Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


About JoshC.

  • Birthday 04/06/1994

Previous Fields

  • Favourite ride
  • Favourite Theme Park

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Interests
    Theme Parks.

Recent Profile Visitors

52,767 profile views
  1. If Annual Passholders keep going back and riding it, does it really matter what they do to the experience any more? 🤷‍♂️
  2. JoshC.

    Paultons Park

    Storm Chaser's queue is partially complete... https://twitter.com/Lawrence_Mancey/status/1162351227373522944
  3. For a recent example, Untamed cost €12m. Assuming a ground-up RMC would cost more, and then take into account Merlin inflating prices, a brand new RMC would probably be slated to cost between the £18-20m mark. Hardly cheaper than a 'big' manufacturer. Sure, Freespins would be a nice idea, but they'd be pretty low down on my list of rides I'd like to see go to Thorpe (or Towers really). It wasn't too long ago the idea of one them (or a similar-ish Intamin Zac Spin) would have been shot down for being ridiculous, due to their average throughput. Now it feels like that option would be brilliant because it's something. It definitely is. Alton did that with B&M in the 90s to be fair. Six Flags seem to have done it with RMC. But for every successful partnership, they'll be unsuccessful ones. Sure it's not coaster-related, but Merlin/Simworx is a prime example. Parque Reunidos work closely with Gerstlauer, but they've gotten very little out of it. It's a gamble, especially with smaller manufacturers, so it doesn't always pay off.
  4. Thorpe went for a smaller and cheaper manufacturer for DBGT in Simworx. But Thorpe asked too much and Simworx over-promised (and had to get in multiple other manufacturers making it a cocktail of technology which didn't really mix). It doesn't matter what manufacturer you go for, it matters what brief you give them and how much money you put into it. With RMC's popularity ever-soaring, their prices will be going up. They're definitely not a 'small' or 'cheap' manufacturer these days. Exactly the same as with Vekoma, for example: rides like Lech cost £4m, but now they're charging significantly more for the new style rides because demand has increased. S&S's track record hardly does much for them. Few of their coasters have been trouble-free (even Steel Curtain had construction issues). If Thorpe went for a coaster from them, if..or rather, when..a problem came about, they'd be slammed for being cheap. It's simple: you get what you pay for.
  5. Thorpe was incredibly busy today, long queues and what seemed to be a lot of people at guest services at the end of the day complaining about the reduced opening hours...
  6. Night time video too, with what appears to be one person on the front row riding it:
  7. JoshC.


