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Everything posted by Mega-Lite

  1. I would apologise for how long it's taken me to finish this report, but at the end of the day I wanted to make sure I was at least half satisfied with how it came out, unlike most of the trip reports on the internet... #NotShadeButHonesty Day 15 Today was the last full day of the trip but it was easily going to be one of the most memorable. It began with a short metro journey to... Lotte World - https://rcdb.com/5016.htm This was my 2nd time visiting the park, so if you want a much better write up go see my last Korean trip report. The main reason for visiting today was to reride Atlantis Adventure and ride Pharaoh's Fury, which was down on our last visit. Because we had a much more important and pressing matter to attend to later, today's visit was going to be akin to a hit and run. While waiting for the doors to open, we devised a plan... Sprint to Atlantis Adventure, grab a fast track, ride Atlantis Adventure, ride Pharaoh's Fury, mince about a bit, fast track Atlantis Adventure, then leave. I saw with my own eyes last time that Atlantis Adventure can get 3+ hour queues and that the free fast track can sell out in the first 20 minutes of the park being open, so we knew we'd have no option but to absolutely run full speed to the attraction. Our only worry was the PA outside the park repeatedly telling us that running wasn't allowed in the park, pfft, details... As soon as the doors opened we went for it, sprinting full speed up escalators, over bridges and through castles, all while slithering past Koreans at speed, which in turn caused them to start running too. At one point a security guard screamed "STOP RUNNING", which caused all the Koreans to stop dread infront of me, causing me to shout "JESUS CHRIST" and almost cause an international incident. Thankfully I was able to crash between a bin and a wall and continued to give it all I had until I reached Atlantis Adventure. We managed to get 11:15 return tickets for Altantis Adventure and then quickly joined the currently 20 minute queue. By the time we reached the ride, the tickets were completely sold out, the park was open until 11pm by the way, I told you they sell out quick. Atlantis Adventure - https://rcdb.com/1646.htm I still really enjoy Atlantis Adventure. The seating and train design is awesome and very exposed, the first launch is alot quicker than I remembered, it has 2 insane ejector moments and lots of twisty goodness. It's just almost criminal that the coaster blocks to a complete stop, then goes up a slow lift mid course. I think I've reached my daily quota for moaning about pacing issues but I just really wished Atlantis had the launch mid course and the lift to start, never mind eh, it's still pretty awesome. With our first ride on Atlantis done, we tried to go ride Comet Express, the park's awesome powered Intamin spinning indoor space themed coaster of craziness but it appeared to be down today. One of the tallest towers in the World looking pretty next to Lotte World's castle. As you'll remember Lotte World is a mostly indoor theme park, with only Atlantis Adventure, Comet Express and the large flat rides living outside. So next we headed indoors and to the top floor to ride Pharaoh's Fury. Pharaoh's Fury Pharaoh's Fury is yet again another Indiana Jones knock off and has a bit of a cult following within the enthusiast community. Now the story goes that it used to features insane amounts of real fire and loads of special effects with some calling it as good as the real Indiana Jones but then it was tamed down for whatever reason. In it's current state though I'd probably put Indy on par with Qin Dynasty Adventure and Pharaoh's a small step down from those 2 but that's not to say I'm slagging it off because it is very good. What really is impressive though is how they have managed to fit this monster dark ride on the top floor of a multistory building that's part of a theme park in the middle of Seoul. I'm certain black magic was used when building Lotte World because it all defies logic and it adds another layer of enjoyment to the park in my mind. After using our Atlantis fast track tickets that we almost died obtaining, we hit up another ride we missed last time before leaving. Fly Venture My 2nd flying theatre attraction and it was even worse than the 1st, that is all... After leaving Lotte World, we decided for lunch to try Taco Bell and despite my hesitations it was lovely. Now the following magnificence needs at least some explanation and I hope you find it amusing. Gfriend, one of the best Kpop groups to ever be etched into existence were holding a full blown concert in Seoul the day before our trip ended. From the very moment I noticed online that stars had aligned for the timing to be that perfect, I knew we had to go, no matter what. This was the perfect ending to the trip and knowing it was happening but not being able to go would have seriously tainted the trip, whether it liked it or not. The day tickets went on sale, me and my friend were ready. He had snuck out of an important meeting at work, got in his car, synced his laptop to his phone and was waiting 5 minutes before the timer hit 0. While I was hiding behind and under shelves at work ready to assist at any possible moment. 10 minutes passed the tickets going on sale and no response from him, now 20, 30, an hour. At lunch I phoned to be presented with, "I've been sitting in this car trying and trying again for over an hour now, it 99.8% sold out in 1 minute and me and many Koreans are trying and failing to buy the last 2 or 3 tickets and it keeps crashing the stupid website." Without thinking anything other than, "we are going, there's no other option", we headed to Stub Hub and purchased 2 incredibly inflated tickets. It wasn't long however before we discovered that we had just made a terrible mistake. First I read an article on a popular Kpop website, explaining that the industry is heavily cracking down on resold tickets, including fining those who use them... Then it became apparent that you cannot talk directly to the ticket seller on Stub Hub and that the customer service team are dreadful. The tickets wouldn't be delivered to the seller until after we landed in Korea, so we needed it explained to them that they CANNOT mail them to England, they need to either meet us or post them to our hotel. Well the customer service team just kept repeating bulls**t like, "it's your job to make sure you can receive them" and not answering our questions or passing anything on. Fast forward 2 days, we went back on the official Gfriend ticket website to discover that thousands of tickets had been cancelled and were now up for purchase. Very much doubting we'd ever even get our Stub Hub tickets, let alone if they'd work, we bought 2 official tickets and decided it was time to cancel the Stub Hub ones. I'll take no credit for the mammoth task my friend went through with getting the Stub Hub tickets refunded. It took nearly 3 weeks, many emails to banks and paypal and no help whatsoever from Stub Hub. In the end he beat the system but moral to the story, f**k Stub Hub. In our understandable excitement to get to the venue we made many hilarious mistakes, with the best one being taking the wrong fork on the metro line, ending up at a dead end, then being sat on the train while the driver walked through switching ends, he took it in his stride, the thousands of Koreans outside did not. Once at the venue I luckily made a new best friend, who helped us pick up our tickets and understand the slightly strange system of you getting let into the standing bit depending on the number on your ticket, which is ultimately pointless because nothing stops you from slithering through the crowd once inside and the Korean populous weren't even pushing to be at the front either way, strange. My new friend asked me about how and why I got into Kpop and Korean culture, after explaining in detail and bigging up his country, he replied with, well you guys have got Harry Potter... He didn't understand me when I called him racist for that... There are no words to simply describe how good the concert was. One of the best bands ever created, a massive arena, huge impressive staging, PYROS, 2 hours long and the perfect audience. In London for Dreamcatcher we had tons of fake fans not even paying attention and spoiling it for the real fans. In Japan for Oh My Girl, because the Japanese audience are so reserved and quiet there was a slight sense of awkwardness. For Gfriend in Seoul, we were presented by thousands of people all there for 1 purpose, united, going mental at all the right moments, which combined with the perfection occurring on stage made for a magical experience. Buzzing so hard on the way back to the hotel we made even more metro mistakes but it didn't matter, life complete. Day 16 It is the end. The end of the best trip ever and the more I look back, the more I stand by the statement that it can never be topped and even if it is one day, it will forever remain special to me. After some last minute Kpop shopping and a hastily eaten Quiznos, we boarded the plane back to England and back to reality. Thank you for reading.
  2. Well... Have you actually seen how much effort Wanda put into theming in their parks? It wouldn't surprise me if the clone looked as good if not better than Taron... As I mentioned in my trip report recently (read it), riding a cloned layout, if it doesn't live up to how you remember the original riding, can cause you to question if you've remembered/rated the original correctly. I'll see you at the meet! In all seriousness though, can we all actually go ride this coaster and then debate who's bae it's beating. I don't want me and ChiapasC to be the only 2 who go and ride it because that will solve nothing!
  3. Was dreading coming in this thread after reading elsewhere people coming out with outlandish comments concerning the new coaster, but TPM you've done me proud. So I'll begin with it looks absolutely amazing and I'll sell my body parts to be standing in the queue (as it's probably broken down) on opening weekend. But I have a question, not a complaint. Why have they gone for putting a triple launch switch track section mid course? Is it just to be able to claim all those silly records, I really hope not... I know NOTHING about Parc Asterix, other than 1 visit I enjoyed but it appears to me that they have the space and ability to have run this as a full course layout but haven't. I'll echo Benin and say my first thought other than "holy s**t that looks insane" was, "oh no, why have they put that bit in the middle..." If the coaster started with the triple (if they MUST have it), then it would have flowed sooooo much nicer, just imagine hitting a Taron style running launch with that layout... Either way, not moaning, just spewing words, I'll see you on opening day.
  4. Me and my credit counting friend have tried no less than 4 times now with no result, it quite simply is not as simple as you make it out to be... On the up side, the very same day they last ignored us they made national news for "trapping screaming children 200 feet in the air for 4 hours", so who really is the loser here? I'm not bitter honest... Tempting...
