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Derren Brown's Ghost Train: Rise of the Demon


Marc

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You'd get certain quarters defending it to the hilt regardless of the park it was at...

 

Like the Europa fanboys being excited over a Soarin' clone and some of us not being utterly arsed by it...

 

It's very unlikely though that this is the exact future of rides, much like Potter, or Spidey, because by the time these things are affordable there's new things on offer...

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DBGT has been more reliable than Colossus and Stealth this season so I'm unsure why people are always attacking it in that respect.  Not saying it's a race to the bottom or anything for the record, but when people are constantly moaning about the ride for being unreliable, it's only fair to point out there are other rides which are less reliable than it..

 

The 'future of theme parks' spiel seems to have been taken really hard as well.  Plenty of parks use those sorts of lines in marketing big rides and half the time it's always bog standard marketing speak.  To be fair, it could be in relation to the VR (which, like it or not, is playing a part in the theme par future), to the more personalised experience (which, again, is happening more and more, especially with dark rides), etc., so it's not a wild claim to have made..

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Derren's reliability like many rides hasn't been perfect this year, but is certainly been noticeably more reliable this year as it hasn't had a full day down yet from what I'm aware.

 

and Baron is correct, the attraction has actually been more reliable than a number of other rides, especially Stealth.

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I personally think it's doing great, and eating the crowds! 

 

My main issue with it last year was the ending and the fact it had no re-rideability. This year however I cannot wait to get back on so I think they've hit it on the head for me. Also, not to start anything but I find it interesting that people often assumed Derren was either embarrassed or disappointed with last years version as though it wasn't his fault and that Thorpe were entirely the issue, which as we now know (thanks to recent interviews) isn't entirely the case - especially in regards to Derren's idea for a 'fun' ending. :P 

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How are the public finding it though? Is it a ride it once and that's it type thing. It has been walk on from about 3 everyday this week and while you could argue that's because it's being reliable, well so are the B&M's and Saw on these days and they have queues all day. Purely because reriding roller coasters is fun. You ride Ghost Train, yeah it gets you once, but that's it. It doesn't change, and it isn't thrilling enough to warrant you wanting to go again. The ending catches you off guard once and that's it.

 

It's another investment where they haven't thought long term. It's expensive to staff and I highly doubt it's going to hold up popularity wise over time. The ride still does nothing and you are sitting still watching a screen most of the time, it's not even like a motion simulator. Yes it's better than last year, but it is not built around the demographic Thorpe get or even want to get. I see it like a midway they've cut in half and plonked in the middle of an amusement park.

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13 hours ago, Owen said:

Also, not to start anything but I find it interesting that people often assumed Derren was either embarrassed or disappointed with last years version as though it wasn't his fault and that Thorpe were entirely the issue, which as we now know (thanks to recent interviews) isn't entirely the case - especially in regards to Derren's idea for a 'fun' ending. :P 

 

Dont know about others but I hadn't "assumed" it, I had reliable reason to say it, though of course he would say only positives about something with his own name on in interviews, etc. I don't think there was any discussion that he was pointing blame as such, just distancing himself by omission, which he certainly did do all last year with his media presence around the project during its delay and opening.

 

His actual design involvement in the project was largely at the beginning stages and (in an overseeing position) the final completion stages. Very large portions of the attraction's design he was not involved in (other than peripherally), and he was certainly disappointed by the outcome last year from what I reliably know, which factored into its delay. I'm sure he pushed for changes this year though and they did something about it, so that's a positive.

 

 


It's disappointing to see recycled parts from other attractions dressed up as 'easter eggs', whatever that is meant to be! In reality it was done purely to save money on recording/creating anything new and because they had the Sub Terra tracks & Hex artwork already lying around on their servers. The audio is generic so it easily fits anyway, which I think is  telling of how formulaic Merlin's horror attractions are now, but nothing wrong with it being used in DBGT really. It's a quick simple solution on their part.

 

"Easter eggs" mean nothing anyway and easy to do, but as long as Merlin don't end up like Doctor Who or something (caught up in one big game of dull fan in-references without actually delivering any fresh story or drama), then I'm happy!

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I mean my friend loved it but he's only ridden it last year and this year, once each year. Personally, I do love the concept surrounding trains and it is a bit of a letdown inside, especially as it ruins the unique Victorian feel. Add to the use of large amounts of actors and technology (that won't be maintained), I really fear that the attraction will be closed in the next 10 years. I wish the inside could have kept that train sort of feel but instead of using vr, it could have used no vr. It could have been done with screens as windows, smoke machines and leg ticklers. Even having an actor inside would still be viable if it would only need to be 1 instead of 5.

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3 hours ago, Wumbamillio said:

 

Dont know about others but I hadn't "assumed" it, I had reliable reason to say it, though of course he would say only positives about something with his own name on in interviews, etc. I don't think there was any discussion that he was pointing blame as such, just distancing himself by omission, which he certainly did do all last year with his media presence around the project during its delay and opening.

