Duel. Time to say goodbye?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Wilko, 4th Jun 2017.

  1. AT86

    AT86 TowersStreet Member

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    When it was the HH it was 6 seats but this was reduced to 5 for Duel as the space of the 6th seat was needed for the tech used for the guns. So 5 seats was more out of necessity than a specific choice.
     
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  2. Matt N

    Matt N TowersStreet Member

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    Ah, that makes more sense!

    Where on the cars is the gun tech actually situated, out of interest?
     
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  3. AT86

    AT86 TowersStreet Member

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    I believe it sits in the space that was formally the middle seat in the back row (you can clearly see from the design it was previously a seat).

    I also think they added those ‘books’ to the back of the car when it was converted to Duel, so I imagine that also holds something to do with the guns too.

    [​IMG]
     
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  4. Matt N

    Matt N TowersStreet Member

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    Ah yes, I can see what you mean! Thanks for the info @AT86!

    I must admit, I do find Duel’s ride system fascinating, and I’m surprised that more parks didn’t go for dark rides like it, as it’s basically the best of both worlds, packing both the capacity of an omnimover and the intimacy of a single car dark ride!

    Also, what was the Haunted House actually like by the time it closed, if @Rick says that everyone is remembering it inaccurately?
     
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  5. Skyscraper

    Skyscraper TowersStreet Member

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    The original HH cars had six, but when the blasters were added one of the middle seats had to be blocked off in order to fit the control unit.
     
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  6. rob666

    rob666 TowersStreet Member

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    The original Haunted House was great, but over time half the features either failed or wore out so badly they revealed their illusion.
    Took me years to work out the jumping jellyfish!
    By the time of conversion, it was a shadow of its former self.
     
  7. Matt N

    Matt N TowersStreet Member

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    Out of interest, what are some of the effects in Duel that used to work, but now don’t? When I rode the other day, all of the main scares still worked for me; the only thing that wasn’t working was that the strobe wasn’t flashing when the initial bust is shown as you enter the house.

    Come to think of it, a couple of the sound triggers might not have been working either…

    What is it that people think needs sorting out about Duel? In terms of an old-school ghost train-type ride, I think it still does that pretty well. Admittedly, it’s not my favourite dark ride (I’d prefer something a bit more ambience-based than jumpscare-based, myself), but in terms of a ride that’s supposed to be like the seaside ghost trains of old, I think it still does the job pretty well!
     
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  8. AT86

    AT86 TowersStreet Member

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    Trommel.
     
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  9. Matt N

    Matt N TowersStreet Member

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    Is this where that cylindrical tunnel is? I honestly never knew that was supposed to move… I thought it was just supposed to be a cool tunnel!

    Even when I first rode Duel back in 2014, the tunnel didn’t move…
     
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  10. Skyscraper

    Skyscraper TowersStreet Member

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    Yep that is correct. It's been broken for years now.
     
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  11. Fuct

    Fuct TowersStreet Member

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    The pacing between the two versions of the ride is massively different. I played both videos through side by side and had to keep pausing the Haunted House video to let Duel catch up.
     
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  12. Skyscraper

    Skyscraper TowersStreet Member

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    That's interesting. I know the HH had the cars speed up slightly part way though the layout, does Duel do the same?
     
  13. Trooper Looper

    Trooper Looper TowersStreet Member

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    The system is still the exact same as it was back In 1992, it's just different because the HH Pov isn't one take, it's different pieces of Footage throughout seasons put in order, that's why the scene after the trommel is quicker to the giants lair scene, there's no footage of the part where the bats are currently. Another example is the HH sinister garden scene, as the first few seconds are from the previous film and is followed by another piece of Footage that's a lot closer to the undertaker.

    If you actually keep adjusting both POVs to look like one another, you'll see the that nothings changed to the Rides system. It's just the lack of Footage of the HH
     
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  14. Matt N

    Matt N TowersStreet Member

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    I just watched the two videos side by side, and I have to say, there’s more difference than I’d anticipated. Some of the main differences I noticed include:
    • I’m not sure if this is down to the video quality from 1992 or not, but the modern-day Duel POV generally looks an awful lot brighter; these days, it’s bathed in bright purple light, whereas back then it was a lot darker.
    • There’s scenes and bits of narrative in the Haunted House POV that I’d literally never seen or never even knew existed; I never knew that it said things to you like “I’m coming to get you…” and “Are you scared of spiders?”. I also never knew about all the skeletons, and the creatures in the garden.
    • The zombies were seemingly a much more recent addition to that ride than I’d thought; I knew they changed the ending scene slightly for Duel, but I thought the zombies screaming “Ahhhh!!!” at you had always been there since 1992. Were there any zombies inside the ride when it was known as the Haunted House, or were the zombies added in 2003 to coincide with the interactivity element being added?
    Rightly or wrongly, there’s far more difference between the 1992 Haunted House and the 2021 Duel than I’d anticipated there being.
     
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  15. Trooper Looper

    Trooper Looper TowersStreet Member

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    If you want to compare each attraction to one another, I suggest you buy 'Smoke and Mirros, Alton Towers Haunted House' by Michael P Elay. It shows never seen before photos of its construction and concept art. And the 'Are you scared of spiders' quote is still used to this day but is difficult to hear from the loud music and Zombie jumpscare SFX.

    And no, Zombies were never in the HH, they were introduced in 2003 when it was converted to Duel. Kinda shows you Tussauds (Now Merlin creative) lack of creativity.
     
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  16. Skyscraper

    Skyscraper TowersStreet Member

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    I've got that book and can agree as it is brilliant! :)
     
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  17. rob666

    rob666 TowersStreet Member

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    The early Haunted House video is far far darker than it was in real life...shows the development of video systems has improved over the years!
     
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  18. DistortAMG

    DistortAMG TowersStreet Member

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    I think it is unfair to say Tussuads (studios) lack of creativity. Tussauds as a company was going through a lot of big changes behind the scenes at the time. Lots of cost cutting and major restructuring of the company. Duel was done very much as cheap as possible and that really hamstrung how creative Tussauds Studios could be.

    Alot of the zombie props were purchased off an american halloween website and indeed back in 2003, literally anyone could purchase the same zombie props that sit in the ride to this day. It really shows how little money they had for this project.
     
  19. Matt N

    Matt N TowersStreet Member

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    I know no info was ever released, but at a ballpark guess, how much did the Duel revamp actually cost?

    I’ll admit I’m surprised that Alton Towers never got a company that specialises in designing interactive dark rides, such as Triotech or Sally, in to do the Duel refurbishment. I think either of those two companies could have done an amazing job! (Although I’m admittedly unsure if Triotech were manufacturing dark rides in 2003)
     
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  20. DistortAMG

    DistortAMG TowersStreet Member

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    Pretty sure I read somewhere that is was quite a bit below the million mark.

    Why would they get Sally in when one goal of the project was to renovate the ride as bare bones cheaply as possible? I get what you are saying though.

    This was the time when we started seeing pay per ride attractions and sponsored rides, literally everything being done as cheap as possible. The start of the decline some would say.

    Here is the biggest change. Looking from the end of the station back into the ride. This was the garden scene, which as you can see, was ripped out here during the Duel refurb for the zombie ending we have today. This is just after the lunatic that comes out at you from behind the rock, just after the undertacker, until the very end of the ride. The ride track is under the wood on the floor.

    The on ride photo section, the zombies with blasters on walkways from above, are all within this shot today.

    [​IMG]

    Not my photo but a great one indeed.
     
    Last edited: 18th Sep 2021
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