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2023 - World of Jumanji


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All should be revealed tomorrow about the new area! 

 

Also, interesting to read that at the Towers Times 20th Anniversary event John Wardley hinted at Chessington getting some further development in coming years. Which was then followed up but this tweet from Chessington Buzz who appear to work quite closely with the park and seem a reputable source...

 

 

 

 

 

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I’m no fortunate teller yet I could’ve told you months ago that Project Amazon was Jumanji Themed. Don’t get me wrong I’m exited about The World Of Jumanji. Id love to become the next Robin Williams (Alan Parrish) and enter the Jungle.  I hope Chessington’s Jumanji area is as heavily Themed,if not more so  than Gardaland’s.

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22 minutes ago, Theme Park Fanatic said:

I’m no fortunate teller yet I could’ve told you months ago that Project Amazon was Jumanji Themed. Don’t get me wrong I’m exited about The World Of Jumanji. Id love to become the next Robin Williams (Alan Parrish) and enter the Jungle.  I hope Chessington’s Jumanji area is as heavily Themed,if not more so  than Gardaland’s.

We could have all told you that months ago! It's been known a long time, this is just now official information released hence the post! 

 

But please remember not all rumours are accurate so don't always listen to the first person who tells you something. Forbidden Tomb was mentioned to you and it didn't happen! 

 

I'm not holding my breath with theming. I just expect aside that large theming structure lots of landscaping and a few other little nods to the series. Regardless its nice for Chessington to be getting some investment and potentially more to come! 

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@Mattgwise I think we know what to expect from seeing the Jumanji ride at Gardaland. If this Jumanji attraction is anything too go by,Chessington will have,an immersive,well themed premier attraction. I’m expecting smoke effects,animatronics,water effects,mist effects,sound effects and smell pods. I’ve heard the Gardaland ride features all of the above. Personally I hope the new Rollercoaster has a Dark Ride section. I know the only thing they have in common is being Rollercoasters,but I am thinking along the lines of The Dragon at Legoland Windsor.

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On another note; now the Jumanji tie in is in the public eye and I’ve had a fair amount of time to process this investment, I have some definite thoughts about it. I’ll look at this from a balanced viewpoint and express what I feel are some positives and negatives.

Positives

  • Investment in Chessington is never a bad thing. And £17m is huge for Chessington; I wouldn’t mind betting that that is equal to, if not more than, the overall new attraction CAPEX at Chessington over the last 5-10 years. ZUFARI cost less than £10m (I seem to remember £8m being quoted as a figure) as did Gruffalo (not sure on this, but I remember £3m coming from somewhere) and Croc Drop (£2.5m), and I’m struggling to think of anything else major that’s happened at Chessington in the last 10 years other than those 3. With that in mind, a £17m investment is big news for Chessington! I know that inflation likely makes £17m worth slightly less than it would have been in the past, but nonetheless, it’s very big money in Chessington terms!
  • This will provide a new major attraction to help disperse crowds a bit more. While people argue that Alton Towers lacks filler, I’d argue that Chessington has the opposite problem; they are very saturated with filler and lack major e-tickets, and rides that would be considered filler in other theme parks currently masquerade as major rides at Chessington for this reason. This should go some way towards improving the balance, and helping the park ease its alleged queue problems. This is not replacing anything, this is adding capacity to the park, and quite significant capacity at that. The coaster has an alleged capacity of 720pph, and the flat rides will allegedly be capable of 600pph each, so this land will add an overall theoretical capacity of 1,920pph to the park. That’s not an insignificant number by any means, and should hopefully go some way towards easing the overcrowding burden at Chessington.
  • Building upon my previous point, I’m glad for the inclusion of supporting flat rides. These should help ease the burden on the major coaster and ensure that the park continues to have a wide variety of things to do.
  • Whatever you think of B&M in the current climate of the industry, a park building one is undeniably a pretty big status symbol. And when that park is Chessington, which I would never have pegged as getting a B&M in a million years, it’s hard for me not to be excited! Putting aside the specifics, this is a B&M at Chessington; what an exciting prospect!
  • Delving more into the ride itself; Wing Coasters a great ride type, and I definitely think this could have a lot of potential to be a good ride. Whilst I’m not expecting Swarm, it could function well as more of a starting thrill coaster for the park, and it looks as though it will add a really good ride for the older children and thrillseekers coming to the park, which it could be argued that Chessington currently doesn’t have many of.
  • I think Jumanji is a very strong choice of IP. The last film came out in 2019, there is another film in development, and the franchise as a whole has made £2billion; it’s very much still in the public conscious. Heck, I seem to remember hearing that the last film alone made more at the box office than all of the Saw films put together, and Thorpe Park has made a great success out of Saw The Ride for the last 13 years! I also think that this IP fits Chessington very well; even if the tie-in does go down like a lead balloon in the years to come (I don’t think it will, but you need to consider the possibility), the land could be quite easily retooled into a generic jungle land that would suit Chessington’s brand identity and demographic down to the ground. I have great faith that this IP tie-in is a fantastic decision by Merlin that should do very well!
  • The theming of this area looks phenomenal; the 55ft Tiger Shrine will surely be very impressive, and the planning application showed some other really nice touches as well!

