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Everything posted by bkroz

  1. Nope. Nope nope nope. Pitting roller coaster vs. roller coaster to compare parks is asinine. Diamondback vs. Millennium. Gemini vs. Racer. Beast vs. Mean Streak. Absolutely a joke. Sigh. Sigh sigh sigh.
  2. Both parks charge far less for admission and far, far, FAR less for season passes than more discriminating* parks. * if you believe the media, especially.
  3. Cedar Point... the best in the world... at...? Food? Entertainment? Family attractions? Cleanliness? Friendliness? Professionalism? Dark rides? Storytelling? Landscaping? Cedar Point is definitively "above" Kings Island in one measurable category: quantity of roller coasters. The rest is up to your opinion. Cedar Point is an internationally renowned roller coaster park. Kings Island's former owners never intended to beat Cedar Point at that. One might argue that Kings Island's current owners never intend to beat Cedar Point at that. That's not a bad thing at all to my sensibilities. Cedar Point, without a doubt better than Kings Island and probably the best in the world. Doubtful bkroz, laughing his way toward the door... to head for Busch Gardens Williamsburg, Tokyo DisneySea, Knoebel's, Disney's Animal Kingdom, Universal's Islands of Adventure, Dollywood, Disney California Adventure, Knott's Berry Farm 2016, Europa Park, Efteling, Disneyland Paris, Ocean Park... There's a big, big world out there, and big, big world here with lots and lots to learn for us all. What a beautiful thing!
  4. Don't worry. I "ignored" the posters in my settings and this is only the second time I'm acknowledging the problem in the months it's been ongoing. But whenever there's speculation of a serious new attraction coming to the park, membership here swells with new people and I want them all to stick around and become part of the community! A good place to start is to introduce the most basic rule of thumb we have: "those who speak don't know, and those who know don't speak." Easy! As for those claiming to know it all, they might have similarly ignored me, which is fine. I'm not trying to change them. I'm trying to help everyone else sort out the difference.
  5. In the old days here, people new to the community would blindly insult Cedar Fair. "BRING BACK TH MOVIEZ." "ILL ALWAYS CALL IT DROP ZONE" "STUPID CDEAR POINT RUINED PKI." It's interesting to see that a new generation vilifies just as blindly, but in just the opposite way. Pure and simple, it's naive to reduce these attractions in this way. Each and every one set new precedents. Some redefined the capabilities of a seasonal amusement park. Some informed industry standards that remain today. Others shifted the growth of competitors who, were it not for Kings Island's intervention, might be more dominant players today, changing the entire course of the park's story. If Son of Beast hadn't existed, we might not have Diamondback or Banshee. If Italian Job didn't exist, there may be no Verbolten. If Flight of Fear didn't exist, neither would Joker's Jinx. (And, by the way, given your analysis, why have Space Mountain at Magic Kingdom? It's a clone of Disneyland's Matterhorn, never-mind that most visitors to Magic Kingdom don't even know what the Matterhorn is, and the two rides have practically nothing in common whatsoever in terms of rider experience. Never-mind again that your two "pros" for Paramount are off-the-shelf carnival rides that are literally and sincerely located in one form or another at almost every major amusement park on Earth... yet Flight of Fear is reduced to a "clone"? Yikes!) There are those here who could tell you that, but for Paramount purchasing Kings Island, the park would likely not exist today. There are those who would go on and on about how Paramount's vision for Kings Island – distinctly DIFFERENT from Cedar Fair's – is what gives the park an atmosphere, style, and aura that's different from, say, Cedar Point's. Paramount, Viacom, and CBS didn't add hypers and gigas and Wing Riders. They added Tomb Raider and Son of Beast and Italian Job and Flight of Fear. I'm incredibly thankful for that, and even now, Cedar Fair has shown a deliberate willingness to adhere to the precedents set by Paramount and its predecessors... the things that make the park different from the kind of midway-amusement-zone that builds big tall bright roller coasters simply for big bright tall roller coasters' sake. In turn, Cedar Fair has taken what it acquired in the Paramount Parks and changed their OWN methods at legacy parks. I think most of us here started with these big sweeping biased and under-informed generalizations like Beast Gal made... I know I did! But stick around and listen to the stories that are told and the experience shared here, explore the rest of the industry, and think outside the box and you'll be surprised what you learn... I know I have been!