 

Forgive me, I wasn't necessarily saying people on here, more so the rest of the internet. I found there to be a lot of "if derren hadn't worked with them it'd been better" which I find a bit harsh and interesting that now we know one of the most disliked events was heavily down to Derren (and arguably everyone involved in VR including Merlin Magic Making) rather than solely the park (bad wording on my part). :) 

In regards to the public based on what staff were saying the majority seem to really like it, however they also said it's stressful for everyone when the attraction experiences technical issues, but that's a given! 

 

Also, ThemeCrafter, I'd recommend you try the experience in its entirety rather than saying it's a disappointment without fully experiencing it! ;) 

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Finally experienced the improved Ghost Train today, much better than last year!

 

The ending was really clever (and nice to see an anamatronic!) but the overall concept of the attraction still doesn't appeal to me personally.  Too much waiting around and I just don't find it entertaining - would have much rather seen a high-budget actual ghost train.

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Well after experiencing the attraction with someone who'd never stepped foot inside a theme park before I can safely say I think Thorpe have a winner with the GP!



After we had been on the attraction twice they began talking about how amazing it all was and how they will have to come back to try it out again, they also told (more or less) everyone they spoke to about the ride and how they need to try it. The others in my group who had ridden all the other attractions before said that they really enjoyed it however one felt that the final section where you are moved around on the notion platform should have been longer. :) 

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Same could be said of my sample size of taking a person who'd never been to a park before on Hex and them thinking it was the best thing since sliced ham...

 

Sure for every member of the GP who enjoyed it there's one who didn't for whatever reason... It's not exactly unlikely...

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My sister who rarely visits theme parks but went to Thorpe with her friends (with me having never spoken about the Ghost Train to her) came back saying it was one of the most naff non-entities she'd been on. Usually she loves theatre type things! But even then I wouldn't take one newcomer's reaction as whole.

 

But excellent to hear somebody enjoyed it as was intended. :)I think it very easily could have offered far greater response though, had it been designed with guest experience as the priority, rather than the novelty of heavy handed VR and sidelining the original intentions.

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I think you are missing the point. I am not taking this one persons opinion as whole however I know there has been some concern over the attraction not being interesting enough to hold the GP, and so I used this person as an example of someone who enjoyed it enough to go back for this one attraction. The simple truth is, that yes we can assume the majority of the GP do enjoy it which can be seen from social media interactions, at least more than last year. Obviously not everyone likes it and why should they at the end of the day, much like the other person I mentioned who wasn't the biggest fan since it didn't move around so much. :) 

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Went on this again on Monday - still enjoy it a lot but a pair of idiots decided to go out of a fire exit after the live section - which resulted in the ride having to be reset (according to a staff member) - I get that maybe they felt a bit panicky and didn't want to finish the ride but to go out of a fire exit when they could have just spoken to a staff member - frustrating to say the least.  

Was a bit bored waiting on the train but was at least sat down - and it was quite funny listening to a group of young lads saying how they reckoned it was part of the ride and that something was going to come onto the train(!)

 

Also the end part - do they always have an actual demon (as in someone inside a costume) because I swear I've only seen a projection of one - :blink: and admittedly almost soiled myself when this huge demon thing appeared.

 

I still enjoy DBGT but it's not something I would wait ages for - we joined a 15 min queue but were queuing for at least 30-40 mins - then got stuck on the last part so the whole thing took up an hour.  I know people do queue a long time for it and as much as I enjoy it, I would rather queue for a coaster which I find more re-rideable.

 

The only gripe I have is that once you've been on it and go again you have to watch the pre-show which I could possibly recite word for word now - the pre show is great for your first ride but does become tedious after a while - an option to skip that part would be great but would probably cause problems with throughput.

 

I do think in terms of the GP you will get people who love it and others who don't but that's to be expected - it won't be everyone's cup of tea but that's life.  I love going on and being on a train with people who haven't ridden before because some of the reactions are brilliant and you do hear some pretty fruity language.

 

I think DBGT was a gamble by the park - a huge investment that wasn't a coaster but it brings something very different to the park and it desperately needed a dark ride 

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Oh my goodness, just gotten off of it now and I was actually pretty darn impressed by it this time, which is something I never thought I would ever say about it.

 

There have been some subtle changes and differences compared to riding it a few weeks ago, most of which are for the better:

 

• Firstly, it opened at 10:13am first thing and not the typical 11-12pm hour. Much, much better.

 

• Staff were filling both bays to the brink which massively helped the queue moving quicker.

 

• Only issue I had was the pre-show began as soon as the first person entered the room in the group. Since I was near the back, I missed out nearly a minute, but not an issue with the ride itself, just the operation.

