4 Ways to Bring SCREAM! Back to Life.

The almighty SCREAM! opened in April of 2003, and was placed to be an easy money maker after the expensive X. Six Flags had worked with B&M for a while by then, and realized that installing a mirror version of Medusa at Six Flags Great Adventure (now Bizarro) would be a great way to go, since the B&M rides were often opened without many technical difficulties. This was yet another great reason to place it, since both Deja Vu (2001) and X (2001-2002) had many technical difficulties, slowing down operations, and costing the park a lot of money.

But here we are, almost 11 years later and many new coasters have been built since. X has made its reappearance as X2, and Deja Vu left in the Six Flags ride rotation program, and is to be found at Six Flags New England as Goliath. But there is Scream!, slowly fading in the CA sun, in a back corner somewhere in a huge park. 20130825_175711Not to mention that the ride can be seen from parts of the park, the entire parking lot, several local service streets, and the huge Interstate 5. But yet, it looks like a roller-coaster that can be found in a deceased park. Don’t worry, as all of you probably know, it’s still operating, although never with 3 trains. It actually ran only one train for about 12 months in 2012-13. The photo-booth stands vacant, after the on-ride action-photo system was basically ripped out. (Yes, booth, and all equipment is still there, except for the actual cameras).

Let’s move on to the way we can actually fix the problems, and how the park could treat SCREAM! better.

  1. Repaint – Agreed or disagreed, it’s insane that one of the most visible, and open rides from anywhere in the area, especially the parking lot, looks like it will fall apart at any given time. The ride is 11 years old, and has not received a single paint job in it’s life. Wouldn’t be such a big deal if it weren’t out in the open, on a concrete (former parking lot) block. But since it is, the fact that it looks so faded is a shame. The ride was up for a repaint in 2008, almost desperate for a repaint in 2010, and far beyond a repaint in 2014. The current state of this roller-coaster is sad. You could ask almost any visitor, or theme-park enthusiast, and they will definitely agree that SCREAM! needs a repaint. Then comes in the color, was it smart to color the 150 ft. giant violet, blue, and yellow in the first place? We think not. Yes, it looks great, for the first year, but looks at least twice as old if not maintained well, and since this ride is definitely not maintained well, compared to some other rides in the park, this color scheme should go. We we’re thinking of something that wouldn’t look half as bad faded. Black supports, or very dark blue supports will just look a bit rough when faded, but not as bland as the violet used now. The track could be gray, which would hardly be noticed when faded. Just think of Batman’s colors from 1994-2010, the gray still looked alright after 16 years.
    After all the fading the track still looks great. You can get away with gray and black fading.
    After all the fading the track still looks great. You can get away with gray and black fading.

    Or the park could go with something more attractive, something like yellow and orange track colors. (Think Dominator at Kings Dominion). When faded it will still not look as bad, since a light-yellow can look great too.

    Would definitely look fresh!
    Would definitely look fresh!

    This all depends on eventual re-theming, or landscaping, re-profiling, or non of them all. In conclusion, SCREAM! has a lovely color scheme, but due to the fact that it’s out in the sun, and the park doesn’t maintain it too well, the paint will fade soon, look awful, and asks for a different, more durable color scheme. Comment your repaint ideas below.

  2. Landscaping – Ever seen the picture Six Flags Magic Mountain uses on their website? Yes, those trees happen to be behind a mirrored Interlocking Corkscrews.
    This picture is used on the official park website.
    This picture is used on the official park website.

