Brilliant in concept, disappointing in execution?

Discussion in 'Rest of the World Parks and Attractions' started by Matt N, 23rd Sep 2021.

  1. Matt N

    Matt N TowersStreet Member

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    Hi guys. Often when concepts for new attractions are first pitched, the initial concept sounds awesome. Like a recipe for the perfect attraction. However, something can sometimes go awry during development, meaning that the execution of an amazing concept might not live up to the strength of the initial concept. So my question to you today is; have you ever ridden an attraction that sounded amazing in concept, but was disappointing in execution?

    In terms of some of my nominations, a coaster I’d nominate for this is Galactica at Alton Towers. In terms of the concept; the whole “flying like Superman” idea is awesome, and I think the whole idea of having a sedate, nice ride that has a really calm feel is a great one! However, I’ve got to say that I’m unfortunately not finding myself too enamoured with the final product these days. I find the whole position and the restraints that entails quite uncomfortable, and the ride involves some of that “lying on your back” stuff that I personally find quite awkward.

    But what attractions have you done that were great in concept, but disappointing in execution?
     
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  2. pluk

    pluk TowersStreet Member

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    Zufari is the biggest UK wasted opportunity of recent times. Such a perfect concept to suit the park, mind boggelingly badly done.
     
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  3. Danny

    Danny Gugu Rides’ Number 1 Fan

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    Thirteen - This could have been a rather unique "horror" coaster had it been given more speed through the woods, and a few additional horror elements blended in with the free-fall drop. Totally shunned by the fact it turned out to be a family coaster.

    Perhaps the most disappointing in execution from concept, however, is DBGT. What a farce.

    The London Resort also looks great in concept, but as for the execution? Well...
     
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  4. pluk

    pluk TowersStreet Member

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    That was my first thought, but then I realised its not even a good concept really. It's a train simulator. A train. Those things we go on all the time and really don't need to have simulated. Someone at some point during that development needed to step back say 'hang on, we're spending how much to realistically simulate what?' and take the whole thing back to square one.
     
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  5. jon81uk

    jon81uk TowersStreet Member

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    Exactly.

    I got excited seeing Thorpe were building a building and thought "yay we are getting a new dark ride at last". Then it was announced as being VR and my excitement stopped. Then I rode it and just wasn't sure what it was meant to actually be.
    Actually disappointed DB put his name to it.
     
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  6. Bert2theSpark

    Bert2theSpark TowersStreet Member

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    Derren Brown's Ghost Train - It has an absolutely amazing concept that if done well would have absolutely changed the idea of what it means to be a dark ride, but due to so much of the tech in the ride being young or prototype, the execution was flawed because the technology was 5-10 years ahead of it's time (ride system and VR itself comes to mind). The ride has/had some brilliant show scenes and set pieces before, between and after the ride itself but these have proved to be temperamental themselves and can ruin the flow of the attraction if they don't run correctly.

    Not to mention the unused effects and concepts that were designed for the ride but never used, such as: leg whippers, fogged glass and the alternating VR scenes which meant you were supposed to get a different monster from the person sitting next to you, shame all the only thing that changes in the VR scenes between riders is the type of homeless person you get. I feel like DBGT has a lot of potential to be a phenomenal dark ride, but as it stands it doesn't justify a £30m+ budget, maybe even if it remained at it's original budget of £13mill, it's debatable if it's even worth that...

    It's going to be interesting to see what happens when the Derren Brown IP inevitably gets removed.
     
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  7. JAperson

    JAperson TowersStreet Member

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    Ooh trickey one but would have to agree with a few here a go with thirteen. I don't think it's a bad ride by any stretch but I think the ride itself is a bit underwhelming and disappointing especially if you've already rode it as there's no surprise element.
     
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  8. Matt N

    Matt N TowersStreet Member

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    So in essence, most people’s answer to this thread so far is “Merlin stuff”?
     
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  9. JAperson

    JAperson TowersStreet Member

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    Yes although i don't think merlin are that bad of a company nor do I think there was anything else planned for thirteen that got cut. It was what Alton Towers were looking for it just isn't presented to be family friendly. As for DBGT I haven't ridden it but can't comment.
     
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  10. jon81uk

    jon81uk TowersStreet Member

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    I also think the opposite could have been true. They over-marketed as it being the most scariest experience EVER! which it never was going to be. Whereas a family coaster with a unique element is still a lot of fun. Something more story driven with a pre-show like Wickerman could have worked to make a really fun but slightly scary family coaster. The outdoor section should also have been twice as long too.
     
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  11. Funcone

    Funcone TowersStreet Member

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    This could easily turn into another Thirteen and Derren Brown thread. I think people are being harsh on Thirteen though. Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure shows what you can do with that ride system, but of course Alton Towers didn’t have a spare $300 million.

    I agree that Thirteen was mis-marketed and the fake story about the waivers did set people up for disappointment. Thirteen also spelled the end of the cross valley woodie, which enthusiasts had spent years getting excited about. I also accept that Thirteen has been plagued with a few technical issues. It isn’t ideal having the magnetic brakes on the first drop, or having to have a minimum number of riders to send a train. With hindsight, they should have had a set of brakes before the second lift hill, then they probably wouldn’t need the brakes on the first drop, or the minimum number of riders.