  6. Opinions are splendid. What's frustrating and eye-roll-inducing is that a few users here are posting as if they're insiders, "blessing" us with little hints and photos of where things will be with sly, coy "winks" that are supposed to impress us and make us swoon with just how elite they must be. We're supposed to be bamboozled with how they got this information and plead for them to share more. These posters are decidedly NOT insiders – if they ever were, they wouldn't have remained that way for long. Given that they're not insiders, that means 1) they're either faking it and pretending to be in the know (which is not cool, fun, cute, or admirable) ~ OR ~ 2) they really did find out through some coincidence, a friend-of-a-friend connection, something illicit, etc (which makes these little "winks" ESPECIALLY not cool, fun, cute, or admirable). Speculation is fun. Opinions and guesswork and hopes and fears and desires are what make "decoding" such a fun annual past time for enthusiasts and guests. Someone who purports to know-it-all – whether genuinely or otherwise – sucks the fun out of it for those of us who are enjoying each other's company and learning what different members here look for in their rides. I have posted similarly in the past and been ignored by said users, who know who they are. So be it. But I'll ask again: just to let the rest of us have some fun, leave the cute little "winks" to the park? If you are indeed right, we'll know soon enough and you can gloat then. I won't see it, but I'm sure some here will! There are those here who truly and absolutely know what the park is doing in 2017. They are not posting about it.
  7. Wasn't too long ago that both of Disneyland's parks were shut due to a suspicious metal object in a tree in the Esplanade between the parks. It was a geocache. Better safe than sorry.
  8. At Disneyland Resort, those announcements – "Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls! In just fifteen minutes, the lights surrounding Paradise Bay will be dimmed..." – are made by a husband and wife pair. He does Disneyland Park. She does Disney California Adventure. Kind of cool! Their announcements and narration being a "constant" through the day is really cool, and very touching. My day at Disney California Adventure always ends with Camille reminding us to "dream in wonderful color." (Watch to the end of that video. In an original draft of World of Color, a single mischievous orange fountain named Squirt appeared throughout the show, representing the spirit of Walt Disney and connecting the animated vignettes. That frame story was cut, but a hint of Squirt remains: at the end of World of Color, every fountain turns off except one – Walt's – which bows and then disappears. Gets me a little misty every time. In more ways than one.)
  9. I know i'm late to this, but it's worth bringing back. There's a lot to fix here. It's a big issue with lots of opportunities along the way. If you pay competitive wages, you can hire a team that you can trust. If you hire a team that you can trust, you can empower them. If your team is empowered, they can right wrongs and fix problems. If problems are fixed, customers are happy. If your customers are happy, they spend more money. ...Unless, of course, they've already purchased the All-Season Dining Plan. Fine print: Dining Plan participating locations & menus subject to change without notice throughout the season and from year to year. Operating hours vary by location and some locations may not be open on select operating days. Put another way: You get what you get and you don't throw a...
  10. The Marvel Island has been treated pretty well between the completely new Hulk and the HD, from-scratch re-animation of Spider-Man which truly made it into a new ride. It also received the Storm-themed tea-cup spinner shortly after the park opened. Now it just needs generally refreshed in terms of painting, etc. Kong is part of its own separate themed "island" (Skull Island) distinct from Jurassic Park, and even though it's just a tiny stretch of path, really, it's well done. Jurassic Park is huge and just needs another attraction or two to anchor it (and these could be a family dark ride through the Discovery Center and / or an "antique cars" style ride through an animatronic herbivore habitat). Toon Lagoon is tough because it's supposed to be timeless (in the same way the Peanuts are). What can be done? I don't know. Maybe razing the seldom-used amphitheatre in favor of a classic dark ride through the cartoons to introduce them to kids who don't know Rocky and Bullwinkle, Popeye, etc. As for Kong, I bet the problem is with the trackless vehicles. They're far and away the biggest trackless vehicles out there. Disney and SeaWorld's hold 4 - 6 people. These are massive and hold 60, with animatronic drivers. Wow. That being said, they're almost certainly having serious issues. No park operator wants their new ride to still be testing in June or July.
