where the reference to intensity comes from. It loops but there is only a couple of sections that has any noticeable positive G's. Most loops end up feeling like every other loop.

Roughness is very much a personal experience and has a lot to do with where your head ends up in relation to position in the OTSR (mainly down to height). For me the first half is ok but, with an annoying vibration when in the back. This is a lot better towards the front. The second half is just painful with a nasty, nasty slap in the face before the final two inversions. The best bit of the ride are the two airtime hills (bits where it is not going upside down).

I actually like some Gerstlauer rides. Anubis, Huracan, G'Sengte Sau, Fluch Von Novorod and even Speed amongst others, just simply I find the Smiler boring for the most part with some serious rough spots. The later most likely down to the construction team rather than the manufacturer.

Personally I was hoping for something thrilling but, got something that has has crept in as the 6th best coaster at Alton and probably not even touching my top 300 coasters. It is better than a certain pain machine in Parc Asterix though  :lol:
 
DaveBear
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Re: The Smiler

Wed Jun 12, 2013 5:43 pm

Well i have finally Ridden the Smiler....  :D Have i been Corrected  :?

Well if the aim was to leave you Smiling then yes it does the job, its a fun Roller Coaster thats for sure, and by fun i mean like Kraken and Dragon Khan.....

If its intended to Marmalise you, and by that they mean disorientate then i guess YES/NO you see the ride does feature Loop after Loop and its pretty smooth and over really fast (never seemed like 2.5M+).  And so yes on the ride its does kind of distract you as you looping a lot, well for me... I never noticed the Marmaliser that much or even the other Dueling Train as it was hard to focus on anything when your being twisted over and over.

A Thrill ride..... yes to a degree but it is not that intense, and after the ride i was certainly never as Marmalised as i get after Nemesis. (2nd part of Cobra Roll is Rough).

I have made a lot of comments about Secret Elements and the Marmaliser and while those rumors where cool  and these elements are in effect a lot on Nemesis Sub Tera,  they never made it to the Smiler, yes we have the Inoculator that Sprays Water but on 2nd and 3rd Rows you dont get hit, well not when i was on.  And the Giggler well all i saw was just the spray mist coming out of that part of the ride, but never felt any smoke etc.

Only just before the indoor roll.....

But to be fair, if the Tickler did Tickle, you and you did get sprayed with Smelling Gas etc, having been on the ride you would not have really noticed them enough for them to be effective and thus no real point in installing such a thing.  I did say these kinds of effects are suited to slow moving rides or stationary attractions.

So what we was left with is the Marmaliser and its props and they look great to look at, so does the track from off ride, but when you ride the Smiler well for me, you dont really notice them that much, they dont seem to give the close hit effect of the Nemesis near misses.

But it does look really nice off ride.

The Que section you really do get a great look at the Track and Trains and its a sight to behold, the Indoor Projection Mapping Room is a little smaller than i expected.

Overall i dont think the Smiler lives up to the Theme, and i can see how they could have added more to it especially in the Que sections.... (I mean we hear what the Marmaliser Stages are, but we dont really experience anything that coinsides with those supposed stages, ok Hypnotiser i guess if you count the Projection Mapping and the Giggler if you count the Smoke etc just as you start the ride and go into the First Inversion.

But i guess i can leave such ideas to add to the Theme at a latter date, but i just felt the Theme and how it is played out with Sub Tera and the Staff fits more and is more well done, than the Smiler.

Saying that when it comes down to the actual Ride, then the Smiler is well very very good, strip away the Gimmicks and the Track Itself is a good ride, not as Thrilling as i thought it would be and more fun than i thought it would be.

The Biggest Shame about the Smiler...... IS...

THE DARN QUE TIMES.....

Yep as the Ride was that good that you just want to like go back on again, its got the X Factor feel like that such as Oblivion and Air, once you come off your like lets go again.... but then you realize even in Single Riders its a 45M+ Wait.

But i am sure over time the Ride Times will come down, as i remember when Air was new that also was 2 hours plus....

I would give the Smiler a 83/100 8)

It really is a must ride Roller Coaster in the UK, maybe Europe, does it have enough to make those far away come to the UK to experience the Record 14 Loops..... i dont think it does and thats a record that will be broken in years to come.

EDIT....

Verdict is yes we get a new ride that adds to the park, but to me its a new Attraction like Rita was, and while yes its a Thrill Ride,  and the only other is Nemesis, i dont think this ride had anything special about it like the last few Worlds Firsts SW Rides...