  5. You sir are the true winner here!
  6. Day 13 I woke up today feeling an awful mixture of sadness that today was our last day in Japan and dread for just how insane today was going to play out, you'll see. Tokyo Dome City - https://rcdb.com/4982.htm After a solemn but quick train journey, we arrived at Tokyo Dome City, the home of Thunder Dolphin. I had it in my head for some reason that Tokyo Dome City was going to be a bustling, large amusement park next to the legendary Tokyo Dome, when actually it feels much more like a collection of rides inside of, outside of and on top of a massive mall. For this reason, finding the entrances to attractions was a lot more confusing than you'd imagine. Following a confusing search, which was constantly interrupted by screaming at Thunder Dolphin, we found the ticket counter, which was literally hidden in a line of your standard looking mall shops. Thunder Dolphin - https://rcdb.com/1845.htm You know how in this report I keep bringing up coasters that in my head have a legendary status, well most certainly among them is Thunder Dolphin. Look at how this beauty absolutely towers over the mall area below. After going up an elevator and 2 flights of stairs we found ourselves at the entrance. Now as a huge fan of Expedition GeForce and Goliath and a previous advocate of the Mega-Lite, I was extremely excited to see what Tokyo's own Intamin monster would ride like. The outcome unfortunately, aligns with exactly what I had previously read online, that it is infact nowhere near in the same league as the other Intamin Hyper coasters. Thunder Dolphin's first drop is by far the best part of the coaster, providing an awesome ass out of seat experience during the whole decline. It is from the bottom of this drop however that things take a turn and Thunder Dolphin becomes an Intamin Jet Coaster. While it is still an amazing experience to fly over building tops and through massive Ferris Wheels, you can't help but be disappointed when knowing what this ride hardware is normally capable of. Thunder Dolphin looks visually outstanding and provides an experience I very much doubt you'd be able to replicate, sadly as an Intamin Hyper though, it's a let down. The Dive Next up we did the park's shooting dark ride, the only reason I mention it is, you ride it standing up, which is different at least. Wonder Drop So I was going to keep alluding to how crap my shoes were in this trip throughout this report but I forgot. The short of it was, they'd fill with water any time the floor was even slightly damp and with the insane weather we'd be facing on this trip, I'm lucky I'm still able to walk as I type this. With that in mind, today was a lovely sunny day, we didn't have a hotel tonight and the shoes were currently performing fantastic, untill... Wonder Drop is the park's log flume attraction and was absolutely evil! In the ride's defence, one of the most attractive women I've ever seen appeared just before the drop, to remind us to stay seated in a manner of cute smiles and amazing hand gestures. This probably took me off guard, because the main drop kicked my ass. Water braking redefined and probably the wettest drop on a conventional log flume ever. My shoes were absolutely ruined yet again and good God was I going to feel it later. The park is/was home to a Spider Man knock off called TOKYO PANIC CRUISE, which looked amazing but for whatever reason, was completely boarded up, I want to believe they were getting it ready to be a Halloween maze. Big-O The park's famous spokeless Ferris Wheel where I got lots of lovely pictures of Thunder Dolphin. Rather amazingly it featured touch screens and could play videos in multiple languages about the park's attractions. After a few more laps of Thunder Dolphin we left the park but kept our wristbands on incase we found time to return later today, spoiler, we didn't. Tobu Zoo - https://rcdb.com/4978.htm The train ride to Tobu Zoo took a good 45 minutes and really did feel like it was in the middle of nowhere. The park is apparently a 20 minute walk from the station, so we jumped on the bus that departs from just outside the station. While I'll sit here all day slagging off Japanese trains, the buses in Japan are fantastic. The drivers are so incredibly friendly, the buses are clean as anything and all the patrons are so respectful. And I used to bad mouth Thorpe's entrance... When we got to the ticket counter, an old Japanese women told us that Kawasemi wasn't operating. When we replied with, "oh ok, that's what we came for, so thank you but we'll leave", a younger women jumped on her phone and told us to wait. She then informed us that, engineering were going to try to open the coaster. Now I can't be 100% sure they opened Kawasemi just for us but I do strongly feel that's what happened, I LOVE Japan. With that we bought entry only tickets and while 2 of my friends went to check out the zoo, I went to scope out Kawasemi. Almost as soon as I arrived outside the completely deserted entrance area, engineering smiled and gave the thumbs up to the ride team. Now we have a problem, we have entrance only passes and as far as we can tell you have to walk all the way back to the park entrance to get wristbands, or not... After explaining the situation to the Kawasemi ride op, he walked us to a GAMES COUNTER, where an incredibly friendly lady sold us some wristbands, oh Japan I love you so. Kawasemi - https://rcdb.com/3799.htm Kawasemi as everyone knows is an Intamin Mega-Lite, a coaster type and layout I used to praise immensely based on the wonderful Piraten at Djurs Sommerland. Now let me once again moan about clones (I promise I'll be quick), it turns out riding layout clones that don't live up to the first example you rode, can quite seriously harm your perception of that first coaster. Piraten, from memory blows the aforementioned GeForce and Goliath out of the water, it is a coaster I rode over 10 times and literally only stopped when I started to go blind in my left eye, so yeah, it was awesome. Then earlier this year (I'll do a report at some point I hope), I went to Nigloland and rode Alpina Blitz, same layout as Piraten but built by Mack. While a very good coaster, it came no where near how awesome I viewed Piraten. Is Alpina Blitz considerably worse despite have the same layout with better trains? Or was I wrong in how I rated Piraten in the first place? Stupid clones man... And now we come to Kawasemi. Literally the exact same ride, trains and all as Piraten and while it was clearly better than Alpina Blitz and had hints of what I remember lapping up on Piraten, it ultimately once again failed to be as good as I remember Piraten being. Is Kawasemi considerably worse despite being the exact same as Piraten? Or was I wrong in how I rated Piraten in the first place? Stupid clones man... Though I won't deny it was seriously cool on one of our laps to be the only 2 people on Kawasemi, a Mega-Lite almost to myself, I just wish the ride type hadn't been seriously tarnished by this point. Regina - https://rcdb.com/1243.htm From an Intamin Mega-Lite to an Intamin woodie, sadly not a prefab... Regina falls in with woodies that are exactly meh, such as Robin Hood, Loup Garou and Mammut. The best part of the whole ride is that it has a removable extra cushion for every seat and it won't deny it's a pretty looking beast. Tentomushi - https://rcdb.com/1426.htm Regardless of how good this coaster is, I'm just happy to be able to say I've ridden Tentomushi. Tobu Zoo's other coaster, some small kid's thing wasn't playing ball today unfortunately. After this we rode the park's Ferris Wheel and had a real quick dash around the zoo. With the right people in your group and with no deadlines, I've no doubt you'd be able to spend a lovely day out at Tobu Zoo. See the animals (including Capybaras), ride Kawasemi, then chill out looking at the nice scenery, everyone's happy. From here we went to the Tokyo Pokemart, followed by a free to visit observation desk, neither of these are really my style but the Pokemart did feature a scene they couldn't have defined Japan better, a TV screen showing Slowpoke dancing with 40 Japanese school girls, culture. Following this we collected our bags from the hotel and made our way to the airport. Just a heads up for anyone interested, the airport monorail was laughably poor compared to what you'd picture when you hear Japan and monorail. Day 14 Our plane back to Korea was due to take off at just after 2am and at first I thought I was coping quite well but that didn't last. I can't remember the flight at all, not sure if that's a good or bad thing though. Once back in Korea we collected our Music Bank tickets from the angriest man ever at the airport information desk then once again boarded the airport to Seoul train. Falling asleep despite your best efforts not to is a horrible experience but that was me for the entire journey, man it was tough. Though it was funny watching the Koreans opposite me do the exact same thing on their morning commute, I felt part of the team. We arrived back at the Seoul Station K-Pop Hotel at I think about 8am and despite telling my friend during the booking that I very much doubt I'd be able to sleep during the day, as soon as my destroyed body hit the mattress I was out. The reason for the aforementioned crazy flight and sleeping during the day, was today, as with every Friday in Korea, was Music Bank. Music Bank is a weekly Korean music show, where the currently promoting Kpop artists all perform their latest hit, then based on statistics around album sales and on the day voting, a weekly winner is crowned. Because it's so hard to truly know in advance which artists will show up, it's a bit of a risk just how good each show will be. Last time around, no less than 5 bands I was a fan of ended up showing up, with 2 of them being among my absolute favourites, it was a truly amazing experience. This time around things were a bit more sparse, which (G)I-DLE being pretty much the only band I had heard of beforehand. Either way it was still a really good show, with the only true downside being that BTS (who weren't there) ended up winning, so all the artists just stood on the stage waving while BTS played on video screens, awkward... With this being our last weekend, we now had full reign to spend all our money and fill our suitcases. So after Music Bank we went to Myeondong, Seoul's biggest shopping area and started ticking off the Kpop albums we came for. After going to sleep I woken up by sirens wailing, knocking on the door and shouting. Waking up thinking the hotel was burning down, it ended up being my friend, "feel like going to Lotte World again tomorrow?", "yeah why not, night". Thank you for reading, next time the finale, featuring Lotte World round 2 and the best part of the trip (nah the 2nd best) [nah the best] {nah that 2nd best}....
  7. Thanks to Coaster himself making this a thread last year, I've been happily spread sheeting my park visits this year, he's a saint, I'm a nerd, let's go. Delete as appropriate for what counts and what doesn't. Sea World (Australia) Warner Bros. Movie World (Australia) x 2 Dreamworld (Australia) Aussie World (Australia) Oriental Heritage Xiamen (China) Fantawild Dreamland Xiamen (China) Happy Valley Shenzhen (China) The Milky Way Adventure Park (UK) Crealy Adventure Park (UK) PortAventura Park (Spain) x 3 Ferrari Land (Spain) Tibidabo (Spain) Alton Towers (UK) x3 Dymchurch Amusement Park (UK) Thorpe Park (UK) x2 Chessington (UK) West Midland Safari Park (UK) Treasure Island Amusement Park (UK) Big Sheep (UK) Camel Creek Adventure Park (UK) Flambards Village Theme Park (UK) Funder Park (UK) Animal Farm Adventure Park (UK) Funland At The Tropicana (UK) Clacton Pier (UK) Pavilion Fun Park (UK) Old MacDonald's Farm (UK) South Pier (UK) Blackpool Pleasure Beach (UK) x 4 Oakwood (UK) Barry Island Pleasure Park (UK) Coney Beach Pleasure Park (UK) Walygator Parc (France) Nigloland (France) Parc Saint Paul (France) Parc Du Bocasse (France) Dennlys Parc (France) Bagatelle (France) E-World (South Korea) Gyeonju World (South Korea) Suzuka Circuit (Japan) Parque Espana-Shima Spain Village (Japan) Nagashima Spa Land (Japan) Enakyo Wonderland (Japan) Japan Monkey Park (Japan) Higashiyama Zoo And Botanical Gardens (Japan) Lagunasia (Japan) Hamanako Pal Pal (Japan) Tokyo Joypolis (Japan) Yokohama Cosmoworld (Japan) Yomiuriland (Japan) Fuji-Q Highland (Japan) Tokyo DisneySea (Japan) Tokyo DisneyLand (Japan) Tokyo Dome City (Japan) Tobu Zoo (Japan) Lotte World (South Korea) Southport Pleasureland (UK) Knightly's Funfair (UK) Tir Prince Family Funfair (UK) Family Fun Fair (UK) Lightwater Valley (UK) Ocean Beach Pleasure Park (UK) Flamingo Land (UK) Bayside Fun Park (UK) TusenFryd (Norway) Liseberg (Sweden) x 2 Total: 77
  8. I love you, you've just made my day! If it makes you feel any better, I've been joking that Helix will be cloned and looking weird as hell propped up on massive supports in a random city in China for a while now. Does that announcement bother you at all is my question now? Knowing that your bae is now no longer unique in this World? Oh and still not as good as Helix...
  9. Sorry lads, I was struck down in my prime by a nasty cold and didn't want to taint this trip report with my cold medicine infused delusions. Day 12 After actually seeing the typhoon first hand and hearing all hell going on during the night, I was sure I was going to open my curtains today to see Japan in a post Godzilla state, but nope all still standing and better yet the weather looked lovely. After checking the Disney site to make sure they were unaffected, I hastily jotted down the attractions that tickled my fancy (thankfully more than DisneySea...), then we headed out to... Tokyo Disneyland - https://rcdb.com/4959.htm Now while I 100% stand by my comments about DisneySea being slightly disappointing, I do feel bad for having to report that, so you'll be glad to hear that whilst I still absolutely prefer Disneyland Paris, Tokyo Disney park had a much better showing than it's resort counterpart. In order to get to the entrance for Tokyo Disneyland you have to walk on an overpass over the coach park, well now they are just rubbing salt in the wounds... Once in, things felt much more "Disney" than they ever did at DisneySea. There was a proper atmosphere in the air and while it never reached that of Disneyland Paris, it was great to feel that "magic" again. Tokyo's castle looks so beautiful. We first headed to Adventureland to ride Splash Mountain and Big Thunder. It turns out that you can't just trust where you think attractions will be located because neither of these rides were in Adventureland, never mind... Correcting our mistake we made our way through Adventureland and over to Critter Country to experience Splash Mountain. That looks awesome. Splash Mountain For years of following Disney parks online I'd been really interested to try Splash Mountain and it didn't disappoint me for one second. Incredibly detailed theming, an adorable story (this time featuring a defined ending), a nice long ride time and a surprisingly thrilling final "splash", to coin a phrase, this thing was fab. Owing to it's location in relation to Critter Country, we next headed over to ride... Haunted Mansion Phantom Manor is one of my favourite dark rides and is joint first in regards to my favourite attractions at Disneyland Paris. It's a stunning attraction that has stuck with me since I first rode it all the way back in 2005. Because of this, I was so excited to try out the alternative mansion, but there was a problem... For reasons only known to the insane, Tokyo Disneyland had their Haunted Mansion in Holiday Nightmare flavour in EARLY SEPTEMBER! So instead of getting to experience the legendary Haunted Mansion, I got some emo Christmas bulls**t featuring A Nightmare Before Christmas. For principle I'm not even going to give an opinion of Holiday Nightmare and I guess I'm going to have to wait till I go to the US to finally get to ride the Haunted Mansion... Following this crippling disappointment we finally made our way over to Big Thunder Mountain. Big Thunder Mountain - https://rcdb.com/1183.htm Sorry to keep mentioning Disneyland Paris, but I'd rank their Big Thunder with the list of coasters that sit just below the top 10. The theming, the dive under the water to start the coaster, the truly out of control feeling it creates and the insane ending, I absolutely love it. During this trip, me and friend kept saying to each other, it almost feels like every ride here is a far tamer version of their great other halves. The more I think about it now, the more I agree with that statement. For reasons unknown, the country that's home to Flying Dinosaur, Eejanaika, Arashi and Pyrenees (4 of the most intense roller coasters ever made), seems to also be home to the Disneyland with tamed down rides. Big Thunder Japan was no different. While the theming as expected is outstanding, the coaster itself rides much more like a Vekoma Junior than the out of control French version and the ending is much much more lacklustre. It's still a great ride but when you've done other Big Thunders it doesn't quite live up. Making our way back to Adventureland, it was time for me to experience my first Jungle Cruise. Jungle Cruise After almost doing Hong Kong Disney before, I had seen on their website that their Jungle Cruise contains pyros and all sort of madness kicking off, so this probably didn't help in regards to forming my opinion of Japan's version. While Jungle Cruise was a lovely little sit down and bless the poor skipper girl who really was giving it all she had. Sadly due to stupid Hong Kong I was destined to come off disappointed, when the ride just ended without any major pay off. Star Tours Much like the French one, to a man who hasn't seen Star Wars, this was just a rock dodging simulator. It's good but it ain't no John Cleese dark ride... Space Mountain - https://rcdb.com/1185.htm Next up was Space Mountain, another attraction I'd be longing to experience for a long time and sadly another attraction that led to some disappointment. Now this time, the disappointment doesn't stem from the Paris one being better, probably because I haven't ridden the Paris one... This time it comes down to the experience as a whole falling far short of what I was promised. The coaster itself is super super tame, which would have been fine if there was anything decent to look at but there wasn't. So after the interesting lift hill section, you just end up mincing around in the dark while space sound effects play quietly on the on board audio. I'm sure the American Space Mountains feature a score that causes instant orgasm among Disney fanboys, so why doesn't Tokyo have that? It's not all doom and gloom though because on the first dispatch our train got hand pushed into a maintenance bay and we got evaced, the aforementioned fanboys wouldn't of been able to keep it in their pants, I just laughed. Though if I ever get a VALHALLA evac I'm sure I'll be in the same boat... It turns out I didn't take any pictures of Space Mountain, but you all know what it looks like. After this we had lunch at the pizza place in Tomorrowland, after the pizza place in Fantasyland refused to take the pineapple off the pizza for me, fools... Pirates Of The Caribbean Exactly the same as I remember the Paris one but this time featuring really lifelike looking Jack Sparrow animatronics, it's really good, though nothing new. Western River Railroad After using the statement, "might as well do the train", we were certainly glad we did because it was great. A nice sit down, with fantastic views of the area and even some surprise sections out of nowhere. Gadget Go Coaster - https://rcdb.com/1184.htm While they have certainly done a lovely job of fitting this Vekoma Junior in, it still doesn't really excuse that Disneyland has a Vekoma Junior to start with. Roger Rabbit's Car Toon Spin I still can't believe that Roger Rabbit has a ride at all at a Disney park, so for that alone, I love it. Monsters Inc Ride & Go Seek Even though I had no idea how to make this interactive ride work properly, I absolutely loved it. Monsters Inc is one of my favourite Pixar movies and this ride did the source material justice and then some. With everything we wanted to do (and some extras) knocked off, we took things easy for the next few hours and hit up various other attractions that sounded worth our time. PhilharMagic This 3D theatre based musical adventure was fantastic, easily the best surprise at the park. Next up we did the essential photos infront of the castle. Yeah, still beautiful... Pooh's Hunny Hunt To say anything other than it's amazing, you NEED to try it, will completely ruin this awesome trackless dark ride. Hilarious to the point of tears and a technical marvel, essential. Pinocchio's Daring Journey Exactly the same as the Paris one but still a great little ride. Small World I'm not sure if it's a Tokyo exclusive, but this variation featured Disney Princesses within the attraction and that added an extra element of enjoyment to the ride. We had a couple of rerides and then got ourselves in position for the nighttime castle show. Now for the last few hours I had really started to get into the Disney Magic and as the sun went down, I didn't feel a million miles away from the feelings I felt while walking through the Paris park. Unfortunately, things were going to turn sour to cap the day off... Disney Dreams at Disneyland Paris moved me in ways I rarely feel like expressing and with my friend who's done all the Disney's except the US ones telling me that ALL the Disney castle shows are near enough as good as Dreams, I was unbelievably excited to see how the Tokyo one was going to play out. Well... Instead of the show being featured around Disney movies, tied together with a magical story, this time the show was based around the park itself. This meant instead of seeing Rapunzel swinging from the turrets or hearing Elsa singing Let It Go, you were treated to crudely animated recreations of the park's attractions, while each ride theme played. Tied together by an out of tune overly pretentious song about how great the park is. The 2 most insulting parts were, the Haunted Mansion section, when you can't even ride the proper ride at the moment and an extended part about a paddle steamer... Worst of all though, no fireworks at all, only a few flame throwers that went off every once in a while. I could literally feel the magic being sucked out of me every second this waste of time continued. Disney Dreams in person > watching Disney Dreams on YouTube > thinking about Disney Dreams > going back to the hotel > Tokyo Disney's current castle show Thank you for reading, next time, our last day in Japan, featuring, Thunder Dolphin and Kawasemi.