    In case you didn’t notice, it’s a picture of Medusa (now Bizarro) at Six Flags Great Adventure. Medusa/Bizarro actually happens to be built on the edge of a forest, over grass, surrounded by trees. The photo was simply color-edited, to look like Scream!. The wonderful landscaping of Medusa/Bizarro adds to the ride experience, as everything seems to be neatly maintained. In fact, it’s the exact opposite of what Scream! has. Let’s face it, who has not noticed the huge fading parking lot while riding Scream!? We normally don’t use this terminology, but it looks ‘cheap’. Although we aren’t construction builders, drilling out some of the previous parking lot, and replacing it with dirt, and then trees, doesn’t seem too hard. This could easily be part of a re-profiling, or re-theming of the ride. Even planters in the helix, or under the Cobra Roll would look good. But sadly enough, the entire plaza, and currently the ride, station, line, etc… looks like it’s the all new ‘Depression Zone’. A big faded, gray blob that seems to have sucked the life out of the area is what we first think of. But that can be easily fixed by planting some flowers all over the plaza, in line, and around the pathways leading to Scream!. The big plaza in front of the line should be having a circular planter similar to Riddler’s Revenge’s plaza. This planter could immediately host a new ride sign, that is 3D, and sticks out on a pole while rotating. Talking about an awesome new entrance! Additionally, trees are very essential for a ride’s look, so any way in which trees or plants, or anything else could be placed, would greatly benefit Scream!. Although this might be seen as something other than landscaping, a big ‘pool’ under the ride could bring it back to life as well, any ride over water is generally a hit with the public. In conclusion, Scream! needs some landscaping done, which can be done in many different ways, and even the slightest change would be greatly appreciated by guests, and theme-park enthusiasts. There are so many things that one could do to better Scream!’s landscaping right now, that we can’t even get close to going through all options, therefore we’d like you to comment your ideas below!

    These are all the trees that are to be found, and the plaza looks very sad as you may seem, not to mention everything that's not in the picture!
    These are all the trees that are to be found, and the plaza looks very sad as you may see, not to mention everything that’s not in the picture!
  3. Re-Theme – Let’s say that a re-theming finds place, but Scream! is to keep its current name. Different kinds of theming could apply to a roller-coaster with the broad name; Scream!. Let’s use one specific color example in this argument. Let’s say that Scream! got the new planter in front of the entrance with an awesome new sign, and a color scheme that’s yellow (track) with very dark blue (supports). The fences surrounding the ride should get a new color, preferably dark blue. In addition to that, the station building should become entirely dark blue from the outside, with yellow on the inside, including the Flash Pass entrance that needs new walls, and roofing. In addition to the basic repaints around the ride, the big billboards with the screaming faces have to be replaced with something more permanent, that won’t fade as quickly. This could be a general logo, sign, or series of signs that will brand the new theming. Scream!’s line and station don’t have TVs at this moment, so that needs to be placed in then, and an appropriate new soundtrack would be great for the entrance plaza. Through out the ride, the park could place tunnels, with LED lighting it. Perhaps, to make it all even more spectacular, the park could enclose the Interlocking Corkscrews, and have an indoor part to the ride too. All mixed with a fresh color, fresh light package, fresh logo, fresh signs, fresh line, fresh plaza, fresh music, and fresh everything else, Scream! could be one of the most popular coasters around. Because, other than the looks, it’s a great ride, and any other park in the universe would take good care of it, and would promote it as a star attraction. Could you imagine the lines for it, if it were to be located at Knott’s, or California’s Great America? Comment your thoughts of a new theme to Scream!, below.

    This is what the walls surrounding the lines, station, and transfers looks like. Yes indeed, it's up for an overhaul!
    This is what the walls surrounding the lines, station, and transfers looks like. Yes indeed, it’s up for an overhaul!
  4. Re-Profile – Many of you know the Bizarro make-overs. They were extremely popular, and the rides received attention as if they were brand new. But what most of you are not aware of, is that neither Bizarro is still complete. The Bizarro re-profile sounds awesome to us too, but knowing Six Flags Magic Mountain, this is not the way to go. Because SFMM would need something, low cost and durable. Bizarro at Six Flags Great Adventure no longer has the on-board audio installed, and the fog effects hardly work. Bizarro at Six Flags New England no longer has the popular flame throwers, and the onboard audio is mall functioning to say the least. Both rides came with new light effects, flame throwers, on-board audio, and fog effects. Let’s cut to the options for Scream!. We’ll be pairing it with the color schemes we came up with earlier, so the first colors would be black and gray. For the black and gray theme, MM would not have to re-profile the ride too much, as it could be aircraft related. A new name would be appropriate, but the parking lot it rusher over would make perfect sense, and thus wouldn’t have to be replaced. In addition to that, the station building could simply be painted all gray, and the trains could be made black, gray and red for a more aircraft related look. Since the station already looks like a hangar, only a new soundtrack would be necessary, and perhaps some new signs around the ride relating to the aircraft theme. Few air-traffic control towers could be placed around the ride. For example in the helix, or in the Cobra Roll.20130731_111947 Some simple, empty hangar buildings could be placed around the track, perhaps serving as fly-throughs or tunnels, and the ride would be pretty much re-profiled. A nice set of LED lights would do to light it up at night, and the catwalk lights could be similar to runway lights. The line would stay the same other than the new colors, the entrance plaza could have some sort of aircraft on display, and the exit path won’t look as bad as it does now since it fits the theme. Bring back the on-ride cameras as you could advertise it as a new ride experience, and you’re pretty much set. If it were to be yellow and dark blue, like we mentioned before, the park would have to put a lot more work into it. This is because the soft look of the new colors would be very energetic, and it would easily look unfinished if it’s not heavily themed. Besides the repaint, a lot of landscaping seems necessary, and an appropriate name which could be a hard one with a park full of coasters already. When we think of it after all, the black and gray aircraft themed re-profiling seems to be the easiest, most durable, and most creative way to go. Luckily Six Flags Magic Mountain doesn’t have anything themed like that yet. Please comment your ideas of a re-profile below!