All The Smiller offers is a World First 14 Loops, which is something that will be beaten, but then look at Nemesis its SW and Worlds First was again not a World First at all, just Europe's First Inverted Coaster....

Saying that Air, Oblivion and Th13teen all have True Worlds Firsts but do those 3 really top Nemesis, Rita and The Smiler in the Thrilling Coaster Department..... nope they dont, so i guess having a Worlds First is not the be all that ends all and Alton Towers wanted a Thrill Ride to Top Nemesis and rides in UK Like Saw and Swarm and i have to say overall it has managed that.
Last edited by DaveBear on Wed Jun 12, 2013 5:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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Lillyland
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Re: The Smiler

Thu Jun 13, 2013 12:41 pm

I really really enjoyed it (went on tuesday). But, after reading reviews on here, i feel a bit let down with the 'effects' -there was no water spray, no flashing lights. There was only the requisite number of operatives, none of the people who chased others up the stairs, no suits at the end asking how the experience had been (and none of the projections working in the exit part).

That said, i don't think the ride needed all of the gimmicks anyway. It speaks for itself, and i came off it with a grin like a cheshire cat, despite missing half of the theming elements.

One thing i would say though... when queue times of 3 hrs are operating, a portaloo in the middle of the queue somewhere would be an absolute godsend!  :oops:
 
DaveBear
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Re: The Smiler

Thu Jun 13, 2013 3:12 pm

Lillyland wrote:
I really really enjoyed it (went on tuesday). But, after reading reviews on here, i feel a bit let down with the 'effects' -there was no water spray, no flashing lights. There was only the requisite number of operatives, none of the people who chased others up the stairs, no suits at the end asking how the experience had been (and none of the projections working in the exit part).

That said, i don't think the ride needed all of the gimmicks anyway. It speaks for itself, and i came off it with a grin like a cheshire cat, despite missing half of the theming elements.

One thing i would say though... when queue times of 3 hrs are operating, a portaloo in the middle of the queue somewhere would be an absolute godsend!  :oops:


Yeah i know what you mean and that was my point that the Nemesis Sub Tera staff and theme works and the Staff are always in Character, the Smiler was supposed to have similar interactive experience off ride but maybe thats not been the case...

I will say though when you read what the supposed Marmaliser was its 5 Stages, well end of the day all it is now is a Gimmick, just a Structure with Themes Props that you do not notice much on the ride and thus if the Marmaliser was taken away it would not effect the ride much as well Rita and Oblivion have no such things....

But then the Marmaliser does look awesome and add to the ride while your off ride its nice piece of eye candy.

The Ride does not live up to the Advert as far as Indoor roll section and effects, but you do get sprayed only its the timing of the thing, as it usually hits the front row and then sometimes maybe it just does not spray in synch to when the Trains past.

Thats always the problem with trying to get such effects to interact with a ride moving fast by and also while it goes around so many inversions, i mean with how the ride goes would you actually notice a spray of smoke, and tickler brushes unless they tickle you for a while....

I guess end of the day they worked out such things would be prone to failures and timing issues and ultimately would not get noticed much on ride. 

I do however feel the Marmaliser could have been implemented during the Queening Process.

Instead we get those areas that have like Stage 1: Inoculator and Stage 5: Giggler but all they are is just names on a Yellow Frame with Black Plastic Flaps...  But i guess these are things that can be added at a latter date.

Having been on the ride, i agree that such effects may have been a waste of time on the ride.

Ideally i have a few ideas of improvements and things that could have been done different away from the track, but then i guess with limited space there just ant room for such things.
 
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Re: The Smiler

Fri Jun 14, 2013 6:14 pm

So I was at the park Monday and Tuesday as I was staying at the SL Hotel. Queued up from about 9.15am, effects working a few test runs and then the infamous stall. Got our tickets revalidated.

Queued up from 9 on Tuesday, got on the ride just before 11. Wow, I love this thing, best ride at AT (yes, better than Nemesis) in my opinion.

Just one question though: Is it just me, or does anyone else love the jolt and the last 3 inversions on this ride? I felt it just gives some more force to the ride and really isn't uncomfortable like others are saying.
 
Kirsty25

Re: The Smiler

Fri Jun 14, 2013 6:20 pm

Review...