  10. Well this is going to potentially start riots but here goes... From people I respect to randoms on YouTube who can't even name the park's lineup, Tokyo DisneySea is branded the best theme park in the World. If the statement were "best THEMED park in the World", you might be able to convince me but as for being the single best park in the World, I'd strongly disagree. Hell I'd even say it's not even the best theme park in Japan. Now come with me on a journey to discover why or just stop reading and leave a comment telling me I'm wrong. I do urge you to stick around though, the way this day ended makes for an interesting read. Day 11 So today was the day the typhoon was set to hit Japan. Our group made the decision that if we looked out the window and saw carnage we'd spend the day in the hotel watching Korean variety shows but if things looked OK we'd stick with our original plan of hitting DisneySea. I opened the curtains expecting the worse but just got blinded by the blazing sun, I think we're going to Disney lads. Now I remember many moons ago a member on here stated that you should plan Disney trips MONTHS in advance, well in almost direct contrast to that I opened the Disney website 5 minutes before leaving the hotel and crudely jotted down on a piece of paper I later lost the rides and attractions that sounded interesting, each to his own. Tokyo DisneySea - https://rcdb.com/5073.htm Despite there supposedly being a typhoon, the weather today started off insanely hot again and as I chose to wear jeans expecting the worse, things were rather uncomfortable... Once we arrived at DisneySea we purchased the 2 day Disney Resort Pass. Sadly with the 2 day pass they force you to pick which park you do on which day and you aren't allowed to visit both parks on the same day. This was a bit of a shame because that was one of my favourite things about Disneyland Paris, the ability to mince between parks at your leisure. The entrance plaza area reminded me alot of Port Aventura. That's either an insult to Disney or a compliment to PA but I'll let you lot decide... Not knowing where we were going or even wanted to go (maybe we should have planned better after all) we accidentally ended up in the Mysterious Island area of the park. This is the area to bring up if you're trying to convince me it's the best THEMED park in the World, because Christ this area looks beautiful. 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea Noticing that this submarine based ride had a 0 minute wait time, we walked straight onto our first dark ride of the day. Picture Legoland's Atlantis done properly and without the real fish and that's basically what this was. While I really enjoyed it, I couldn't help but think that it ended without any major climax or WOW moment. After picking up a fast track ticket for Journey To The Centre Of Earth, we made our way over to Lost River Delta... Raging Spirits - https://rcdb.com/2424.htm Japanese flavoured version of the Indiana Jones coaster from Disneyland Paris. It wasn't as bad as I remember the Paris one being but I've taken many a beating since then so it's probably not fair to comment. Indiana Jones: Temple Of The Crystal Skull Holy crap, this thing was absolutely amazing! After loving Fantawild's outstanding knock off, Qin Dynasty Adventure, I was desperate to ride the original and Christ was I not disappointed. Incredible from start to finish, I am so sad I only got to experience it once. Nemo & Friends SeaRider This giant simulator attraction featuring the characters from Finding Dory was good fun. Journey To The Centre Of The Earth With our fast track time up, we ventured back over to Journey. What can I say really, it's fantastic, but much like 20,000 Leagues, it feels like the ending is missing. The dark ride part of the attraction that starts you off is incredible, the lava monster itself is insane and the high speed section after you meet the monster is damn good fun, but then it just ends suddenly with no final payoff. Tower Of Terror After making it back from the centre of the Earth, we made our way over to the Waterfront section of the park to ride one of my most anticipated rides in the park, Tower Of Terror. I absolutely love the Paris version of this ride and knowing the Japanese one had it's own unique story made me incredibly excited. Up until the actual elevator section, Japanese ToT is AMAZING. The new story and effects used to convey it in the preshows made me prefer this over the Twilight Zone version. Then the ride itself happens... Call it lost in translation but I really didn't like the way the new story is applied to the actual elevator section, it didn't really make sense and left me thinking that this story would of suited a tracked dark ride much better than the very limited elevator system ToT is tied to. Also, either I've changed or Japanese ToT is incredibly weak when compared to Paris. The drop sequence was about as effective as Legoland Billund's Ghost... At least you can't deny the building itself looks breathtaking. Something I'd glad to say DisneySea did do better than it's French cousin was food. We had a lovely pizza and when compared to what I expecting it to cost, it cost almost nothing. Flounder's Flying Fish Coaster - https://rcdb.com/1501.htm Why is this a thing? +1 Toy Story Mania I really enjoyed Toy Story Mania, though credit where it's due, Maus Au Choc is a far superior example of the interactive screen based rides. Did I just give Phantasialand praise? I feel dirty... After exiting Toy Story Mania, it became apparent that while maybe the typhoon wasn't striking Tokyo, it was making it presence known by providing us with extremely strong winds. I had never felt anything like it, but testament to Japan's familiarity with such events, the locals didn't seem bothered at all and the park made no announcement. Sinbad's Storybook Voyage Fighting the wind we made our way to the Sinbad dark ride. This water based ride takes you through various scenes based on Sinbad and is heavily focused around music. I rather enjoyed it and it had me laughing out loud at points, wondering when Sinbad was going to break into song next. And with that, Tokyo DisneySea was complete and here lies my major issue with calling it the best theme park in the World. I count 9 attractions in my opinion that are worth doing, which without going any further, to me is far from enough to keep you busy for a whole day. But you have to factor in that only 4 of those attractions are unique to the resort, 1 is a terrible Togo junior coaster that couldn't feel anymore out of place and ToT can be experienced in a far superior form elsewhere. From my personal experience, only Indiana Jones exceeded my expectations, with the other attractions either leaving me slightly dry or doing exactly what I expected and nothing more. Much like Universal Studios Japan, Tokyo DisneySea also suffers from a distant lack of magic. Now here me out, at Disneyland Paris the atmosphere was at points overwhelming and I'd be lying if I said I didn't feel quite emotional just being there. To contrast this, for all the time I was at DisneySea the "magic" of the place never struck me. With Universal Studios Japan lacking the atmosphere that it's Singapore cousin emits, perhaps the issue is country based? This isn't to say I didn't have a good day out at Tokyo DisneySea because I did, it just didn't live up to my expectations based off of Disneyland Paris or live up to the immense hype placed on it's shoulders. With everything done, we headed for another go on Indiana Jones, however it was closed due to a breakdown. While waiting for it to open the parkwide PA system announced "your attention please, the train line linking the Disney Resort to the rest of Tokyo may soon close due to extreme weather conditions". We decided it was our best interest to heed this advise and make our way back to the hotel. After getting off the monorail that links the parks to the Disney train station, we knew we were f**ked. Thousands of people milling around outside the station with screens listing the closed lines, of which there were many. We headed up to the rammed full train waiting in the station, due to depart any minute and there we stood for over 20 minutes, cramped and confused, as the train just sat there but more and more people piled in. To save myself having a panic attack we got off the train to ask a guard what was going on, he blanked us and walked off... So we walked back down the station stairs to the ticket office and asked the lady at the barriers what was happening, "I don't know" she shouted back, so we asked another staff member, who just walked off... See I wasn't joking when I said the Japanese train staff are absolute bastards. It turns out the trains had been stopped, but no one there thought it would be helpful to tell us that. Not knowing at all what the f**k was happening or the best way to get off of the Disney Resort island, we ventured into the Disney WELCOME Centre and couldn't have felt any less welcome. As we walked in, the 2 staff women behind the counters stared us down. "hi, it's madness out there, can you please help us find the best way to get back to our hotel?", "oh no no no no no no, I can't help you", "sorry what?", "I don't speak English, I cannot help, sorry", "right....". So you work at Disneyland in the WELCOME centre and don't speak English, I don't believe it but I can at least accept that, but outright refusing us help as we stand in the WELCOME centre for Disney is just unbelievable. There was a mall next to the Disney station that upon searching was home to the Disney annual pass centre, so in we went. Inside we found a women who put the WELCOME centre staff so much to shame it's laughable. She got translators involved, maps up on her computer and the bus schedule. Thanks to her helpfulness we were told we needed to catch bus number 1, easy right? Into the bus rink we went and into madness we descended. There were many bus stops, with none of them showing the destination we were meant to be heading. After awhile we spoke to a member of the bus staff and he told us that we needed to be in the coach park. Fine we thought, we are on track now... On approach to the coach park, we saw a sight that will forever haunt me, thousands and thousands of people, all waiting to catch buses. Thinking no, this CAN'T be real, we spoke to a member of staff who informed us, we needed to catch a bus from stand number 1, but the queue was going to be, "many many minutes"... What followed was over 3 hours of waiting for a bus, in a Tokyo DisneySea of people, in typhoon strength winds. No this wasn't Disney's fault, it was mine for going out in a typhoon and the train companies for being s**t at their jobs, but either way this wasn't the way I wanted this day to end. Moments before getting on our bus, we were informed that the train line had just reopened. Well that's a lovely insult to injury... When I finally got back to the hotel I was tired enough to sleep through the immense wind trying to blow the hotel over. Thanks for reading, next time, Tokyo Disneyland.
  11. They are free and I didn't see anything about time limits, we were naughty and left stuff in them after finishing up with Valk, with absolutely no issues. Liseberg have only implemented them because of lack of room for storage lockers on the ride platform, it's hard to really argue with that logic. Quick reviews because I'm so far behind on trip reports but want to say these things before it's too late, a report will follow though. Helix is still the best coaster in the World, even after having nightmares about it not living up to how I remember it, I came off my 1st of 19 laps during last weekend on the verge of tears and shaking. #TeamHelix Valkyria is HANDS DOWN the best dive coaster I've ever been on and has transformed a coaster type I normally roll my eyes at into something truly special. Everything has purpose, the fast lift, the fast turn around, the tight intense layout and the lovely forces it provides. It's an absolute winner and I must retract my previous statements about not being excited for it. Loke is fantastic and adds yet another fantastic flat to Liseberg's outstanding line up. The new Max restaurants are great and a massive improvement over the BKs. I second those complimenting the Halloween event at the park, the place looks stunning and the scare zone near Balder and Valk was hilariously good fun. I'm now promoting Liseberg to my favourite park out there, the line up, the atmosphere, the food and the location, it all finally came together and dawned on me this time round, I apologise for being late to the party on this one.
