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Showing content with the highest reputation since 01/16/19 in all areas

  1. 6 points
    Project LC

    Merlin Entertainments

    Investors are starting to become worried that underwhelming economic performance is not due to current market conditions and is more to do with the quality of the attractions. In April when the latest financial data is released and another underwhelming year is revealed the share price will either fall or flatline. Investor predictions will most likely turn to sell and Varney will be under pressure to make changes or walk. From what he has said in the past he doesn't like change and blames standard cycles in the economy. What I feel Varney has failed to take account of is that the current economic cycle has just past its peak and it is very unlikely they will be able to increase profits in the coming years with the eurozone heading towards recession. With any luck the board will oust Varney and someone with a refreshed vision can take the reigns. You really have to question if one person can continue to come up with new ideas to drive forward the company for as long as Varney has been there. His current direction is suffocating the parks and I see issues on the horizon as major assets reach the end of there service life.
  2. 4 points
    Benin

    2019 Season

    Constructively criticising the parks for their flaws is a much better option then pretending everything is fine... It is a DISCUSSION forum after all no? At the end of the day we all want the parks to succeed, I want Thorpe to become a park I would actually plan a trip to again, same for Chessie really, as they've both regressed as parks over the last few years... It's not helped by looking longingly across the Channel and seeing the quality additions on the continent, and wondering why the second biggest theme park operator can't match even decent quality additions that some small family run parks are getting... Thorpe have a brand issue problem, not helped by their constant changing philosophies and target audience, which added onto that they actually have nothing to shout about addition wise means they haven't got a marketing campaign to speak of... Pushing for the birthday celebration would be sensible, but are the park able to get a budget for that? Do they have anything confirmed for this season events wise beyond Fright Nights? Wouldn't be surprised if they've had a review of the events last season and had a lot of question marks over their successes.. I honestly no idea of the whole year of Walking Dead or Love Island Lates were actually critical successes, especially the Lates stuff beyond goons being able to whore some night rides...
  3. 3 points
    pluk

    Hyde Park Winter Wonderland

    I really enjoyed Dr Archibald, it all synced up really well and was pretty effective in creating fun scares. Ridiculously, while clearly nothing like as technologically advanced it was actually more of an enjoyable experience than the £millions worth of DBGT. Makes you realise DBGT just isn't fun however clever it is, and when you are literally creating a world from scratch in a VR headset why would fun not be your starting point?
  4. 3 points
    Wumbamillio

    Merlin Entertainments

    Haha no offence to out of touch hipsters everywhere, but after going in to DBGT with an open mind and usually loving attractions rides like this, that is exactly how I feel and seemingly anyone Ive chatted to as well (enthusiasts and non enthusiasts). The arrogant attitude Thorpe Park still have about it, like in the recent behind the scenes video ("nowhere else in the world does anything anywhere near the scale of what we do"), is just plain silly. You don't entertain people by forcing this 'impressive soundingness' on them. They know it's their most complained about attraction by a long way, so why don't they dial it back a bit? Hopefully Merlin has learnt from their mistake..! Could have been awesome in different hands.
  5. 3 points
    Wumbamillio

    Merlin Entertainments

    This is very true these major problems couldn't have been foreseen by enthusiasts, but they should have been by the project managers. I study building design/production and project management, I'm not an expert but I can say these are certainly bread and butter for any project. Same for a lot of Merlin projects, these things are known about but corners are cut relentlessly. Same for Ninjago's lack of air conditioning at Legoland – cut from the budget to save money and now we have staff fainting in summer and cheapo air cons added at the park's expense. But anything to cut MMM's project budget. Or countless other scenarios at Merlin parks, that later cost them more. But the irony with DBGT is the project budget was so ludicrously high anyway, they could have rebuilt half the park with that! As well as cutting corners and not value-engineering their projects, Merlin are extremely wasteful. "Efficient with capex" they are not, unlike what Nick Varney believes they are. But probably more important than all of that is the entertainment factor. DBGT is a pretentious, unentertaining load of nonsense, designed by self-congratulatory out of touch hipsters. (haha) Despite all the problems behind the scenes, it had the beginnings of a great theme and should have at least been fun! I totally agree the core idea and the way the illusion works could have been phenomenal. But it missed every single opportunity to entertain, and squandered that amazing train system.
  6. 3 points
    The more that is revealed about this project the more soul-suckingly mediocre it becomes. If it were included in the ticket I'd gladly give it a try with an open mind, but I can't even do that. Not going to play Merlin's brainwashing game by paying extra for something I've done many times before anyway. The Dungeon "brand" has been watered down year on year until it's become just another easy to reproduce tourist trap. You could have the same kind of horror/humour experience far better for less price elsewhere. This was the last thing the park needed.
  7. 3 points
    Benin

    2019 Season

    It'll be the Rangers because it'll be an attempt to jump on the nostalgia bandwagon and try to remind us miserable lot that the park used to be enjoyable Of course it could be something new... But with no real addition to speak of in terms of... Anything there's little else it could be beyond a few more dodgy IP tie-ins tacked onto an event or two...
  8. 2 points
    Project LC

    2019 Season

    Nick Varney at the end of the day is a brand creator. Its what he worked as for many years and its what he has focused on as a CEO. You have the overall Merlin brand, the sub brands (thorpe, alton ect.) and then you have the microbrands (nemesis, cheap and tacky IPs). Now Merlin is typically very good at the sub branding and the microbrands. There are exceptions with Thorpe being one of them. Thorpe lacks direction and as such its brand is poor. However its issues wouldn't be as significant if the overall brand was used more. Take Cadbury's, nearly every product is Cadbury's ... (Cadbury's cream egg, Cadbury's dairy milk). I feel to maximise revenue and reduce on advertising costs Merlin should be pushing the master brand more. It would drive up pass sales and would mean customer location is far less of an issue for advertising campaigns. The midways cant afford tv advertising by themselves but a combined campaign with the whole group can drive customers towards them which may never have considered it.
  9. 2 points
    TPC

    2019 Season

    Thorpe needs to go back to 2014 marketing where an island like no other was used. You could easily use the same format for adverts except change the line at the end saying 'and now new for 2019 there are...'.
  10. 2 points
    PJ.

