Iron Gwazi POV

Jeff's avatar

This looks pretty amazing. I'm amused at all of the unused footers around the ride.

Jeff - Editor - - My Blog - Phrazy

Once this opens it will get me back to the park. I can't say I'll invest in another Annual Pass unless the park can provide me with a half decent experience, but I can't wait to have an RMC on the level of Steel Vengeance I can ride without having to catch a flight out of state.

Jeff's avatar

I just completely loathe the drive to Tampa. I don't know why I-4 is so exhausting when I used to do I-71 across Ohio constantly. But yeah, I suspect that this will be worth it. They've got a pretty great collection of rides there, operations not withstanding.

Jeff - Editor - - My Blog - Phrazy

I saw this video last week and didn't even notice the unused footers. That's also not something I've paid a lot of attention to on previous RMC conversions, but I bet the number of unused footers on Gwazi was higher given the big change to the ride.

I feel a Florida trip in my future.

Jeff said:

I just completely loathe the drive to Tampa. I don't know why I-4 is so exhausting when I used to do I-71 across Ohio constantly. But yeah, I suspect that this will be worth it. They've got a pretty great collection of rides there, operations not withstanding.

Orlando to Tampa is roughly the same distance, if not closer, from where I grew up in Ohio and where my parents still live to Cedar Point. That trip down I4 is brutal no matter when you do it. There's always terrible traffic and it's just a super stressful drive.

99er's avatar

That drive has honestly kept me from going to events in Tampa before when I check Google Maps and see how bad traffic is. From where I live in Clermont it's getting to the point that taking a two-lane backroad is the better option. It adds 10 minutes to the drive but the experience is way better.


The evening I-4 Westbound backup from Celebration to Haines City is still the worst traffic I have ever seen. I'm not sure how it is now, but pre-COVID it could take a solid two hours to go ten miles.

It's a pretty monotonous drive. Flying by a constant stream of low slung palms cut back to the footers like a former Gwazi. Though we traded up the RV version of Cadillac Ranch for a random Santiago Calatrava building. Dinosaur World means almost at the turn off for Busch Gardens. Beyond that the payoff of a cityscape with its uniquely tubular white sign frames. An exit to 275 North would display more tubular steel. By the time you hit the bridge it is almost cathartic. Well for the first couple miles, then that too becomes a little eerie monotonous. A long road from the Mickey antennae.

Last edited by Kstr 737,

Seems to be one of the better RMC's from the looks of it. I think I will prefer it quite a bit over Steel Vengeance (simply because I loathe the ending sequence of SV). I like the larger, more drawn out elements as well. They are all fun rides, though. Not really a bad ride from the handful I have ridden.

I don't think it alone will get me to Tampa specifically, but I do enjoy BGT overall so it's an added plus when in the area. Can't say RMC's really excite me much anymore, once you have been on a few they all kind of feel ride the same, aside from a new spin on how to enter or exit a barrel roll, or make you feel like your on a (uncomfortable) mechanical bull.

Last edited by SteveWoA,

SteveWoA said:

Can't say RMC's really excite me much anymore, once you have been on a few they all kind of feel ride the same

I've admittedly only been on Steel Vengeance and Twisted Timbers, but I feel like this is the same "complaint" enthusiasts and others had with B&M loopers when they were the hot new thing. Once you've done one or two of each variant, you've essentially done them all.

In 2016 when Valravn opened at Cedar Point it didn't really excite me at all since I had done similar versions of the same thing. But in 2018 I flew up for Opening Day 2018 to get on Steel Vengeance because it was that exciting to me (and I lucked out majorly and got my ride in about a half hour before the train bump closed it). It will be interesting to see if in another few years a major RMC installation is as "underwhelming" as when a new B&M looper became a "been there done that".

Obviously all of these rides are still wildly popular at their respective parks. Valravn still has a major following at Cedar Point. I guess being snobby about coasters is OK since I'm self aware, right?

99er's avatar

BrettV said:

The evening I-4 Westbound backup from Celebration to Haines City is still the worst traffic I have ever seen.

Right!? It's a stretch I will never understand because it is bad no matter the time of day or season, it is just backed up every day of the week. It's especially bad at World Drive, 429, and the Champions Gate exit and those are nothing special in their design so I don get it.

I still haven't been on an RMC yet. Didn't feel like waiting while I was at Cedar Point but having an RMC an hour away might finally get me on one. It's been a long time since I've been to BGT so a trip has been needed for awhile.

Last edited by 99er,


And there is no morning backup going eastbound that parallels it to make it make any sense at all. It's not Disney tourist traffic, and I truly can't believe that many Disney Cast Members get off work at the same time to create that mess.

Jeff's avatar

I remember the good old days when coaster enthusiasts traveled around to ride as many rides as they could, if only for the credit. I both understood and rejected the idea that the rides were "all the same" when it was B&M that people complained about. By 2005, yeah, I wasn't really going out of my way to travel anywhere for a new ride, especially when Ohio (mostly) had one of everything. But at the same time, I found it silly that anyone would single out a manufacturer as "boring" because they kept building similar rides. The disconnect between enthusiasts ("ride all the things!") and the public at large ("ride what's near me") became painfully obvious to me at that point.