  12. I feel more so than any park in the World that since I first learnt of it's existence many years ago, that Fuji Q was both the most intriguing and most unobtainable park out there. Way before I actually got off my arse and went to see what the theme park World offered outside of the UK, this place was already at a legendary status in my mind. Dodonpa, Takabisha and Eejanaika were on pedestals and the fact I was going to get to experience these icons was almost unbelievable. I know some of you find it annoying that I'm against cloning certain rides, let my respect and intrigue for these 3 legends be a perfect example of why I am. The sheer thrill of being able to say "holy s**t I'm about to ride Dodonpa, something I've dreamed of doing for years", is almost completely ruined if there's a clone of it chilling somewhere else in the World, I guess some will never be able to see it that way and that's fine but I do. Day 10 Today we woke up early to make the almost 2 hour drive from central Tokyo to Fuji Q. It would be fair to say we were absolutely expecting the worse in regards to this park. Way before I saw it myself in Nagashima, China and Korea, this was the original park that I heard closed everything in anything but perfect weather. It was spitting with rain and looking disgusting as we approached, so things weren't looking good at all. Also I'd read far too many trip reports saying X was closed but that's to be expected, I'm just glad we got Y, so that was a concern. Fuji Q - https://rcdb.com/4961.htm When we got to the park our spirits were lifted by a digital board in the car park showing all the rides open today and the times they were due to open. To further reinforce that idea, Fujiyama (which is mostly in the car park) starting testing as we parked. I got such Thorpe Park vibes in the car park toilet, with chart music, a "welcome to Fuji Q" announcement and youths assaulting each other in excitement, all on display. We've all heard of exit through the gift shop but you actually enter Fuji Q through the gift shop, which was odd. While buying tickets, Dodonpa started testing and Christ does it sound absolutely terrifying. After entering the park we made our way straight to Dodonpa, which it turns out is located right by the turnstyles. We entered the queueline and as soon as we did 2 things happened, 1) it began to rain heavily and 2) I felt the most nervous I've felt in a queueline in YEARS. The queue was probably only about 20 minutes and contrary to what I've read online the operations appeared to be fine, with a ground shaking launch sending one of the 8 person trains out of the launch tunnel every couple of minutes. Despite it raining heavily, Dodonpa launched full train after full train for about 15 minutes, before operations were suspended due to the weather. At first I was honestly glad they stopped the ride, something about being launched 112mph into heavy rain doesn't appeal to me. Sadly my initial appreciation for operations stopping was short lived. For almost an hour we stood in the queue, hearing them power down Dodonpa, watching them close Takabisha and seeing no sign of the rain stopping. Then suddenly the queue started moving again, I was sure the ride was still powered down so didn't understand why. Then when we reached the ride station it became apparent as we were handed priority passes to come back later and got an apology and a bow from the ride staff. See the internet had me believe that when it rains Fuji Q close everything and the staff go home, so an apology and a ticket to return later blew my mind. Well, that's an hour and a half wasted. We know Dodonpa is shut, Takabisha (which is next to Dodonpa) has it's entrance gate locked and Eejanaika hasn't even tested yet... So we entered the queue for Fujiyama. Despite the ride testing with 2 trains, possibly due to the weather it was only running 1. This meant an almost 8 minute coaster (including loading) was running 1 train with no other coasters in the park open. The queue which was quickly filling up was displayed at 4 hours as we entered... This is us screwed then. When we leave this queueline it's going to be 3pm, we absolutely have to leave at 7pm and there's no sign of the rain stopping and who knows if they'll close Fujiyama in a minute... About an hour into the most frustrating queue of my life the rain did stop and about 30 minutes after that a parkwide announcement proclaimed "ladies and gentlemen we are happy to announce that Takabisha has now reopened". Before we could even think of how to react to this information, nothing short of a swarm of people began running in it's direction and almost everyone behind us in the Fujiyama queue bailed too. My friend left the queue to get an update on what the Takabisha area was looking like, he returned with the simple statement, "it's a mess". Desperation made us draw up a plan on how to react to Dodonpa reopening. It appeared the Fuji Q way of queueing was to leave 1 member of your group in the queue, while the others go to the toilet or to get food, then simply slither back in no questions asked. Ok we thought, if Dodonpa reopens, we nip out and use our priority passes, while the non rider in our group holds our place here. 30 minutes after coming up with this plan, this happened, "ladies and gentlemen we are happy to announce that Eejanaika has now opened". Eejanaika - https://rcdb.com/3254.htm A swift nod was all we needed before we jumped over several queue fences and began to literally sprint in the direction of Eejanaika. The thing was, we didn't even know the way, so we just followed the crowd and overtook as necessary. I'm not even sure why we expected anything less but when we got to the coaster the queue time was listed as 5 hours... We had seen literally hundreds of people purchasing fast track for Fujiyama while we queued, so now with the situation being desperate we decided to join them. As we got to Eejanika so fast and everyone had just piled into the massive queue without thinking, when we did purchase our fast track from the vending machine, we got offered the very first slot to ride. So before even seeing the coaster test, we entered the fast track queue and were immediately batched into the station building. After being told to remove our shoes and put anything loose in the locker, it finally dawned on me that I was moments away from riding Eejanaika and because it all happened so fast I wasn't prepared at all. With the S&S freespin Arashi being one of the most intense coasters I've ever ridden, the idea of being spun while riding a coaster this time doing almost 80mph from a height of 250 feet was honestly terrifying. The reviews of S&S 4D coasters range from best coasters in the World to absolute hatred and I could easily see it swinging both ways for me. The seating and restraint set up for Eejanaika only further helped to make me even more uneasy. A very small over the shoulder restraint holds your top half into the seat while absolutely nothing at all holds your legs in. I have never felt so improperly secured in a ride seat before, we will get back to this on the ride itself. With the restraint set up already looking absolutely insane, it was also extremely complicated. 1 part comes in from the side, the other part comes down from above, then no less than 3 belts hold it all together. I let the staff member secure me for fear of actually killing myself if I did it wrong. When they were finished they smiled and said "is this OK?", I smiled and gave a big thumbs up, while deep down thinking "I don't know, oh God I'm going to die". After all the ride staff do a dance and chant, the coaster is dispatched and immediately becomes terrifying. Between the station and lift hill the 3rd rail which controls the orientation of the seats is missing, meaning on the corner between station and lift you get a small teaser of what the ride can offer, as it quite violently tilts backs then wobbles around to centre itself. It was here I knew my fears for nothing holding in my lower half weren't for nothing, as my legs bounced around in a most unnerving fashion. On the evil, evil, slow lift hill I tried to remind myself of looking Arin in the eyes during the fan meeting, as I could literally hear my heart tearing through my chest. As we neared the top a massively unnerving thought sprung to mind, wait a sec, which way are we tilting for the first drop? And then it happened... It would be impossible for me to explain Eejanaika to you and unfair on the coaster itself. All you need to know is it's absolutely amazing, probably the scariest roller coaster on Earth and unlike any other coaster out there (apart from the other 2 4Ds probably). With the tilting of the seats, Eejanaika has you at it's mercy to experience the layout however it wants you to and that creates some truly crazy moments. Eejanaika bonded with me on a first ride like very few rides do. I respect the sheer terror it installs in me and adore the incredible things it's able to accomplish with the rotating seats. S&S 4D coasters are incredible and it's such a shame there's only 3 in the World, well 2 if you count X2 being Arrow. Fujiyama - https://rcdb.com/1190.htm We stumbled back to Fujiyama and slithered back into the queue where our friend was standing, still about an hour from the station. During the last hour of the queue we noticed Dodonpa had just reopened too, we might complete this park after all! Fujiyama was rather good, like not 4 hour queue good and it's easily the lesser of the park's big coasters but for what it is (a giant jet coaster) it's good. A great first drop, some properly decent airtime moments and wicked laterals near the end. There was 2 Japanese girls behind us screaming from the top of the lift to the brake run which added to the experience too. After leaving Fujiyama, we heard an announcement telling the people who had Dodonpa priority tickets to please head to the ride now, so we did. Dodonpa - https://rcdb.com/1423.htm Much like Eejanaika, things proceeded at such a pace that the fear from earlier didn't have time to build up again. We walked up the coaster's exit and met a smiling man, who put us straight us on the train waiting in the station. It's fair to say the fear came back as soon as Dodonpa dispatched though. It wasn't Eejanaika bad but I was certainly on edge while waiting for this monster to launch. Now put it down to Eejanaika before or having done Bullet Coaster in China but Dodonpa's launch didn't really pack anywhere near the punch I was expecting. In fact the whole experience was just really smooth and enjoyable, not the being hit by a truck I was expecting. Dodonpa absolutely glides (thanks to it's tire running wheels) through the rest of a it's layout and while it's not boring, it's a bit something and nothing. Even the loop which replaced the insane looking airtime hill is completely forceless and smooth as silk. And that was Dodonpa. Not the ultra intense coaster I was expecting but rather a big softy. I'm absolutely delighted to be able to say I've ridden this legend, so I won't hold that against it. 2 of the legends down, 1 to go. Takabisha - https://rcdb.com/9795.htm Another fast track to avoid a 4 hour queue and soon we were standing on the station platform of Takabisha. Takabisha is a Gerts Eurofigher, that really should of of been an Infinity Coaster and that really shouldn't be being cloned and themed to Spongebob (sorry...) It must be noted that Takabisha has much slimmer OTSR than any other Eurofighter I've ridden, they were much better and it's a shame they weren't implemented elsewhere. This coaster is good but sadly it's nothing too special. Pacing issues and a lack of forces hold it back from greatness. The first half is really good but then you are stopped dead before climbing the awkward looking lift hill. Much like Atlantis Adventure, putting the launch in the first half and the lift hill in the second causes some really bad pacing issues. Now onto the lack of forces. Takabisha's layout is much more suited to an Infinity, with many huge inversions. Taking these elements in a small Eurofighter car really makes them ride forceless and strange. The big 4 down but no time to relax yet, we had 3 more creds to mop up and I was determined to get another lap on Eejanaika. But first up was the Thomas dark ride which was surprisingly good. Rock n Roll Duncan - https://rcdb.com/1503.htm +1 Mad Mouse - https://rcdb.com/1192.htm This thing was awful. Voyage Dans Le Ciel - https://rcdb.com/1193.htm This coaster's station building was the closest we came to seeing Mount Fuji on the trip... Now with everything we wanted knocked off, we headed back over to Eejanaika but there was an issue... They had ran out of fast track slots for the day and the current queue time was listed as 2 hours. Now this shouldn't have been a problem, Eejanaika is easily worth waiting 2 hours for but the issue was we had to leave at 7 at the latest to get the hire car back for our 9pm drop off. Regardless we entered the queue with the plan to bail out at 6:45 if we didn't make it. I'm so glad to tell you that we did infact JUST manage to get on Eejanaika before we ran out of time. Second time around, this time in the dark, cemented Eejanaika as one of my favourite coasters out there and I'd currently place it at the bottom of the list of coasters that caused a deeply emotional reaction in me (Helix, Karnan & T Express being the others). Even after riding it earlier, if anything it was even more intense a second time round, I freaking love Eejanaika! Following this we literally sprinted from the Eejanaika area at the back of the park to the park entrance, which damn near killed us. And with that our day at Fuji Q was over. Now while I've got nothing massively positive to say about the park as a whole, other than that from our experience it's no where near as bad as the internet makes out. There's almost nothing you need to say when the park is home to 3 legendary coasters and one of them happens to be one of the best and more unique coasters in the World. Thanks for reading, next time Tokyo DisneySea in a typhoon...