  11. I'm astonished that Universal has let their child offerings slip so far. Universal Studios was always considered the park for tweens and teens – not the sort of place you'd consider visiting with elementary school or younger, with every ride ending with "something going horribly wrong" as you're attacked by a shark, ape, earthquake, tornado, Terminator, etc. Universal's Islands of Adventure was supposed to changed that, and I think it did a respectable job with Seuss Landing and Toon Lagoon (though both could use another E-ticket family dark ride). That's all well and good, but neither of those lands has grown and Universal Studios next door still has Woody Woodpecker and Fievel? It's a little disgraceful, really. Meanwhile in Universal Studios Singapore, Shrek and Madagascar each have their own full land. I realize the licensing must work differently (why else do Dreamworks properties outside of Shrek have zero presence in the parks? Why else hasn't E.T. become a How To Train Your Dragon dark ride? Why else isn't the Barney show a Kung Fu Panda Academy and playground? Why else isn't Curios George's area a proper Shrek dark ride? The rumor now is that Nintendo is their coup and that will be UNiversal Studios Florida's "family" area. It would still be nice to see family stuff permeate the parks. And I agree with everything you said and noticed, RailRider. I love Islands of Adventure, but I'd skip one of Comcast's promised big-budget E-Tickets in favor of just giving the park some TLC outside of Potter. Clean it all up, repaint it all. And I absolutely 100% think both those parks could benefit from 4 - 5 new C or D-Ticket attractions. They don't all have to be headliners. Give us a family roller coaster around Mount Crumpet in Seuss Landing, a family dark ride in Jurassic Park, a new show / mythology ride to replace Sinbad in Lost Continent... Universal Studios suffers from a lack of "medium-sized" rides, especially. Those are the sorts of things that keep families coming back as their children grow. I think people were excited for Kong, and now that it's opening, we're looking at the slate of E-Tickets they've got planned and going "uh oh..." Fast and Furious, based on the terrible, terrible, terrible piece of Hollywood's Tram Tour? Yikes. Jimmy Fallon's Soarin' Over New York? Fine, I guess, but is anyone waiting with baited breath for this? While the big name headliners may be selling points for some, the parks need to be foundationally strong to support them or else people come once... then decide Universal is a 1 or 2 day aside. That's Universal's worst fear, and I think it takes more than just big name E-Tickets to counter that. tldr: USF needs to bulldoze its 90s "kids area" and start from the ground up. If Dreamworks isn't the answer, let it be Nintendo. Then, let's take a few years off of adding headlining E-Tickets to simply refurb / TLC the park and the ride's that need some love (Dudley, Jurassic Park, etc) then focus heavily on adding some medium-sized family offerings to permeate the parks, even in places they're not expected – Jurassic Park, Lost Continent, etc. Now that Kong's nearing completion, the next round of up-and-coming headliners isn't nearly as attractive, only making me more sure that it's time to improve the parks at their foundation instead of rushing into the next billboard additions.
  12. Wow... Seriously awesome. And faced with parkwide photos like this, I'm suddenly taken with how Kings Island today might as well be a different park altogether. It seems like very little of the "original" Kings Island survives today. It's unrecognizable. You could've told me those were photos of Kings Dominion and I would've believed you. In shots missing the Eiffel Tower, you could've told me the photos were of a park in California and I would've bought it. Very, very cool to see, and I imagine these will be a little sad to those who experienced the park "back then."
  13. Funny enough, halfway between Frozen Ever After's animatronic boat ride and Skull Island's screen-based dark ride is Pirates of the Caribbean: Battle for Sunken Treasure at Shanghai Disneyland which, yep, is probably the ultimate modern dark ride as of 2016. (See #8 here) The thought / hope now among Disney Parks fans is that the Avatar boat ride will use the same technology. I'm still a pessimist when it comes to the whole Avatar thing and I think even a groundbreaking and mind-bogglingly technological ride simply won't be as praised as it would be if it were, say, an original story, or a beloved franchise.