Negatives

  • I do wonder whether the 720pph capacity of the coaster was what Chessington needed. The park has well documented capacity struggles, and this will be a major attraction themed to a big ticket IP, so it will inevitably get high demand. Will a 720pph theoretical throughput be enough to handle that demand? The supporting flats could help with this, in fairness, but I reckon the coaster, as the headline attraction of the area, will receive the bulk of the demand.
  • If I were to cast a slightly more critical eye upon the coaster layout, I’d argue that it doesn’t appear to play to the strengths of the Wing Coaster ride type very much. The things I feel that Swarm (the only Wing Coaster I’ve done) does well, such as the awesome sense of speed, the great near misses, and the awesome floaty inversions don’t appear to be channeled here very much. I’m open to surprises and very willing to be proven wrong, but that’s my current thought.
  • As much as I love B&M and am very excited to see Chessington working with them, part of me is slightly sceptical as to whether they were the right fit for the park and this particular project. Reviews of rides like Dæmonen at Tivoli Gardens suggest that compact, small scale rides like this one are not B&M’s forte, particularly when big trains like the Wing Coaster trains are used. I do wonder if another manufacturer and ride type could have provided something more worthwhile for Chessington with greater versatility, wider appeal (I imagine another manufacturer could have made the height restriction lower than 1.4m) and slightly more “bang for buck”. I’m very willing to be proven wrong, but that’s just my current thought.

Questions I Have

  • In spite of my negative above about capacity, I do wonder if Chessington is hiding something here that will make the coaster higher capacity than it appears to be at first glance. Merlin have hidden things from planning applications before (remember Smiler’s missing 6 inversions?), and not everything said in past planning applications has ended up true (What happened to Wicker Man’s “silent magnetic lift system”? That lift hill has to be one of the loudest I’ve ever stood by…), so it wouldn’t necessarily be unheard of. The ride has a maintenance shed, which coasters running only 1 train don’t normally have. One of the key pillars of B&M’s design ethos is high capacity, and I’d be surprised to see them betray that. John Wardley recently stated in a TowersTimes Q&A that he was impressed with how B&M had “solved the shuttle coaster capacity problem” with Chessington’s ride, which I feel is an interesting comment to make when this ride, which is being pegged at 720pph with a 24-rider train, has lower capacity than the regular Vekoma Boomerang (760pph with a 28-rider train) and the Vekoma Giant Inverted Boomerang (870pph with a 32-rider train), two fairly commonplace shuttle coaster types. Given that Wardley has not shied away from criticising sub par capacity on rides in the past, I found his comment intriguing. Could B&M have invented some genius technology that allows the ride to run 2 trains?
  • I also wonder whether a lower height restriction may be in store. I’ve heard rumblings that this ride will be a “Family Wing Coaster” rather than a regular Wing Coaster, which could suggest that different seating and a lower height restriction could potentially be in store. Some Legolands are also building Family Wing Coasters, and I’d be very surprised if Lego permitted anything with a 1.4m height restriction to be built in their parks.

But on the whole, I think this is a really positive step for Chessington, and I look forward to seeing what it’s like!

P.S. I know I contradict myself a fair few times, but I should say that I am in two minds about certain aspects of this investment, so some contradiction is inevitable!

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What are the flat rides that will be part of this area?

 

I think this addition makes complete sense for the park and fits in well with the ‘explorer’ theme that’s seen across most of the area. 

 

I am intrigued to see how the rollercoaster rides, as mentioned above wing riders work well with speed and height to allow for zero-g elements but this seems to lack that at the moment. I suppose if it was a Vekoma then that could be seen as too similar to what Paulton’s have so this differentiates them more.

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  • JoshC. changed the title to 2023 - World of Jumanji

On a random note, I was thinking about the capacity of this ride, and Wardley’s comments about how B&M “solved the capacity problem”, and I was trying to work out how they would be able to run 2 trains on this ride with the train configuration and station setup specified. Wing Coaster trains, due to airgates being required on both sides, would not work with the typical turntable or sliding station solutions used to enhance capacity on other types of shuttle coaster.

 

Then, I had an idea.

 

There is apparently a big empty space being left below the station track.