    Part of the station can be seen, which would look great when gray, track would thus also work with the new colors, and  the runway concrete is already there right under neath!
    Part of the station can be seen, which would look great when gray, track would thus also work with the new colors, and the runway concrete is already there right under neath!

After these 4 ‘easy’ ways to give Scream! a fair chance again, we would definitely like to see something among these lines to happen. Perhaps when the rumored Iron Colossus is being constructed the park could close off the entire area and give Scream! some real love, it definitely deserves it! Please comment your thoughts below!

Throwback Thursday — Pandemonium

In 2008 Six Flags Discovery Kingdom finally filled the old ZONGA spot, and placed a family thrill coaster. Pandemonium.tonyhawksbigspin

The ride opened as Tony Hawk’s Big Spin in 2008, this was during the period in which Six Flags had the rights to the Tony Hawk brand. There were 4 Gerstlauer spinning coasters with this name, although the one at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom was special. Rather than placing permanent footers, the park placed a ride with a base structure on the concrete space it was occupying. The most significant difference between the other 3 and the DK one, was the model. As where Six Flags Over Texas, Fiesta Texas, and St. Louis placed the Gerstlauer Spinning Coaster Model 420/4 (Extended), Discovery Kingdom placed a more compact spinning coaster, with higher speeds. They placed the Gerstlauer Spinning Coaster Model 380/4.100_1029_280

The funny thing is that they used the other model in their promotional video.bigspin

The compact model was a huge hit with the public, and received the general theming that all the other ‘Tony Hawk Big Spin’s’ had too. This excluding a skate-board ramp, but including the videos in line, similar station building, and entrance including a jumbotron screen.christmas_season_2008_068_429

Tony Hawk’s Big Spin/ Pandemonium had a length of 1,351 ft, was 53 ft tall, and had a drop of 27 ft. Which is actually the exacts same length as the 3 other TH’s BS’s. But the one at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom was 5 ft taller, although also having a 27 ft drop. Due to the compact structure of the DK model, and the many blocks on it, the capacity was almost doubled. DK had a great capacity of about 1,400 guests per hour (same as Scream! at Magic Mountain), which is phenomenal for a ride with 4 person-vehicles. The other models could only rush through 720 passengers per hour. A ride onTHBS/Pandemonium took about 1 minute and 50 seconds, in which multiple drops, helices, and ‘wild-mouse’ like elements were to be found. The ride could operate 8 vehicles at once, which means that with a good crew, 7-8 would be used. Although often only 5-6 trains would be operating.dbspinningcoaster380websn9

The line to the ride passed by almost the entire ride structure, before taking a ramp up to the actual station. The line had a little set of switchbacks near the entrance of the line, that was hardly ever filled, part of the line was covered and entertained guests with TV screens. That same part of the line was used for Zonga, and is currently being used for Superman Ultimate Flight. The ride that replaced it, and is now operative in the same spot.e-sm

