Mitch's Wood Coaster Poll Results

Friday, December 8, 2006 11:04 AM
rollergator's avatar ^ Thing is, many people vote based on their "most recent ride", which may or may not reflect work that has been done. For instance, my last ride on RWB was in '05, when PART of the work was done, so my ranking would likely be lower than someone who rode in '06. Likewise, if I had NOT ridden Thunderhawk in the past few years, it would have rated *considerably* higher...pity what's happened to that poor thing! :(
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Friday, December 8, 2006 11:38 AM
Personally I rank on my best rides on a coaster and if it's still capable of giving *SAID RIDE*

If I didn't and had based Shivering Timbers on my *NORMAL DAYTIME RIDE* It would probably be in the mid twenties and not third on my ballot.

Chuck Who says ST is still capable of those *SAID RIDES* just retrack some sections and lube her up :)

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Friday, December 8, 2006 12:18 PM
I usually base my rankings usually on its better rides, but do try to weigh in some of the less than stellar performances. For example, Raven in the Day was just a good ride, but nothing special. However at night, it was a great ride, up close to my top (have not been on Voyage yet). However Legend I felt out performed it during the day, so it gets the nod, even though at night, both were great. However, Beast in my opinion out performs both in the day or night, so it gets my top spot.

Viper at SFGAM is another ride, that my later rides in the back seat were much beter than during the day near the front. However it would probably be in my top 5, but it fell a few spots do to its inconsistant performance. I do think you have to consider whether a ride delivers all the time, most, or just part of the time. Wood Coasters are tempormental but usually the top rides always deliver.

With that being said, I am not sure I agree that this poll is the best one out there. I wonder how 495 ballots compares to other polls, such as Golden Tickets, etc.

Also the weighting system, while do giving smaller lesser know rides a more even playing scale, also favors people that get to travel more and have track records of 400 or so. Who is to say that the person who went on 125 coasters knows less about coasters than the person that went on 250? I understand people don't like other polls, since it favors coasters that everyone has been on. But than again, this sort of is the other way around. If a person who traveled all over the world and loves Aska in Japan, well that ride is going to do great on the list. However, who really knows if that wood coaster is a top 10 ride. It only had 16 people go on it, so the sample size is soo small.

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Friday, December 8, 2006 12:42 PM
rollergator's avatar

Beast Fan said:I do think you have to consider whether a ride delivers all the time, most, or just part of the time.

Apparently so do the voters that put Phoenix up near the top of their ballots... ;)

:)

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Friday, December 8, 2006 12:49 PM
That beign said Beast fan, When does the Beast ever deliver?.

At least the other coasters you mentioned aren't braked ALL THE TIME and run slower sometimes due to weather or what have you.

Thats why Beast is what? 66th?

Chuck

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Friday, December 8, 2006 12:50 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar Stop and think about it Beast Fan.


Who is to say that the person who went on 125 coasters knows less about coasters than the person that went on 250?

No one is saying that. But how can you compare or vote for coasters you've never been on. It works the same in both poll styles. People who've ridden more coasters potentially have more influence.


I understand people don't like other polls, since it favors coasters that everyone has been on. But than again, this sort of is the other way around. If a person who traveled all over the world and loves Aska in Japan, well that ride is going to do great on the list.

Only if the people who've ridden it rank it highly compared to other rides - it can't do well in Mitch's poll unless it consistently ranks higher than other coasters. If 16 people have ridden a rare japanese coaster and rank it above another coaster, then it ranks higher in the poll.

With the other point based polls:

Let's say 500 voters total.
16 have ridden a rare Japanese coaster.
400 have ridden a certain American coaster.
The number who've ridden both is 12.

If all 16 people all rate that Japanese coaster as the best coaster they've ever ridden and then 200 people rank the American coaster as #10 (with the other 200 putting it even lower) - then in the poll results the American coaster ends up ranked higher with 200 points and the Japanese coaster ends up with 160 - even though less than half of the voters even put it in their top ten and every person who has ridden both ranked the Japanese coaster higher.

