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TombRaiderFTW

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TombRaiderFTW last won the day on March 13

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About TombRaiderFTW

  • Rank
    KIC Superstar
  • Birthday 11/25/1991

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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    The Dino Institute
  • Interests
    Highly themed, totally immersive dark ride adventures.

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  1. ^ I'm in the opposite boat--when that area looked like that, I was developing my love of parks and Tomb Raider: The Ride. I think about that big, open entrance plaza and trees nearly surrounding the building all the time, because that was from my "golden years" at the park. I'm still a little salty that the textured plaza concrete is all but gone at this point. Sorry, I'm getting into Grumpy Old Man mode...
  2. ^ Sure! So I don't know if this is super well known in the enthusiast community, but KI has some alternate systems in place for people who are able to ride the rides but have some kind of disability that keeps them from physically waiting in the queue. There are two or three different kinds of sheets, and they're generally referred to by the color of sheet they are given. The sheet communicates to the ride operators what rides the guest can or can't ride and is used to track the guest's wait times. Folks who use the green sheets walk up the exit and hand the sheet to a ride op, who will check that they can ride, check what time it is, check how long the line is, and then write down when they can return to ride the ride based on what the wait time is. So if I'm at Adventure Express, it's 2:00pm, and we have a 15 minute wait, I'll write on their sheet that they can return to ride AE at 2:15. A lot of the time (at least at the rides I worked), folks who used green sheets would stand to the side at the exit and wait for their time to ride. Sometimes, if I wasn't in the middle of something, they would strike up a conversation. Often, they would happen to be very friendly people whose conversation often ended up being a highlight of my day. Obviously that's not a rule for everyone who uses a green sheet; that was just my experience in the shortish time I worked at the park. A few memorable groups took time to ask what my name was and thank me by name and wish me a good rest of my day as they left. I thought that was really sweet. Also, it's a common misconception among people who witness the systems being used but don't know the details of it that the people using them don't have to wait to ride. That's actually completely untrue. There ARE wait times built into it; they're just not waited out in the queue. It's a very clever little system, and I'm really glad the park has it. It gives folks who might not otherwise have the opportunity to ride the ability to make memories together on the rides, and I think that's awesome.
  3. Please just be nice. The sheer number of grumpy folks ride ops deal with on a daily basis is higher than you'd think. If your child is too short, it's not because the ride ops have decided to ruin your day. It's because that's the rules that you as the rider must follow and ride ops have to enforce. They didn't invent the rules, so please, PLEASE don't rip into them over it. If you don't want to deal with ride ops checking your child's height, *please* go to a height station in Planet Snoopy or International Street and get them a wristband. I can't tell you how many sighs of relief I had in my ride op days because of those colored wristbands. As someone who worked rides with a 48" height restriction, the 48" wristband color very quickly became my favorite color. I personally loved conversations with guests, especially when I didn't have to start them (although starting them wasn't a bad thing.) I got a lot of questions about how my day was, how long was my shift, etc. If you can mix it up, that's cool, but even those questions are appreciated. Just something to acknowledge that we're people meant a lot. A lot of green sheet folks would start those kinds of conversations with me, especially at Viking Fury, and it was always a highlight of my day.