In late 2010, Six Flags began the process of removing licensed theming from attractions. They terminated several licenses including their license with Thomas the Tank Engine and Tony Hawk. Tony Hawk’s Big Spin was renamed and rethemed to Big Spin, then Pandemonium. Thus it operated as Pandemonium in it’s last season at the park. The theming was hardly touched besides the branding of Tony Hawk. Signage and billboards were also changed for the ‘transformation’. When Six Flags Discovery Kingdom announced their new Superman Ultimate Flight in 2011, it became clear that Pandemonium would be scrapped for the 2012 season.DSC_0390

Rumors quickly made clear that in Mexico Six Flags was clearing land already, and was working on some sort of expansion. Although nothing was placed in Six Flags Mexico, and the Pandemonium track was in storage for 2012. In august of 2012 Six Flags finally announced the introduction of The Joker at Six Flags Mexico for the 2013 season. The former Pandemonium would be totally repainted and rethemed, to become one of the most popular rides in the Mexican Six Flags park. The Joker includes tunnels, scenery objects and some pyrotechnic effects, mainly fog. The line is mainly switchbacks, ’til an attendant sends visitors through the ‘Fun House’ with moving walls, twisting tunnels and dark-walkthrough effects, to get to the actual ride station. The opening was celebrated on big scale, and almost a year after opening, some of the park’s longest lines are still to be found at this ride.The-Joker-rollercoasters-33897308-960-638

Tatsu Quiz

Up, up, and away… are you ready to take flight on Tatsu? Let’s find out!

[slickquiz id=17]

 

Proud of your score? Comment it below! And see how others did!

How to Take the Yesterday out of Tomorrowland

smdl

When Walt Disney first envisioned Tomorrowland, he saw a futuristic paradise…in 1986.  Unfortunately, 1986 has come and gone, and we still don’t have commercial space travel or interactive houses, but we still do have the “futuristic” Tomorrowland, circa 1986.  Here at CCK, we have many ideas on how to update Tomorrowland, but it all has to start with an updated version of the area’s centerpiece, Space Mountain.  When Space Mountain opened in Anaheim, it was a one of a kind experience, but now, with all new coaster technology, the ride itself has gotten for lack of a better term, lousy.  This is not the case, however, for its equivalent in Paris.  smmt

Space Mountain: Mission 2 opened as Space Mountain De la Terre à la Lune in 1995.  It was based off of Jules Vern’s novel “From Earth to the Moon”, and was supposed to portray a futuristic way of space travel.  Riders would enter the dome and step onto an open walkway, where they could actually see the coaster and track.  Riders then would board trains and would be placed into a giant cannon and launched into a dangerous asteroid field.  After narrowly dodging asteroids and space age mining technology, riders would finally reach the moon (with smiling face as seen in the 1902 Melies film “A Trip to the Moon”), and see Jules Vern safely landed their as well, before returning to earth.  The  was the first Space Mountain to feature  synchronized on board audio track (SOBAT). 

In 2005, the ride received a futuristic make over, and became Space Mountain: Mission 2.  This is what we’d like an updated Space Mountain to be like.  The ride now goes beyond the moon, but even further to a Supernova at the edge of the universe.  The track remained the same, but the theming got a futuristic update, and new sequences were added.

smmt3

  The original smiling moon was changed to a large supernova, the cannon launch went from the bottom of the cannon, instead of the top, and a new SOBAT soundtrack was added.  The queue was also updated, by replacing the original open walkway with a hallway featuring pictures of cosmic phenomena such as comets and asteroid fields.  The original Victorian soundtrack that was played in the queue was replaced by space like radio messages.  A new ending was added to the ride, where riders enter a red worm hole known as the Hypergate, before slowing down and heading to the station.  The custom Vekoma track begins with a 0 to 40 mph launch, followed by a few twists and turns around asteroids before hitting the first inversion, a sidewinder, which begins like a traditional loop, but then twists out at the top and continues on.  The ride then hits its second launch, a few more twists and turns around space, and then goes through a corkscrew.  The ride then heads to the top of the dome, where riders see the supernova, and then drop into the final inversion, a Tongue, an inversion that only Space Mountain: Mission 2 contains, before going through the Hypergate, and heading back to the station.smmt2

  Here at CCK, we like aspects of both the original and updated Space Mountain in Paris.  For the line, we love the open walkway, in which patrons can view the track and coaster.  We also love the track layout, and because it is Vekoma, believe that there could be modified version to fit into our Space Mountain structure, to lessen the cost.  This ride would definitely up the anty for thrill seekers to come ride at Disneyland.

