Are Inversions That Good

Monday, August 28, 2006 10:32 PM
Just as many people have aversion to riding woodies as steel loopers, though. My girl will ride any nutty steel coaster you put in front of her, from Deja Vu to Borg to whatever. She'd ride any steel coaster ever made. But she's leery of wooden coasters. There are very many BAD wooden coasters out there, a point we enthusiasts tend to forget, and there are millions of people who've ridden Grizzly, or Hurler, or gotten a bad ride on GASM, and have sworn them off. Meanwhile they've had nothing but good times on B&M steel (or Intamin, whatever) and have no such prejudice.
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Tuesday, August 29, 2006 12:09 AM
Acoustic Viscosity's avatar If everyone coming off the new woodie speaks nothing but praise for the ride, would that not be enough to convince her to give it a try? If not, her loss.

AV Matt
Long live the Big Bad Wolf

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Tuesday, August 29, 2006 12:52 AM
SFoGswim's avatar

Charles Nungester said:
Sorry but Voyage proves my point.
Case closed.

Every park can't have a Voyage in it. Then the originality (read: interest) would be gone. Batman: The Ride, for example. Pretty intense ride, but there's so many of them, no one really cares.

PS. Make a Voyage out of steel, and I'd be all over it.


Welcome back, red train, how was your ride?!
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Tuesday, August 29, 2006 12:53 AM
Let us take a quick look at who votes for the Golden Ticket Awards... According to their site, "Surveys were sent to a database of experienced and well-traveled amusement park fans around the world – in balanced geographical regions – asking them to rate the “bests” in 23 categories such as “amusement parks,” “roller coasters,” “landscaping,” “food,” and “waterparks.”"

That, in a nutshell is why you get the answers that you do. This isn't a general public review and award selection. This is a specific demographic expressing their opinion. The only way to make this a totally unbiased poll would be to take 100+ random people and have them ride every darn ride and visit every park that would qualify as a possible winner, and then rank everything.

In general, coaster fans tend to gravitate toward hyper coasters and up. Why? Who knows exactly, but it seems that many big time coaster fans like either being able to claim that they rode the tallest and / or fastest ride or a fear of heights partially drives them to ride and overcome coasters. Therefore, taller rides earn their reps.

Rides that were once awesome but have lost a lot of their charm may continue to make the list based on their previous reputation. Shivering Timbers comes to mind as a ride that many people have said is running horribly lately, but was once known as being incredible. Certain parks that are revered in the coaster fan groups will generally lay claim to certain park prizes because no matter where you are, as a coaster fan chances are you have heard of Holiday World and Cedar Point.

Now, why don't many inversions make the list? Other than the above reason -- where the hypers and up tend to be the biggest coaster fan friendly rides -- the other reason I think is that many rides that do invert are not unique enough to really stick out. Millenium Force is vastly different than Goliath at SFMM and they are both vastly different than Superman at SFNE. On the other hand, there are what seems like a million different Batman inverts out there, and the general public seems to love them. But those are all so similiar that big fans tend to believe that if they have rode one, they are all alike and since they are not unique, they aren't as special as a Millenium Force or a Superman or whatever.

Personally, I'm not a fan of much of anything hyper or similiar. I find those rides to be deadly dull, and I don't find the floating airtime to be interesting at all. If I ever made a top ten, I don't think any of the top 10 with the exception of possibly Montu would have any chance of showing up. But then, to each his or her own.

By the way, the above post should only be used when thinking about steel coasters. Wooden coasters seem to have a whole different set of criteria that they are judged on by people, and those seem to shake out just because for the most part, big wooden coasters suck.

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Tuesday, August 29, 2006 1:15 AM

Acoustic Viscosity said:
If everyone coming off the new woodie speaks nothing but praise for the ride, would that not be enough to convince her to give it a try? If not, her loss.

Probably would be enough. I think she'd be legit scared of a monstrosity like Voyage but would do it anyway. I never said "she won't ride them", I said "she's leery of them". I can talk her onto almost everything once. See http://www.coasterbuzz.com/forum.aspx?mode=thread&TopicID=45673 for examples.

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Tuesday, August 29, 2006 1:28 AM
rollergator's avatar

thecoasterguy said:In general, coaster fans tend to gravitate toward hyper coasters and up. Why? Who knows exactly, but it seems that many big time coaster fans like either being able to claim that they rode the tallest and / or fastest ride or a fear of heights partially drives them to ride and overcome coasters. Therefore, taller rides earn their reps.