Jeff - Editor - - My Blog - Phrazy

When I became an adult and made money I traveled to some parks I had always had an interest in when looking online but never was in a place to go. I have a collection of parks I like to visit when I can every couple of years, but it's almost all about the memories and overall park experience rather than the coaster. I can ride a B&M invert in Montu anytime I want to deal with the drive down I4, but I know I've ridden Raptor and Banshee (and of course Dueling Dragons) numerous times throughout my 12 years in Orlando and maybe have ridden Montu three times. When I make it to Hershey, I know I'll probably ride Trailblazer 4 or 5 times even though I'll go years without riding Cedar Creek Mine Ride. Most of the B&M floorless rides are essentially the same to me, but I went out of my way to power ride Dominator when I made it to Kings Dominion in 2018 because of the memories I had from riding the ride at Geauga Lake/Worlds of Adventure. Yet I can't tell you the last time I rode Kraken, and for a year I could literally see it out my apartment window.

I guess for me over the years it becomes much more about the emotional attachment to the parks and the rides because after so many years it does take a LOT to truly get the "wow" factor on a coaster. Most recently it was Steel Vengeance that did it. X2 at Magic Mountain did it when I got out there in 2014. Fury 325 *kind of* did it, as did I-305 at Kings Dominion. Millennium Force did it 20 years ago. My first night ride on The Beast. And X-Flight at Geauga Lake did it the first time I rode it back in 2001. There are plenty of silly fun can't stop laughing and "this is such a great coaster experience" moments like night ride marathons in the back seat of Villain the first season it opened at Six Flags Ohio and was an incredibly fun ride. Riding Intimidator at Carowinds in a "wintry mix". Mystic Timbers night rides during Coasterstock. But it's interesting how something designed to terrify the average rider can be seen as such a "ho-hum" experience for many of us.

I mostly agree with those sentiments. I don't really care for the atmosphere of the Tampa park (something weird about midway proportions, seriously). I went a couple times when I lived down there. And back once for a couple hours the year Cheetah Chase opened to ride that. I remember being suprisingly impressed by that ride.

Iron Gwazi is enough to subsequently pull me back. BGT was sketched in for my cancelled April then October Florida runs. Who cares if all RMCs are similar. They're all awesome. And this one is purple.

Last edited by Kstr 737,
sirloindude's avatar

I was getting worried that we were about to have a thread discussing a roller coaster on Coasterbuzz, but thankfully, much of the discussion has been about I-4 traffic to keep the coaster talk somewhat at bay. ;)

Regarding RMCs, I can see similarities between them, but of the rides I've done, I have differing opinions. New Texas Giant was a great proof of concept and it managed to deliver a stellar experience without going trigger-happy on inversions. Goliath at Six Flags Great America is the only one I've done that was new from the ground up, and it's probably the most forgettable, although it has been six years since I last rode it. Twisted Timbers and Steel Vengeance are the other two, and both really delivered the goods, but I felt like at least in the case of the latter, it was another case of trying to do too much. I only rode Steel Vengeance once, but when I left the park that evening, it was the laps on Maverick, Millennium Force, Magnum (all of which I had already ridden), and even Valravn (which I had not) that left me with the strongest impressions.

In general, I feel like RMC eschews traditional maneuvers in the name of adding stalls, overbanks, barrel rolls, and speed bumps. Using the Twisted Timbers example, they replaced the original drop into a flat turn with a rolling drop into an overbank. I didn't so much mind the rolling drop, but I really wish they'd have kept the flat turn. The overbank came off as a showy maneuver as opposed to what could have been a blistering flat turn with some solid laterals. I don't believe I've rated any of their rides below five stars, but I feel like they haven't found the sweet spot in balancing their innovative maneuvers with more conventional ones, or avoiding doing too much.

I do get some of the arguments about B&Ms being boring sometimes, but I find that the boring ones tend to be in the minority. Despite a lot of similar ideas and maneuvers, I find that only the hypercoasters and dive machines tend to have larger portions of their populations in my track record that I would consider meh, but for every one of those, there is a B&M that has that wow factor. Fury 325 is my favorite ride of all time. The Batman clones are still top-five material to me. Flight Deck, Afterburn, Intimidator, Silver Star, Nitro, Mantis (haven't ridden it as Rougarou yet), Bizarro, Dominator...I could go on and on, and I know I'll kick myself later for not mentioning one of the many others that still deliver the goods.

Bringing it full circle, though, I think Iron Gwazi may sway me. Seeing how a lot of the maneuver are more stretched out intrigues me. It looks very balanced with the "tricks" being spread out enough that my optimism is high.

13 Boomerang, 9 SLC, and 8 B-TR clones

eightdotthree's avatar

A cobra roll is a cobra roll and if it it’s a invert or floorless B&M there is a probably cobra roll... and interlocking corkscrews. I remember being excited because Hydra had an airtime hill because it was something different.

I personally don’t understand this new every RMC is the same sentiment. Somehow GCI keeps cranking out twister layouts and no one (that I’ve noticed) says the same about them.

BrettV said:

The evening I-4 Westbound backup from Celebration to Haines City is still the worst traffic I have ever seen. I'm not sure how it is now, but pre-COVID it could take a solid two hours to go ten miles.

Same. I've been to that area on the way to Legoland a few days before Labor Day weekend back in 2018 and it was just as hellish in the afternoon hours.

Benjamin Polson's avatar

Not having the opportunity to travel much beyond the South makes me appreciate the RMCs and other types that we do have here... New Texas Giant, Iron Rattler and this summer Twisted Cyclone at SFOG... but IG looks flipping amazing!! Those of you complaining about similar elements on RMCs are a bunch of spoiled rotten Cotton Headed Ninnymuggins! (Can you here the jealousy coming out in my voice?) My son is finally tall enough to ride our Batman clone and it blew his mind (so did Twisted Cyclone which blew mine too)... I can’t wait for him to ride the Superman Krypton Coaster at SFFT. We now hope to make a new park every year... until then I will live vicariously through the rest of you.

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