Things that you'd like to see more of and things that you'd like to see less of in theme parks

Discussion in 'Rest of the World Parks and Attractions' started by Matt N, 20th Mar 2020.

  1. Matt N

    Matt N TowersStreet Member

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    Hi guys. I know that the topic title is slightly weird and long-winded, but basically, what I'm trying to ask with this thread is; of all the things that are in theme parks, which ones do you really like and want to see more of and which ones are you not overly a fan of and want to see less of? To get the ball rolling, I'll start with some of my personal choices:
    Things I'd like to see more of:
    • Roller coasters over entrance areas - I am a real sucker for themed parks and themed park entrances on the whole, but I must admit that there's something that I really love about what Cedar Fair has recently been doing with some of its parks' entrances. Even though they're not really themed, there's something about seeing photos of GateKeeper swoop above Cedar Point's entrance or watching Fury 325 curve its way above Carowinds' entrance that I find utterly beautiful. I've never visited either of these parks, but there's something about seeing those coasters in their respective entrance areas that I absolutely adore, and I would really like to see more parks do this. I feel like it would give an entrance a little more life and it would offer more of a reason to stay in a park's entrance area (even though the entrance area is a theme park staple, they are often devoid of attractions). It would seem that my wish is coming true with this one, though, what with ChocolateTown at Hersheypark and SeaWorld Orlando's planned 2021 coaster both heavily straddling their entrance areas.
    • Novelty food/drink items - Whether it's Mickey cookies, cinnamon bread or butterbeer, I feel like having some sort of food or drink item unique to your park on sale adds a sense of personality to a park. I feel like it can make what is often one of the more routine aspects of a day at a theme park a little more interesting. As much as I have a very simple taste in food & drink, I feel like a park putting their own unique spin on food or drink does give guests an interesting experience when they're not riding rides, and it's a little magical detail that really makes a park day unique.
    • Experience-based roller coasters - I know that the primary kick people get out of riding roller coasters is through the g-forces they provide, but sometimes, I think that immersive theming & storylines can really add something to a roller coaster. Whether it's large theming structures on an outdoor roller coaster like Wicker Man at Alton Towers or a coaster with dark ride sections like Revenge of the Mummy at Universal Orlando, a cohesive theme and story can really make a rollercoaster experience special, in my opinion. However, I don't think theming is necessarily essential to a coaster; I think a hyper coaster would be quite hard to theme effectively, for example.
    Things I'd like to see less of
    • Forced participation - Now, I know that I just talked about immersive experiences above, but one of the things that I personally like about a theme park is that you can sit back and be immersed in an attraction; whether you're enjoying an immersive story on a dark ride, getting soaked on a water ride, or getting tumbled head-over-heels on a roller coaster, you can sit back and let the attraction take you in its grasp. For me, I feel like forced participation almost removes an element of that; I personally often find it quite uncomfortable, and it can sometimes inhibit an experience if it does not go as intended.
    • Kids' areas - I know that kids' areas are a common staple in theme parks, but I must admit that they're one I've never really understood. I know that it's nice for the younger guests to have their own area to play in, and I completely understand why they're so commonplace, but if you have a family with a wide range of ages, then it can often split the family up, which in my eyes kind of defeats the object of a theme park. If I was designing a theme park, I'd personally integrate smaller attractions in amongst the larger attractions in different areas of the park, so that the whole family can adventure around the entire park together. For example, if you had an area with a roller coaster called Goliath for the thrillseekers, I personally think it would be nice for the younger guests or those fancying something a little gentler to be able to experience Goliath Jr within the same area as opposed to having to venture to a different area.
    But what things do you want to see more and less of in theme parks?
     
