Wonder Mountain's Guardian gets a Halloween makeover

Posted Monday, September 8, 2014 8:41 AM | Contributed by slithernoggin

At Canada's Wonderland, the park's new for 2014 ride, Wonder Mountain's Guardian, will become Zombies 4-D for 2014's Halloween Haunt. Projections on the ride will be themed around zombies. Some of the special effects on the ride will be moved, and others will be added.

From the park website:

Are you prepared to defend yourself from the invading zombies? Just try to hold them off in this 4D fight-for-your-life adventure inside Wonder Mountain... make sure to watch your back...

Zombie 4D begins with a perilous climb up the side of Wonder Mountain, followed by a quick descent into the core of a terrifying world where zombies roam and are on the hunt for brains. Riders will have an opportunity to showcase their gaming skills as they compete against and alongside their fellow riders, in a bid to come out of this nightmare alive. Good luck.

Read more from Canada's Wonderland.

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Monday, September 8, 2014 8:52 AM

Cool idea. Maybe I will go to this park at Halloween time next time I head North.

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Monday, September 8, 2014 12:57 PM

Although the ride has had some reports of being somewhat mediocre, being able to change the movie and move around effects inside the ride make it much more interesting and "reridable." Great idea!

And in five or so years when zombies are not popular anymore, but maybe werewolves or Greek gods (for example) are the next new popular thing, all it will take is to add a new film to the ride to keep people interested.

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Monday, September 8, 2014 1:13 PM

I stumbled on this over at themeparkuniversity.com.

What I found interesting in their article about the ride was the ease with which the ride experience can be changed -- the track remains the same, but what is seen can be easily and quickly changed.

Canada's Wonderland could introduce a brand new -- ride? -- each year by evolving or completely changing the storyline. Or the park could introduce daytime and nighttime versions.

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Monday, September 8, 2014 1:56 PM

When Rob Decker (VP of P&D at Cedar Fair) and Matt Ouimet (CEO) were talking about this ride after the announcement, the ability to do exactly this was something they were frequently bringing up. It probably contributes to the reason that Triotech was completely mobbed at IAAPA last year too.

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Monday, September 8, 2014 2:02 PM

So if you ride Wonder Mountain's Guardian and Zombies 4-D, do you get two coaster credits? :-)

I hadn't thought about the implications prior to reading the article, but the appeal of having a ride that a park can change quickly and repeatedly is clear.

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Monday, September 8, 2014 4:39 PM

The part of this that surprised me was that parts of the special effects can be moved. I wonder if the special effects were designed to be easily moved, like unplug it, roll it over there, and plug it back in?

And Slitheroggin asks a very interesting question. New coaster credit? ;)

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Monday, September 8, 2014 5:43 PM

LostKause said:

And Slitheroggin asks a very interesting question. New coaster credit? ;)

Only in the sense that the scenery changing around any coaster makes it a new credit.

"Ooh, look a new row of bushes over there! New credit!"

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Monday, September 8, 2014 11:10 PM

The other big play for CF here is to build one at each property with a different theme and rotate them around season to season to get the marketing and novelty push without any new hardware investment. Considering the meh reviews about Wonderland's version hopefully they can enhance next gens at other properties. Curious if the second will debut at CP or Knott's.

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Monday, September 8, 2014 11:43 PM

The beauty of the concept is, Cedar Fair wouldn't need to rotate. The apparent ease of updating the software would, I think, diminish the need to re-use the imagery.

I've never been to Canada's Wonderland. I'm curious about the size of Wonder Mountain, and whether other Cedar Fair parks have the space to add a show building that could accommodate such an attraction.

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Monday, September 8, 2014 11:53 PM

I'm going with Knott's. But they better be careful over there. With a third dark ride the park would be Cedar Fair's Darkride Capital and the other two they have are so well done, this one better pass muster.