    Derren Brown's Ghost Train: Rise of the Demon

    When it has been operating for awhile and they want to drum up some interest in it, I hope they do some behind the scenes videos on how it all works. As long as they make it clear which videos have spoilers so those who don’t want to know, don’t have to watch. I think we would have more of an understanding why it breaks down so much of we saw all the components. Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
  11. 2 points
    Benin

    2019 Season

    Plus a confusion over who the target market actually is... One year it's for families, next year it's the MOST TERRIFYING YEAR YET! As badly as the places are run at least Chessie and Towers have quite distinct and solid branding behind them...
  12. 2 points
    JoshC.

    2019 Season

    You don't need new things to advertise a theme park. A solid brand and a mention of the park's 40th birthday would work.
  13. 2 points
    Benin

    Hyde Park Winter Wonderland

    Oh it's obviously a general issue with all VR based attractions, but the majority at least clean them either in between cycles or have a bulk load of them... I mean the amount of cleaning just those crap little 3D glasses get over the course of their life (granted they can go through industrial steamers which helps) but should anything happen they've not really got a leg to stand on... Least Towers can say the their stuff got cleaned between dispatches...
  14. 2 points
    JoshC.

    Galactica

    Galactica track is being jetwashed.
  15. 2 points
    Stuntman707

    Hyde Park Winter Wonderland

    The Dr Archibald was another VR ride that felt like more of a demo. Not worth £9 a go. The best parts of it were actually the real world theming in the queue and the exit tunnel. To me its conclusive that no matter how good VR may be, it does not beat the immersion of real world, old fashioned theming, animatonics, smoke, lighting, sound effects & UV.
  16. 2 points
    Cedar Creek

    Merlin Entertainments

    It’s no secret that the majority of Merlin attractions are currently going through some sort of decline, whether that be Thorpe, the midways or even the Legolands (as there have been reports of profits dropping there too). Whilst things like ‘cheaper flights’, terrorism, the economy and recent ride accidents are just some things that may have hindered visitor numbers, Merlin cannot be cleared of all charges by any means. Over recent years, we have generally seen charm, character, atmosphere, upkeep/appearances and general pride dwindle in these parks. There is typically less escapism when you are bombarded by ‘cheap short-term attractions’, walking adverts and ‘exposed ride buildings’ -see DBGT, Ninjago etc.). The fact they have stuck ‘cheap’ Lego monsters on there only salts the wound further and epitomises this. It’s a fact the U.K. parks are generally capped when it comes to growth and expansion, largely down to space limitation, strict planning or most likely both, but this shouldn’t be a hinderance to what the parks could do, if they were allowed the resources to create entertaining attractions. The Wickerman is a pure example of this. Sure, it’s probably not the best layout for a roller coaster, but through it’s compelling storyline, effects, atmospheric soundtrack and theming proves the parks and the U.K. can still create distinctive and memorable attractions that the G.P. will love and enjoy.
  17. 2 points
    Cbeebies Land is nothing on what Toyland Tours and even Charlie were for a big family attraction. If Cbeebies Land is now meant to be the new standard for family offering, we know British parks are in the toilet
  18. 2 points
    Whatever

    Your Thorpe Park

    some of y’all really need to buy a sarcasm detector huh
  19. 2 points
    Little bit of insight about the engineering checks involved for DBGT. Interesting for them to be open about it, given how secretive they tried to be over it in the past. Almost like they've given up caring? Also, no idea why they decided to do the silly flicker from Part Seven to Part Six, given that they did Part Six last week. Achieves nothing..
  20. 2 points
    Ivsetti

    Colossus

    Exhibit No. 105 in our obscene quotes taken out of context
  21. 2 points
    Benin

    Complaints, complaints and complaints.

    Negative - It's Thorpe Park (RESORT & RIDES)! Positive - I'm not visiting next year.
  22. 1 point
    holtjammy16

    Your Thorpe Park

    I've seen serious posts suggesting worse so you never know huh 🙄
  23. 1 point
    Benin

    Merlin Entertainments

    Hmmmmm...
  24. 1 point
    JoshC.

    Colossus

    I believe the main issue with new Intamin trains is that they're wider than Colossus' are currently. So for Thorpe to introduce new trains (which make a noticeable difference to the ride experience), they would need to make station alterations, lift hill alterations, new clearance testing, etc. On top of this, new style trains on track designed for old trains could significantly alter the ride experience in unpredictable ways, so it may not even make a difference. In other words, new trains would cost a significant amount of money (we are talking literally millions, probably more than Thorpe have spent in the past 2 years combined). And there's a, albeit small, risk it may not make any difference. Of course, that doesn't mean there's not stuff Thorpe could do. They just have to think a bit outside the box to come up with an alternative way to improve the ride experience. But sadly, they won't put the energy into that. Frankly, the best thing for Colossus would be to tear it down and build something new. But again, ain't never going to happen...
  25. 1 point
    JoshC.

    Introduce Yourself

    Well, looks as if you've joined the right place...
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