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    Posted 20th Mar 2020
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  2. Thameslink Rail

    Thameslink Rail TowersStreet Member

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    1. Rare in UK parks (Does Corkscrew count?) but I do love an entrance like that
    2. I don't see the point of novelty food but your park should have a good selection of food, most parks in the UK have atrocious food offerings if you want to eat healthy food.
    3. Absolutely yes, that's why I love Hex and Wicker Man. They transport you out of your comfort zone and into the unknown.
    4. UGH! I HATE THAT! (Except in the Dungeons when it's hilarious)
    5. Going to disagree with you here, the Goliath Jr can never be as good as Goliath. Most theme parks in the UK are using a well known TV show/channel to theme a kid's area and if done right (Peppa Pig World), It can be the most successful part of the park.
     
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    Posted 20th Mar 2020
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  3. RicketyCricket

    RicketyCricket TowersStreet Member

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    More: Airtime
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  4. Thameslink Rail

    Thameslink Rail TowersStreet Member

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    More: Themed menus, this may seem to contradict what I told Matt earlier. I don't like novelties (food themed around a mouse), but why is there a Pizza Pasta Buffet in an African village. Surely authentic African cuisine would make more sense.
    Less: Corporate greed, I understand that theme parks (with a few exceptions) are designed to make money however some theme park operators charge their customers far too much adding paid priority queues (which I think are the worst part of any theme park), pay their employees far too little while the bosses get richer and richer.
     
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    Posted 20th Mar 2020
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  5. John C

    John C TowersStreet Member

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  6. D4n

    D4n TowersStreet Member

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  7. Tim

    Tim TowersStreet Member

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    More:
    Areas to explore. Adventurland at Disneyland Paris and Diagon Alley at Universal Florida are two of my favourite themed areas. They barley have any rides but I can spend hours discovering all the little secrets.
    Less:
    Half-baked attractions. It's very hard to go back and fix an attraction that was foundationly flawed to begin with. Let's not rush to get things open but make sure they are good enough to stay open more than a couple of years.
     
    Posted 21st Mar 2020
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  8. Danny

    Danny Leicester Melvin Rong

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    More: Rides.
    Less: IP walk-throughs that are removed after a couple of seasons.
     
    Posted 21st Mar 2020
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  9. Thameslink Rail

    Thameslink Rail TowersStreet Member

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    I think you've just summed up everything wrong with Thorpe Park
     
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    Posted 21st Mar 2020
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  10. pluk

    pluk TowersStreet Member

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    More - places that sell decent fresh Churros

    Less - places that sell fastrack, reduced to approximately zero.
     
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  11. Jonathan

    Jonathan TowersStreet Member

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    I like the bit where churros. <3
     
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  12. Error

    Error TowersStreet Member

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  13. Rob

    Rob TS Forum Team Team Member

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  14. MattyH

    MattyH TowersStreet Member

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  15. Trooper

    Trooper TowersStreet Member

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    I agree with everything on the OP, especially the kids areas. When I was too young for the coasters, I still loved to watch them. I could go on Blade but also walk around the area beneath Nemmy where you can't get to anymore. Same with Oblivion, I could go on Energizer but go right up to the drop/pit. I don't think having a ride that is a step down again from those would be a bad thing at all.

    I guess I'm saying more Wardley, less the rest. But the entrance coaster flyover is in the same ballpark. That attitude of the ride and area being a spectacle for the spectator is something I think there should be so much more of.
     
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  16. OilyWater

    OilyWater TowersStreet Member

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    More:
    Fun, surprises, entertainment, vibrancy and imagination, more humour and new ideas. Doesn't have to be complex or cutting edge, just good and surprising!

    Good food and drink

    Smaller things to discover and secrets, not just headline rides all the time with long queue after long queue.

    Less:
    Ride themes or "storylines" that are just explained at you on a TV/sign instead of discovering for yourself. Boring. Add to that the dull trope of sending guests on "research" trips with backstory organisations (A.C.R.E., S.C.A.R.A.B., S.Q.U.I.D., Sub Core Energy, Phalanx,.........) I swear attraction designers in the UK are so uncreative and boring now that they nearly every new ride is just this formula repeated.

    No more IPs being used as main attractions

    Less constant music pumped at you on every path. Sound should be part of an atmosphere or a moment that you remember, not used to fake an atmosphere where there's nothing, otherwist it just feels tacky
     
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