Replace "coaster fans" with "park guests over the age of seven", and I think you have the answer why hypers (read: non-inverting) rides, and I think you've got the explanation for the hypercoaster boom and for the steel rankings... ;)

Sometimes enthusiasts ARE the same as everyone else.. :)

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Tuesday, August 29, 2006 7:46 AM
matt.'s avatar

thecoasterguy said:
Who knows exactly, but it seems that many big time coaster fans like either being able to claim that they rode the tallest and / or fastest ride or a fear of heights partially drives them to ride and overcome coasters. Therefore, taller rides earn their reps.

This is an oversimplification that ignores what people really like about hypercoasters in general; the sense speed, the airtime, etc... I think you're reading way too much into this considering that most people know exactly why consider their favorite coasters their favorite coasters.

I also don't buy you're ideas about inversions. The B:TR's rank the way they do based on the quality of the rides, not because they have been cloned in a lot of parks. You seem to be happy to note that many coasters with inversions are similar but you fail to mention that many hyper coasters are the same way.

SFMM's Goliath vs. SFOT Goliath.
SFDL's Superman vs. SFA's Superman.
Steel Force vs. Wildthing vs. Mamba

All with obvious differences but I don't buy the idea that many coasters with inversions are very similar when many hyper coasters aren't in the same boat. The difference is that there are many more coasters with inversions out there these days so of course, some coasters with loops are going to become redundant by default because there's only so many layout's which would be practical. In other words, three's just no way for every major park to have 1 or 2 completely, 100% unique coasters.

Then again if you cloned SFNE's Superman across the country you don't think it would rank almost just as well everywhere?

I think the bottom line is that some coasters are better than others. Subjective opinion, but seeing some patterns in what people like and don't like isn't that unexplainable. *** Edited 8/29/2006 11:48:24 AM UTC by matt.***

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Tuesday, August 29, 2006 9:33 AM
Acoustic Viscosity's avatar So what was your point then, Vincent? I thought you were trying to imply there are many people who are afraid of woodies due to bad experiences compared to all of those smooth steel coasters and will never ride them, so it's not a wise investment for parks or some nonsense like that.

AV Matt
Long live the Big Bad Wolf

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Tuesday, August 29, 2006 10:33 AM

rollergator said:
Replace "coaster fans" with "park guests over the age of seven", and I think you have the answer why hypers (read: non-inverting) rides, and I think you've got the explanation for the hypercoaster boom and for the steel rankings... ;)

Sometimes enthusiasts ARE the same as everyone else.. :)


Yes, with the exception being that most park patrons don't visit multiple parks, and therefore the tallest ride for them is whatever is in the particular park they are at. Rides like Kingda Ka, TTD, Millenium Force and so on rank so highly because they are the tallest, and therefore make great bragging rights.

I'm not saying that it is wrong that those rides rank the highest, it's just true. Most park patrons also love rides that either do something different (stand up, flyer) or flip them upside down the most. Since most inversion coasters in the states top out at seven inversions, there is more competition amongst them about which one is "better" than another one, since they aren't as tall as hypers and height doesn't always matter as much.

If you asked 100 park patrons what their favorite ride at a certain park was, I bet that you would get a very good mix of answers. In fact, I've worked in a position where I did just that, and believe it or not, one of the inversion coasters ranked higher than a hyper coaster. I can all but guarantee that if you took those same park patrons to 10 different parks and set them loose on all the rides, the loopers would blend together more and the hyper / giga / strata things would appear as the most unique and memorable.

What I'm saying is that inversions _are_ that good, but they just wouldn't show up in a ranking like this.

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Tuesday, August 29, 2006 10:41 AM

matt. said:
Then again if you cloned SFNE's Superman across the country you don't think it would rank almost just as well everywhere?

I agree with most of your post, except for the fact that the hypercoasters being very similiar (the changes between each one is much more dramatic, and terrain is usually taken into account) but for this point I just wanted to weigh in for a second...

No, I don't think that if they cloned SFNE's Superman it would rank just as well. First, part of it's ranking comes from people ranking it very highly because other people have said it is great. If the same coaster was everywhere, there is a familiarity that you get with it that makes it seem not quite as special. As the saying goes, "the grass is always greener on the other side."

