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Angry Birds Land


Marc
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I think Sidders is wary of product/brand tie ins from previous history and I don't blame him - Ribena Rumba Rapids anyone? Tie in finishes, rip out any reference to Ribena and as you were.

That said, I am quietly optimistic for the new land - c'mon Merlin, please do your magic! ;) If we have a themed area as strong as Swarm Island we're on to a winner. If it's a couple of fibre glass birds scattered about, then it's a definite must try harder :lol:

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Are the decisions that hasty though? They've been gradually re-focusing on the family market for a few years now, with Storm Surge, the new "resort", X's refurb, and now 2 new family rides + area for 2014.

I wouldn't call that a hasty decision. This is a gradual re-brand in to a more diverse resort.

This is true, although my 'hasty' remark, specifically, was directed at this Angry Birds development only. With regard to Storm Surge and X that indicate that the park are 'refocusing on the family market', I would argue that their generally lazy and noncommittal nature is far more representative of how little Thorpe Park are interested in devoting to this secondary demographic. Indeed, the idea that they are attempting to gradually 're-brand' in this half-hearted way actually contradicts the other gloomy and uncaring brand that they were cultivating at the same time (using apocalyptic, sadistic imagery and showing a disregard for adventure or enthral). My concern is that they don't know what they're aiming for, with park advertising, online promotional material and new developments on-park all communicating a different message. Are they 'The Nation's Thrill Capital' exclusively, or are they hoping to, as you say, create something more diverse? It's fundamentally confused as far as I see it, and each new decision seems to suggest a different intention, but that's just my own opinion (and an unfortunately cynical one).

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I think Sidders is wary of product/brand tie ins from previous history and I don't blame him - Ribena Rumba Rapids anyone? Tie in finishes, rip out any reference to Ribena and as you were.

I guess that's fair - although I'm hoping this is more a Saw kind of thing rather than a sponsor.

Say what you like about the ride, it has some of the UK's best theming IMO.

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This is true, although my 'hasty' remark, specifically, was directed at this Angry Birds development only. With regard to Storm Surge and X that indicate that the park are 'refocusing on the family market', I would argue that their generally lazy and noncommittal nature is far more representative of how little Thorpe Park are interested in devoting to this secondary demographic. Indeed, the idea that they are attempting to gradually 're-brand' in this half-hearted way actually contradicts the other gloomy and uncaring brand that they were cultivating at the same time (using apocalyptic, sadistic imagery and showing a disregard for adventure or enthral). My concern is that they don't know what they're aiming for, with park advertising, online promotional material and new developments on-park all communicating a different message. Are they 'The Nation's Thrill Capital' exclusively, or are they hoping to, as you say, create something more diverse? It's fundamentally confused as far as I see it, and each new decision seems to suggest a different intention, but that's just my own opinion (and an unfortunately cynical one).

I'm confused, haven't you just kind of answered your own question there? That it isn't just a case of either/or and that they consider both markets to be important?

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Storm surge from what I remember was not marketed at families whatsoever... I'm sure the advert was young adult orientated. I don't think they put that in because of families, but because it's a ride they could get hold of cheap, and a fun one which they thought would appeal to the target audience at the time. X retheme however was clearly done for the family market, which was the focus of changer after the 2012 season in my opinion.

It's understandable that solely marketing for a teenage / young adult audience who are probably the age group with the least money, wasn't a good move for thorpe, and it's a good idea to still have attractions for the younger audience while mainly focusing on the thrill side to it (as legoland is young children, chessington is family based for all ages, thorpe is mainly thrill seekers, and alton towers features a bit of everything), I just hope they don't go too much the other way and forget about the thrill seeker market as they have done for this year (and questionably last year), leaves me pessimistic about what we'll see next year; and hope thorpe realise what they're doing - this year will either be really good for them in terms of attracting a lot of the younger market which may not normally go, but see angry birds land and want to go, or put off a lot of thrill seekers going with nothing new for them really for the past 2 years and have a bad year, or I guess could be somewhere between - I hope it's a bad year for them to make them realise they're pushing their thrill capital slogan and audience away. In all fairness we went to fright nights who had a family with children 9, 10 & 14, and the 10 year old was just 1.4m so would have liked to gone on everything if they had the time, so when you say thrill seekers, if they liked rides, children who are still pretty young can still have the full experience of thorpe park!

