Re-structuring the Poll Categories

Tuesday, July 31, 2001 7:54 PM
Just a thought:

I notice that the top four steel coasters in the Golden Ticket poll happen to be non-looping hypercoasters and that almost every hyper in the US makes the top 25. I guess that this shows hypercoasters are generally more popular than multi-loopers. Throughout the years, as more hypers and loopers are built, I forsee the steel category being broken down into "loopers" and "non-loopers" .


1. Almost everyone agrees that comparing wooden and steel coasters is like comparing apples and oranges and therefore, polls break rides down into such categories when ranking rides. In my opinion, a hyper is almost impossible to compare to a looper as they give totally different sensations. I (like most people it seems according to the poll) prefer hypers over loopers, so obviously, I would rank most hypers above any loopers.

2. Since parks add more steel coasters than wooden nowadays (due to the fact that so many different types of rides can be built from steel), I think that something will have to be changed in the Steel poll to break down that category more. In 10 years, is the Steel poll going to look more like a top 25 hypercoaster poll?

3. By breaking steelies into loopers and non-loopers, some of the better mine trains and other different types of coasters could be represented in the poll, making things more interesting. I've always thought Gemini is worthy to enter a a top 25 poll, (it is at least comparable to some of the lower 20's ranked woodies) but it has been overshadowed by other rides.


1. Why make something more difficult than it needs to be?

2. There would obviously be some problems categorizing coasters as looping and non-looping. What about rides like Flying Dutchmen, 4-Ds, and Impulses? What about rides like Revolution and King Cobra that have 1 loop but are mostly non-looping? Where would they fit?

3. If hypers are more popular than loopers, than shouldn't the poll reflect that?

I guess all these points just go to prove that rankings and polls are pretty flawed no matter how they are done, and like they teach in Physics classes, "Everything is Relative." But I must say, flawed or not, polls are fun.

Any thoughts from anyone else on this? I personally would like to see the Steel poll broken down into looping and non-looping categories, with rides like X and S:UE being categorized by the people at AT before the poll.

Whew...all that over something pretty pointless!

roller coaster n: an elevated railway (as in an amusement park) with curves and inclines on which cars roll.
Tuesday, July 31, 2001 7:58 PM
I'd say it won't happen, at least not for a while, for one reason: There's simply not enough hypers.

Matt Lynch
Co-Webmaster, Kennywood Boulevard
Tuesday, July 31, 2001 10:18 PM
I agree with Lynch.

roller coaster
A steep, sharply curving elevated railway with small open passenger cars that is operated at high speeds as a ride, especially in an amusement park.

Tuesday, July 31, 2001 11:04 PM
Non-loopers doesn't mean hyper. They aren't synonyms. There are many, many steel coasters that lack inversions and aren't hypers.
Wednesday, August 1, 2001 12:05 AM
I totally agree with the first point, they are like apples & oranges. Don't forget one day there will be Hyperloopers.

Exactly what is the fuss about Hypers? I'm sorry to say that I've never been on one. The closest I've ever been to riding one was at SFMM just two weeks before Goliath opened. I've been on Manhattan Express, but that's a poor example.

I love looping coasters & Kumba is my all-time favorite coaster.
Wednesday, August 1, 2001 7:29 AM

MooreOn said:
"I've always thought Gemini is worthy to enter a a top 25 poll, (it is at least comparable to some of the lower 20's ranked woodies) but it has been overshadowed by other rides."

Correct me if I am wrong but are you saying that Gemini belongs in the Woodie class? Do you realize that Gemini is a steel coaster? A wood frame does not make a wood coaster.

Wednesday, August 1, 2001 8:50 AM
No, I meant to say that Gemimi would belong in a steel, non-looping class, like hypers, mine trains, and other coasters. I guess that third point is a bit confusing. What I meant by saying it is comparable to a 20's ranked woodie is that a lot of good wooden coasters that are out of the spotlight (Twister, Timberwolf) were ranked in the top 25. I think Gemini is a great ride and worthy of being ranked, but because there are so many more steel coasters out there, it isn't.

I agree that a change is not necessary now (it may never be necessary), but this year, all but one hyper (Wild Thing) made the top 25 poll (and Manhattan Express if you count that), and 14 out of the top 25 coasters were hypers. Let's say 3 hypers are added to parks every year for the next few years (considering 3 were added this year and 4 were added last year). If this trend continues, in three years anywhere from 15 to 20 of the top 25 steel coasters will most likely be hypers.


I hope someone can make some sense out of my rambling. :) *** This post was edited by MooreOn on 8/1/2001. ***
Thursday, August 2, 2001 9:10 AM
I'm inclined to agree with MooreOn - there should be more differentiation than "wood" and "steel".

For example: I never read anything good about Desperado at Buffalo Bill's, yet it was #24 in the poll.
Thursday, August 2, 2001 9:57 AM
I agree with MooreOn. I just by pure nature prefer hypercoasters to loopers as the novelty of going upside down has waned on me. So there is an automatic *weighting* of hypercoasters in my mind (sort of like a "C" in hypers is better than an "A+" in loopers). One day I may still around and think real hard and remove that weighting. Of course that will have to wait until a day when I find myself in the bathroom with no reading material..
later days,
--livin for the weekend
Thursday, August 2, 2001 10:11 AM
I think there should also be a poll for the best small coaster (under 75 ft?). There are some really fun (and intense) rides out there that are under 75 ft and never appear in top 25 lists. I know this would be a lot more trouble, but I think some of these rides need to be recognized.

Maybe I ain't so shy!
Thursday, August 2, 2001 10:30 AM
The debate on this could go on forever. There are just so many elements on coasters out there that would create so many different categories, thus creating mass confusion. The poll, as it exists now, is fine. It's simple, direct and mostly all-inclusive to the trends of the general public. Looping, non-looping, hyper, giga, inverted, stand-up, suspended, mine train, wild mouse, launched, 4D, vertical drop, etc... these all could warrant their own catagories, and most do in smaller independent polls. The industry, media and the general public, however, tends to lean towards this more straight-forward simplistic rating as set forth by Amusement Today.

I do tend to agree that there are many gems out there that get overlooked on these polls, but being one that is anti-polls or anti-top 5, 10, 25, etc... it really doesn't matter to me at all. I know what my favorites are, and I could care less what someone else thinks about it.

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