Well, I guess I'm grateful this trip turned into a night at Six Flags (it was supposed to only be a shopping trip to Strongsville), but since I have expectations of how a park should be run based on my many years as a CP passholder, this park just fails to deliver. To think it has so much potential. Ride for ride, I think it can compete with CP, especially with the addition of a hyper (hopefully). There are just too many kinks in other areas that need to be ironed out first.
My friend and I arrived at the park around 5 PM to process our SF passes (bought to save money when we go to SFGAm later in the month). Driving into the park, my first view of X-Flight filled me with anticipation...that is until I realized there was no one in line and all three trains were sitting idle...DOWN for the day, as the sign at the front of the park confirmed.
Well, then we went to process our passes. I actually give SF props for an efficent pass processing setup. Even though CP's has become much more efficient this year, SF still has them beat for quickness.
Entering the park, I also noticed no trains were running on Villain. OK, so not only is the new ride down, but so is my favorite ride there. Not a good start for the day. I wasn't in the greatest of moods.
Our first ride was Batman, which put me in a better mood. Screw the floorless effect; gotta ride back on this one! The drop of air off the mid-course brake run in the back is a textbook example of great airtime. Funny that all my favorite parts of this ride are the non-inversion elements! The wait was only about 15 minutes, but the ride ops were doing everything they could to stack two trains regularly. It amazes me how the Raptor ride ops can run 3 trains with little/no stacking while this ride, which is quite a bit longer, always stacks. On a later ride, the op made the shirtless guy riding next to me get his shirt from the platform and put it on after the harnesses had already been locked, causing quite a delay. At CP, this would have been caught before the guy even entered the loading station. This is why SF needs to put a worker at their station entrances - to catch things like this and to do height measurements (not on the platform where it will slow capacity). I also tripped over everybody's bags when I was walking off the platform. I guess I agree with Jeff that this is really irritating, but I think boxes on the platform would solve this instead of CP's new approach (but that's a whole different topic).
After Batman, we walked onto Raging Wolf Bobs, which I think is an almost total waste of time. No airtime (except for one hill - the water wing turn)is one minus, but the biggest demirit is the fact that this is probably the roughest coaster I've ever ridden. Now I enjoy the roughness on some woodies, like SOB, but this was just too much. Maybe it's the trailered trains, but I think it's overall neglect. Yuck! This is a case where the ride was too rough to be fun.
After the Bobs, we walked over to the Villain to see what the problem was. The op told me that the ride system started operating in Maintenance Mode. I'm surprised he told me. Anybody know what this means? Is it a computer problem or does a part of the ride really require maintenance? I think CP employees are trained not to tell anything to guests who ask what's wrong with rides when they shut down, but this must not be the case with SF. Well the ride never opened and I didn't get to ride my baby. :(
Passing up the long Double Loop line, we decided to ride the hang n' bang, Serial Thriller. If this ride has a supposed Western theme, I wish they would paint it Western colors and give it a Western name, for God's sake! Last year, I waited an hour for this thing due to one train operation and thought it to be a huge waste of time. This year, there was a walk on wait with two trains running, and I actually enjoyed the intensity of the ride, despite the headbanging. This proves that a long wait CAN affect your enjoyment of a ride! My friend and I rode it back-to-back, actually. The trains were stacking like mad, but since the lines were short, I really didn't care.
After this, it was on to the Big Dipper. I was excited since I've never been on it (it was closed when I visited last year). The capacity on this thing was horrible - one train with a separate loading and unloading stop and SLOW intervals between the car moving. What should have been a five minute wait was a half hour. We still snagged two rides during the day. The first was in the back. Wow, whiplash airtime! The fourth drop is the most violent "air-lat" moment I've ever experienced. For the first time in my life, I am grateful for a trim brake (which comes right before it). The pullouts on the hills of this ride are VERY abrupt so you go from ejector airtime to being slammed back down into the seat. Needless to say, I loved it! Sigh, they don't make em like they used to! I just wish SF could put a little TLC into this woodie. It is unnecessarily rough in many spots, and heck, it's only 65 feet tall! Some simple retracking and work on the trains would do wonders! By the way, are those NAD Century Flyers? They seem like it but it is hard to tell since they are in such bad shape. The train makes a loud BANG when they transfer from the unloading to the loading deck, which does not sound healthy at all. More confusion while people threw their bags onto the unloading platform from the loading side, especially for us since we were waiting for the back and had to let everybody through.
After this, it was a 5 minute wait for a ride in the back of Superman. What can I say? Loved it last year, loved it this year. I really can't complain about the operation on this one. For one train operation, it is very efficient.
Mr. Hyde's was also down for the day, which made me think, "You never see this many major rides down at CP at one time." Yeah, because CP takes care of their rides!
After being mad with ride closures, my friend and I decided to hit Batman, Big Dipper, and Superman once more and then call it a day (although our plans would change). On Big Dipper, we took seat 1-3 and were ejected to some standing airtime on all the hills. Some retracking and this could be an AWESOME roller coaster.