I queued from 9am on Tuesday to ride this and got on it about 10.30am, and found it to be a truly amazing ride, front row, absolutely brilliant, smooth running a 9/10 ride, theming brilliant, heartline roll inside brilliant, nothing more to say other than excellent.

Then I rode it at 3.40pm on Wednesday, it wasn't so smooth, second row and came off feeling a little queasy (but that could have been not eating anything that day. I'd say 7/10 for this ride

I rode it then at 5.45pm on Wednesday and Saw sprung to mind, it was rough and jolty, I was back row which is noticeably worse than the other rows and actually came off with a banging headache. An honest 3/10.

I hope that the last ride of my trip was a dodgy car needing new wheels and that it isn't a sign that this ride is going to deteriorate rapidly.
 
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zippy
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Re: The Smiler

Fri Jun 14, 2013 8:28 pm

I have just been corrected. All I can say is WOW!

Thought it was going to be a disappointing day when we were told it wasn't operating today, but then news quickly spread that it was open. Queue time was quickly above 2 hours, but despite the rain showers it was well worth queuing up for.

Can't wait to go back to ride it again  :D
 
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Zach
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Re: The Smiler

Sat Jun 15, 2013 7:45 pm

sully1311 wrote:
So I was at the park Monday and Tuesday as I was staying at the SL Hotel. Queued up from about 9.15am, effects working a few test runs and then the infamous stall. Got our tickets revalidated.

Queued up from 9 on Tuesday, got on the ride just before 11. Wow, I love this thing, best ride at AT (yes, better than Nemesis) in my opinion.

Just one question though: Is it just me, or does anyone else love the jolt and the last 3 inversions on this ride? I felt it just gives some more force to the ride and really isn't uncomfortable like others are saying.

What do you mean by jolt ? Do you on the vertical lift hill ?
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DaveBear
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Re: The Smiler

Sun Jun 16, 2013 4:22 pm

ATfanatic wrote:
sully1311 wrote:
So I was at the park Monday and Tuesday as I was staying at the SL Hotel. Queued up from about 9.15am, effects working a few test runs and then the infamous stall. Got our tickets revalidated.

Queued up from 9 on Tuesday, got on the ride just before 11. Wow, I love this thing, best ride at AT (yes, better than Nemesis) in my opinion.

Just one question though: Is it just me, or does anyone else love the jolt and the last 3 inversions on this ride? I felt it just gives some more force to the ride and really isn't uncomfortable like others are saying.

What do you mean by jolt ? Do you on the vertical lift hill ?


They mean the one as you exit the Cobra Roll, that last part of the Cobra Roll does jolt you a little, i guess depends on where you sit and what train as for me its nothing major.

As far as 3/10 come on ;)  This ride is fab, you should gave it higher but then noted that the roughness for you meant you would not enjoy it.... but each to their own.

the ride was smooth for me, then again i felt Nemesis is smooth to a degree also as far as jolt you about etc, yes when your odd you get dizzy and you feel the G-Forces but as far as rough i find neither rough.

Now Spin Ball Whizer/Sonic Pin Ball for me is rough as hell.....
 
JayTricky
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Re: The Smiler

Sun Jun 16, 2013 9:40 pm

After a lot of anticipation and a long time waiting, I finally arrived at the Towers today and can now add my thoughts on The Smiler! Being Fathers day, I invited my old man along to join in the fun. To make it extra special, my other half who's never been before (She's Texan and been living over here for a year!) - came along as well and we had a perfect day.

Arriving at the park we went straight over to X-Sector and I got my first look at The Smiler. Wow... I could not believe how good it looked. Better than the pictures for sure. The catchy, wacky theme tune was playing and all of the effects on 'The Marmaliser' were operating. It looks brilliant! Joining the queue we were told we had a 2 hour wait, and we finally started moving through the line and into the X-Sector where the music started to get louder and the screams could be heard.

The queue itself is bearable and fun. I found myself looking overhead at the cars racing round the track, and at points within metres of my head. It's intimidating and exciting at the same time. You get a great view of peoples reactions and there's some excellent photo opportunities. (Hoping to take a good camera next time!). The music is very loud, and you constantly hear people singing the laughing tune, which is quite catchy I'll admit. Upon entering the indoor part of the queue line, you are now surrounded by '3D' images and hypnotising visuals. A new sinister soundtrack was playing which was a nice change. The effects were a nice touch and very well executed.