 

• There was no stacking anywhere between the pre-show room and the warehouse. Good stuff.

 

• Some may see this as a disadvantage, but the carriage was absolutely sweltering hot inside just like a real underground carriage during summer. Not sure if this was deliberate or not, but I couldn't hear the fans working to cool the units. I didn't mind it.

 

• Pretty much all Vive headsets were working on both halves. Great stuff.

 

• The first VR half had a minor addition made which I've never noticed before. When the infected girls breaks into the carriage, I could see the man sitting opposite me just casually walk out of the carriage to the right as though nothing ever happened. All previous rides show them immediately disappearing as soon as the window breaks without any trace, so this was something new.

 

• Half-way section was working perfectly with all audio and visual effects working, including the moving carriage. Yay.

 

• Now the 2nd VR half was the most surprising bit for me. Despite already haven ridden it earlier this year, new content appeared. My guess is because we were waiting still for nearly 4 minutes, the VR content goes through 3 or 4 different scenes and whenever the train is ready to move again, it cuts that scene.

 

So instead of waiting in green mist like last year or seeing the demon creature wander through the carriage, I was also shown an infected girl standing right in front of me before being pulled out of the carriage and then the night vision goggles turned on and another person was pulled away into the darker corners of the carriage when they stood up and the announcer asked them to keep their contamination goggles on.

 

My previous few rides have all only shown up to the point where the demon wanders through the carriage before being thrown into the pit, so this was a really nice surprise to see how the teams have worked around the holding issue experienced last year. Instead of having the same scene on loop, it progresses through several different scenes until the train is ready to move back into its starting position again.

 

Last year I said it would be impossible to avoid this looped scene as it depends on the timing of all carriages in the circuit. I'm glad that I've been proven wrong!

 

• Finally for the new ending without giving too much away, all I'll say is the eyes and mouth now light up in red with smoke coming out of them. You may also get a little wet too.

 

This has been the most complete, consistent and enjoyable ride I have had on this yet and if Thorpe can keep it's current quality running every day throughout the year and especially during Fright Nights, they have a real winner now. Keep it up!

 

[emoji4]

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I was on park today. The tube train effect in the tunnel was up and running for my first ride of the day but not for the re-ride unfortunately. Also three infected actors this time for the live action scene! There were a lot of screams and a round of applause after the new ending which was great to see!

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It's a real winner now, I've been on it last weekend with Mer and it's much better. Feels like they are running at max capacity and really getting more people through the ride with having two groups and playing the pre-show as early as possible. 

 

The story makes much more sense with the train staying underground and explaining that the demons escaped from hell due to the deep sub-core drilling. At least that's the way I see how it makes sense. When Mer put on the second VR, she said she could still see the other people and then they were snatched by the demons and she realised it was supposed to be like that!

 

The surprise at the end was great at blurring the lines between fiction and reality again and had excellent use of Melin's tricks used at other attractions to really make that end room come alive and I'm so glad it's not just an added-on scare maze!

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Was my first time on the new ghost train yesterday, and was pleasantly surprised! The queue and pre-show is a lot better now and the VR is soo much better with the new headphones. The new VR section was my favourite part whereas that used to the worst by far, and loved the ending!

 

Still, can't see how this attraction will run in the long run with it having like 15 staff + actors whereas other main rides like Colossus can run with 4 or 5. 

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Very good to hear DBGTROTD is going down well this year - shame it couldn't have been this good for opening but lessons will be learned etc. etc...

 

20 minutes ago, ThorpeAddict said:

Still, can't see how this attraction will run in the long run with it having like 15 staff + actors whereas other main rides like Colossus can run with 4 or 5. 

 

It's just as easy to remove bits of the experience as it is to add them - will be interesting to see how the ride operates in a few years time.

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The first time I rode the ghost train this year I found no glitches and it was a good surprising experience and I very much enjoyed it.

On my recent visit I rode it for a second time the operations were good and it was the best run through I had on it all effects working and

actors were onpoint, and credit to one of the thorpe staff who recognised me and gave the whole batch a more intense experience, he also

thought it would be funny to go to me and try to drag me off my seat. 9/10 good upgrade this year, although it still lacks a bit of scares and

some glitches/effects here and there but overall great update to the ghost train, and if thorpe continue this upgrade through future years

it could come out to be a actually scary and thrilling ghost train.

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Just want to say how good Derren was today. Queued 20 minutes and the new batching system is still working well. Timing was perfect from the hosts. First section was clear and all audio and visuals working. Timing was perfect again and didn't get help up. VR ended and we got off. Tunnel scene worked and many live actors was there. Second VR timed perfectly again, everything working and some interesting hosts holding my hand. And it's always fun seeing the GP reaction to the new ending. Probably the best I've had on Derren. Hopefully it's always like that and it's a solid part of the park. Was very impressed overall today.

Sent from my SM-G935F using Tapatalk

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