While on Superman, my friend looked over, and A TRAIN WITH PEOPLE ON IT WAS RUNNING ON X-FLIGHT! We ran there after Superman and found that a substantial wait had built up. Well, at any ride at CP, it would have been a 20 minute wait, but due to one-train operation and a brief delay, the line ended up being an hour and a half! Oh well, we were just glad the dumb thing opened! Of course, we were "lucky" enough to get directly behind three drunk smokers for that time period. One of them had to use the bathroom really bad but didn't want to lose his place in line after waiting an hour, so he urinated in a plastic pop bottle (filled all 24 oz. of it) and then dumped it out all over the stones on the side of the queue. I was shocked. Chalk this up as another thing on the list of "Things that will never happen at Cedar Point." Of course, CP has people working in the queue and security guards at their busy rides to make sure things like this don't happen!!!
OK, on to X-Flight itself. Besides the horrible capacity of one train with long loading times (we calculated about 200 - 400 people per hour), I can't complain about the ride. We rode in the last seat. I thought the ops stapled me in too tight, but that changed when I actually got on the ride! The first turn to the flying position is the most scared I've been on a ride in a long time. The loop almost ripped my face off, the in-line twists were great, and the helix was awesome. It seems much faster when you're on the ride than it does watching it in line! Great ride, although maybe not exactly classic, and the ride did not justify the horrible capacity of the night. Riding it at twilight was pretty cool. Definitely a unique, world-class thrill ride, though.
After this, we got two more nighttime rides on Batman, which were sweet, but I would have rather had those night rides on Villain. Oh well. Mediocre day - great rides, horrible operations.
Other general complaints: Can the theming be any more inconsistent? Dodgems in the Western area? Huey Luis playing in the 50's area? Where's the distinct themed areas that can be found at other Six Flags parks? The theming here all runs together and is overall ineffective. They really need to work on that!
Also, the rides make a lot more weird noises than they do at CP...sort of unnerving, espcially the Big Dipper.
Trash??? It's everywhere! That's just what a park needs to make a good impression...filth.
The lake looks in sad shape around Serial Thriller and Batman, and weeds abound everywhere. Someone needs to mow stuff down! Bring CP's landscapers in.
We never got over to the Wildlife side. I hope to do this on a later visit. Maybe this will give me a better opinion of the way the park is run.
I know I have compared everything to CP in this review, which may be unfair, but I can't help not doing it, and neither will tourists from Ohio who go here expeciting another Cedar Point. Neglect and lethargy are problems that need to be dealt with, as is (the lack of) efficiency. I really want to see Six Flags give CP a run for their money, but despite having the rides, they still have miles to go in other areas!
This LOOOOOOOOONG review has deprived me of an hour of sleep. I hope those of you who read the whole thing enjoyed it! :) -------------
After this lovely tale, we may cancel our trip to this park. Any ride with that long of a wait should have some kind of security guard on it, and the part with the trash, smoking drunk urinating in a bottle and pouring it out is just ridiculous. Anywhere else, security would have been called and this jerk would have been ejected from the ride line.
This park was exceptionally dirty last year, and now its going to start smelling like urine all over the place. 3 great coasters there, but no thanks.
Wow, and I thought I've had bad days at that park. It seems that every time I've been there, at least one of the new coasters is closed, generally the one I feel like riding the most.
I'm in the same boat. I'd love to see them give Cedar Point a run for their money, because competition only means more and more outstanding rides for us! However, the public isn't stupid. They know the difference in customer service, and no ride is going to overcome that.
------------- Jeff Webmaster/Admin - CoasterBuzz.com
If SFWOA is as bad as all have been reporting, please don't lump all Six Flags into the same pile. SFOT was 100% perfect on all 3 days I was there! All coasters open, all running at least 2 trains. (except the boomerang, of course) It all depends on the individual park.
I didn't think my TR lumped all Six Flags together...I just said Six Flags (or SF) when I meant Worlds of Adventure as a way to shorten my already-too-long TR. I personally am really looking forward to my trip to SFGAm later this month. I've heard nothing but good things about this park.
Ug. I am still making my Kennywod?SFWOA trip this summer, and I can't wait to see how well SFWOA has operations on rides and services is like compare to Kennywood! I highly doubt that everybody is going to start flocking to SFWOA and abandoning CP. Jeff was right, the customers know the difference in service. PKI, IOA, SFDL, and many other I have been too, they just don't match up to CP. Long live CCI............
------------- Shivering Timbers- for the love of Michigan's Adventure, just ride it.
