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warnerleroy

SIX FLAGS 2011!

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Eh...low capacity and people barely sit through Houdini let alone follow a story line. With 25 seat capacity and a 7-minute show the throughput could only be about 175 an hour. Even with multiple theaters it would be a nightmare.

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HOW DO people barely sit through Houdini?

They talk over the pre-show, missing out on the story line and quite often scream like idiots over every little thing. It's not like going on the Haunted Mansion at WDW when everyone actually gets wrapped up in the pre-show and it sets the mood for the ride.

 

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It's not entirely the guests' fault.

 

On a fundamental level, SF crafted a poor storyline for the ride that doesn't draw in the rider. Think of any good themed attraction and you'll realize that it has a ride segment that BUILDS OFF OF its preshow. Houdini's preshow doesn't really have a story, it just involves a woman whom we know nothing about talking, with some cheezy effects going off around the room. There's not even any indication to the viewer where to look around the room to see the effects ("Look! The Gargoyles!" or "Look! The Candelabra!" means nothing to someone who doesn't know the attraction well.) More importantly, we're told to throw it all out once the ride segment starts, which is just plain confusing.

 

A big part of the problem is that there's no contextualization of what we're experiencing, like if they made it clear to each group of riders that we had signed up to take a tour of Houdini's old house and experience a seance. I think SF tried to do this with the posters and such on the building exterior, but it's simply not clear. Moreover, there's no rationale for the switch between what happens in the library and the parlor. The preshow ends with Margery saying "We've done it!" (which is ridiculous in its own right for a preshow), but there's somehow another room to go through? And once we're there, the real Houdini's spirit takes over? For anyone but a frequent rider, this "story" doesn't make any sense, and I don't think you can blame people for not following it because of that.

 

Moreover, on a day-to-day level, the park runs the ride in what is essentially the least engaging way possible. First, the preshow volume is WAY TOO LOW. You can only hear Margery if EVERYONE is silent, and often even the most well-behaved crowds don't realize that she's talking at first, which kills the beginning of the preshow. SF could fix this by starting the show with a slow dimming of the lights, which would be a better signal and give people some time to pay attention, but instead they begin the show with the lights going black, which only increases the commotion and noise level.

 

Once the ride itself starts, many effects commonly don't work, as we all well know. The head in the crystal ball adds immensely to the ride and the story, but for some reason it is off far more than it is on. Plus the ride is often run with a dramatically cut audio track. Instead of hearing Houdini talk through most of the experience--which better explains what is going on and immeasurably adds to the story--we only hear a few snippets like "I spent my life exposing frauds like Margery and they have the audacity to betray me," followed by nothing for minutes at a time. They even often run the ride without the 30 seconds or so of audio in the end ("I still have much to learn here in the great beyond," etc.), leaving riders sitting stuck and motionless in the dark as the ride's finale.

 

If everything is working, the experience is a pretty good one, and I'm happy to say that that was the case on Columbus Day, when I went through the ride with a large group, including many families, all of whom were able to follow the story and enjoy the experience very much. But by last Friday, the experience had deteriorated to its usual levels, with no crystal ball, barely any ride audio, and a lackluster response to the attraction as a result.

 

I could go on forever about what I think should be done to overhaul the ride's storyline and operations (in short, have an actor run the preshow as a tour of Houdini's house, then have her move us into the second room to begin a seance. She takes everybody's loose articles "because they can easily float away and get lost during the seance," and when she's depositing them in the exit room, the doors slam shut and the real Houdini takes over), but I'm tired of typing.

 

And as for the Castle of Chaos, it looks like a cool system but the storyline looks very poor. They have the preshow video on their website and it's just plain painful to sit through.

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Then don't ride the ride. I don't understand how people bash things yet somehow they go back to it and praise it when it re-opens. Seriously, be glad they got the ride open. The GP doesn't even look that close to detail.