That's what Mitch's poll fixes. :)

*** Edited 12/8/2006 5:50:51 PM UTC by Lord Gonchar***


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Friday, December 8, 2006 12:54 PM
rollergator's avatar Now if only Mitch's poll could do something about the American educational system.... ;)

You still have Zoidberg.... You ALL have Zoidberg! (V) (;,,;) (V)

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Friday, December 8, 2006 12:55 PM
RE: GACyclone and Hurler, they're both having rough years. I still think Cyclone's better than that, though. I'm stunned Hurler isn't down by Psyclone and Grizzly, my one lap this year was the worst coaster ride I've had. Ever.
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Friday, December 8, 2006 1:18 PM
Statistically, 495 ballots is an adequate number for a survey like this. All those polls we get deluged with every election telling us which candidate is ahead are based on 400-500 "likely voters." So if they can use that sample to predict who's going to win a presidential election, I think they a sample of the same size can decide which coasters are best.

There is no weighing system. It's not like if you rode 100 coasters, your favorite coaster gets 100 points. But someone who rode 300 coasters gets 300 points for his favorite and someone who rode 20 only gets 20 points for his.

And there's no averaging of votes. A few people who decide to rank Voyage low aren't going to affect its ranking. Because their ballot would be only one of dozens comparing Voyage to say the Comet at Hersheypark. There were enough people who preferred Voyage to every other coaster to give it a #1 ranking.

It's all based on head to head matchups of people who rode common coasters. Since Beast Fan mentioned Aska, I'll use that as an example. If you click on the link from Gonch's first post ,click on the "Results Main Page" and scroll down a little, you'll see a table. Go to the row for Aska.

As you start going across, you'll see in the next column that of the 10 people who rode both Aska and Voyage, 4 preferred Aska and 6 preferred Voyage. So Voyage wins that one, Aska loses. (So Aska is 0-1.) Then as you go to the right, you see the column for Boulder Dash and see that of 14 people who rode both coasters, more liked Aska better than Boulder Dash. Aska wins that matchup. And on it goes comparing Aska to every other coaster that riders have in common. (Click on the link to the Mutual Rider Spreadsheet if you want to see it all).

So what the whole thing means is that when all the people who rode Aska and any other coaster chose which coaster they preferred, 163 times more of them picked Aska and 8 times more of them picked the other coaster.

Beast Fan, you made the Beast your #1? OK. According to the poll, comparing the Beast head-to-head with all other coasters, mutual riders preferred the Beast 107 times. 70 times they preferred the other coaster, and one coaster there was a tie. (2 people rode both the Beast and Magnus Collosus and each person liked one better than the other-- thank me for looking that one up :) )

I know this was pretty wordy, but I'm trying to explain how the system works without getting too heavy. I think Mitch's system is far better than just collecting top ten lists, and it's the most fair to people who rode a lot and people who rode just a few coasters. Hope it helped.

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Friday, December 8, 2006 1:35 PM
I again understood all that, but I do have to question how Aska can be rated so highly. Its layout is the exact same as Viper at SFGAM. Don't get me wrong, Viper at SFGAM is a good wooden coaster, but it was rated not nearly as high as Aska. That just seems questionable to me. I have a hard time believing if everyone on the 490 ballots went on Aska, that it would be ranked as high. How can you explain a similar ride being ranked much lower?

I still perfer the Golden Ticket awards. Yes, they are done for mostly advertising reasions, however, that doesn't discount the credibility of the rankings. They sample experts from all over the usa and the world, and they vote their top 10. This list however skews the rankings by comparing head to head wins/losses, which give the advantage to less ridden coasters overseas.

It seems to me a group of enthusiasts, probably theme park review, etc, went to Japan, and loved Aska. I do sort of believe that, since they were not huge fans of voyage and can explain why 4 out of 10 perfer Aska that went on it. However that doesn't really mean everyone would like it. It probably would have been ranked around 25 or 30, had more people been on it. *** Edited 12/8/2006 6:50:01 PM UTC by Beast Fan***

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Friday, December 8, 2006 1:52 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

I still perfer the Golden Ticket awards. Yes, they are done for mostly advertising reasions, however, that doesn't discount the credibility of the rankings.