  13. Day 8 Morning now and an attempt for the stupid hotel to redeem itself. Apparently it afforded fantastic views of Mount Fuji, sadly the reality was it offered fantastic views of a man's house and some trees, redemption failed... This morning we were headed to our new hotel (this time a real one) in central Tokyo, where we were going to spend the rest of our time in Japan. After dropping off our trusted car and paying over £200 in toll fees, we ditched our luggage at the hotel and jumped on public transport (we will get back to this later) on route to a very special event. My friend had discovered that K-Pop group Oh My Girl were in Tokyo for a 1 day only special event in a popular Japanese mall and through multiple emails with the event team I felt I at least half understood what was happening and when. To over simplify a ridiculously complicated process (trust the Japanese)... Oh My Girl's debut Japanese album was on sale in the mall and in every album was a photocard of one of the members and depending on how many photocards you had you got to claim various awesome rewards, I think you can see where this is heading. 1 photocard got you a high five with said member, 2 photocards of different members got you the option to pick your bias and have a prolonged handshake and chat and 2 photocards of the same member got you a signing with that member and a selfie. Complimenting meeting the girls by redeeming your photocards, was those who bought 3 albums or more got to attend 2 mini concerts. The 2 hour queue to buy CDs flew by in minutes and soon I was holding 3 copies as if they were gold, they sure cost enough. I got spited quite hilariously in which photocards I received but thanks to trading with my friend I was able to be a position to get a handshake with my favourite member, Arin. After the awesome first mini concert I had my one on one meeting with Arin. If you've ever met one of your favourite K-Pop idols you'll know exactly how I felt, if you haven't you couldn't possibly understand. Now with only 1 card left I convinced myself to queue up again to get another CD, to gain the opportunity to get another handshake, this time with Seunghee. After an even better second mini concert (Arin recognised me from our previous meeting and waved), I got my handshake with Seunghee, who spent our entire life changing interaction in shock that a random English bloke had come to see them in Japan, for the record I'd do it again. The entire experience felt like it had lasted an hour (the best hour of my life) but had actually gone on for a little over 7, meaning that by the time we were finished there wasn't very much left of the day. On one of the previous days I saw on the tv in passing something about a typhoon. While in McDonalds still in a daze after the day's event, my friend told me that, that typhoon was going to hit Japan in 3 days and it was going to pose danger to properties and life, great I thought, I wonder if Fuji Q runs in a typhoon? Joypolis - https://rcdb.com/5256.htm With it now raining aswell as being late we gave up on original plan of doing Joypolis and Tokyo Dome and chose instead to just hit Joypolis. Rather luckily located 5 minutes from the mall, Joypolis is a sadly quite disappointing arcade featuring a Gerts spinner. When picturing a large scale arcade in Japan of all places, I thought of floor upon floor of countless ultra high tech arcade machines and an atmosphere that was bordering on too intense but alas no. Tokyo Joypolis is 3 floors of really not much at all worth doing, with Coral Island at Blackpool having a far better atmosphere. Gekion Live Coaster - https://rcdb.com/6453.htm Gekion Live is a Gerts spinner that's half arcade machine, half coaster. You start out playing a rhythm based game while the coaster slowly slithers past screens in the dark. Then you are tire launched out into the arcade and through an inline, which is by far the best bit of the ride. After the inline you leave the arcade again and enter a room with a light show and screens while the coaster doesn't really do much of anything. Nothing of note really took place in the final part of the coaster and hardly any spinning either. It's certainly interesting and different but it isn't very good. Day 9 For those keeping score at home, on one of the days we had the car we managed to knock off 3 parks in a day and came damn close to also getting a +1 too. Well today we were going to try that same approach but on Tokyo trains, what could possibly go right? The Tokyo transport system is an absolute mess. On top of the fact it's incredibly complicated (google the map, I dare you), different bits are also owned by at least 5 different companies. You need different tickets for each of the different companies, so it's not uncommon to need 3 different tickets for 1 trip on the metro. This means that the super value day passes you can buy from the many companies only work on their little bit of the network and as soon as you leave you have to go back to paying again and it's not obvious who owns which bit so you'll almost certainly be paying the fare adjustment costs and getting beeped at by the barriers for doing it wrong. Then there's the cost... 1 - 4 stops on the metro costs you 3 pounds, 4 - 8 stops costs you 6 pounds and so on, which is why the day passes would be super handy if it wasn't for the fact as mentioned they are company specific and once you the leave that company's bit you'll have to start paying those prices again. Also not helping things is the fact that Tokyo rail/metro companies seem to be staffed by the worst Japan can offer. Anywhere else in Japan they'll go so far out of their way to help you that it makes you feel guilty but on the trains at BEST you'll get "sorry no speak English". We originally intended to start our day at Sea Paradise but after getting not quite half way there and realising it had already taken an hour due to train faff, we came to the conclusion that we'd have to ditch it if we wanted to hit the 2 preferred parks today. Yokohama Cosmoworld was our next destination and we arrived in Yokohama station at 10am, it was just a shame the park didn't open until 11... Shortly after arriving it began to rain so we killed the hour in the second Starbucks of the trip, I really am starting to associate Starbucks with disappointment. Talking of dissapointment... We got to Yokohama Cosmoworld a little after opening to the site of both the major coasters being under tarp. After asking guest services they told us they'd walk the track at some point and if they looked dry they might open them. The coasters really weren't worth waiting around for so we opted to just move on to the next park. On the way out we ticked off the kiddie cred which rather insultingly was open. Yomiuriland - https://rcdb.com/4968.htm With 2 parks missed, hideous amounts of train faff and the rain still falling on and off we really needed Yomiuriland to lift our spirits and it certainly did. As we were on the cable car that takes you from the station to the park entrance it began to rain again and it really did feel like all hope was lost. Though when asking the man at the ticket office if the coasters were open he replied "they might close if the weather gets really bad", so there's hope you say? Bandit - https://rcdb.com/1218.htm We powered straight to Bandit, the tallest jet coaster in the World! Bandit is a monster, at near 260 feet tall and over 5,000 feet in length it almost doesn't seem real, but don't worry it gets even more insane... Not really paying attention in our rush to get to the coaster it turns out we entered the queue for "Wet Bandit", this is a special mode they put Bandit in during the summer months and oh boy was it something. Before being dispatched Big Bang's Bang Bang Bang (K-Pop) song played while the the staff made everyone clap along. Then you dispatch and as you take a turn to the right towards the lift hill, a giant water geyser goes off absolutely soaking everyone. I spent the entire lifthill laughing, thinking what the hell just happened, will anything else happen? As soon as you begin to descend down Bandit's massive drop, from the trees to the left of the ride water is shot an easy 200 foot in the air landing on you by the time you reach the bottom, Jesus Christ! Almost Valhalla wet now and laughing so hard I wasn't braced so getting the crap beaten out of me, this was awesome. Wet Bandit's final surprise was a wall of water awaiting you on the entry to the brakes, madness. So I just came from a park that's waiting for the track of a jet coaster to be dry while I'm riding the World's tallest jet coaster that's shooting water 200 feet in the air and then on the track, makes sense right? I'll more than forgive it for it's age and charm but it's fair to say Bandit is a bit of a rough monster, nothing serious but certainly some vicious jolts in places. Wan Wan Coaster Wandit - https://rcdb.com/3253.htm One the best named coasters out there. Momonga Standing And Loop Coaster - https://rcdb.com/1219.htm This Togo coaster gives you the option of riding in sitting or standing trains using a switch track in the station. The sitting train offered a rather meh ride but the standing one was quite fun. You are actually fully standing on the Togo coasters as opposed to sitting uncomfortably on your balls like on Intamin stand ups. The exposed feeling of truly standing with not much holding you in really makes the standing aspect appealing. Who knew Togo were the kings of the stand up coasters? Spin Runway - https://rcdb.com/13431.htm Spin Runaway is another Gerts spinning but this time themed to working in a fashion factory, no really. Unfortunately after the highly detailed queue, the coaster itself takes place in almost complete darkness and much like Gekion from earlier it really doesn't do much of anything exciting. Is this going to be a recurring theme for Gerts spinners or are Japan just unlucky? From disappointment to probably the best ride in the park, sorry Bandit. Splash UFO is the park's rapids ride, a rapids ride themed to cup noodles, how Japanese is that? This thing was insane and I'm certain it was built by those lunatics at Hafema. I was expecting a slightly tame indoors rapids with cup noodle theming but was presented with River Quest's whirlpool, bouncing off walls at 40mph, steep drops and sheer terror, I absolutely loved it. With all the rides we wanted to do done now, we went for a ride on the Ferris Wheel. Yomiuriland was great and brought the day back from total failure. Quality rides combined with a really wacky sense of fun made for a really enjoyable few hours. To end the day we picked up our hire car for our trip to Fuji Q the next day. We had forgotten to ask for the ETC card so discovered it was going to cost us £84 return in tolls to get to Fuji Q... Thanks for reading, next time Fuji Q and the awesome Eejanaika.
  14. Day 7 After close to 10 hours sleep I woke up feeling considerably better but still not 100%. With some of the most exciting stuff on the trip quickly approaching I vowed that today I would go as easy as possible and drink more fluids than I've ever drunk before. Lagunasia - https://rcdb.com/5228.htm Previous reviews I've read of Lagunasia promised uncomfortable levels of friendliness from the female ride staff, a park swarming in bikini clad women and not much else, well then, sign me up! We were planning to hit 2 parks today so we rocked up for opening, only to find out that the park's major dark ride opened 2 hours after opening. Luckily we managed to keep ourselves entertained until said ride opened and oh boy was it worth the wait... Aqua Wind - https://rcdb.com/2591.htm We started with Aqua Wind, the park's Gerts Bobsled and it was better than expected. I've become a bit Jaded with these things (excluding the awesome Van Helsing) and they all blend into one but Aqua Wind's first drop was more intense than I was expecting and unlike other examples this hauled ass over the air time hills at the end. The ride's theming was really nice too. There was some sort of J-pop 360 3D cinema experience thing that looked awesome but sadly the first showing wasn't until like 2pm and would have meant missing the next park, in retrospect it may have been worth it... I had read online that Lagunasia's log flume was special and Christ was it. The flume is called Legend of Labyrinth and all but the last drop is enclosed. To spoil what you'll find inside would be criminal but trust me when I say I was utterly speechless at the scale and quality of what I was faced with. Easily the best ride at the park. Pirate's Blast - https://rcdb.com/3801.htm After politely turning down the VR option at batching, I left this coasters utterly perplexed why it was an option in the first place. 80% of Pirate's Blast takes place within a highly themed show building, with the coaster speeding past and reacting with some really nicely done set pieces. After that rather awesome section ends, you take the big drop out the show building, jolting in amazing fashion as you do, then you mince around on a patch of a grass for a bit before re entering the station. To call the ending a let down is a bit of an understatement, never mind... Stellar Coaster - https://rcdb.com/1825.htm A singing whale coaster with kick ass onboard audio, 10,000 times better than your average Vekoma Junior. 2 hours had now passed and the aforementioned dark ride was now open. Named Magic Powder, which should give you some idea of just how messed it was going to be, this thing can't be explained and you wouldn't even believe me if I tried. It would be a stretch to say I enjoyed this madness, it rather occurred around me as I was having several out of body experiences and then it ended and I'm not sure I'll ever be the same person again. An absolute must ride, just make sure you're of a semi sound mind before you enter because if not it WILL destroy you. Literally the dark ride you imagine you'll stumble on in Japan but you guess it can't exist, then Lagunasia has it and suddenly you regret everything. The following pictures were taken in the queueline and serve as a warning of what's to follow. And somehow this is the ride vehicle, please don't ask me to explain how it works because it was all a terrifying drug induced blur. And with that, Lagunasia was finished and while I sadly wasn't swimming in bikini clad women or fighting off ride staff with tins of magical powder, the park itself far exceeded my expectations. My friend's really wanted to ride the Ferris wheel next to the mall opposite the park, so we crossed over the bridge and grabbed some ice cream for lunch, living the dream. The lovely lady serving me at Baskin more than made up for the lack of female attention elsewhere and even saved me money, that'll come in handy soon. At the entrance to the Ferris wheel a sign mentioned that the pods had no air con and currently the temperature inside them was 37 degrees, as I was being good to myself I opted out and instead sat under an air conditioner in the mall. Hamanako Pal Pal - https://rcdb.com/4997.htm After a relatively short drive we arrived at Hamanako Pal Pal, a park I walked away from rather disappointed. The park has a weird mall like hub which you enter after purchasing tickets, this "hub" connects the two sides of the park together. There was something rather off putting about walking through a dirty looking mall type room full of arcades as you enter an amusement park. After getting out we arrived at... Mega Coaster - https://rcdb.com/1284.htm Online I'd be led to believe that Mega Coaster was some sort of hidden gem and since then I had been quite excited to give it a go. Unfortunately I found it ride exactly like I'd expected before I read the hype, completely devoid of excitement or charm and just another cred for the count, what a shame. Mini Coaster - https://rcdb.com/1802.htm +1 Jungle Mouse - https://rcdb.com/1285.htm +1 It was a shame that a park I was quite excited for ended up being a bit of a disappointment. I wouldn't recommend bothering with Hamanako unless like us you're just doing it for the creds, the park itself needs some work done to tidy it up, the staff weren't up to Japan standard and with Mega Coaster being a disappointment there's very little to keep you there. Following this we went to a mall to get food and watch Ant Man 2, both were great. We left the mall at about 9pm for the 2 hour drive to Tokyo. The first half of the journey was spent watching an absolutely beautiful thunder storm light up the night sky in spell bounding fashion. With the second half spent trying to see Mount Fuji or Eejanaika out the window, I saw neither but don't worry I promise you I see ONE of them before the end of the trip. The following is a sore subject but I really do find the honest trip reports the best reads, so you're welcome. We arrive at our hotel for the night at almost midnight. We go in, exchange pleasantries with the friendly lady behind the counter, get our rooms keys and head upstairs... I open my room door to discover that my friend without telling me has booked us into a traditional style Japanese hotel. The kind where the floor is a straw mat, there's nothing else in the room and you sleep on a half inch thick piece of cloth on the floor. I was f**king livid... If it wasn't for the following day containing something I'd have given body parts to attend, helping me to keep my eyes on the prize, I probably would have caused more of a scene and I did honestly think about sleeping in the car for a long while. It took me half an hour to kill the largest fly I've seen that was circling my room and a further 20 minutes of spraying various scents around the place to get rid of the awful smell before I managed calm myself enough to attempt to sleep on the floor. Thanks for reading, next time, 7 hours of paradise, an impending typhoon, Joypolis, Tokyo Metro, Yokohama Cosmoworld (sort of) and Yomiuriland.
