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The Next Big Thing

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15 hours ago, Flipper said:

So, if we rule out RMC because of Vekoma, rule out B&M and Intamin because of budgets, and rule out Mack because of bookings for projects; it really does leave us in a toss up between a GCI (or another) woodie, or towards something less expected such as Gerstlauer, who, in fairness probably could deliver a Hyper-esque coaster at a reasonable rate, should either party agree to work together again.

By this logic, you would also have to rule out GCI, because Mack are their European sellers in effect, much like Vekoma's relationship with RMC;)


I see no reason why Vekoma couldn't be used.  They're the company with the most coasters built (granted, that's largely down to clones, but still), so they've got the resources to deal with many many projects. Similarly with Mack too.


35 minutes ago, JoshuaA said:

 I think Gerstlauer is very unlikely after the many troubles Smiler had.

GCI is a interesting one that could happen, but if the next big coaster is in the new few years I think its unlikely due to Wickerman.


Merlin's biggest competition in the UK is probably themselves so adding another GCI a year or two after would probably not be the best idea.


Rita and Stealth happened in the space of 2 years, and Tussauds made sure speed was the big marketing push (Stealth has the height factor too, but speed was the main push).  So never count it out!  If Thorpe were to go for a much bigger GCI coaster (say market it as that "pushes the boundaries of what wood can do" or whatever).  And that's true for any woodie tbf.




I can never remember where I heard it, but one rumour that sticks in my mind is that Merlin aren't keen on RMC due to the accident that happened on New Texas Giant a few years back (though technically that was more a Gerstlauer fault, but I imagine Merlin aren't keen on them at the mo either..).  It may sound silly, but if they've got any doubt that the company might not see safety in the same way they do, it might rule them out from the word go.


At the moment, I don't see anything that B&M offer that would really fit for Thorpe.  I mean, sure, they could get a 'mini-hyper' and chuck in lots of airtime, but there's plenty of other manufacturers which can produce similar rides (and arguably have a wider portfolio of existing rides which suit the size Thorpe are going for).  I'm not saying there's nothing B&M can offer, or that B&M won't happen, but I just don't see why Thorpe would opt for them.


I'd love to see a Mack or Vekoma personally.  Their latest stuff is always looking fantastic and is always received well.  Mack might be pricey, but they'll be worth it.  Vekoma might be a bit of a risk, but they'll be worth it.  Failing that, Intamin can produce some blinders of a ride every now and then - if we got a good one, would anyone really complain?


I'm also not ruling out a launch coaster yet.  I'm sure Merlin have taken note of the successes of rides like Taron and Helix, but also the popularity of semi-shuttle launches which Mack in particular are churning out.  I'm sure they could create a launch coaster which isn't so fast that it negates Stealth, but is interesting enough in its own right.  And I'm sure they could play on 'the fastest/tallest/longest triple launch coaster in Europe' or whatever if necessary.

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Fits like a glove then.

I'm sure that train in the background is going the wrong way

They said "pine", wooden coaster confirmed.   

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Definitely would like to see something like an RMC. Something along the lines of Steel Vengeance or Wild Fire, but probably noticeably smaller with more styling/theming. 


A GCI Woodie or something similar to Taron/Helix (but comparatively different) are honourable mentions. Even something like Time Treveller wouldn’t go a miss. 


Can’t really see them adding another B&M unless it’s something like a Hyper. Swarm alone pretty much rules out any Floorless and Flyer type coasters and Saw probably writes off a dive coaster. Don’t fancy a stand up at all.


Lets just hope the capex reduction hasn’t affected this otherwise we’ll be lucky to get an apocalyptic Wacky Worm or Spinning Wild Mouse with faded primary colours. 



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6 hours ago, BaronC. said:

By this logic, you would also have to rule out GCI, because Mack are their European sellers in effect, much like Vekoma's relationship with RMC;)


I see no reason why Vekoma couldn't be used.  They're the company with the most coasters built (granted, that's largely down to clones, but still), so they've got the resources to deal with many many projects. Similarly with Mack too.

Wasn’t aware of Mack-GCI tie in, thanks for that!


regarding Mack and Vekoma though the only thing that makes me shrug them aside is their turn around time. Icon was allegedly planned in to be constructed for a while (I'm sure somebody on here could confirm and give a time frame), and likewise if the rumour is true about the second Mack ‘ride’ with Pleasure Beach already agreed and purchased, again this is suggestive that Mack are taking bookings ahead at the moment. Andthe same with Vekoma. Again I’m sure somebody could confirm but I’m sure Pterosaur and Velociraptor were purchased and planned for Paultons for a few years.

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RMC do offer the T-Rex track instead of raptor which seats 2 per row rather than 1. Not really sure what it would bring to Thorpe's line up though other than something pretty cool looking.