Comment your thoughts, agreements, ideas, etc. below! Let’s see how Disney could go about upgrading ‘Tomorrowland’ to actually become ‘Tomorrow’!

California Adventure Trip Report

We arrived at the park around 10 and received a three hour tour having to do with the physics behind California Screamin’, Goofy’s Sky School, and Tower of Terror.  After the tour concluded at 1, we headed over to Condor Flats to get a Fast Pass for Soarin’ Over California, which had us return in about an hour. 20140125_183439 We ate lunch at the Taste Pilot’s Grill next door.  The food was mediocre and overpriced, but that is what people expect at a large Amusement Park like California Adventure.  If you want a truly memorable meal at the Disneyland Resort, stick to their fancy dining restaurants, Blue Bayou our Carthay Circle, and don’t worry about the price, the food is outstanding.  Soarin’ was fantastic, as always, and, has a new added element from the Disney Pixar film Planes, in which, before the safety spiel, where the names of the cities are flying by, a character follows by zooming by with the name.  We then headed up the road to Grizzly River Run. 20140125_143514 This is one of our favorite rapids rides in California, due to both its high splashing rapids, and its 2 drops, the only rapid ride in California to have drops.  20140125_134904This ride does get crowded, so unless you don’t mind waiting in about a 20 minute line, head towards it early in the day, or once it gets darker out.20140125_143401We headed over to Cars Land after GRR, but due to its short line, made a stop at Ariel’s Undersea Adventure.  Although this ride doesn’t bring any thrill factor to the table, it is still a traditional Disney style dark ride that is quite enjoyable, plus, due to its vehicles constant movement, there is never a line over 10 minutes.  Once we reached Cars Land, we immediately headed to the Single Rider Line of Radiator Springs Racers (fastest way to get through the lines if you don’t mind splitting up your party). 20140125_151253 We made it to the front of the line quickly, but, unfortunately due to a child exiting before the exit platform, the emergency shut down was hit, and our 25 minute wait became an hour by the time the whole system was re booted. 20140125_152316 Although the long wait, this is one of the premier new attractions at the Disneyland Resort, featuring both a well done inside dark ride, and a high paced family fun racing finale.  We then made the cut across Bugs World into Hollywoodland, and got Fast Passes for our favorite ride in the park, The Twilight Zone: Tower of Terror.20140125_173708  We then rode Screamin’.  This ride is definitely one of the Disneyland Resort’s finest coasters, and, due to its constant running of 5 trains, it features a dispatch time of about 36 seconds per train.20140125_172923

Our only complaint of this ride was that both times we rode, we got the same train (orange) and the on board audio didn’t work.  We headed back to ToT, and as we remembered, it still remains the best ride at California Adventure. This ride features Disneyland-esque theming, as well as amazing drop sequences, that have riders completely up, off their seats at each drop.20140125_181323 20140125_181336We ended the night with a personal favorite, Monster’s Inc. Mike and Sulley to the Rescue.  This ride has a fantastic, immersive theming of being in the Monstropolis Transit Association, and although the ride once again, doesn’t have any thrill factor, it is a great way to relax and catch your breath after a long day of thrills. We finished the night by checking out Buena Vista Street at night for the first time.  It is a fantastic addition to the park, that is a ton better than the old entrance to the park.

Sierra Sidewinder Repaint, and Silver Bullet Repaint UPDATE

Steve Hickey and his ProCoat got another part of Silver Bullet repainted, they sent us the following picture. Only to imagine how hard it is to repaint Silver Bullet from a cherry picker over the water!image (6)

As we went to DCA yesterday, we had to stop at Knott’s real quick to pick something up, and we decided to run in to take some pictures of the fresh paint on Sierra Sidewinder! 20140125_200118 20140125_200201 20140125_200212

We also took some pictures of the progress on Silver Bullet. Which looked absolutely amazing! The helix, loop, and lift-hill are done, and the red looks so bright, the ride looks brand new! 20140125_200020 20140125_200010 20140125_200006 20140125_195945 20140125_195918