Oh brother! You really want someone to believe that an ORLANDO park has a level of service substandard to Cedar Point? OKAY, I love the point as much as the next man, but they are not in the same league as the ORLANDO parks when it comes to service.... lata, jeremy
------------- An SFBrat who is resigned to the fact that the world is filled with Six Flags Haters....it's tragic that they waste their lives like that
I am ashamed you but PKI and IOA in the same league as SFDL. Both parks are the same if not better in service as CP. I never see rides closed at CP. I never see rides closed at PKI or IOA. CP is clean and has great food. PKI and IOA are clean and have great food. CP has excellent rides and coasters. IOA and PKI have excellent rides and coasters. You get the picture. I might cancel or delay my SFWoA trip as well. PKI and IOA have great themes. CP has... Oh never mind.
yeah six flags is turning into a real sty. I really love the park which is to bad....I in love with a pig . Where is management ? why don't they care? I cant blame the employees too much a old saying goes " An employee is only as good as their manager." I've been management many years and when your employees ain't doing the job fire them and do the job yourself. I'd like to see SFWOA management rollup their sleaves and help clean this park ! I can tolerate a closed coaster or two ... but garbage cans are over flowing, people urinating in line, the place is turning into such a dump ..
*** This post was edited by Dennis on 6/14/2001. ***
*** This post was edited by Dennis on 6/14/2001. ***
On my last trip to SFMW, two *MAIN* coasters were closed, no one could believe it. Why were they closed? maybe because of some computer problem? No, because they decided to lay new asphalt in the middle of the day, closing both Roar and V2. WTF? When a lady ask why this couldn't be done earlier in the morning, she was rudely told by a *manager* that "they can't see in the morning, don't worry about it". The guy didn't even look her in the eye. This kind of crap is unexceptable, the rides didn't open until 4:00pm!
*** This post was edited by DWeaver on 6/14/2001. ***
It's trip reports like this that make me glad that I live so close to SFOT. The park has just been refurbished for it's 40th aniversary. It looks beautifull with all the new flowers in the entrance. All the rides generally operate every day and run at least two trains. In fact, Titan and Texas Giant usally run three trains on busy days. Guy's urinating in line? Let'em try that at SFOT! If anyone were intoxicated at anytime they would be thrown out of the park. I've never been so proud of my home park.
Even kids at school, the regular dumb GP teenagers notice crap going on here. They say stuff like "I only see two or three mullets at Cedar Point, but I see like 30 at Six Flags." "Why is there so many hill billies that get drunk at Six Flags?" "How come Six Flags doesn't have any trees?" "Why is Six Flags so trashy but Cedar Point so clean?" If that wasn't enough, some will just come out and make these kinds of statements: "Six Flags is the ghetto of parks." These questions and statements are coming from kids at my school. They go to Cedar Point, Six Flags GL, Disneyworld, and maybe BGW, PKI, and Kennywood.
This is why I get all hot and bothered. Some people might say they can compete w/ Cedar Point. I would love them to. If they ever become better than Cedar Point (Don't EVER see this happening) I would be the happiest man. I mean I live 90 minutes from The Point but 40 from SFGL. If I had a park closer to me that was better than The Point good for me.
Point is if the dumb teenagers (yes, most of them are dumb) notice things that shouldn't be happening, normal people will notice it more which equals bad business.
I take issue with your teenager remark, in that you seem to forget what it's like to be a teenager. The kids on my JO volleyball team are ten of the most beautiful, wonderful people I know. Don't lump them all together.
If teens are "dumb," it's because most "adults" are too busy putting themselves at a higher level and not treating them with the respect they would want in return.
------------- Jeff (who, with his wife, a high school teacher, came to this conclusion when we figured out what we did differently from other coaches and teachers) Webmaster/Admin - CoasterBuzz.com
Sometimes I think it's an Ohio thing. While I was @ CP last year (closing Saturday), GregLeg and I were in line for the Force and three significant things happened (in no particular order): 1. Somebody was smoking weed 2. Like five "mullet"type folks were drunk and escorted from the line 3. Somebody's father (like mid thirties) hopped out of line and took a whiz behind the pop machines.
Not that that really has anything to do with anything, just wanted to give a bit of perspective. Thank you, please drive thru, jeremy ------------- An SFBrat who is resigned to the fact that the world is filled with Six Flags Haters....it's tragic that they waste their lives like that
I don't even think it is an "Ohio thing". Going back to the original posting, It sounds more like a "SF bad, CP good" thing.
Having never been to either park (but not having the highest respect for SF in general), I view the original post with a little bit of skepticism. Okay, so it was not the best experience, but if you want to talk about SF (or any other park), then talk about that park... don't use it as a launch point to say "how bad (insert park name here) is but look at how good CP is.)"
If you want to review (and priase) CP, then write about CP. If you want to write about another park, then write (good or bad) about that park, but enough of the comparisons!
------------- "Resistance is futile... you will be assimilated." The BORG's (and Six Flags') motto.
SFWoA was that bad when I went. X-Flight broke down in line, Mind Eraser was down (sucks anyway), a lot of flats were down, and vilian was closed for a little while. SW side was good with food but I'm sad to say. the SF thing is starting to creep in and all the shows were cancelled (I though how funny it would be if someone hijacked the Batman show boat and drove it around the lake :) ) and the entire ride side was dirty.