The Sinking Ship: (Un)Love Letters to Merlin

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by AstroDan, 20th Nov 2016.

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  1. OilyWater

    OilyWater TowersStreet Member

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    Does that mean its entertaining though? I think to most people it's not particularly eye catching when it actually comes to it.

    The best part is the upturned ambulance in the middle of the plaze (which was oddly added in the summer). That's the kind of thinking that makes a good themed area, but there's so little of it. Crashed plane wing, sound great - but when it turned up it was really underwhelming, placed neatly on a pile of mud.

    Tidal Wave did 'devastation' far better. Before it got run down, it had tonnes of great atmosphere, places to walk around and interact with the ride (not just a bit of fenced off pavement), boardwalk over the water, far more special effects that were witty and cool. Queue winding around the 'village' with street lamps at angles, water still spouting from showers and toilets, boats crashed through roofs.

    Not like Swarm, with some garden hoses in a pond that may or may not go off when the train flies by, a cattle pen queueline with broken TVs playing a preshow video worthy of Richard O Connor from Duel.

    And that was just for a pretty basic water ride, not a hugely more significant B&M coaster. And the public loved Tidal Wave, it was great!
     
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  2. Crawleyboy01

    Crawleyboy01 TowersStreet Member

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    I agree with you bill 100% I never said it was entertaining. But it was good. And it' so much better then most of the recent attempts at theming. For a younger visitor the plane, ambulance etc makes it a extremely scary part of the park. That is what it was ment to do. The first season it opened it was fantastic. I loved it. But as the seasons came and went certain parts of it was either removed or watered down so to speak. It still shows that someone in Merlin put a lot of thought into something other then just the ride but how to try and make guests feel on edge. Some will say it worked and still does. Some will disagree. Different strokes for different fokes I guess
     
  3. WickerManiac

    WickerManiac TowersStreet Member

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    Have all of the 11AM openings been scrapped now and the entire park will be ready come 10:00AM?

    This website changes like the wind.

    [​IMG]
     
  4. imanautie

    imanautie TowersStreet Member

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    It changed to that within a day of them "rolling back the changes".
    I just wish they would tell us the close times as some people need to plan around the times!
     
  5. Martin

    Martin TowersStreet Member

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    Therein lies the problem with Merlin's approach to theming many of their coasters, one or two cool massive centrepieces, but not much else.
     
  6. Rick

    Rick TowersStreet Member

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    Which Tussauds-era coasters bar Nemesis are you suggesting they should aspire to be like?
     
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  7. Martin

    Martin TowersStreet Member

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    ... I wasn't?

    Although if I wanted to I could easily point to Oblivion so I don't think I get what you're getting at.
     
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  8. Benzin

    Benzin TowersStreet Member

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    I'd say Colossus, but that's more that it had that old style consideration of landscape and active path design (i.e. the coaster moving around you on all sides whilst you're walking in the middle of it) rather than any major set pieces...

    Compare Colossus to Swarm, as they both have that main path in the middle of the ride, and there's a major difference in the dynamic feeling Colossus gives out compared to Swarm's flat path...

    Air as well had this to a degree, Fury less so...

    Landscaping seems to have been considered for this at least, though it's easier to do that at Towers...
     
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  9. DiogoJ42

    DiogoJ42 TowersStreet Member

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    As much as I slate Colonsucks, I have to concede it is well landscaped.
     
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  10. TPC

    TPC TowersStreet Member

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    Even Saw works better (both coaster but entrance plaza) than swarm. You have a clear focus (the drop) rather than just some inversions that don't look impressive off ride.
     
  11. Funcone

    Funcone TowersStreet Member

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    Clearly entertainment has a subjective element. I think The Swarm's an impressive coaster. B&Ms still have a touch of class that few other manufacturers can achieve. It's visually striking when you drive into the car park. There are some nice set pieces like the exploding fire engine. I appreciate the effort at queue line entertainment and the station fly by. At the same time it does feel slightly disappointing. If there weren't several other rides there with dark themes it would probably have more impact. The area feels a bit contrived rather than feeling like we really have stepped into an apocalyptic scene that happens to have a roller coaster going round it. The coaster itself is enjoyable and different to anything else in the UK, but I don't come off it eager to rush straight back round for another go like I do on some rides. Still, it's my third favourite coaster there after Inferno and Saw.

    For any faults, I don't think it is evidence of a sinking ship. Not unless you count the fact that their visitor numbers have stopped rising, but you could say that about a lot of major parks. Reduced opening hours, moth balled rides, the lack of live entertainment and maybe the over reliance on IPs could all point to a company with problems, but I think The Swarm is one of the good things that Merlin has done.
     
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  12. IanSR

    IanSR TowersStreet Member

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    The Swarm is about half the length it should be, that's it's only fault.
     
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  13. Inferno

    Inferno TowersStreet Member

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    Swarm not being as good as it should have been isn’t the reason Merlin appears to be sinking in my opinion.

    Personally I think it’s all down to the public’s perception of value for money from a visit - a trip to a Merlin park just isn’t what it used to be, and on top of that it’s so much more expensive...

    I think they either need to seriously drop their prices to match the product offering, or provide the wow factor that’s gone missing to justify the prices

    People don’t want to rush back to a half closed theme park for a few hours for a higher price than they used to, for fewer hours than they used to, ride fewer rides than they used to, and have fewer food options than they used to...
    Unless they have an incentive!

    If you gave an “ok” time, why rush back?

    That’s just my opinion as a closet enthusiast / GP Hybrid anyway...

    I really hope Wickerman helps fix this...
     
    Last edited: 14th Feb 2018
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  14. Olivus Prime

    Olivus Prime TowersStreet Member

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    One of the problems I have with The Swarm is a problem I had with the new Mad Max video game. Wastelands can be exciting and mysterious in the movies, but turn out to be boring empty spaces when experienced for yourself. Placing it on the edge of the park and using theming elements sparsely it is a good idea in writing for creating an apocalyptic wasteland area, but just results in a flat open space in reality.

    Had they expanded the church into a larger ruined cathedral that the coaster could interact with, or even include some sort of alien landing site on the far side of the area, it would have been a bit more interesting. But then, the possibilities are endless...
     
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  15. Inferno

    Inferno TowersStreet Member

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    I think enclosing the station to generate some armosohere would help loads to be honest - a dramatic dispatch would help!
     
  16. DiogoJ42

    DiogoJ42 TowersStreet Member

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    It plays that screaching noise on dispatch. What more could you want?
     
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  17. John

    John TowersStreet Member

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    Well as of 2016 it plays a recorded safety announcement on dispatch, not that atmospheric really.
     
  18. DiogoJ42

    DiogoJ42 TowersStreet Member

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    [​IMG]
     
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  19. Rick

    Rick TowersStreet Member

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  20. Matt N

    Matt N TowersStreet Member

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    I am aware this post wasn't directed at me, but... what are you on about, out of interest?
     
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