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Next Big Thing - 2016 Development ?


pluk
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With The Swarms opening season out of the way I'm sure the park have started to think about their next big thing already, so lets join them!

If the MTDP is adhered to we have a couple of fairly barren years ahead, but then we should be hit with something special again. Yesterday Ride Rater posted this

Thorpe Park is considering a wooden rollercoaster among a number of other possible options to be its next major rollercoaster in 2015.

Now that might be the most non committal, easily guessable almost non rumour you are ever likely to see, but the stuff on there is often reliable and there's no reason to think it's not grounded in some sort of truth. For me it would be the best possible news if it came true, a modern woodie of some sort is long overdue in the UK. We have lost out while the rest of the world has moved on, I hope Thorpe can be the ones to stick their necks and see the beauty of wood before anyone else in the UK.

So what will we get? What should we get? And when? And where?

A coaster? A dark ride? A whole new area? Anything is possible. Speculate away...

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Thorpe have always wanted a woodie, wasn't one for Canada Creek debated behind CCR at one point, but settled on Saw instead?

I'm not sure what they should do next.. To be fair, a B&M flyer as intense as Starry Sky Ripper at World Joyland would fit in fantastically next to Swarm as an aerial assault on it!! :)

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If it was to be a woodie it would have to be an inverting one or one with a major woodie! Beating outlaw run this year it would probably have to be the steepest and the woodie with the most inversions to get much interest in it.

My idea was to have the worlds first wing-diver. It is a dive coaster mixed with a wing-rider, the trains would be 3 rows of 4(2 on each side of the track) it would stop like oblivion does and would become the worlds steepest wing-coaster aswell! The ride itself would have up to 8 inversions and would be up to 200ft tall! As much as I would like this at thorpe, it will have to go somewhere else because thorpe have the swarm!

A b&m flyer would be awesome but it would definately have to be something special...

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If they get a woodie, please make it be an Intamin prefab such as Balder, El Toro or T Express. No gimmicks. Just pure ejector airtime awesomeness. It's what Thorpe lacks in my opinion, a non-launched coaster with no inversions with plenty of airtime. It wouldn't have to have a massive footprint (e.g, Balder...). Maybe Rocky Mountain Construction could come up with something similar though if they do want a gimmick, with what they've done with Outlaw Run I could see them thinking up more new elements in the future too.

I think it's too early to put any solid guesses in but meh speculation is always fun! :P

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Shame Colossos was one of the most over-rated pile of wood I've ever ridden... Like every single Intamin ever, great first drop, rest of the ride forgetful and some might say dull...

I would much rather a GCI... So, so much rather...

You can't be putting down Colossus...

Colossus is an amazing experience although I have to admit it is not one of the best I've been on!

If thorpe park got a starflyer type ride it would be nice and also maybe if they had samurai replaced with a zierer starshape it would be good aswell! If detonator was also double the height and still the same intensity, it would be one of the best dop towers ever! Detonator is a really intense drop tower but I prefer power tower because of the height!

To be honest as long as thorpe brings something good which I can ride, I'm not particularly bothered if its a woodie or a flyer!

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I thought it was common knowledge now that the 2015 coaster won't be built until 2016, owing to Thorpe's attention shifting to their "accommodation strategy", starting next season with Snoozebox next season and finishing with the completed hotel in 2015. I think it was Josh that pointed this out to me; it was buried deep in the proposed plans files for the Snoozebox application under a section called "Background". I took a screenshot for y'all:

http://i1227.photobucket.com/albums/ee432/OddOne93/THORPE2015.png

(Can't appear to be able to use .png on this community).

So it seem these hotel plans have also delayed out next coaster by a year! I'm hoping for a Mega-Lite á la Piraten at Djurs Sommerland, a Blitz like Maverick at Cedar Point, or a decent Woodie like El Toro or Outlaw Run.

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You can't be putting down Colossus... Colossus is an amazing experience although I have to admit it is not one of the best I've been on!

You mean the same Colossos? The Intamin pre-fab of over-ratedness? Not the awful piece of rusting crap Colossus Thorpe already have right?

Just to make sure we're on the same level...

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You mean the same Colossos? The Intamin pre-fab of over-ratedness? Not the awful piece of rusting crap Colossus Thorpeshame already have right?

Just to make sure we're on the same level...