My favorite thing is how they continue to highlight the coaster aspect of the ride, when it clearly kind of isn't. I'm not sure how the Zombie climb up the side of Wonder Mountain would be any more "perilous" than it ever was. But never mind about that, in every regard it's closer to being a coaster than a Super Loops will be.

Another thing they can do, especially with holiday conversions, is to install scenes with live scare actors. I don't know how that would impact the shoot-for-points thing, but it sure could add some close up scares.

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Tuesday, September 9, 2014 11:18 AM

slithernoggin said:

I've never been to Canada's Wonderland. I'm curious about the size of Wonder Mountain, and whether other Cedar Fair parks have the space to add a show building that could accommodate such an attraction.

The mountain is big, huge even. But my understanding is the ride itself doesn't have a huge footprint inside. I'm sure CF will first look to existing structures (Coliseum/arcade building at Cedar Point, Kingdom of the Dinosaurs building at Knott's, maybe empty theaters at the former Paramount parks?). In addition to saving on cost, those giant Dark Knight boxes are pretty ugly so it's not the worst strategy.

RCMAC said:

I'm going with Knott's. But they better be careful over there. With a third dark ride the park would be Cedar Fair's Darkride Capital and the other two they have are so well done, this one better pass muster.

Agreed. I don't know the price tag of Wonder Mountain but the two Garner Holt AA projects at Knott's seem to be money very well spent. Ouimet knows the sophistication of that market (with Disneyland next door and Harry Potter looming) so my hope is Knott's gets a plussed-up version. I don't see them creating anything new that can't morph for Halloween Haunt though so not sure where that leaves Garner Holt and any AA's in the mix. Should be interesting to see what happens.

Then again, I'd take a timeless, immersive AA-filled tour with a fun ride system like a flume over a video game wall any day but I'm not the demo for this. Toy Story Mania is better than Pirates, really? Kids these days...

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Tuesday, September 9, 2014 11:33 AM

It's basically two long LED screens, iirc, but not hugely long.

I've had the same thought about the theaters at the former ParaParks, and from what I've seen of the POV, I bet they could easily start outside with a lift and drop into the buildings.

It'd be a much better use of the space. Especially considering they removed the motion seats.

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Tuesday, September 9, 2014 6:48 PM

Sometimes I'm not sure what's on and off the record when talking to those guys, but I had the impression that this was something they would like to do at different parks if it was well received in Canada. And honestly, it makes sense, because it's real delivery on the promise of what simulators were supposed to offer all along. It just turns out that people want it to be more dynamic and have some kind of interaction. It also certainly seems a lot more flexible than your typical Sally dark ride.

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Tuesday, September 9, 2014 9:05 PM

I recall hearing that if these kind of rides turned out to be popular, CF would consider putting them in more of their parks.

I also recall hearing a rumor that Cedar Point was thinking about placing this kind of ride in the first floor of the ballroom after removing the awesome arcade.

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Tuesday, September 9, 2014 9:52 PM

I've read the rumor about a ride going into the Coliseum, replacing the arcade. It just seems like it would be such a challenge to work around all those columns.

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Tuesday, September 9, 2014 10:38 PM

If it was going to happen at all, (and I hope it doesn't), it would make sense to me, after seeing how CW's turned out, that the station would be behind the Coliseum where 3 Point Challenge is now. The lift could go up one side of the building and drop onto the second floor of the building for the ride. There would be fewer obstacles and a much higher ceiling on floor 2. Then it would be in position for the final drop back to the first floor and unload.

The bad news that comes with my plan is that the ride would replace the historic Cedar Point Ballroom, and that would suck. Maybe instead they could get creative with the Oceana building, enclose it, and use it for a multi-level dark ride.

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Tuesday, September 9, 2014 10:45 PM

The Oceana building seems like a great location. Is that even being used anymore?

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Tuesday, September 9, 2014 10:51 PM

Yes, I think they still have the wheel sport show in there.

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Tuesday, September 9, 2014 11:12 PM

All Wheels Extreme (cheap plug) uses the building and the show is pretty good too.

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