Thorpe Park: General Discussion

Discussion in 'European Parks and Attractions' started by Ted, 11th Jun 2012.

  1. Rick

    Rick TowersStreet Member

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    If you luck out, Thorpe is a better day out than Towers, for me. If things don't go well, it feels like a badly rehearsed school play on opening night directed by Mr Bean.
     
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  2. MattyH

    MattyH TowersStreet Member

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    I really enjoyed Thorpe Park when I visited back in May, the queues weren't too bad, and there was a decent atmosphere to the park. Nemesis Inferno ranks at number 11 in my coaster rankings, I agree with the comments about the Nemesis tag causing comparisons to the Better coaster.
     
  3. Leah

    Leah TowersStreet Member

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    Thorpe is alright If you manage to get a day with short queues and only minor closures (for example, last time I went only vortex, slammer and detanator were down all day and a few opened late). Stealth, swarm, and inferno are excellent coasters imo. X isnt bad for a family ride and they have some great flats: quantum, samurai, (maybe some more, but like I said, a few were down when I went and zodiac is just a basic enterprise).

    If you go on a day with acceptable queues, decent weather, and few closures, it will be a very good day. But it's thorpe, what's the chance of that happening ;)
     
  4. andeyhart

    andeyhart TowersStreet Member

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    For me personally, Thorpe Park could be so much better than it actually is. The ride line up is good, but operations have always been very bad when I've visited, and that really dampens the overall experience. Plus the whole setting is somewhat soulless.
     
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  5. Rick

    Rick TowersStreet Member

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    I think I like Thorpe for the all the reasons a lot of people dislike it. I love the American parks, Thorpe, followed by Drayton is the closest you can find to a Six Flags park in the UK.
     
  6. andeyhart

    andeyhart TowersStreet Member

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    I think those sort of parks suit America way more than the UK.
     
    Last edited: 13th Jun 2016
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  7. Rick

    Rick TowersStreet Member

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    Why?
     
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  8. rightbackgranty

    rightbackgranty TowersStreet Member

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    Visited Thorpe Park for the first time today. I'd sort of formed my own opinions of the park, based on what I've read on this forum (and similar) over the years.

    Having seen it first hand, it's such an odd park to describe! Seems to have created problems that Alton Towers could never have (lack of segregation between areas), but be better in areas that Alton is lacking (e.g. thrilling flats). Combine that with having some wonderful rides (I really enjoyed The Swarm) and themeing in isolation (how can Saw be Merlin best themed addition to date?) superimposed against the, frankly laughable, X / Dodgems / Angry Birds Land gave me a very confusing experience!

    I'd re-visit, only to experience Derren Browns Ghost Train, but wouldn't pick it over Alton Towers.
     
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  9. Matt.GC

    Matt.GC TowersStreet Member

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    I go regularly and find myself picking it over Towers more often. Don't get me wrong, for a family day out, Towers is still the best park in terms of multi - function visits, but the disappointment sets in when you realise that Towers used to do ALL things better than other parks. Now it's a jack of all trades, master of none which almost seems intentional with Merlin and symbolises why their monopoly of the industry in the UK is a bad thing for Towers. If you're doing a short break, it's almost better to do it down south now, stay over a couple of nights in Chessington and do Thorpe, ches and Lego.

    Whilst Towers is closing rides and cutting back, Thorpe has been adding to its lineup for years. It now has a good set of coasters (that are themed better than Towers) to compliment it's already decent lineup of flats. It still doesn't have the natural setting of Towers, the whole mix of themes is still wierd and chaotic and there is no Nemesis (a 22 year old ride) or Oblivion (an 18 year old ride). But consider this, since 2005, Towers has removed flats, rethemed old McDonald's to ceebebies and installed Rita, Thirteen and the Smiler. In that same time Thorpe has continued to add and replace flats, plus installed Stealth, Saw, The Swarm and now Ghost train. That says it all I think.

    The thing that I can't get over about Thorpe when I was there on Tuesday is the ride operations. Every coaster was on one train so most where on 15-30 min queue. That sounds reasonable enough. Yet at one point Inferno went up to an hour and there was nothing they could do about it as adding a second train would take too long. It annoys me greatly that there was no single rider queues or Ert and the park were almost manufacturing queues to save s few quid.
     
  10. rob666

    rob666 TowersStreet Member

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    Almost manufacturing queues to flog more fast pass.
     
  11. Rick

    Rick TowersStreet Member

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    That way of operating is a product of the geographical locations of the parks, though.

    Alton has to be the Jack of all trades, because Merlin has no other operations in the midlands. It's pretty good at providing a variety of experiences, I'd argue the overall line up is pretty mixed and offers a lot. I guess the downside to offering such variety is that there will be less available to someone who is only interested in thrill rides, or family rides. That said, on the whole - most parks operate that way.

    In the South, there is a higher population centre. So, Chessington will be the family park with an animal focus, Legoland will be the family park focussing on rides/IP and Thorpe will be the thrill offering.
     