Seems that you still don't understand the mechanics behind both. Feel free to follow whichever poll you like.

However, Mitch's poll cannot skew the rankings in the way you think - or at least no more or less than a point-based poll. If Mitch's poll gives too much importance to coasters with low ridership, then the Golden Tickets give too little.

Quite simply, in a point-based system (like the Golden Ticket) a ride that has less riders cannot be ranked as high as a similarly qualified ride (based on voter preference) with more riders.

The fact that you can't vote for or compare coasters you've never ridden is present in both poll styles...Mitch's poll just compensates for this.


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Friday, December 8, 2006 2:04 PM
Olsor's avatar Frankly, I think El Toro deserves the #2 spot because its only loss was to the #1 ranked coaster in the U.S. Oh, wait... wrong forum.

The wood poll always tends to be interesting, as there's always a lot of movement annually. Some rides start strong and tank (Predator) and some ride keep getting better (Phoenix). Plus, I always like to see the current-year comparisons to gauge how well the rides are holding up.

I'm one of the people who rank based on last ride taken. I'm curious how those who rank on best ride ever can categorize that. I mean, when I first rode Magnum in 1998, it was the best ride I'd ever been on. But it was also, at that time, only the 12th ride I'd ridden. I've ridden 127 coasters now, and while that first Magnum ride was excellent, it's hard to compare it to everything I've ridden since.

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Friday, December 8, 2006 2:21 PM
Mitch's poll says that 13 people rode both Aska and Viper. 10 to 3, they preferred Aska. At this point, all I can say is if it bugs you that much, go through every ballot, see who those 10 people are and ask them why.

Another way to look at Mitch's poll is as a humungous round robin tournament with 179 teams. Every team has to play each other once. It doesn't matter if the team wins 1-0 or 200-12, a win is a win. Teams are ranked by their records after all the matchups are done.

Interesting thing is a coaster could lose its head-to-head matchup against another coaster (Phoenix vs. Boulder Dash) but still end up with a higher ranking because it does better against all the other coasters. BD actually lost to a much lower ranked coaster 3-2.

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Friday, December 8, 2006 2:36 PM
Yeah, there is movement in the middle of the pack of Mitches polls and I'll agree with that. Screechin Eagle back when it was opened in the 90s was like 70th or something and hit top twenty when it reopened in 2002 (But it obviously ran smoother)

Still, A coster like Raven thats droped from 2nd to 13th in ten years is still showing its greatness.

Think about it, The top ten in mitche's poll is the very elite. If it's in the top 75 its a damn good coaster and you may even find something like last place GRIZZXLY to be likable for some reason even if it is boring.

Head to head this poll beats the crap out of the AT survey, Places like Dollywood and other parks not many have been to get no recognition whatsoever on many of their catagories like BEST FOOD and coasters like MEAN STREAK make the top five.

Im not bashing AT's poll, I just wish theyd use mitches formula from all their poll takers and then see where it ends up instead of a most visited tabulation. I can assure you SFFT isn't in the most visited catagory in any poll but somehow they get a nod or two in the AT poll.

Chuck, who also mentiones Mitch raised the least ridden qualified from 3 to I think 7 riders to ten in the last four or five years.

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Friday, December 8, 2006 2:39 PM
rollergator's avatar

Olsor said:I'm one of the people who rank based on last ride taken. I'm curious how those who rank on best ride ever can categorize that. I mean, when I first rode Magnum in 1998, it was the best ride I'd ever been on. But it was also, at that time, only the 12th ride I'd ridden. I've ridden 127 coasters now, and while that first Magnum ride was excellent, it's hard to compare it to everything I've ridden since.

That's *precisely* why I feel it's necessary for ME to rank based on last ride...I'd be hard-pressed to stack the FIRST ride on Thunderhawk against anything I'd ridden for the first time only recently. The most-recent ride, I can more easily recall...and I think it gives a more accurate description of what someone might *anticiipate* should they head to Dorney for their first visit during the '07 season.