Secondly, if there were 10 of them, the votes would get divided up. If there are 10 coasters that are the same thing and you are going to rank them, are you really going to rank the 10 coasters all together in a lump? Chances are you'll pick your one favorite and leave out the others to vary your list. Since there are now 10 of them, the votes get divided up amongst them.

I'm not necessarily saying that Batman should be a top 50 ride, however if only the original one had been built, I bet it would be in the top 50. There are a ton of inverts in the top 50, but Batman isn't distinguishable from any of them. Yet every time I've been to a park with one, it has one of the longest lines in the park, usually along with whatever is that parks largest coaster.

So, would it change the rankings if we did straight clones of Superman at NE? Yes, I do believe it would.

Just one guy's opinion :)

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Tuesday, August 29, 2006 12:08 PM
rollergator's avatar ^^ Whoops, part of my post didn't seem to make it in print....mea culpa.

The part that got lost was that when rides HAVE inversions, a certain percent of the GP refuses to ride (ask Kennywood). Also means that, even AMONG coasterphiles, the rankings will NORMALLY be a little lower based on the fact that not everyone likes inversions. MOST people like airtime, and speed, enthusiast or otherwise.

Hypers rank high because A) they're good rides, and B) the lack of inversions makes them "accessible to all, enjoyable by all". Kinda like the Pig Sandwich at Hard Rock (only without religious proscriptions against pork).

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Tuesday, August 29, 2006 12:20 PM
I know alot of people that would ride the largest inverting coaster yet are scared to death of the smallest woodie (one example is my mom) shes scared of airtime and just a lapbar and prefers the shoulder restraints and inverstions because she feels more "secure" and closed in, which I guess makes her feel more safe.
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Tuesday, August 29, 2006 12:53 PM
Acoustic Viscosity's avatar ^Exactly why I don't care much for steel loopers. Funny... ;)

AV Matt
Long live the Big Bad Wolf

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Tuesday, August 29, 2006 1:02 PM
Acoustic Viscosity's avatar I don't think SROS is ranked high because people are conditioned to think it's so good from all the hype. It's because it is that good and nothing else (in this country anyway) comes close. I do agree that if there were multiple copies of it, it wouldn't be as unique and lose a bit of its appeal, but mostly if it was mas-produced. A couple of them isn't going to make much difference, but if every park had an SROS, it would get old and we'd be hungry for something different.

AV Matt
Long live the Big Bad Wolf

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Tuesday, August 29, 2006 1:18 PM
I'm ok with the occasional inversion, but too many it gets boring. non looping coasters are AWESOME.
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Tuesday, August 29, 2006 3:44 PM
rollergator's avatar

Acoustic Viscosity said:...if every park had an SROS, it would get old and we'd be hungry for something different.

Hmmmm, I would really like to try and put THAT theory through some rigorous scientific testing.... :)

Personally, I don't think copies/clones/variants cause that much distress in rankings. Every park has different scenery, landscaping (settings). Also, every park OPERATES rides a little differently. That's why I can say that Great White is the worst operating B:TR I've ridden - and that SFoG's B:TR, Spring Fling '05, was running like a bat(man) out of hell... ;)

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Tuesday, August 29, 2006 3:48 PM
So Gator, Why aren't many Arrow loopers ranked?

Because basically a ride on one feels like a ride on another. There were a few exceptions but very few.

Chuck

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Tuesday, August 29, 2006 4:30 PM
Acoustic Viscosity's avatar ^But the same is true for most any coaster type/manufacturer. *** Edited 8/29/2006 8:38:52 PM UTC by Acoustic Viscosity***

AV Matt
Long live the Big Bad Wolf

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Tuesday, August 29, 2006 4:41 PM
Inversions have never been that exciting for me. B&M are the only ones who got it right, Arrow loopers hurt my neck, and you'll have to wait until 2007 for my opinion on Intamin. :)
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Tuesday, August 29, 2006 4:49 PM
I tend to love *rollercoasters* period. And I prefer the *good* ones, whether they have inversions or not. Airtime is wonderful, but I like variety, not the same thing time after time. I guess that's why Voyage, Fire Dragon, Nitro, Space Mountain, Tatsu and Hades are all among my favorites.
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