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  12. Matt.GC

    Matt.GC TowersStreet Member

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    I fully understand this and did reference it, that's why I said the monopoly piece. Towers used to be a master at all but there is no incentive for it to be anymore whilst it doesn't compete with any other parks directly.
     
  13. Rick

    Rick TowersStreet Member

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    I don't see how the offering has changed massively, other than expanded. The only key difference is the shift from flats to coasters, but that's an industry trend - the only park not following that trend, for all their faults - is Thorpe.
     
  14. Matt.GC

    Matt.GC TowersStreet Member

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    Alton hasn't changed from flats to coasters. It's replaced coasters with coasters and removed flats full stop. Thorpe has added both.
     
  15. Rick

    Rick TowersStreet Member

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    I mean as a percentage share of the overall product, roller coasters make up more of it now than flats do because as you say, flats have been removed, whereas it used to be the opposite way around.

    Also, Thorpe, although it's flat ride city, they haven't added a flat ride for over a decade, bar the dodgems.
     
  16. Benzin

    Benzin TowersStreet Member

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    Thorpe is also the perfect example of aggressive expansion... Lest we forget only 15 years ago the biggest ride there was Tidal Wave and the park pretty much had nothing of note...

    That's why they add things every year, though at the same time that ideal has given us Storm Surge and I'm a Celeb, so its not all positive stuff being added, but stuff added for the sake of having something new...
     
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  17. Matt.GC

    Matt.GC TowersStreet Member

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    In return for ghost train, they could do with throwing a couple of flats Altons way. Something like quantum isn't very popular at Thorpe, but would fit perfectly in Katanga canyon or at the bottom of dark forest.
     
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  18. CGM

    CGM TowersStreet Member

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    I'm not a huge fan of Thorpe. It's just too small to be able to deal with the kinds of crowds it can attract. It has the opposite problem to Alton really in that it has excellent transport links but its potential is limited by its size.

    My main problem with the park is that it's just not a very pleasant place to be. I think Tussauds and Merlin made a mistake in targeting the teenage / young adult market. I find the park's 'edgy' approach to branding, marketing and theming as grating as one of those obnoxious 30 second celebrity news programs in the middle of a film you're watching.

    Gearing the park towards this demographic can also create quite an intimidating atmosphere when the park is full of rowdy groups of teens. It's the only park I've been to where I've seen a proper fight break out. I've not even seen that happen at Hull Fair.

    As for the ride line up, I can take it or leave it. There are a lot of decent coasters there but there's nothing outstanding. Flat wise, most of them are on pretty tame settings with Slammer being the stand out due to its uniqueness. Detonator is probably the only ride there that exceeded my expectations.

    I think that Thorpe is a large part of why standards at Alton fell so dramatically in the mid part of last decade. Thorpe was hitting its stride and Tussaud's were throwing everything into their newest pet project. New developments at Alton became almost an afterthought to keep things ticking over and we ended up with ill-fitting rush jobs like Spinball, Rita and Charlie.

    I'm not saying this is why I dislike Thorpe. To an extent, the same thing happened to Chessington once Tussaud's switched their focus to Alton. Obviously buying Thorpe made the most business sense to them but I do wonder what would have happened had Tussaud's invested all of that money and effort into developing Alton as a resort rather than transforming Thorpe from a small attraction into a major park.
     
    Last edited: 16th Jun 2016
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  19. Marcus

    Marcus TowersStreet Member

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    Although they lost some of their more charming features like thorpe farm, the model world etc but I felt the new addictions were very good rides throughout the 2000's at the cost of alot of their family/ kiddie rides. After 2009 the addictions became alot more miss than hit for me with 2010 having saw alive which only operated properly for 1 season, 2011 storm surge which took away one of the final clumps of kids rides with octopus garden and placed a poor ride in a terrible location in the park, it just seems to be plonked in the middle.

    2012 had swarm which is imo a good well themed ride (for UK standards) and one of the better editions in recent years but has always felt a little bald to me (in know its suppose to be an alein apocalypse I just wish there was a little vegitation but overall a good addition. 2013 had the shipping container hotel and then 2014 my least favourite addition that ****ty ****ty angry birds area which made storm surges location look graceful compared to how angry birds is just dumped into the park. 2015 had Im a celeb which to be fair to it I havn't done yet but it really doesn't jump out at me as a good ip investment.

    So from 2010 in my eyes there have been 5 bad/ poor investiments that have at best added little to the park and at worst made it alot worse! I hope ghost train is a good investiment and I will go in with an open mind, but the last few years to me have been far worse than the investment decade before it. It was quite something going once a year throughout the 2000's and seeing something awesome new nearly every year which I know isn't really sustainable but at least they were making good investiments. The maps have also got really crappy from the obnoxious maps from 2010 - 2013 to the now dog turd maps with every coaster designed to be poping off the page and therefore all look like they are trying to be stealth, if you didn't know the park this map isn't going to help at all making the park look like it has less attractions than it really has!
     
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  20. AliceHL91

    AliceHL91 TowersStreet Member

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    Don't bother
     
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