Edited by CoasterPrince

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I'm not certain what you're trying to say but it seems like a very stupid way of thinking. I love the ride dearly and it can be a very enjoyable experience, but I also think that it has an enormous amount of untapped potential, first in the way it's run, but also more deeply in the underlying story. My wanting it to achieve more of that potential stems directly from my love for the ride, and I'm glad to say I was thrilled when I heard the news of it reopening, and when I rode it with every working effect on Columbus Day. Still, that doesn't mean it's perfect, and the deteriorating effects are just one way that that's the case. There's a difference between just plain hating something and giving constructive criticism.

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There isn't anything wrong with the ride and I'm forced to say I come off hereing people say its retarded for a ride, then they get in line and say "lets ride again"! I think most people don't understand that not all rides are meant for the same people. Some are Family Rides (Teacups, Dark Kight, Houdini, Mine Train) and some are aimed for more daring people. The story is perfectly fine, yes your right about the unclear setting, but Six Flags isn't Disney World. They aren't ussually focased on theme,as much as thrill, so in '99, this was new to them.

 

And nobody thinks stupidly...

Edited by ThemeParkRider

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You would think since i work out in 240 i would be trained for it nut im only trained at GASM and the carosel, Most likley next season ill get trained for alot more since ill be there more than a month

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Simple, GASM has got to go. Sorry GAfreak. That ride allmost made me pass out. Add a Blue fire in that infield and Bam its good. We need some flats though, Lots and Lots of Flats.

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I would like to see G.A.S.M. go. It was always a rough ride, and its time has come. I appreciate the part she played in saving Great Adventure, as well as her beauty in the skyline. Bluedusa simply outclasses G.A.S.M., and is less likely to inflict a traumatic brain injury.

 

With G.A.S.M. gone, I would love to see The Golden Kingdom expanded. A "Jungala" like addition would great, and animal exhibits are something this park handles well (care infrastructure is already in place). Team up with Landry's, and add a "Yak & Yeti" style restaurant. I really think current management lacks the insight to see how beneficial (and inexpensive) these type of overlays can be.

 

I love Kingda Ka, but The Golden Kingdom expansion should have been the blueprint Six Flags ran with. Even Plaza de Carnivale was great on a much smaller scale. I like the intermingling of children friendly attractions and adult coasters, versus dedicated zones. Very Disney/Universal-esque. I often wonder if The Golden Kingdom was borrowed from what Six Flags had in mind for Worlds of Adventure (read its press release on rcdb), and recycled for us.

 

It would be nice for Six Flags to resurrect the Schwarzkopf catalog for "flats". Thanks to "Shane's Amusement Attic" over at Theme Park Review, Intamin AG *DOES* owns the entire Schwarzkopf blueprint and (what's left of the) patent catalog. Schwarzkopf "flats" are near bulletproof in reliability terms, and always rock. Plus, unlike Huss Rides, Intamin isn't seeking annual bankruptcy protection, or refusing to service their products.

Edited by Thunderbolt

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well, i still dont think GASM is going to go, You will need to repalace it if you remove it and i think in 2011 were going to see a large coaster in the old country area. if Gasm is going it wont be for 2-3 years out.

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How about bring back the "American" theme with the Sarajevo Boblseds, Parachutes, GASM, and the Right Stuff. I know the chutes were just repainted but they could still recolor the que...

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i would like to see the return of chiiller, since its down the road from the park and the station is still there, maybe they have plans to modify it and stick it back in old country, I would love it if that was the case! Does anyone have pics of it sitting outside on that farm?

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didnt see any pics of it taken down and sitting in a field on his website, not sure he has any of it

Hmm,I looked too,I know he had an update with some pictures of it in a field.But I guess he took them down.

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i cant figure out why they would only scrap one half of it unless they have a plan for the other half. It did cost 15 million and i really think it could find its way into the park again, and why else would they leave the station up and then shut down old country? i think it is going to return at some capacity, it may not be the same ride it was but they modified the trak once , why couldnt they do it again?

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....it may not be the same ride it was but they modified the track once , why couldn't they do it again?

 

You have to let her go gafreak... she is gone, she is gone..... :Reaper2:

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