  4. I don't know that I've ever heard of Arrow's suspended coasters being designed around a particular row. The loopers, yes--it's 5-1. With very few exceptions, 5-1 is great on their loopers. I don't typically get super excited about Arrow looping coasters, but 5-1 on Loch Ness Monster is one of my favorite things to ride. I've always heard the 5-1 thing associated with Ron Toomer, but I don't know Arrow's history well enough to know if he designed all of their rides, if he applied that to every ride he did, etc. That being said, The Bat is much swingier in the first car. The last car has airtime on the first drop, and you'll get whipped around the turn over the lift hill. The rest of the ride is kind of the same regardless of row, except when you swing up into the brakes, your car won't swing as much if you're in the back. In the front, you'll feel like you nearly reach 90 degrees (although I don't think it's actually that extreme.) I personally find the swinging aspect to be more fun than the forcefulness of the last row. Your mileage may vary depending on what you prefer. It's a fun and underrated ride regardless.
  5. I'm gonna do a combined list cause I'm too lazy to do wood and steel lists, haha. I'm at 290-something coasters now. 10. Phoenix, Knoebels. You don't understand how fun airtime can be until you ride this ride. RMC makes fantastic rides, but RMC does not understand the nuanced thrill of finding yourself almost standing up from ejector airtime plus buzz bars. 9. Magnum XL-200, Cedar Point. I don't have reasons for this that make sense anymore. It hurts and I like it. 8. Apollo's Chariot, Busch Gardens Williamsburg. AC and Nitro exist in this weird bubble of B&M's history where they were totally cool with putting abrupt ejector airtime on their mega coasters. Dunno what happened there, but I wish they'd keep doing that. Anyway, Apollo does it more and is also at one of the best parks in the world (although SFGAdv is great in its own way, too.) 7. Adventure Express, Kings Island. Y'all may have heard of this one? It's one of the best mine trains (I'd put it on par with Silver Dollar City's and Six Flags over Texas's) but I also have a ton of personal history with it. We have family stories about me being scared of it. It's also the only coaster I've ever worked. I can't not love it. I'll cry when its day comes. 6. Shock Wave, Six Flags over Texas. Schwarzkopf does NOT get enough love in the 21st century, and I am here to shame you all for it. You do not know how good coasters can be till you've ridden a Schwarzkopf looper (that's not Sooperdooperlooper cause that one's basically a tamer mine train with a loop.) Shock Wave gets the edge over Mind Bender for having stupidly strong airtime in the back. Mind Bender is great too, though. 5. El Toro, Six Flags Great Adventure. We as a collective group of humans forgot this ride existed when RMC burst forth. I'm confused. El Toro is great. You crazy kids and your Alan Schilkes... 4. The Boss, Six Flags St. Louis. It does a better job of Voyage's pacing while being a lot more pleasant to ride. There, I said it. I regret nothing. (jk i love u voyage just stop hurting me plz im not 16 anymore thx) 1 (tie). Verbolten, Busch Gardens Williamsburg. Nothing--NOTHING--is as fun as taking unsuspecting newbies on this ride's drop track. But also, I love the charm and adventure of this ride and the horrors of the Black Forest. Do I wish the story of this ride was more evident and easier to pick up in the queue? Yes. Would I literally kill for us to have a ride themed on this level and even with its current storytelling methods? Also yes. Do I also think the way you slow down on the bridge over the Rhine was actually originally intended to be a launch because they use LSMs (not brake fins) to slow you down despite the teaser videos making it look like you'd careen over the edge of the bridge but then the rest of the ride would have been too intense? Also also yes. Where was I going with this? Dunno. Go ride Verbolten though. 1 (tie). Expedition Everest, Animal Kingdom. It's the same story as Verbolten, but Nepal and a yeti instead of Germany and Sandra Bullock. Do I have a type? Possibly. Am I ever going to change that? Probably not. Have I ever waited in the standby line to fully understand the story? No. Do I tell myself I will before every WDW trip but then I get there and FastPass or the single rider line call to me? You betcha. 1 (tie). Fury 325, Carowinds. If B&M's not gonna do the abrupt ejector air thing anymore (see number 8), then at least they did this. I dunno whose idea it was to mostly ditch the giant camelback thing Leviathan has going on, but I wanna give them a hug because they made something that's the right amount of I305's turns and Millennium Force's sense of speed and hesitancy to make me gray out and none of Leviathan's desire to put me to sleep. I dunno what Walter and Claude were thinking, but I hope they think about it again if they're doing any work for us for next year.