    Heh, nice. Looks like it could be a copy of Baa Express at Europa? Nice little investment for the park tbh. Good to see, and I'm sure it'll work for the park. Woo.
  8. Yes, this is true. The reasons include: -A decrease in visitors compared to 2011. Despite the fact that 2011 was one of Thorpe's busiest and most profitable (and so, in that sense, 'best') years ever, Swarm still had to deliver an increase. It didn't, so Merlin saw Swarm as a failure, and immediately lost faith in whatever their thought process was behind that direction. -Weak brand. Swarm didn't capture people's imagination. It was very generic and not very recognisable. The end of the world vibe was overdone and it merged in with so many other things that went for that. -Experience didn't match marketing. For one reason or another, people expected an intense thrill ride, similar to Saw. Instead, Swarm offered a much more graceful experience, leading people to be disappointed. So basically, people had minor niggles about the ride, and less people visited Thorpe (which would have happened regardless). So, Merlin see it as a failure. Despite that, in the long term it's done a good job, is less generic these days and scores very highly in KPI scores, which Merlin love. So it's been a slow burner. But Merlin's model doesn't allow for slow burners. Just a couple more to add: Derren Brown's Ghost Train Going for a dark ride over a coaster was always a risk, but it was one which needed to be done in my opinion. Sadly, DBGT missed every single possible mark, which really damaged the park. It did attract attention, and it did cause attendances to rise. But it damaged the park's reputation by so much more than the worth of a few thousand visitors. Two big investments in a row that failed is a big recipe for disaster. You need a sure-fire win after that; something with minimal risk. But when everything is spiralling downwards, the pressure is even great, and the amount of risk you take has to decrease. Ultimately it leaves us in the situation we're in now: the best way to minimise risk is to not take a risk at all. Can't lose money if you don't spend money, right? Terrible Non-Big Investments You have to go all the way back to 2007 when the park added a solid non-big investment, in Flying Fish. Arguments can be made for Storm Surge (diversifies the line up and added a much needed family ride) and Walking Dead (a solid scary-themed indoor attraction at the end of the day). I guess you could say 2013 with turning X forwards but that slipped under the radar with the focus on Swarm backwards. But I think Flying Fish is the last one where someone would struggle to come up with a reasonable negative for it. Since then, we've had short term investments, based off fads or needless IPs, which have led to a mish-mash of identities and ideas, and nothing which has really improved the line up. This is coupled with a lack of general upkeep in the existing parts of the park. The bare minimum was done to rides, theming, presentation, etc., which eventually led to rides closing, theming being taken away, etc. Focusing too much on Scares Fright Nights works for the park. Regardless of its quality, it's still the busiest, best received, and most profitable time of year for the park, year in year out. The park tried to capitalise on that and make it work all year round (which, in fairness, isn't too unreasonable). It worked with Saw - The Ride, because that was handled properly. Saw Alive was a nice idea and helped absorb the busyness whilst it was full time. After that, Thorpe should have quit whilst they were ahead. Scare attractions don't work outside of Halloween in a theme park setting. Scary stuff doesn't work outside of Halloween in a theme park setting. One thing to compliment a line up, yes. But an overarching focus on it? No. Yet Thorpe didn't realise this. They didn't learn that in 2005 when Freakshow 3D was dead during summer because no one cared. They didn't learn that after Saw Alive's popularity dwindled in 2012. They didn't learn after Swarm. They didn't learn after Ghost Train. They probably haven't learnt after The Year of The Walking Dead. Keep scares for Fright Nights, and focus on a diverse line up. Not Learning Lessons Related to above, Thorpe make the same mistakes again and again. This likely comes down to management seemingly being a revolving door, especially in more recent years. A new person comes in, tries something, it doesn't work, leave. A new person comes in, tries that same thing in a different disguise, it doesn't work, leave. Repeat. They need to take a step back, look at what they've done for the past 15 years and realise what hasn't worked, and what has worked, and start building from that.
  9. I wouldn't call it 'truly shocking'. Plenty of mid-sized parks out there adjust their opening times throughout the year to reflect how busy they are, including reducing them. It's not good obviously, and a sign of how the park are struggling. No doubt the weather at the start of the summer holidays hasn't helped with attendance, but surely with the weather now likely to be more normal for the rest of summer, it's time to recuperate and stay open longer when the crowds will be around. The back-end of summer is always busier, and reducing opening hours just feels like a shot in the foot.
  10. I do wonder how much of the Loggers station they'll be able to utilize. If they can use most of it, it gives a solid amount of space to play with given they've got the undercover queue area too. Be nice for them to start pushing it a bit more now to try and gain more attention. Summer so far feels quiet so a big push for Fright Nights feels needed now more than ever (feel like I've said that before..)
  11. Looopings are reporting that Plopsaland are considering introducing a Mack Xtreme Spinning Coaster, perhaps for 2022: https://www.looopings.nl/weblog/11992/Plopsaland-heeft-plannen-voor-extreme-nieuwe-achtbaan.html The park are planning on opening the finished version of Dino Splash (rethemed log flume) and a hotel next year, and a new kids area with kiddie cred and dark ride in 2021. But with Belgian parks investing heavily and being very competitive lately (Walibi Belgium resurgence, Bobbejaanland actually investing, Bellewaerde ticking along nicely), the park seem to want to focus on introducing more thrill rides too, to complement Anubis and family-thrill Heidi. Certainly would be great to see one of these in Europe, and would be a fantastic and diverse addition to the park. Hopefully it does happen!
  12. The park had a competition for people to guess how much the project of the new coaster cost (originally asking how much the ride cost). Apparently, the project is costing over £20m. For some perspective, that means it's costing more than any Merlin project (except maybe Ghost Train). If that's true, that's ridiculous and park are ripping themselves off.. 😂
  13. Regardless of the correctness of the source, it's pretty poor of a staff member to be saying 'a ride is closed cos someone has been sacked'. Tbf if staff were saying when the ride would open and it did open at that time, there's a good chance it could be a staff-related reason. There's not many other ways they would be able to know confidently when the ride would open.
  14. Swarm should be back open soon (hopefully today or tomorrow). I'm under the impression that Stealth (and Quantum again - sorry @Mark9) will be closed for a little while longer yet.
  • Create New...