I was talking about the one at heide park! But I think the one at thorpe is good too :)

Shame we won't be seeing a new coaster until 2016, however I think this means thorpe will install more flat rides(up to the 9 proposed) over the years!

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I think it was Josh that pointed this out to me; it was buried deep in the proposed plans files for the Snoozebox application under a section called "Background". I took a screenshot for y'all:

'http://i1227.photobucket.com/albums/ee432/OddOne93/THORPE2015.png'>http://i1227.photobucket.com/albums/ee432/OddOne93/THORPE2015.png</a>'><a href='http://i1227.photobucket.com/albums/ee432/OddOne93/THORPE2015.png'>http://i1227.photobucket.com/albums/ee432/OddOne93/THORPE2015.png

I think it might have been me who pointed that out, or at least something similar. :P

At the moment, it's unclear whether the next major investment will be 2015 or 2016 in my opinion, as I seem to remember reading different things in the Snoozebox application which conflicted each other (I'll have a look later), though I've heard things which more suggest 2016 than 2015. <br />

<br />

As for what I'd like to see, I'll post that later, after I've thought about it some more. :P

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Ah sorry Josh - I was meant to include in my post that you'd shown me that! Yeah I remember now because I couldn't find it for the life of me and I thought you were taking the piss. :lol:

And I've seen a few other sources that still say the next large coaster will arrive in 2015 but these didn't seem quite as official as these documents, which came from Thorpe/Runnymede Borough Council themselves, I believe?

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<blockquote class='ipsBlockquote'data-author="Thorpe Park= :)" data-cid="146739" data-time="1356819951"><p>

I was talking about the one at heide park! But I think the one at thorpe is good too :) Shame we won't be seeing a new coaster until 2016, however I think this means thorpe will install more flat rides(up to the 9 proposed) over the years!</p></blockquote>

If Thorpe install 9 flat rides before 2016 I will go to the park naked.

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The next big thing, good question.

I personally want to see something completely unremarkable but something unexpected. There are only two types of roller coasters that I can think of that fit the bill, that being a wooden rollercoaster or a mega coaster in the vein of Expedition Ge Force or Silver Star.

Wooden Rollercoaster

People seem to be convinced that a wooden rollercoaster with an inversion is the way forward. I'm really down on this idea. It's fine for American parks to get these gimmicky wooden rides but I would adore it if Thorpe stuck to their guns and went for something that doesn't require an inversion to get people interested. Think about it, rides like Tonnerre de Zeus, Megafobia, Grand National, El Toro, Balder are adored by enthusiasts and public alike because they are the definition of rackety wooden rides that deliver bucket loads of air time without having a gimmick to uphold. Thorpe has enough inversions as it is, without chucking one at a ride type that doesn't really need one.

Mega Coaster

A Lot of companies could deliver this potential ride type. The only rollercoaster at Thorpe that really delivers nice air-time is Colossus's bunny hop. I'd love to see a ride that throws air time at its riders on every hill. I'd personally want a Mack as they have proven that they can deliver any variant of ride, one that is reliable and successful.

But a crucial thing for me is why a roller coaster? Why not an epic dark ride. People often argue its not Thorpe's target audience. Rubbish, if thats true then why is one of the most successful rides of all time a dark ride.. Dark rides take up a lot of space but can be more satisfying for a larger amount of people then any terror rollercoaster. A decent IP, a long ride that scares and entertains would be a perfect ride for Thorpe, a park that does suffer from a lot of low throughput attractions and rides that are very samey (I'm thinking of the flats specifically)

And finally, a few people have said that as its a low investment year, then a few existing rides should see some up-keep and repaints. The park should not be waiting for low budget years to be doing this. It should be a continuous thing otherwise you run the risks of rides like Oblivion being next to your brand new ride, completely letting the team down.

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Would we need an IP to create an epically themed dark ride? Whilst Spiderman, ToT and Huntik all have their own IPs, there's also Curse of DarKastle which provides an excellent story and themed experience (as cliched as it is)...

Would love a B&M Hyper mind, this country needs a pure airtime machine... That would certainly provide it...

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And finally, a few people have said that as its a low investment year, then a few existing rides should see some up-keep and repaints. The park should not be waiting for low budget years to be doing this. It should be a continuous thing otherwise you run the risks of rides like Oblivion being next to your brand new ride, completely letting the team down.