I'd like to see something like steel vengeance but with Thorpe's restrictions in height and there guidence on length of the coaster I don't think it would be very good. I'd like to see how Fly turns out because a new generation of vekoma flyers might offer an experience that complements swarm. 

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2 hours ago, A.T.I said:

What is Thorpe's height restriction? I mean Stealth is 205ft tall...

Currently the highest they can go is 50m on the island behind swarm and stealth. It should also be no longer than 950m if they comply with the mtdp. However the mtdp doesn't seem very applicable anymore and is coming to the end of its term anyway. It's also more a guideline than set rules. 

My concern is the length limit would make any 50m ride feel rather short so if they were to go with an RMC I'd like to see the length far longer so it doesn't feel like a wasted opportunity.

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The most recent MTDP expired in 2016 I think, so those numbers would be obsolete now, since they would have to submit plans from scratch effectively, rather than under that.


The actual height ceiling for Thorpe is like 500ft, but Thorpe would never build anything of that height for several reasons.  Getting anything above 200ft would be a big ask to keep the locals onside, but who knows.  The length thing is self-imposed, and not really a restriction - that was more Thorpe saying to the council "just to let you know, we don't plan on building a coaster over 850m in length between 2010-2016".  

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No matter how much I try to, I just can't ever picture Thorpe getting wood of any sort, be that an RMC hybrid or GCI/Gravity traditional. By all means suprise me, but I can't even imagine it.


For reasons I've spoken before (the rumour Mack are not thrilled to work on a large scale project with Merlin at the moment) and Merlin wanting to not look like they are copying Icon, I can't see a Mack coming.


I reckon an Intamin Mega-Lite isn't impossible, but once again seems unlikely. I for one would love it!


It's a really tough one to call...

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  • 3 weeks later...

After such great success with Thorpe’s latest IP: The Walking Dead, rumour has it that Stealth will be re-themed next season into a similar style as Rita at Alton Towers. The music and audio will be replaced with the same as found in the Dark Forest to save on costs. Stealth’s station and trains will be transformed with blood stains and sheet metal. The queue line fences will be replaced with a chain link barbed wire perimeter. The surrounding area will be transformed into a Walking dead themed wasteland. The “new” ride will be called; The Walking Dead Presents: Infected Stealth. (TWD PIS) What’s your TAKE on another new zombie themed ride at Thorpe?

Happy April Fools! :P 
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Wouldn’t surprise me if we see Stealth tweaked sooner or later. With Angry Birds dividing Amity Cove, and now the Dockyard taking place it would not surprise me if we finally see Amity bite the bullet and with it see the loss of the beach and possibly a removal, relocation or rebranding of Fish in the process for a future development. And as such, see Stealth’s speedway rebranded into something like ‘Thorpe Speedway’ - albeit I’d expect this to happen when the island behind Stealth and THE SWARM is occupied and the footpath (theoretical) is added in through sunken gardens.

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  • 4 months later...

After sightings of more cryptic signs hidden around the resort, there have been rumours going around about a new coaster coming to Thorpe in 2020.


- Sign lettering: “MMXX =?”, Location: Top of shed seen from Nemesis Inferno exit path.


- Sign lettering: “C.H.I.P. 7706” below an infinity symbol in blue, Location: Zombie Hunt notice board & tucked in operators booth window above The Swarm.


So far the speculation has been that MMXX refers to project 2020 and that further information / planning surrounding a new project may be imminent. As this sign is in the same style as project zero, I remain highly sceptical until we get further information.


Speculation around the “chip” sign grabs my attention more so. There’s a theory it could be cryptic stats for a new hyper coaster. CH being Coaster Height 77 metres - making it the tallest in the U.K. if granted permission.

IP 06 Either being; Investment Project 06, A new 6th IP, or Intamin Project 06.

The fact it is a printed sign and has been spotted in two locations makes me believe that this is a more deliberate and relevant clue made by Thorpe themselves.



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  • 2 weeks later...

So it was around this time in 2011 that Thorpe put in plans for Swarm. Thanks to the MTDP, planning permission was all but guaranteed, and the ride had long been rumoured. Aside from that, plans for major investments were going in about 18 months before the ride opened (DBGT in Oct14, Saw in Nov08, Stealth in Oct04..).


So, that, coupled with no rumours really floating around about a new addition in 2020 - the expected year of a major investment - do we think we can now safely say that there won't be a new big thing any time soon? As it certainly feels that way..


Can Thorpe really go 8 years (or more) without adding a new coaster? In a time when Legoland are adding more well rounded, substantial family rides, Chessington seem to actually be crafting new attractions again, albeit rethemes, and Towers are on the up, can Thorpe really make do with their poor quiet season investments for another 2 years?

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