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I guess that's fair - although I'm hoping this is more a Saw kind of thing rather than a sponsor.

Say what you like about the ride, it has some of the UK's best theming IMO.

Agree with this - and the same applies to The Swarm. As I say, if the area is as "immersive" as SAW Island or Stealth Island, then I will take my hat off to them :)

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I don't think Thorpe are moving to far away from their thrill seeker market in all honesty.

The problem is that it's a very targeted audience and since losing CCR / Time Voyagers there is really little new for anyone under 1.4 to really enjoy. X obviously helped but I do think a couple of years improving their family line up can only be a good thing, in the run up to what I can only assume will be a coaster aimed at thrill seekers

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A strong, recognizable brand though one that has undoubtedly passed its heyday. Merlin have clearly done the sums, the research and IPs do seem to be popular (as much as I despise them), however in the long term, I don't see this as a particularly enticing offer.

Flipping the coin however, surely reopening the 4d theatre can't be a bad thing?

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hopefully with slammer & samurai actually open, along with better reliability parkwide which I'm guessing was seen improved in 2013, as well as 2 new attractions... will hopefully have a positive effect on queue times.

anything new, or reopening... giving a larger amount of attractions can only be seen as a good thing regardless of whether it appeals to you or not.

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I am really Excited for this so much so I have redownloaded Angry Birds on my phone :D.

It's already working in Rovio's favour then! ;)

My opinions have already been expressed by everyone else, only thing to add is that THORPE PARK Resort look to be doing better than Chessington and Towers for yet another season.

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When I first saw this I thought oh dear; then I read through all the comments so far, and I'm with Marc and a few others on this and I'm gonna sit on the fence.

Say what you like, when done well an IP can be pulled off well; SAW is a very good example of it (okay, maintenance wise hasn't been brilliant but as a whole) and Merlin did show they can do a strong theme when they put their mind to it with SWARM.

A family area is never going to go down well with people; since the Thorpe has pulled people's attention as a thrill park. But I fully support Merlin's logic of trying to revert this now. At the time, it was a very quick way of marketing the park and bringing people through the gates, but with that it has brought in the high influx of the rowdy pumped up teenagers - which every park gets - in their droves, which I personally feel is somewhat reflected by small noticeable bits of damage here there and everywhere which has had a higher present regretfully at Thorpe than perhaps other parks. But when you step back and look at it, it's a bit like the park saying "Hey, we're not your doormat to come smoke some drugs, spit on our floor and scratch how big your genitalia is into our bins!" ... that aside and from a business point of view, creating two "for everybody" parks in Thorpe and Chessington instead of it's current layout surely will (in theory) result in attracting visitors to both parks. I think it's often overlooked by enthusiasts how many civilised teenagers enjoy a day out at Chessington, as well as Thorpe.

Anyway I'm rambling. As an IP Angry Birds is neither here nor there. It personally wouldn't pull me in, but I'm sure it'll pull in plenty. If anything my criticism would be that the area is relatively small if anything! I'm not big-up on the Detonator incorporation, but people's comments have won me to say its better to be themed in, than to not really fit at all. I just personally hope the park spruce it up nicely, maybe do something with it's queue line fencing and kiosk, and hey, maybe fix that bar that jams a lot while they're at it. Family ride or not, I think people have the common sense to judge a ride like Detonator before riding it with their "Just gone 1.3m kids". My bigger concern comes with the Dodgems. Yes, they're making a popular comeback with both Chessington and Blackpool Pleasure Beach having them - and they prove popular; but the Thorpe clientele isn't ironed out yet, and it won't be for a while I don't think; so I dare say they may become a little boisterous at times, especially for younger kids? Unless of course, they're carefully staffed out. And 4D attractions, well, Paultons Park added one for 2013; and Ice Age 4D at Towers have both proven incredibly popular. So maybe it isn't such a dead goose of an attraction as people think after all? Hats off to them, I look forward to seeing some concept art for this. Hopefully it won't be too simplistically done.

I fully agree I feel this could however divide Amity Cove a little; but the tea cups could easily be themed to be more stand-alone (like Rumba is in my eyes) and Stealth, really. Sorry to say it but Stealth's theme is in my opinion an abandoned race track, give it a lick of paint, a new sign that hasn't turned white, and fix some broken gas pumps and dare I say you have a new race track theme, and thus again, a quickly done, stand alone little area.