I definitely agree with you but unfortunately past experience has shown that Thorpe clearly are not singing to that song sheet. As I've posted somewhere else, Thorpe appear to be all about building new rides and then maintaining them in the most cost effective and safe manner; nothing that really goes above and beyond their duty to keep their rides available as much as possible. Unless they are explicitly mandated by the manufacturer to (for example) repaint the ride every so often for safety or even increase the ride's lifespan then I'm sure they would do it.

But on the topic of the next new ride, I really do think the next big thing should have a pure focus on airtime. From my view, I think Thorpe already have every other coaster trick covered:

  • Inversions: Colossus, Inferno, Saw, Swarm
  • Inverted: Inferno
  • Launch: Stealth
  • Wingrider: Swarm
  • Backwards: XNWO
  • Vertical: Saw and Stealth
  • Family: Flying Fish

With all those rides covering a lot of existing bases, the only base which I see isn't covered properly is airtime; a ride dedicated to ticking that box, and doing it well. We've got some positive G-force monsters at Thorpe, I think the negative G's now need some love.

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I think a new darkride would work well. The challenge is creating one that relates too Thorpe's target audience and one that isn't just filled with cheap gimmicky ghost train stunts.

Not my personal favourite but if there was to be a darkride I imagine they would almost certainly go for an interactive, laser shooter one like Tomb Blaster or Laser Raiders.

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So, here's my view on the next Big Thing for Thorpe.

In the past 10 years, Thorpe's big additions were Colossus, Inferno, Stealth, Saw and Swarm. Each of them added something unique to them - inversions, inverted-ness, speed and height, (beyond-)vertical and winged coaster. In a park of Thorpe's size, with the number of attractions it has, it would be pretty silly really to have something which mimics these experiences. Immediately, in my mind, this rules out any coaster which would focus on any of these things, so any sort of multi-looper (by which I mean, the key focus is the number of inversions, not any form of coaster which has a large number of inversions), any inverted coaster, any launched coaster, anything with vertical drops as a focus (Euro Fighters, Dive Machines, etc.), or another winged coaster, or a flying coaster (as I believe it is thought that flying and winged coasters are 'similar experiences').

That knocks out quite a lot of options - the two stand out remaining options being a (steel) airtime monster or a woodie. There are of course other options, such as mega coasters, spinning coasters and such, but I don't think these would fit the bill. A mega coaster is something which I think could possibly be the 'big thing after the next big thing', as I think at this stage, it wouldn't suit the park appropriately - they have a maximum height barrier of 50m, and can only exceed 30m once or twice I believe, and their coasters must not exceed 850m (all due to the MTDP). Due to those restrictions, a mega coaster just won't fit the bill at this stage in my mind. Spinning coasters are likely to have too low a throughput, and other ideas probably aren't popular enough.

Now then, a steel airtime monster. It is something that Thorpe lacks - airtime. It could realistically be done in the constraints they have, and given the opportunity, it would work perfectly as a step up coaster to the bigger coasters - another thing that Thorpe lacks. It seems like the perfect way to fit everything which the park is missing, as plenty of others have said. This also goes back to Benin's point earlier - a ride with no gimmicks, which is just great quality. Such a ride would no doubt be a cheap ride system as well, meaning that Thorpe have the option of installing a somewhat cheaper major attraction than normal, if they need to save on money, or have extra budget for theming or sprucing up the rest of the park. You can just imagine it on the island next to Swarm and working perfectly really. The only thing I can think of against it would be - is this what the public wants? Will a ride with no gimmicks, no inversions and such draw in the crowds, especially since the UK has been 'spoilt' by gimmicky coasters for so long now (even Swarm comes here, what with the wingrider concept). I guess that's something which only market research can tell...

Then, there's a woodie. Again, this fits the bill of giving opportunities for airtime and a step-up coaster to the bigger ones. The fact that one was seriously considered just a few years ago shows that there would definitely be interest in - after all, despite what Merlin's research tells them, the park wouldn't have gotten as far as they did with the plans under Tussauds if the ride wouldn't have been popular. With the whole thrillseeker / experience thing Thorpe have going, surely a woodie is a great idea - there's not too many around the UK right now (there's only been two installed in the past 50...), and it can be marketed to be very appealing. I've heard rumours of RMC being considered, with even a 3 coaster deal for Merlin being possible(!), and that would suit Thorpe well - has the appealing gimmick, can fit in what they'd want in the length required and such. No doubt RMC can develop their hybrids / woodie (whatever people want to call them) further, and if they prove to be a success, the type will naturally develop. Then, there's the tried and tested woodies, any of which could provide something to suit Thorpe. The problems I could think of here are marketability - if Merlin's findings really do reflect the general consensus of the public, is it worth the risk? Then there could be practicality issues - the whole new engineering team required (at least I think that's true, or is that whole thing just a load of rubbish?) and other possible issues.