  15. Jae 6 The heat from yesterday, combined with the long day at Nagashima, coupled with 5 busy days in a row of coaster goodness meant I woke up today feeling like crap. Now this obviously isn't ideal, but the situation was worsened by the fact today was the day we knew we had to go hard in order to mop up as much of the parks in Nagoya as possible before we headed off for Tokyo. To make things even worse, today was even hotter than yesterday. To put it in context, my legs never get sunburnt but I could literally feel them cooking from being in the sun for all of 3 minutes. Enakyo Wonderland - https://rcdb.com/5276.htm The first park of today was Enakyo Wonderland, a small family oriented park home to 3 roller coasters. After being attacked by a flying bug half the size of my hand (no seriously) and shouting about how hot it was, we made our way to the ticket counter. We picked up the entry only tickets because we knew it was cheaper to just purchase tokens for the coasters once in the park. There was no turnstiles or staff to check tickets so rather strangely you just sliver into the park, made all the more strange by the fact we were the only visitors in sight. I had written down on my phone the amount of tickets we needed to purchase, so we walked to the nearest ticket dispensing machine we saw. While making a scene at said machine, 2 adorable staff members slithered over from out of thin air bowing and blushing, see I told you you don't have to wait long for help in Japan! Cycle Coaster - https://rcdb.com/2502.htm We started with Cycle Coaster and with immense confusion. There was a sign on the fence that implied you get a discount with 3 people, so we asked the very friendly bloke about it. 5 or so minutes of confusion and Google translate later we never found out the answer but he let us on the for the price on the fence anyway, Japan! With peddle being the only English word spoken as we were dispatched I took charge in powering us to the lift hill, that's a first. It's pretty much a roller coaster that you have peddle to get to the next section when it runs out of steam, I'm not normally into exercise but this was quite amusing. Jungle Coaster - https://rcdb.com/1970.htm No not the piece of crap that used to live at Legoland but instead a small family coaster with a hamster on the front, that's perched on the edge of a massive drop and has brutal laterals. It was awesome. Camel Coaster - https://rcdb.com/1969.htm We had a mix up with our tokens and turned out we didn't quite have enough for Camel Coaster. The ride operator, an absolute hero of a man, personally walked us to the machine and told us which package was the cheapest in order to get enough to ride between us, oh Japan. The coaster itself although the biggest in the park was probably the least interesting. Peddling a roller coaster and getting brutally beaten by a crazed hamster coaster were much more exciting. As we went to leave and thanked the op for his time, he offered to take a photo of us infront of the train in the station to forever remember our experience, what a lovely person. So it's obvious that Enakyo wasn't built for me, so there's no point in me giving an opinion of it but I can certainly say if nothing else, the staff were absolutely fantastic and turned a cred run in 40 degrees into a memorable experience. Japan Monkey Park - https://rcdb.com/4996.htm The sheer intensity of the heat on the walk from the car park to the entrance of Japan Monkey Park was breathtaking, I really can't put into words just how unpleasant it was. While this park was nothing special, we knocked it off in such a hurry to get out of the sun that I really can't remember much of anything. Highway Coaster - https://rcdb.com/1283.htm Easily one of the most boring jet coasters I've ridden. I have 3 lasting memories of the entire ride, 1) thinking I was going to black out from the heat in the station, 2) it has a mister near the end of the ride and 3) the coaster has one of the dumbest looking trains I've ever seen. Monkey Coaster - https://rcdb.com/1297.htm Well this was a thing that happened. Go! Go! Banana Coaster - https://rcdb.com/1913.htm The elderly man operating this tiny cred did a super enthusiastic chant during dispatch, which you have to commend considering it was 40 degrees and his only riders were 3 weird foreigners. And that was Japan Monkey Park. Higashiyama Zoo - https://rcdb.com/5179.htm As well as obviously being home to a zoo, this park also features a garden and of course the amusement park, from my memory the entry ticket is really cheap too. While zoos and walking through gardens aren't really for me, I'm sure there's loads of people who could spend an enjoyable day here. Jet Coaster - https://rcdb.com/1706.htm Much like the jet coaster at Japan Monkey Park, all I remember is being hot as hell and nothing else. Bear Coaster - https://rcdb.com/2522.htm +1 Slope Shooter - https://rcdb.com/2521.htm Let's get it out of the way, this isn't a cred, I wouldn't count brake failure in my car going down a hill as a cred, so why count this? While it may not be a cred Slope Shooter is really quite enjoyable. We entered the station to be greeted with 2 ultra friendly blokes who instantly made the experience special. Following that I wedged myself into my comfy car, then got pushed by the blokes (who were singing me a song) to the base of the lift hill. Once you reach the top, you coast on tarmac down several slopes until you get back to the station. Now that may sound a bit boring but it's quite fun. You pick up quite some pace at certain points and hilariously crashing into the walls never gets old. Plus at one point I got slapped in the face by an overhanging plant which only added to the experience. When I got back to the station the ride hosts were chanting, clapping and beaming ear to ear, what a great way to end the ride. With those 3 parks down we had managed to knock off the 3 larger parks we planned to do on this day. We had planned to go visit 3 +1 parks after, but after we showed up at the first one to discover it was completely closed we decided to bail out on that idea. That night while sitting in Mos Burger my condition went from bad to worse and it was at this point I decided that I probably actually had heat stroke for real. As soon as I hit my hotel room I collapsed, then set my alarm and passed out. Thanks for reading, next time Lagunasia and Hamanako Pal Pal.
  16. Day 5 Nagashima Spa Land - https://rcdb.com/4958.htm Today was the day I've literally had dreams about, the day I seek revenge on Nagashima Spa Land. For those out of the loop, the last time I visited it rained an hour in and they closed almost everything for the rest of the day, even when the sun came back. Rain wasn't going to be an issue today thankfully, although the sudden immense heat that descended on Japan made for other issues. Learning from our past mistake of arriving late and Steel Dragon having a 90 minute queue within half an hour, this time we rocked up for opening. While my friend got tickets I marvelled at one of the best theme park investments in years, Nagashima Spa Land now has large electronic information screens telling you what's open in Japanese AND English. Previously you had to contend with 3 different hand drawn signs, all contradicting each other and all in Japanese, which is about as helpful as it sounds. Steel Dragon 2000 - https://rcdb.com/1173.htm Once in we powered to straight to Steel Dragon and entered a 30 minute queue, it was about now that it became apparent just how hot it was going to be today as I found myself sweating from places previously undiscovered. Looking around the queue and seeing that even the Japanese were dying led me to believe it wasn't just me, this was indeed very hot weather for Japan. After the usual Japanese faff of nothing in pockets, this time featuring a metal detector, we took our seats on this legendary coaster and what great seats they were. Steel Dragon as you'll know has trains designed by B&M, so this amounts to the ride basically featuring 2 wide hyper trains with clam shells and as anyone who's ridden a B&M with those seats will tell you, you can't get much better without going Mack. After the ride staff finish an amazing chant which ends with "Steela Dragon!" you are off up the unnervingly tall lift hill, sadly the following drop doesn't amount to much however. With this being my first giga coaster I rather foolishly expected the drop to be quite special but it really isn't. The shaping of the drop and the fact it pulls out 100 feet from the ground produce an experience that goes on forever and is completely forceless. Following the disappointing first drop is 2 camel back hills which do absolutely nothing and then 2 huge inclined loops which only serve to kill speed. Thankfully things pick up on the return to the station with several air time hills in a row, with at least half of them providing some decent pops of ejector. 2 of these hills are inside tunnels which makes for some good headchopper moments and in the heat made for some interesting extremes of temperature. While I'm very satisfied to be able to say I've experienced Steel Dragon, I can't help be feel a little disappointed. Acrobat - https://rcdb.com/12272.htm From the moment Flying Dinosaur showed me that flyers can be so much more than Craplatica, I was desperate to try another and Acrobat certainly didn't disappoint! This beast of a coaster packs so much intensity into it's perfectly paced layout, it really is hard to point out a favourite part of the coaster when everything just flows so well. Once again I'm walking away from a flyer with an intense hunger for more, I think that speaks more than enough for the quality of Acrobat. With the really important stuff that we missed from last time dusted off we spent the couple of hours of mopping up the filler stuff that litters Nagashima. We started with the park's Bobkart for those tasty undefined rare points on Coaster-Count, I love these things and this one was no exception. Ultra Twister - https://rcdb.com/15562.htm My second time on one of these things and their existence still confuses me. Now that Coaster-Count counts Intamin 1st gen drop towers as undefined creds it would have been foolish to not put myself through riding Nagashima's one for the rare points, these things are so messed up. Looping Star - https://rcdb.com/1178.htm Blame it on the heat stroke or blame it on the concussion at the hands of the drop tower but I really wasn't a fan of my first Looping Star. I've seen these things talked up all round the internet and I can't understand why at all. Not as good as Nessie and I can't remember Nessie is my review. Shuttle Loop - https://rcdb.com/1177.htm From one boring as hell Schwarz to another, give me Pyske Underground any day over this crap, on second thoughts just give me the Pyske Underground theme. Children Coaster - https://rcdb.com/1181.htm Better than the above 2 coasters... After this we had lunch and I got to experience my first and last ever soda float, there's something wrong with people who want vanilla ice cream melted into their favourite drink. To let food settle we rode the Ferris wheel which was thankfully air conditioned. Wild Mouse - https://rcdb.com/2558.htm The last of the missing creds finally dusted off and with time to spare, sadly they were only running 1 side which means the other will have to wait till RMC Spite Cyclon opens. After this we went back to Steel Dragon, which broke down 5 minutes after we entered the queue, having not gained anything we tried to leave, before being stopped by a staff member who told us to wait and we'd get a priority pass for when it reopens, awesome. Next we went for a second lap of Acrobat and I fell even more in love with it. By the time Steel Dragon reopened it was dusk and this made for a nice backdrop to our second lap. Arashi - https://rcdb.com/14052.htm Now you may notice that I've yet to mention Arashi in this post... When I first rode Arashi last year I really didn't enjoy the experience it offered and vowed that it would take alot to make me go on it again. Well I whole heatedly retract all previous statements about this wonderful ride. While walking past, after having ignored it all day, I on the spur of the moment decided that I NEEDED to give it one more go to be sure. Once seated however I couldn't have been regretting my decision more, as the seating position jogged my previous traumatic experience. Without a shadow up of a doubt going up the lifthill was the most scared I've been in years with palms sweating so much they were sliding on the restraint and heart thumping harder in my chest than when I met my ultimate bias on Valentine's day. Then it began and I wish I could do it justice. Spinning so fast, so many times that I lost count and even though I try not to swear in Japan I found myself painting the almost night sky with every profanity under the sun. Intensity like I've never seen before and will likely never see again, in a hobby that features so much of the same sensation this thing takes you completely out of your comfort zone and then some. I can totally understand why I hated this thing last time but now that I've grown some balls Arashi is beautiful. Riding Arashi twice in one day caused my friend to spend 20 minutes in the bathroom sorting his life out and wanting the leave the park, thankfully I managed to convince him to join me in riding Acrobat one last time. At night I fell even further in love with it and I couldn't think of a better way to end the day. In the gift shop I bought an Arashi T Shirt as a peace offering to the beast for slagging it off last time, oh and because it looks freaking awesome. Nagashima Spa Land has gone from a park I openly mocked and despised, to a park I've grown rather fond of. When running, the sheer amount of rides surrounding you at all times is quite the site and at night the place looks fantastic. Acrobat and Arashi aren't far off competing for the bottom end of my top 10 and Steel Dragon isn't without it's charm. Plus when this park opens it's RMC things are going to get even more interesting. Thanks for reading, next time Enakyo Wonderland, Japan Monkey Park and Higashiyama Zoo, featuring heat stoke and Slope Shooter...