Wooden coasters ARE more interesting...the variability of rides, from train to train, day to day, year to year, even hour to hour, means they're "living" entities...and it's ALWAYS nice to *meet* a new wooden coaster - or even become reacquainted with an old friend.

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Friday, December 8, 2006 2:39 PM
Well even still, it just seems a bit confusing that Aska would be 20 spots ahead of Viper. They are mirror images layout wise. 10 to 3 perfer Aska to Viper, but it just seems odd that even if Aska runs a little better, that it is 20 spots ahead.

As i understand it, each ride is compared head to head. With points given to wins and losses. And I do understand that say Beast was 5 to 4 over Phoenix, but sucked against all the rest, there is a good chance that Phoenix would be ranked higher.

To me some of the credibility in the system is loss with examples like Aska. A ride with virtually the same layout, is ranked much higer than its counterpart. I am also am surprised about the ranking of White Cyclone around 119 or so. Just from looking at pictures at CoasterGallery, it looks really good and the comments seem like it really rides smooth for a wooden coaster of its size. Just shows you that if is not performing that well that one day some well traveled enthusiast go there, it falls way to the bottom.

I also think that say if someone really doesn't want to see a ride be rated well, they could just rate it last. While on a top 10 list this is not possible, but on this list, you could rate say phoenix dead last, and it will significantly effect its winning percentage. *** Edited 12/8/2006 7:44:08 PM UTC by Beast Fan***

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Friday, December 8, 2006 2:43 PM
rollergator's avatar ^ Layout means NOTHING!

Most wooden coasters are out-n-backs, double-out-n-backs, twisters, or freeform layouts. Taking your argument to the extreme case, we'd only have FOUR possible candidates...and DBH, while a FINE ride, just isn't *equal* to Phoenix, even if their layouts are very similar...

More ridership DOES mean that the results are more *solid*, i.e., predictive. It does NOT mean that becuase a coaster only has ten riders it can't be any good.. ;)

You can go ahead and rate Phoenix last if you want to....the rankings would be relatively unaffected because *many* people have ridden Phoenix and DO rank it highly. If you rode something that had less than a dozen riders, THEN your "lowest ranking" for that ride WOULD have an effect... ;)

*** Edited 12/8/2006 7:47:02 PM UTC by rollergator***

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Friday, December 8, 2006 2:46 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar Again, it seems like a misunderstanding of the system.

As far as the Aska/Viper thing - that's not an effect of the poll, but rather the voters. It's not a flaw in the number of voters or the system. People in general seem to like Aska.

As far as 'fixing' the results - voting a coaster low does not give it muiltple losses. The lowest rated coaster on your ballot gets only 1 loss against every other coaster that you voted for. It's not cumulative. All it takes is one other person to vote the opposite in any given head to head comparison to negate your fix.


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Friday, December 8, 2006 2:50 PM
Layout means nothing?

well not sure I agree, but watching the video of the ride, it seems to perform very similar. I do agree that maintenance plays an important roll and how the ride tracks and runs. I am not an airtime junkie like some of you, so a rides layout does play an important roll. I go for more of a twister or freeform style of ride. And perfer laterals, intensity, and not just straight airtime hills. So a ride like phoenix that does perform well will never be ranked higher than a twister or freeform ride that performs equally as well.

I also don't think that if Aska was running perfectly if it would be in my top 5. Its modified cyclone layout just doesn't interest me as much as legend, Beast, Raven, even Knobles twister. Or even other rides I am looking forward to riding this year, like Voyage and Thunderhead. Not that I am trying to take anything away from Aska, but I just think its a slightly better version of Viper at SFGAM, which would just be making my top 10 as is. However I have yet to ride Boulder Dash, Shivering Timbers, Voyage, Thunderhead, etc.

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Friday, December 8, 2006 2:51 PM
I wouldn't worry too much about BeastFan, he's just echoing from last year...

http://coasterbuzz.com/forum.aspx?mode=thread&TopicID=43708


"Would you like to buy a photo of you boys enjoying the Line Ride?"

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