  14. When I went years ago, even Disaster Transport closed in that light hazy misting. "Holes in the building let water accumulate in the trough," I was told.
  15. I've been at Cedar Point when a light misting -- the kind where you have to squint to even see it -- grounded every single ride. For the whole day. Seriously. No rainchecks!
  16. If I can just plug myself for a minute, I have written two relevant features here: Lost Legends: Maelstrom and the 25 Most Incredible Animatronics On Earth (as determined by me). Both are fun reads and have to do with Frozen Ever After. The latter is one of my favorite things I've ever written. Anyone interested in any of my other theme park ramblings can click the link in my signature!
  17. Pre-booking your entire day? Q-bots for everyone? Capped daily attendance (like Discovery Cove)? It really could be any of the above. Or something else!
  18. Universal announced today that their new "water theme park" Universal's Volcano Bay will feature no waiting in queues once inside the park. We have yet to know how they'll manage it. We'll find out!
  19. In the seasons since the Outer Limits licensing left, I've still heard the exit spiel: "Thank you for participating in our... experiment. We now know what happens when the human body is pushed to..." *Crickets* The point is, that is decidedly better than a teen using the launch as comedy hour and ending with a "fake" countdown or a "Goodbye!" When I bring friends and try to sell the park (and in particular, certain rides) as a well-themed, Universal-style experience, the spieling typically hurts it.
  20. No, but if I were approaching a body of water and saw a sign post sticking out of the water that said "No Swimming," I wouldn't do that^ in the water. Is it considered swimming? No. Would I infer that, by No Swimming they meant "This is not a body of water to get in / play in / swim in / splash in?" Yes. There's no right or wrong answer here. I get it. I'm only saying that for me and probably many others, "No Swimming" would keep me out of the water period. "Well, it doesn't say anything about boogie boarding!" To me, No Swimming means keep out. I realize that's not true of all or maybe even most people and is not defensible in court. Obviously it wasn't enough to deter this family and I don't at all blame them for it. Bad signage. Fair enough.
  21. Knowing only what I've heard through the media, I would chalk this up to a true accident. Images I've seen indicate that this is an artificial white sand beach at the most deluxe of all Walt Disney World deluxe hotels, which certainly gives the impression that it's swimmable. That being said, a sign that says "No Swimming" to me would not be inferred as "Wading Okay." It's a strange bit of childlike thinking in my mind to think from that perspective. "Well you said I couldn't have cake before dinner, so I had pie!" Sure, the argument can and will be made that they weren't swimming; they were wading, and thus Disney's signage was inadequate. But, c'mon. It's a little odd to me that anyone would have to be so specific as to say "Do not enter the water." And then, people would bring inner tubes and say, "I didn't enter the water!" When I walk by my local pond and see "No Swimming," it doesn't occur to me that I could or should wade, float, dive, cannonball, or splash around. I take it as "Stay out the water." I do think Disney faulted here by not being clear that their "No Swimming" is for a much different reason that my local pond's "No Swimming." Alligator signs are a no-brainer now and if these animals are as widespread as we're now coming to understand, then yes, they should've been posted at each beach or potential beach just when a beach is closed for a shark warning or a jellyfish warning.
  22. Oh, the irony. This is a fantastic event and a great opportunity!
  23. I am not an engineer, but it takes longer to redo a ride and replace with steel then it takes to change some wood boards IMO. Some sentences can't reasonably end with "in my opinion." I'm not a theoretical physicist, but the sun revolves around the earth IMO. (I mean, c'mon... Look up and... duh.) bkroz, who doesn't know the intricicies of converting, repairing, refurbishing, or retracking roller coasters... and thus says nothing, starts nothing, claims nothing, and gives no timelines, "facts," or "trivia" related to the subject. (At least, not anymore. When I started here at the age of 14, an unthinkable 11 years ago, I was a fount of wisdom!)
  24. But has he been to Kennywood's Potato Patch? If so, I'm sold!
  25. Right all along, huh? That's what it looks like, huh?
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