  17. Day 4 Today began with an early start, followed by a trip on the metro to Busan airport. A rather uneventful hour long flight later and we were in Nagoya. Despite it being my second time visiting Japan, it managed to yet again take me by surprise just how friendly the people are there. Look slightly confused for half a second in the airport and out of nowhere a friendly Japanese man/woman will slither over with a huge smile on their face desperate to help you, I love Japan. After picking up the hire car and 2 comedy sized drinks from one of the millions of vending machines that litter Japan, it was off to Suzuka Circuit. As you may remember from last time, if I actually mentioned it, Japanese highways come with very expensive tolls attached to them, it's not at all uncommon for an hours journey to cost you £30 ONE WAY. In order to slightly combat this, this time around we rented an ETC card. This card goes into a machine in the hire car and then allows you to drive straight through tolls, with the toll fee being charged to the card. The main advantage of this is that you save 1/3 on every toll and with the amount of driving we planned to be doing this was an absolute necessity. On route we unintentionally passed Legoland Japan and I promise you I'm not joking when I say that the park is built in the middle of industrial wasteland to the side of a huge bridge. Seeing the stupid sky tower thing painted in the brash Lego colouring surrounded by rusting metal and chimneys was hilarious! For the first 2/3 of the journey the weather was beautiful but as we approached the park, the heavens opened... For some context to my frustration I need to refer to me reading that August/September is the driest time to visit Korea/Japan, I guess not. Suzuka Circuit - https://rcdb.com/4969.htm As well as being a World famous race course, Suzuka Circuit is also home to a small amusement park area. It was still raining somewhat heavily when we got to the ticket window and with this being Japan I was already expecting this to go awfully but to our surprise and delight it didn't. Not only is every ride still running but we'd also be getting tourist discount, sweet! After passing the turnstiles, the rain went from "oh this is quite heavy" to "oh my god we are going to die" thunderstorm and immediately an announcement came over the park wide PA, well that's us screwed then... We powered straight to the first cred, assuming the worst but hoping if we were really quick we might be in luck. Rocky Coaster - https://rcdb.com/1225.htm With lightning literally striking buildings in the background we entered the queue for Rocky Coaster. From an idiot who's ridden Stealth in hailstones, I was literally amazed any park in the World would run a coaster in this amount of rain, it's not an exaggeration to say the rain was so heavy you couldn't see through it. Couple that with lightning striking stuff and thunder shaking the ground and I'm left in complete disbelief. Nagashima closed their entire park in medium rain which ended after 2 hours and now Suzuka are running their coasters in a stupidly intense thunderstorm, Japan really is the land of extremes. After seeing 2 trains worth of people coming back wetter than Valhalla and in serious pain, I was glad the rain eased slightly for our lap, which I honestly cant' remember at all because I was still in complete shock at what was happening. Adventure Drive - https://rcdb.com/12038.htm We knew our luck was going to run out at some point, so we powered to the other cred as soon as we got off Rocky Coaster. The lovely lady at the entrance told us something in Japanese, we nodded and entered. After about 10 minutes of waiting with the already intense rain getting even worse, the ride ceased operation but in the craziest way ever. The operator shut the whole ride down, including isolation of the control panel and ride system. Then he made a friendly and casual walk down the queueline informing people something along the lines of, "it's going to be about 30 minutes, if you'd like to wait that's ok". After this he jumped between contacting control on his radio and entertaining the kids at the front of the queue. 20 minutes later the rain died down, he turned it all back on, performed all the start up checks for the coaster and even explained how the block sections on the touch screen worked to the kids. I wish something that nerdy and cool could have happened to me at that age, what a top bloke. Exactly 30 minutes later the ride reopened with much Japanese pleasantries, including all the seats being wiped down and bowing. The coaster itself is quite fun and the scream powered launch is just so Japanese that you have to automatically love it. After the 2 creds were knocked off we did the park's shooting dark ride, a ride style that by the end of this trip I was getting quite bored of but this was the first and I enjoyed it. In order to score some juicy rare points on Coaster-Count, we checked out the park's brand new Duel GP attraction. Duel GP This thing was great! 2 cars race each other in what is essentially a really complicated almost powered coaster. The catch being, you have to steer your car and the goal being, if you steer gently and precisely you'll do well but if like me you can't be gentle to save your life, you spin out on the corners and it slows you down. I'm not ashamed to admit I lost when I rode both tracks, though I'd argue losing control and spinning like a madman both times means I won anyway... Suzuka Circuit really surprised me, I wrote it off as just a stop off on the way to better things but I actually rather liked the place. Their willingness to run things in the rain and their wonderful customer service are very much to be commended. Due to the rain slowing us down, we were now running rather late and had quite significantly gone past the time we were due to leave the park. With this in mind and slightly worried the rain might of beaten us there, we thought it would be best to phone Parque Espana and check everything was still on for their 8pm close. What followed may be the best phone call of my life.. "Moshi Moshi!", "Hi! is it OK to speak English?", "ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, I'll try!", "is the amusement park open?", "ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, I'm so sorry, can you please say again, I'm so sorry", "no worries, is the amusement park open?, "ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh I'm sorry!, I'll try to find someone!". After a minute... "Moshi Moshi!" (still the same girl), "Hi again", "one more time please?" "ok, is the amusement park open?" "ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, so sorry!", "no it's ok", "I'm so sorry!" "thank you, don't worry, bye", "bye!". After that it would have been rude not to make the journey. The journey to Parque Espana was rather impressive with crazy mountain roads and killer views. The best of these views however was seeing Pyrenees getting ever closer. Parque Espana Shima Spain Village - https://rcdb.com/4970.htm We arrived at 4pm with an advertised 8pm close but having not seen Pyrenees move during the last 5 miles of the journey we were rather worried. It was all for nothing though, as soon as we got out of the car Pyrenees dispatched onto the lift hill. After buying our tickets, which were once again discounted, this time due to arriving after 3, we sprinted across the park into the waiting arms of... Pyrenees - https://rcdb.com/1227.htm Now at the time I couldn't believe it but even now I'm rather amazed that I was lucky enough to be able to ride what I consider to be the 2 legendary Asian inverts back to back. Now while Phaethon was good, Pyrenees is in a completely different league, I'll make it as simple as, gentlemen this is a Nemesis beater... I can't not mention that this coaster looks absolutely insane, the shaping on the first drop compared to Phaethon alone got me moist but everything just oozes that this thing is going to kick ass... and it does. So you think the drop looks intense off ride? That's nothing compared to how it rides. The loop, zero g, loop start to Batman is one of my favourite opening sections on any coaster, so the fact Pyrenees borrows it on an enlarged scale is lovely. While the section doesn't ride as intensely as Batman (which rips limbs off), when coupled up with the beautiful drop, it is an absolutely incredible way to start a coaster. The madness is followed by a snappy and intense cobra roll and only then does Pyrenees let you catch your breath, slightly. Next up is an almost helix through the second loop, a midcourse that barely slows you and perfectly pulled off corkscrew. It's now that you really catch your breath, because sadly Pyrenees does a suffer a bit from the large invert habit of searching for the next bit to do, however it really is a short patch and it's so out of place after the intensity before that it's quite amusing. Then things pick back up with a freaking air time hill on an invert, madness, followed by an intense floor hugging drop, before you're swooped back into the station. I knew after my first lap that I was really taken with Pyrenees but by the end of the night and after 5 laps I was in love. Kiddy Montserrat - https://rcdb.com/13668.htm +1 Gran Montserrat - https://rcdb.com/1226.htm One of the biggest surprise hits of the trip belongs to this Mack mine train coaster, this thing is seriously good fun. It's surprisingly fast, way more intense than it looks and as you'd expect from Mack it's butter smooth, for what it is I can't praise it enough. With those 3 down, we went looking for the park's final cred, a search which led us around the entire park. On route we did the Nutcracker dark ride (which was weird), another shooting ride thing (which was meh) and the park's Peter Pan inspired dark ride (which was awesome). I didn't take anywhere near enough photos because of time constraints but please believe me when I say this park looks absolutely beautiful in places. The theming, the location and the setting sun really made for some fantastic sights. Steampunk Coaster Iron Bull - https://rcdb.com/1293.htm I hope this photo of the building sums why it took it so long to find this enclosed Togo coaster, it's hardly screaming in your face and I almost respect that. I won't dare spoil the hilarious experience but I will let you know it rides fine, because almost all the reviews I've seen say it's rough and that's BS. How many parks in the World would bake you a pizza if you show'd up in the restaurant 5 minutes before park close and then proceeded to take most of them 5 minutes choosing said pizza? Not many... But Parque Espana did for us, but not only that, the incredibly friendly elderly man insisted on us taking our seats and bringing it over himself, oh Japan. Given the choice I'd easily be able to entertain myself for the day at this lovely park. From riding my new favourite B&M Invert, riding the fantastic Mack mine train, checking out the many dark rides and just enjoying the lovely theming. Truly the dark horse of the trip. Oh and the pizza is delicious too! Thanks for reading, next time Nagashima Spa Land...