PS the shark is always lingering ;)

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I don't get comments like this (I don't mean to pick on just you!)

But we've not even seen plans for this area yet so I don't see what we are basing opinions such as this on?

We can look at angry birds lands at the other two parks in the UK (Sundown and Lightwater Valley), and then we can compare thorpes recent lower cost editions (Storm Surge... a bunch of nothing, flying fish). And then look at a ride that they're implementing, a dodgems.

Not difficult to come to the conclusion that it's gonna be ****.

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It's already working in Rovio's favour then! ;)

My opinions have already been expressed by everyone else, only thing to add is that THORPE PARK Resort look to be doing better than Chessington and Towers for yet another season.

Based on what exactly?

If it's based on gate figures, then surely Towers did better?

Based on KPIs, probably yes, but even then the season wasn't THAT fantastic... How are we assuming that Angry Birds will be better than CBeebies Land? So many questions come from this statement it's actually a bit weird for it to be said... Will Angry Birds have the same draw as CBeebies? Will it garner more income as a result of popularity? Towers are adding 3 new attractions (and a show) as a result of that and Thorpe bring back a Cinema that closed due to being unpopular and that makes it better?

If people aren't allowed to judge the area as crap before seeing the plans, then people cannot judge it as a success before it's even opened...

Here's a fantastic post about the situation from Joey on Coasterforce... Enjoy...

Okay. Had a little time to digest this, so here's my initial thoughts outrage.

First, let's not get carried away. This is no re-theme. When Merlin have a huge budget to play with their theming attempts are minimal, so the reality is that there's going to be a a few very temporary looking Angry Bird props dotted around the place. It works both ways, both when we wish there would be more elaborate theming and when I desperately hope no long lasting "damage" is done.

TLDR: This will be half hearted and temporary, don't panic.

I have no issue with a Detonator retheme in principle. But what I do have an issue with, much like my issue with Mach Tower at BGW, is why you'd take the most intense piece of amusement park hardware you can get and theme it to convey the exact opposite.

Amity Cove at Thorpe makes good use out of COMEDIC non dark themes that are ironic and funny. That's different. That's clever and well executed, but I still think it's wrong for Stealth - especially when you look at how the park marketed it. You can't get away from the conventions Stealth communicated as a piece of hardware - it's tall and fast = scary.

Angry Birds is a kids theme. Yeah the game has a wide appeal, but the branding and merchandising certainly does not. Is this a knee jerk response to the requirement for Thorpe to be a family park? How exactly is it supposed to help? If anything it's contributing to the problem... Families visit Thorpe, expecting a family experience, and are faced with a severe lack of experiences for the little ones. If that was happening when Thorpe were literally trying their hardest to put off the family market with grotesque marketing, it'll be ten times worse since that stupid advert last summer that showed nothing but footage of Tidal Wave. And now you're advertising a 1.3m ride, that also happens to be the most intense experience in the park, with a child's brand? Wat?

TLDR: Theming can increase and decrease the effect of visceral experience (intensity) to a point. It can't make Detonator suitable for the Angry Birds audience, certainly can't magically reduce it's height restriction. It continues to add to the problem of guest expectation vs reality that is plaguing Thorpe Park and the VERY REASON they've done this.

The 4D cinema thing... Well it's harmless, I guess.

The dodgems on the face of it are a fantastic idea. I'm thrilled they're actually DEALING WITH THE PROBLEM noted above and getting another ride with a low height restriction. The blessing and issue with dodgems though is that they appeal to older audiences as well and are the ideal platform for nightmareish scenarios involving Thorpe's previous target audience (who the park is still ONLY geared up to entertain). Not only that, their capacity is shocking and they won't bring people through the gates, only entertain those already there. But overall, probably are a good idea. No idea is perfect. It's about weighing up the pros and cons.

OH and most importantly, this cost more than you would think because it's an IP. They paid for the privilidge of using Angry Birds - a brand, once again, past it's prime.

Plus, it's just embarrassing bandwagon jumping.

Now we just have to sit back and wait to watch Thorpe cry or gloat thinking their attendance success or lack there of was based on anything other than the percentage of precipitation this coming season.

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We can look at angry birds lands at the other two parks in the UK (Sundown and Lightwater Valley), and then we can compare thorpes recent lower cost editions (Storm Surge... a bunch of nothing, flying fish). And then look at a ride that they're implementing, a dodgems.