But why does the next big thing have to be a coaster? Alton have apparently said that the Secret Weapon project code isn't necessarily restricted to just coasters now, meaning one of their next big things could be something like a dark ride, so why can't it be the same for Thorpe? Thorpe lacks a dark ride which isn't a coaster, so would be a welcome move in the park. Invest in one instead of a coaster, so spend at least £10 million in today's money, and then there's loads of possibilities to create an amazing dark ride which creates a brilliant atmosphere, and have a great ride system to go with it. I can't think exactly what could come from it, but with the correct ride system and the though put into it, it could be phenomenal. A couple of issues I can think of though - would the next big thing not being a coaster work in the long run? Even if it is a huge hit, I'd say the general link to theme parks is roller coasters - would 6-7 years be too long between coasters to keep the public continually going? Personally, I think this wouldn't be a problem, but it is still something to consider. Another problem is the location. If X is kept as it is, the park would need a large building would need to be created to house the ride. With Thorpe, it would be hard to create such a building in a suitable location (ie, one where it naturally fits in), as I personally think plonking a random building would ruin the skyline and look an eyesore in general. If X were to be removed, then this probably wouldn't be as much of an issue, as it could be housed in the pyramid / have a new building replace it, but otherwise, the location could prove to tricky.

So, really, I have no idea what the next big thing could be, or what I even would like it to be. Every idea I can think of has its own flaws / problem, so I seem to think that it just wouldn't happen. So, whenever the next big thing is planned for, I await the surprise of finding out what it is!

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I can see a Tomb Blaster type ride not doing well at Thorpe, it will only really be good for the small number of families, the only way they could improve it is to make it a very intense horror ride, maybe have a Th13teen track drop in there somewhere.

Thorpe have got themselves into a sticky situation, as they have moved away from a family park and they are a thrill park, their target audience now want thrills and bigger and better, so the normal generic dark rides will not fit in. Time Voyages was closed this year, I guess to lack of demand. There is talk of Vengeance 5D, but it has low capacity, if this goes in and is themed to the Swarm it might as well work.

Now for the first year it will have mega long queues, but the re-ride ability will be low, so as the popularity falls, it may in fact have the right capacity for the park and a filler attraction, not take up too much space either.

Now if its big thrills, then Thorpe can only realistically install another three big coasters before they run out of space, so they will need to use space wisely and fill up on flats where possible. But even with all space used, I still would not see Thorpe as a two day park, so I can really see the hotel being a major benefit, only to those guests who travel a very long way or people staying over from a club night/ride n rave.

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Yeah, I feel that the popularity of a non full-on thrill ride would be low with the rebranding they've had over recent years. It's only a matter of time before they either go back on their word so they are able to install other rides, or have to remove a lot of older rides (Depth Charge and Storm Surge's days are numbered in that case).

Coaster-wise I'd love to see something non-gimmicky as almost everyone else has been saying, be it a woodie or Megacoaster or whatever, but then as previously pointed out the lack of gimmick may not bring in the crowds..

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- they have a maximum height barrier of 50m, and can only exceed 30m once or twice I believe, and their coasters must not exceed 850m (all due to the MTDP). Due to those restrictions, a mega coaster just won't fit the bill at this stage in my mind.

I've wondered about this. The MTDP does state those figures, but why? I understood they were merely numbers they were working towards because they wanted to, not because they had to.

Due to its location Thorpe have the laxest planning restrictions of the major UK parks, what is the maximum height they would be allowed to build to? The only thing I think could effect any height restrictions would be the 'local' airports, but it is a bit of a stretch to think Thorpe could actually build something tall enough to get in the way of a plane. And as for the coasters length, I don't see that has got anything to do with anyone outside the park, so that restriction could surely be broken if the park decided to go that way?

Do we have to completely rule out a hyper, or even giga, coaster?

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