Upon entering the station you are greeted with a large 'white' room. To put it bluntly. It's very basic and warehouse like. It reminded me of being in a hospital or at the dentist. Especially with the large lights and lamps that overlooked the cars and turned on just before one was dispatched into the darkness.

I asked the ride attendant politely if we could ride the front row and he smiled and gave a quick thumbs up! We took our seats and I was smiling already. You are staring at a black hole, with smoke filling it slowly. As we are dispatched, the large lamps lit up our seats, smoke sprayed down in front of us and we rolled forward into the first drop. It was excellent! You head straight into a barrel roll and get a little bit of hang time. Caught me off guard and left me quite disorientated! Everyone in the car was already laughing, added by the noisy laughing theme which was playing yet again!

Heading up the first lift hill you get a great view of the Towers. The first drop comes along quickly and before you know it you're heading into an inverted drop which was magnificent. I've never experienced those forces before! It's extremely hard to put into words how it felt. It was like airtime whilst being upside down! Now this is where it gets hazy.... I can not believe how INSANE and fun this ride was. I really did not know what the hell was going on or where I was. All I can explain from the 'first half' of the ride, is that it's very smooth, and the bunny hop was great and came out of nowhere. Everyone in the car was laughing and as the ride came to a stop, we all earned a much needed breather.

I found the break in the middle of the ride came at the right time. I was feeling 'Marmalised' (dizzy, disorientated and a slight case of WTF just happened!?) - so I had time to catch my breath just before we headed into the vertical lift hill. This seemed to scare the hell out of a lot of people! ...

Into the second half of the ride, the drop is great, again, and you're suddenly being thrown about in all directions yet again. Looking down at a line full of staring faces. Into the 'airtime hill', I experienced a serious 'WHAT THE ...." moment. You head over it with such speed that you leave your stomach at the top of it. Sprayed with a blast of water at the crest of the hill was a little refreshing if not amusing. But I have to rate this as one of my favourite moments and part of any roller-coaster I've ever been on. Love it.

Now coming out of the cobra roll, is my only fault with the ride. This inversion was just lethal. I knew to brace for it but a few people I was with said they banged their head. Not good at all. You could watch it off ride at how much it 'jolts' and catches people off guard. Hopefully they'll sort this out one day, I know the Gerstlauer engineers have already pinpointed this as a problem and for the good of The Smiler I hope something can be done as it was not an enjoyable experience! ... Loved the last two, tight, barrel rolls though! Nice bit of hang time on the last inversion.

Exiting the ride you are greeted with more hypnotic and confusing effects. The exit corridor was some sort of illusion that I had to double check was real before I walked through it! Nice effect. The long corridor through to the shop was nice with strobe lights, that laughing tune playing and visuals surrounding you. I was still smiling.

Overall. It's a winner from me. The comment that sticks in my head was from the old man... "That was the best roller-coaster I've ever been on!". Which made me Smile.

I give it a 9/10. Only thing keeping it from being a ten is that painful inversion coming out the cobra-roll. I can't fault it otherwise. I wanted to experience a range of forces on it and that's what I got. I experienced a force on the drop I've never felt before, I hit a couple of bits of airtime including insane bunny hop goodness - and at the end I felt like my mind didn't know where it was. It was very surreal.

I really can understand how it gets mixed reviews as it's not everyones cup of tea to spend half the ride upside down but I was blown away. Awesome!
 
DaveBear
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Re: The Smiler

Sun Jun 16, 2013 11:10 pm

Nice review...

Yeah the Cobra Roll is a intense one the main problem is as you exit the 2nd half of the roll you do get jolted a bit and i think maybe its the trains and how they interact with that kind of a inversion..... by that The Hulk Rides Cobra Roll is bigger faster and more intense but you dont get jolted as you exit it.

Maybe its because the Smiler Cobra Roll may be Small and thus any inversion thats smaller i guess will knock you about more, by that i mean if you compare the last two Cork Screws compared to the bigger loops that are smoother on the ride.... or maybe its just the train that is not suited to give a smooth ride on the Cobra Roll.
 
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SmileyMan
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Re: The Smiler

Sun Jun 16, 2013 11:59 pm

By the sounds of the cobra roll, it sounds like the last inversion on SAW THE RIDE. (The tight barell roll into a half loop).that is very rough, and is EXTREAMLY tight. Can anyone compare it to the smiler for me?
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