  18. With a successful visit to E World behind us, we decided it was time to "dust off Daegu" and this meant visiting Pago Land. After a lengthy journey on the metro and quite literally 2 miles of walking, we arrived. Now my friend had told me that Pago Land was just a collection of crap rides at the side of a main road but even that extremely accurate description doesn't do it justice. Picture an abandoned scrap yard at the side of the road, where the only paths are loose stones and then throw the sketchiest and most sorry looking kids rides you can ever imagine into said scrap yard and have them operated by elderly Koreans who have lost the will to live and you'll be only half way to picturing the mess that lay before me. Still, there was a powered twin helix coaster up for grabs, so I'm game... We walked in to see an operator at all of the rides, not another living soul other than said operators, prices displayed at each attraction, no where to buy tickets and a general sense of dread. After a second loop round trying to find a way to buy tickets and with every single old person running the place staring us down, we walked over to the twin helix. The operator was sitting on the platform in a plastic garden chair and after we gestured that we'd like to ride, he began clucking and spitting and going on a lengthy rant in Korean. Utterly confused we stood there in disbelief and yet again gestured that we'd like to ride, to the exact same reaction. Following this we walked away to regroup and tried to think what the hell this bloke was going on about. We had gone on quite the journey to get here we thought, so let's give it one more go. We walk back over, he is still sitting in his chair, we point to the ride again, this time his approach is solemn and even more confusing. He muttered a slew of soft Korean words in response to any gesture we made or any sentence we spoke at him. At one point we attempted a hilarious stare down, which once again got us exactly no where. My friend believes his response was something along the lines of "why should I get out of my chair?" and honestly at this point I'm inclined to believe it, either way, first spite of the trip, at least it was memorable. Following that absolute farce we took a bus back to Daegu station, collected our bags, boarded the train to Busan and then got spited by another Quiznos... Day 2 Bright and early we took the Busan metro to the express bus terminal station, in order to catch a coach to Tongdo Fantasia. While on the coach it began to storm outside, I wasn't worried though, this isn't China, what a fool I was... When we arrived at the bus terminal it was raining really hard but by the time we completed the mile or so walk to the park the skies were clear, my shoes were not. As we entered the entrance plaza it was quite clear that we were in for disappointment. Although the theme music was playing and the fountains were jumping away, the area was completely deserted and the turnstiles were unmanned... the information centre was open though! We walked in and were informed, "the park is open until 9pm today, only 3 rides (haunted house, carousel and something crap) will be open and it's still the same price as normal". When we questioned them if they plan to open the other attractions later they replied, "no it RAINED (as in past tense), that's your lot for the whole day". Thanks then... bye. Well that's another 2 coasters missed... Back to the bus terminal, to catch the coach back to Busan and while on board we decided that we now had time spare to try to get the +1 in Busan, I'll let you guys guess how that went. Another lengthy metro stint, followed by an even longer walk than Pago Land (this time featuring steep hills) and we arrived at Geumgang Park, a small amusement park located in a famous park area. After reading terrifying warning signs that stated all manner of evil looking bugs were present at the park and all of them were going to try to kill us, we powered up yet another massive hill to get spited by yet another powered twin helix coaster. At least this time the disappointment came clear and concise, "it rained 4 hours ago and so we can't operate this today", Korea you're better than this... So now we've only managed to ride half of what we planned to and we're only 2 days in, Christ this hobby can be a bastard sometimes. We swore before the trip, mostly down to stupid baggage rules imposed by Air Busan, that we wouldn't buy any Kpop until the very end of the trip, well desperate times means desperate measures and we spent the rest of the day breaking our own rule and mending our hearts. Oh and this time we managed to actually eat Quiznos... Day 3 Day 3 began very much like Day 2 with us taking the metro to the bus terminal, but this time the destination was Gyeonju. After we arrived, it was a short local bus trip from the city to... Gyeonju World - https://rcdb.com/5040.htm Again, much like Day 2 it was raining when we arrived at the front door of Gyeonju World, but this time things were looking a little more promising. Firstly Gyeonju World is one of Korea's top theme parks, so in theory their drive to open in the wet should be increased. Secondly, there was a large rabble hanging around outside. Should be fine right? Nope... We walked to the ticket window honestly expecting everything to be fine and were then informed, "limited rides will be open due to the weather"... "Do you think the roller coasters will open later?", "Maybe..." I of course didn't mind getting spited by 2 separate twin helix coasters and was only slightly miffed by missing the coasters at Tongdo but this was honestly very frustrating. Not only was this entire stretch of credding in Korea based around the opening of Draken but being able to literally see Phaethon from the car park but not ride it was heartbreaking. We'll wait... After buying cereal and milk in a convenience store, we slithered into Starbucks, which had an upstairs with the perfect viewing window for scouting out the park. We weren't the only ones who had the idea either, I bet this Starbucks loves it when it rains! For 5 hours we sat and watched and then at about 2pm we spotted 3 engineers climbing Draken. Half an hour later the previously closed flat rides began to test. 15 minutes after this Phaethon tested. Cheers and screams from the Koreans sitting in the Starbucks perfected summed up my feelings and it was time to leave our viewing window, let's be honest we were probably going to be kicked out anyway. Straight back to the same ticket lady from earlier, "2 free passes and 1 entry ticket please!", she remembered us and our bitter disappointment with the coasters being closed and replied in disbelief, "coasters closed, I'm sorry". "We've just been watching them testing", she stares at us not understand what we mean and scrambles to find someone to help us. This lady was so friendly and confused that we decided it would be best to actually watch people on the coasters before ruining her day too much. For another 40 minutes, in which Draken began testing, we stood in the car park staring at both Draken and Phaethon, just waiting and wishing to see either crest the lift with people on and then it happened. I literally ran to the ticket window to be greeted with the lady beaming ear to ear and informing me "coaster's OK!", that's all I need, tickets please. Draken - https://rcdb.com/14310.htm We ran straight to Draken, as this was the first coaster we saw with people on. Draken is the park's brand new for 2018 Dive Coaster and is a clone (boooo) of Busch Garden's Griffon. After passing through the amazingly themed queue building, we got to the air gates, only for the ride to break down as we were about to board, you've got to be kidding me... Luckily the shut down only lasted about 5 minutes and before I knew it I was about to experience my first ever large dive coaster. And how was it? Well it's probably the best dive coaster I've done, due to the fact it isn't over in 20 seconds but it certainly isn't anything special. The drop isn't as intense as Oblivion, in both that Draken doesn't drop you into a hole and the drop itself is noticeably weaker in the ejection department. The large floaty inversions are fine but don't really do anything for me. Also the midcourse stopping the coaster dead half way through is just stupid and kills the pacing so bad. Draken is an impressive looking machine with an amazingly themed queue and station but as a coaster it really doesn't offer much in my books. Dragon 2 Loop Coaster - https://rcdb.com/1404.htm Finally managed to get on one of this stupid things... Phaethon - https://rcdb.com/3935.htm Now we're talking... I've been desperate to ride this beauty for years and sadly was rather let down by it. Much like Draken the queueline for Phaethon is stunning and unfortunately again like Draken the ride experience is lacking something. Phaethon as you'd expect from a B&M invert is very good but sadly that's about as far as it gets. At the time this was my second ever large B&M invert, with my only reference being Monster. Monster to me is a coaster that can't make up it's mind on what it wants to do, which leads to random moments of the coaster doing nothing at all and the infamous straight. However when Monster works out what it wants to do, it does it in style (snappy intense inversions and a helix that's so intense it hurts). Phaethon on the other hand suffers from the exact same moments of not knowing what it wants to do but then delivers the moments it stumbles upon in a FAR less impressive manner. Sadly after 1 lap Phaethon was closed for the rest of the day due to the bad weather setting back in and maybe, just maybe with more rides my opinion would of been swayed slightly but as of right now, I like Phaethon, I just don't love it. With Phaethon closed for the day and the weather getting bad again, we had 2 more laps of Draken, until that closed for the weather and then did the rapids and the Ferris Wheel before making our leave. Gyeonju World from our short time there gave me the impression of a park worth easily half a day of your time, with fantastic theming in places, friendly staff and 2 great B&Ms. We accidentally booked the sexy leisure coach back to Busan, which meant wide boy seats, mood lighting and beautiful women on the on board tv, which was awesome. After arriving back in Busan we decided we'd have a Quiznos but that went about as well as you'd expect... Thanks for reading, next time Suzuka Circuit and Parque Espana featuring the outstanding Pyrenees...
  19. After completely and utterly burning out on reading, let alone participating in any form of theme park based forum, partly due to the immense stress I've been under this year but also truthfully because sometimes I just get fed up of reading stupid crap like "Icon's an ugly shade of grey I hate it already" and statements such as "it won't be as good as Taron" to concept videos of rides years from completion, it is as of today my long awaited return! Not going to lie, I've been itching to start writing trip reports again, so whether you think they are any good or whether anyone actually bothers reading them, tough! So strap yourselves back in, here we go... 2 weeks ago today marked the tragic ending of the best trip of my life, I'm not going to spoil anything yet but believe me when I say me and 2 of my best friends managed to completely blow our last trip to these 2 great nations out of the water and much like when I think of Helix, I am honestly doubtful at this moment in time if this can ever be beaten, your move America... 2 days before our flight, my previously mentioned friends text me with news that the day we are due to land in Korea there's going to be a life threatening typhoon sharing the runway with us, I call BS on that and inform them when their so called typhoon doesn't arrive I will create one for them using fans and the sink at the hotel, I'm nice like that. With that warning well and truly ignored, it was late on a Thursday that we made our way to Heathrow (going the long way because as is tradition the M25 wasn't playing nice) to board our plane to Korea. This was my first time ever flying with one of the ever so exclusive 5 star airlines, Asiana in this case. First we were delayed by an hour, then there was almost nothing to watch onboard, then the food was awful, we got offered 2 drinks in 11 HOURS and the staff were average at best. It really was a good thing we managed to book our flights at well below 5 star money because frankly I think Asiana might on par if not a little bit worse than BA (who are awful), which is not at all what I was expecting. We landed in Korea at 4pm Korean time, flew through security in about 5 minutes, screamed at a poster of Blackpink (Kpop band) and then frantically booked tickets to Music Bank (weekly Kpop TV show) while waiting at the baggage carousel. Bags collected and promptly sniffed we took in a bit of Korean culture, which in this case means watching 6 beautiful ladies in traditional Korean clothing playing traditional Korean instruments, while we waited for the last member of our party to land. All united we made our way onto the airport to Seoul Station metro, which seems to take longer EVERY time we use it. After arriving we got spited by Quiznos, ate Baskin Robbins for dinner, bought our train tickets for tomorrow, saw a homeless man with his d**k out and then went to bed to sleep for eternity. Thankfully the aforementioned typhoon was no where to be seen but don't worry this isn't the last you'll hear about typhoons... Day 1 The next morning after breakfast we made our way to Seoul Station to catch the bullet train from Seoul Station to Colourful Daegu. After a pleasant journey of just over 2 hours we were there, which is rather impressive if you look on a map and realise it only takes about 2 hours to go from the very top to the very bottom of Korea, it takes me about 2 hours to get to London these days. After finding lockers for the bags we took the Daegu metro system to... E World - https://rcdb.com/5041.htm While buying tickets. the staff member (who had an axe through her head) gestured at 2 of the creds on the map before nodding about completing the transaction. Seriously... are we really getting spited on the first day... Undeterred we made our way in and began the ascent up the hill to where the rides live. Magic Castle - https://rcdb.com/1409.htm Our first coaster of the trip was the perfect re-induction into Korean theme parks. Riding a wacky children's cred while a gorgeous ride op sings during the whole circuit. Boomerang - https://rcdb.com/1407.htm One of the smoothest boomerangs I've ever put myself through if that counts for anything? Camel Back - https://rcdb.com/3371.htm Thankfully it turns out whatever the ticket lady was trying to convey about the final 2 creds wasn't that they were closed. Camel Back was the first of many of the legendary "Jet Coasters" on the trip and this thing was actually pretty damn fun! Some proper forces at play, throws you around just the right amount and it even had some air time, yes this beast has some real charm to it and made this park more than just the assumed +4. Also I can't not mention that the ride station was playing Korean dubstep with incredibly offensive lyrics and this only further enhanced the character of Camel Back. Hurricane - https://rcdb.com/1408.htm A mostly rust covered looping coaster buried in a sea of trees with an unknown manufacturer, what could possibly go right? While it was as crap as you'd imagine, the hilariously bad transitions coupled with my friend literally getting hit by a tree made this piece of scrap metal quite the enjoyable experience. Mega Swing 360 If you ever want proof that Kpop's ruined my life, this was it. After watching one of my favourite idol singers ride this insane looking flat I decided I just had to give it a go, bad mistake. While the ride is in it's stride and easily making the 360 rotations, it is terrifying. While the ride is warming up to making said rotations and leaves you hanging upside down for what feels like a lifetime, it is probably one of the scariest rides I've ever ridden. I respect the hell out of it for making me feel things I haven't' felt in years but never again. To calm my nerves we went on the log fume and then went for food. The park is home to both a pizza and a burger place, spoiled for choice we thought, but nope.. The pizza place offered a whole host of "nope!", with their best dish being a potato pizza, so we opted for the burger option, which was equally dire. After lunch and with our discount voucher we were handed when we bought our park tickets, we went to check out Daegu's famous observation tower, which is right next to E World. Call it being in Korea or call it being excited about what's to come but for some reason I rather enjoyed this observation tower, they normally bore me to death. Now I've read that some people really dislike E World and call it a terrible park and I'm here to call them out for that crap. While the ride line up is rather poor and the lack of investment is disappointing, the park itself is fine and certainly has a much friendlier atmosphere than some of the places I've visited before it. Thanks for reading, next time, the spites begin and Gyeonju World featuring Draken and Phaethon...
  20. Someone's in trouble now... That advert(?) is a little understated in my opinion and as mentioned with a coaster this beautiful it's almost a crime to not feature footage of it, how strange.
  21. With the opening of a certain iconic coaster looming, I rather foolishly decided that I would celebrate the occasion by marking it as my 400th coaster. In order for that fantasy to become reality I was going to need to step up my current UK cred hunting streak... This week's adventure took me to the lovely (it really isn't) seaside town of Weston Super Mare. The first park for today was Animal Farm Adventure Park, which is located on farm land (imagine that) around 15 minutes from WSM. After paying the shockingly low admission fee (currently £9) we were ushered straight in without being given tickets, that might be a first. +1 After hitting the cred it was time to check out the animals. Now call it me getting old, call it the glorious weather or call it me happy to be out of the car for an hour but I actually rather enjoyed walking around and watching the animals, what have I become... The farm is home to all your favourite basic animals (sadly they didn't have Capybara) such as horses, ponies, llamas, sheep, goats etc And I thought my teeth were bad... Damn you Marvel for making me love raccoons. I for one am happy creds drew me to this place because although my time there was short I can safely say I enjoyed it and it was a good way to start the day. Friendly staff, funny animals and a dangerously chilled out atmosphere, good little place this. After Animal Farm we made our way to Weston Super Mare, opting to avoid the disgusting (£6 minimum pay) seafront car park and choosing instead to park in a nearby multistory. The reason for coming to WSM was something strange called Funland At The Tropicana popping up on the UK parks page of Coaster-Count. Funland itself has apparently existed on the seafront for a while but only very recently have they added non travelling creds, thus it being added to RCDB and Coaster-Count. It was at this point my friend pointed out the last 3 coasters we had ridden were all wacky worms, I am neither proud or ashamed of this fact. Look how damn shiny and new this thing looks, such a contrast to the rusting scrap metal on Clarence Pier. To end the day we decided to slither into the town of WSM itself and what an interesting place it was. In the short walk to Subway, we walked past, about 10 nightclubs with scary bouncers outside, countless asshole rude boy teens and far too many bitter old people. It's far from being the worst place I've ever been (Eastbourne) but it certainly wasn't very welcoming. Rather thankful to escape we hit the road for the long drive home shortly after. Thanks for reading.
  22. I'm quite happy to admit I live in my own little enthusiast World and that TPM and my 2 enthusiast best friends are my only links to the enthusiast community. However the other day I stumbled on a YouTube series dedicated to the sketchy going ons (past & present) in the UK enthusiast community and I was disgusted, without going into any details the things I saw made me feel ashamed to be associated with this hobby I love. After stepping back I concluded, those assholes be damned I'm not going to let them represent this scene and I'm going to try even harder to do my part to make the best of us look good. I also want to say you lot are a good bunch and you're doing us proud but I won't because I'm too condescending.
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