  6. Back in my day, we enjoyed what the park gave us as they gave us it and speculated from there. I'm curious to see how the early emergence of public details on this one will affect future plans. It kinda feels like we're exploiting a special privilege here? Maybe that's just me? Some of you are giving me some vibes that you'll actually boo aloud at the announcement if this isn't exactly what you want. Please don't. "Decoding" threads are always my least favorite threads here. Always. I'm outie on this one. Later, taters.
  7. The row was removed during the transition from Tomb Raider: The Ride to The Crypt, yes. The ride's mechanical problems pre-dated that. If I'm not mistaken, the ride spent a significant portion of one season waiting for parts from HUSS in Germany? (Or was that Delirium? I dunno, it was in the years before I got into the coaster life.) Based on the changes The Crypt underwent over its 4 seasons, it would appear that the original plan was to give it an intense cycle not unlike what Kings Dominion's Crypt currently does and turn it into a thrill ride. It kept that cycle for a little over a year before it changed to a MUCH tamer cycle where the gondola itself barely did any swinging. It would rotate like a Ferris wheel, then lock the gondola for one rotation so you went upside down, then stop and repeat in the other direction. That was it. The Giant Top Spin was kind of a maintenance disaster throughout its existence, but I'd speculate based on the changes that the intense Crypt cycle definitely didn't help things. Still weirdly miss hearing the resistor bank screech while waiting in line for Beast, though.
  8. Your post reads like a joke. As a HUGE fan of KD's Crypt, I don't understand. Excuse me while I daydream about us having their Crypt... I'd even take it on top of the Royal Fountains if that's the asking price.
  9. Disclaimer: I haven't been to the park yet this year. Just have to make one comment: am I the only one who very much prefers Kings Dominion's International Street to ours, both before and after this year's renovation? I love their oversized trees and black fountain. It feels secluded and integrated with the woods. It adds a level of magic to that orchestral playlist that we now share. But that's me, I guess? Wonderland's feels like a more grandiose version of ours, too. At any rate, I love the care that's been put into our IS this year. It looks nicer than it has in YEARS. I'm curious to see what's coming for the fountains!
  10. ^ Are you sure? He's been fairly ambiguous about his feelings. I think he's probably either content with any manufacturer or else should probably make his preferences a little clearer...
  11. Am I a bad person if I think that's a perfect price for all-season Fast Lane at Cedar Point? And they could raise the price of one-day Fast Lane there considerably and I'd be fine with it? And no, I'm not one of the people who thinks front-of-the-line systems are inherently immoral and shouldn't exist. There's easily more demand for front-of-the-line options there than for any park I've been to that I can think of. I get that Steel Vengeance was new and big and had some capacity issues last year, but I was there in the middle of summer and the FL queue alone had over an hour wait. Did that happen for Mystic Timbers beyond its first few weekends? I don't think so. And that much demand lowers the value of Fast Lane for its users and detracts from the standby guests' experience. It feels like improvements could be made. But I'm sure there's also a price point where they start lowering net profits and yadda yadda and all that finance jazz I don't have at my disposal when deciding how Cedar Point ought to operate when sitting behind this computer screen.
  12. I believe the trains were sent to Kings Dominion to be used for share parts for Shockwave.
  13. 12: No 13: but 14: seriously 15: don't 16: touch 17: Adventure 18: Express 19: okay 20: thanks
  14. I worked in the Rides department in 2017 and 2018. They're as strict now as ever. He's just scratching the surface, too. Off-hand, I don't know that I have any specific stories to share. I do have to just generally put it out there that working in the Rides department was one of the best jobs I've ever had. People aren't exaggerating when they say that you can become family with your crew. That might not be everyone at every ride's experience, but it definitely was mine. Even at the Ship Which Shall Not Be Named. It was definitely fun (and occasionally groan-worthy) to get to know your "regulars." Some of them were great. Some of them were very excited and talkative 12 year-olds whose energy you could appreciate but maybe not return after being at work all day, so you become maybe a little less excited to see them reach their twentieth lap in a row while continuing the story they've been telling you for the previous nineteen laps. But even then, that's a fun problem to have.
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