 

If there was to be a new loading solution on this ride that allows for it to accommodate 2 trains, I wondered if the space below the station could be for some sort of stacked station affair. Think something a bit like the Big One’s vertical transfer track, but with station platforms on the top and bottom levels.

 

Here’s a video of the Big One’s transfer track, to show you what I mean:

 

Hopefully this system would go a bit faster than that, but the basic principle would be the same. My thought was:

  • The station building could be on 3 levels.
  • On the ground floor, you could have Station 1.
  • On the middle floor, you’d have the launch track.
  • On the top floor, you could have Station 2.

In terms of how this would work in practice:

  • Train 2 would load and unload in Station 2 while Train 1 negotiates the circuit. Retractable floors would be raised to allow for riders and operators to get to and from the train safely.
  • When Train 2 is ready to dispatch and Train 1 has completed the circuit, the retractable floors would lower and Train 2 would lower onto the launch track.
  • As Train 2 is lowered onto the circuit, Train 1 would be lowered into Station 1 on the ground floor to load and unload as Train 2 negotiates the circuit.
  • Repeat process, while alternating between Train 2 and Train 1, many times.

That’s my idea, anyway. I’m not sure how feasible it would be, but I think it would be a possible way to get around the pitfalls of wing coaster seating for the regular solutions like turntables and sliding station tracks. It also wouldn’t require any additional ground space compared to a regular station.

 

In terms of how you’d get people up to the top station; my thought was that it could operate a bit like a flying theatre does, where guests are split into different groups to go to different levels. 2 groups (Station 1 right & left) could stay on the ground, while other groups (Station 2 right & left) could go upstairs.

 

What do you guys think of my idea?

 

For clarity, I’m not saying that this ride will run 2 trains. I could be adding 2 and 2 and getting 121 here. But there is evidence suggesting that it might run 2 trains.

 

The ride has a maintenance shed, which is not normally something that’s present on coasters that only run 1 train. Surely you could just use the ride station to do maintenance on the train in this scenario, as the ride wouldn’t be operating if its only train was down for maintenance?

 

Wardley also made rather intriguing comments about B&M having “solved the shuttle coaster capacity problem” for this ride. Given that the 720pph capacity with a 24-rider train being thrown around for the ride on 1 train would be a lower theoretical than that of the common-as-anything Vekoma Boomerang (760pph with a 28-rider train), I find this comment rather baffling if the ride will only run one train.

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I’ve found a theory on Twitter from JAMMY that could possibly explain why John Wardley is “impressed” with the capacity of the new coaster while also keeping to what we know about it only having one train and excluding any theories about 2 trains and fancy station setups:

Basically, JAMMY’s suggestion is back to back winged seating similar to what the Vekoma Invertigo has. This would double the capacity per train from 24 to 48, and would result in 4 riders per row per side rather than 2. It would also suit a shuttle coaster; as I said above, this has been done before on the Vekoma Invertigo models.

 

In theory, this would effectively double the theoretical capacity from 720pph to 1,440pph, but it should be noted that the park time would be roughly twice as long (2 minutes rather than 1 minute) with a 48-rider train compared to a 24-rider train. However, this would still boost the capacity to 960pph, or a 48 rider train every 3 minutes, which is fairly decent.

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The back to back could be a very practical idea- for families/groups of 4 they can face each other which would be nice.

Although I imagine for people you don't know it would be slightly awkward depending on how close the seats are hah.

 

I think another (family) coaster is what chessington has needed for a while to divert demand from rattlesnake/dragons fury/vampire so great to see this sort of investment happening, with an IP that parents (and grandparents) will also recognise. Given the jumanji brand has been around since 1995, I imagine it'll stay relevant for a good while yet.

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Can a family coaster have a 1.4m height limit?

 

Certainly not one that needs to take off the strain on Vampire and Fury.

 

That enthusiasts are desperately clinging on to the #WordsofWardley shows the worrying lack of excitement this ride is giving. It's a B&M and I honestly cannot really be bothered to plan a trip down next year with any urgency (though that might well be down to personal reasons more than anything).

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On 8/23/2022 at 2:53 PM, Benin said:

Can a family coaster have a 1.4m height limit?

 

Certainly not one that needs to take off the strain on Vampire and Fury.

 

That enthusiasts are desperately clinging on to the #WordsofWardley shows the worrying lack of excitement this ride is giving. It's a B&M and I honestly cannot really be bothered to plan a trip down next year with any urgency (though that might well be down to personal reasons more than anything).

 

I'm very excited. Very Very excited. I'm flying the flag for 8 year old Mark. 

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On 8/29/2022 at 4:23 PM, Stuntman707 said:

I can't see them using a transfer track, I'd bet on it being back to back seating. Hope that they can keep the queues short however they build it.

 The planning application showed the trains and capacity….

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