    Despite all of these issues, I think it does a good job with the budget available. It replaced Corkscrew, so it made sense to build a coaster with a 1.2 metre height restriction. One of the problems with Thorpe Park is that the coasters are great for adults, but there’s very little for anyone under 1.4 metres. Alton has Spinball, Thirteen, RMT and now Wicker Man.

    I also think Thorpe Park’s coasters are a bit more samey, whereas Alton Towers has a very diverse range of coasters. Thirteen’s different to anything else in the park, or the UK for that matter.

    As for a good concept, disappointing execution, maybe Flying Fish in its current form. It's an interesting concept, and certainly makes a change from all the Runaway Trains. Thorpe Park's moved away from the maritime theme, but it still fits in with the area around it. Theme parks are all about escapism, and riding along on a flying fish fits that bill. But in its current form, it doesn't look like the kind of ride you'd expect to find at one of the UK's premier theme parks.
     
    Last edited: 23rd Sep 2021
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  12. Ted

    Ted TowersStreet Member

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    Quite a bold one to claim, but Disneyland Paris.

    I love the place and understand why they were keen to build it outside of Paris. It's only 2 hours away from a lot of major cities, a 90 min flight from many more with a direct train from CDG and the centre of Paris. In hindsight the location wasn't great since Paris is not a place you'd go on holiday for theme parks, the climate is not on park's side either, and the locals weren't enthusiastic about it either unlike Tokyo. It's a shame really, it would have been interesting to see how the park would have faired if it was built Spain or even the South of France.
     
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  13. Matt.GC

    Matt.GC TowersStreet Member

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    WDS at DLP. The concept being to hide the fact it's a tiny park built on the cheap by theming it to a studios backlot, not too bad an idea if looks the part and seems quite a creative solution to a funds problem. Concept art looked pretty. The execution didn't fool anyone. The accountants clearly became the dominant force behind that place.

    The Swarm. Quality manufacturer - tick. Good theming concept - tick. Unique ride type for the UK - tick. Money put in to bringing the theme to life - tick..... "oh wait, building a B&M is quite expensive isn't it? Well I'm sure if we build half of one instead, the rides other attributes will see us through won't they?" No, it won't.

    Walliams World. A rotting area in need of a retheme, big gap in the park for the target audience, a dark ride system in the garage that needs using up in a park that really really needs one. Then a best selling children's author on side with his IP to boot! Match made in heaven. Execute it well and they're on to a winner. "What do you mean we don't have any money Nick?..... Yes but we need this, it's a great IP and we've got all those buildings...... Yes I know how much DBGT is costing you but...... sorry, you think the idea is good enough on its own?..... well will you be posting the £20 B&Q gift card to us tonight because Gary the painter guy will need to get in there and grab the paint tins on his way in on Monday....."
     
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  14. D4n

    D4n TowersStreet Member

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    The Big One

    It should be one of the UK's top coasters. It is truly massive. Yet it rides worse than a 99 year old nun.

    The concept is super cool, and if they had built a layout that prioritised ride experience over aesthetics then it could have delivered big time.

    Also, a controversial one, I would say Symbolica. The ride system and pre show are very cool, as is the entire concept, but the ride experience itself feels disjointed and soulless. The photo point is awkward and bizarre, totally killing the flow.
     
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  15. Thameslink Rail

    Thameslink Rail TowersStreet Member

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    The Drop Tower at the end of the London Dungeons because it is an execution and it's a bit disappointing (not the most forceful drop although they probably don't have the space for much more drop).
     
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  16. Ian

    Ian TS Site Team Team Member

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    I’ve always kinda said The Flume Unplugged was a somewhat under-realised concept. It wasn’t thaaat bad but it certainly wasn’t as fleshed out as it could have been. Aside from the tunnel and some bubbles over the turntable there wasn’t much to it.

    I still maintain that “bathtime with attitude” was a really great concept.
     
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  17. Tim

    Tim TowersStreet Member

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    Nemesis Sub-Terra.

    I wrote a whole article about it back before and after it closed for refurbishment. Basic summary; potentially an atmospheric and genuinely scary ride but it needed to really nail the pacing and timing like a good horror film to make it work. Unfortunately it was rushed to open in an unfinished state and any improvement from that point on were patch jobs rather than genuine improvements.
     
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  18. Danny

    Danny Gugu Rides’ Number 1 Fan

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    Dare I ask how you know this.....? ;)
     
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  19. Benzin

    Benzin TowersStreet Member

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    Whether or not its one if those "attractions that have been mooted for construction for ages" things here but it certainly lacks something. Though it's hard to accurately describe what that actually is.

    Don't think it fits this thread though. It's certainly not a poorly executed concept or ride (the only aspect that suits is the touchscreen thing which is completely superfluous for those in the back row).

    What about the Intamin Wing-Rider or Spinner coasters? Only one of each type built and both are extremely marmite rides (I hate both).

    DBGT is probably the best (worst?) example here though. Future of dark rides indeed.
     
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