Not difficult to come to the conclusion that it's gonna be *****.

Id of thought 2013 was thorpes lower budget year (if they still have the 1 large, small and medium budget years!)

Am looking forward to seeing concept art and plans to see exactly what they are wanting to do.

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Lets be serious here, we're all gutted Merlin haven't pushed the budget. Angry Birds is dead.

It's all about Minions. ^_^

Now you see a Despicable Me area would really be an example of a current IP that really is suitable for everyone...

But really would cost the earth to get... And Merlin don't seem to want to do that with IPs...

Id of thought 2013 was thorpes lower budget year (if they still have the 1 large, small and medium budget years!)

Am looking forward to seeing concept art and plans to see exactly what they are wanting to do.

Not gonna be the case though is it what with the next coaster delayed to at least 2016 no?

It won't be anymore than fibreglass models dotted around the area... And some stuff thrown on the buildings as well to 'fit'... Mean if even CBeebies Land is re-using a lot of the current stuff, what makes anyone think Thorpe won't be doing exactly the same?

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I don't understand why an IP has to be current to be worthwhile.

Universal essentially an entire park based on dead IPs.

Angry birds will pull in a HUGE number of young family based on the name alone, for the next few years. I don't particularly agree with the ethics because Rovio are massive sellouts and have literally milked the brand dry, that said, who am I to complain with what the public want?

What's more interesting to me, however, is how late into the season its opening. It would lead me to think maybe their Plan A fell through for this year, and they've fallen back to Plan B...

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I question how everyone views detonator as this really scary thrill ride, when at most I find it enjoyable for the short while it lasts... I went with a family who had a 9 year old just under 1.4m, who loved detonator and said it was her favourite ride... I mean are people forgetting that children this young can still be tall enough, and not all kids are scared of bigger rides? So angry birds fitting in with a flat that has a smaller height restriction of 1.3m isn't that bad of an idea really... I know they haven't specifically chosen this ride, only because it's in the area of angry birds land and for it to fit in has to have some sort of retheme.

And saying trying to appeal to younger audiences when they don't have enough rides to... Without cebeebies land, Alton towers don't have a lot really, and chessington doesn't have loads and loads of rides for that age group, so at least there's more than before, as families with teenagers and younger children would go and find hardly anything for the younger children, but would now in my opinion be sufficient for all to enjoy.

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head in a 360 turn

So in the same direction?

I don't understand why an IP has to be current to be worthwhile.

Universal essentially an entire park based on dead IPs.

Angry birds will pull in a HUGE number of young family based on the name alone, for the next few years. I don't particularly agree with the ethics because Rovio are massive sellouts and have literally milked the brand dry, that said, who am I to complain with what the public want?

What's more interesting to me, however, is how late into the season its opening. It would lead me to think maybe their Plan A fell through for this year, and they've fallen back to Plan B...

I think there is a difference between dead and iconic. King Kong was brought back to LA (and there are Orlando rumours floating around) simply because it's such a strong brand.

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I question how everyone views detonator as this really scary thrill ride, when at most I find it enjoyable for the short while it lasts... I went with a family who had a 9 year old just under 1.4m, who loved detonator and said it was her favourite ride...

I hope it was you're own family ;)

Joking aside, it's deemed as this 'scary thrill ride' due to it being renowned as pulling such high forces. If you find it simply 'enjoyable' and this nine year old you speak of enjoyed it then I'm very pleased for you both. However, Detonator is a sticky wicket; people either love drop towers or hate them, and I think I can safely say I haven't seen all too many nine year olds jumping onto Detonator; if anything I've seen more nineteen year olds anxiously jumping off.

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I don't understand why an IP has to be current to be worthwhile.

Universal essentially an entire park based on dead IPs.

As a Movie themed park though it's a bit different... Looking at their rides though most opened when the brands were during their peak (MIB, Mummy and Shrek), whilst Simpsons is the weirdest one...

As Turtle said though, the likes of Twister (which is FABBBB), ET, Jurassic Park, Seuss, Marvel, Toon Lagoon, Potter (hardest to tell, but it's certainly made Universal obscenely rich) and whatever other IPs I've missed are very much eternal in a sense... Much like Thomas Land will never be out of date because it is an iconic character...

Fad like IPs (Ice Age, Saw, this) which are done poorly and on the cheap are rather obvious quick money makers...

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