Wicker Man - General Discussion

General discussion regarding the UK's No.1 Theme Park. Talk about anything and everything Alton Towers here.
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Owen
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Although the theme certainly won't be extremely dark (in my opinion) we have to take into account the materials being used, the weathered effect wood makes me feel the attraction will have some theme of abandonment or disuse associated with it. Merlin do like their abandoned/under maintained buildings! :lol

I feel that this will look great if the ride structure also fits, and I look forward to seeing what happens with the flume station!
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MakoMania
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Yeah, a theme something along the lines of Kraken at SeaWorld Orlando would work perfectly!
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Just quickly on the topic of themeing, planning permission for The Smiler's main pieces (i.e The Marmaliser) was sent in a couple of weeks after everything else. Could we see that happening again? Would be interesting if it does if it gives us a few more hints of possible themeing
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Owen
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JaykeAT wrote:Just quickly on the topic of themeing, planning permission for The Smiler's main pieces (i.e The Marmaliser) was sent in a couple of weeks after everything else. Could we see that happening again? Would be interesting if it does if it gives us a few more hints of possible themeing
Yes this is likely going to be the case along with a more destined look at the station, this often occurs with larger theming elements such as The Smiler's Marmaliser and Derren Brown's Ghost Train's Tower.
I would expect these plans to be viewable within the next few months at least. :)
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MakoMania
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Just a quick question, why do people keep saying that a thatched roof indicates a Katanga Canyon theme when buildings currently in Mutiny Bay have thatched roofs?
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Liam_s99
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Altontowersbarlow wrote:
pleaty wrote:Just a thought but with the powered/launched lift hill and the relatively short track could the trains make 2 circuits of the track with a different speed of launch on the second circuit to give an out of control/runaway train type of feel. Not sure how this would work with multiple trains but maybe there could be some kind of switch track in the station building so the running train doesn't actually pass through the loading area, just close by adding to the out of control feel.....
My knowledge on layout is fairly limited, but if it is possible for trains to make multiple circuits even on multiple train operation, could the train complete a forwards launch and a backwards launch? Or even just a standard backwards and forwards lift/circuit like fire chaser express at Dollywood? This would be a European or worlds first surely?
I'm not aware of any wooden attraction that travels both backwards and forwards. This would explain the short track layout and adds some motive for Merlin to call it a SW. Furthermore some people have indicated that there is a show building before the lift hill and this could presumably hold a turntable of some sort paired with a few effects.
Switchback is the only wooden coaster that goes fowards and backward, but it isn't a launch.
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iamradam
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One thing I'm wondering is how much this'll cost, I have no idea what a likely cost of a GCI woddie of this size would be.
Without a doubt this will be far from their biggest investment. But with the lack of a gimmick or new innovation they can put their money on quality theming?
This could be a great money saver for Alton if they play it well and just deliver a great coaster rather than one element which costs millions in terms of R&D.


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Burniel
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Wodan, a GCI which is undoubtedly larger than SW8 (but has less theming) cost 10 million euros, or approx £7,765,000.
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NemesisRider
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Dan.B wrote:Wodan, a GCI which is undoubtedly larger than SW8 (but has less theming) cost 10 million euros, or approx £7,765,000.
I beg to differ, Wodan does have some pretty extensive theming, for example the large entrance gate. I think this could be an investment with a similar cost to Wodan overall.
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Owen
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It'll be very hard to tell seeing as I don't believe one has been installed here, At least I know not recently. For this reason it makes it difficult to estimate shipping and construction costs for the attraction as this will effect it greatly. Also, the cost of the coaster and cost to build the coaster will differ drastically. When looking at the coaster this will be the layout alone, however 'building' it will include the removal of the flume, filling the land, planting trees and theming.

I can see this attraction being quite costly for this reason, and personally I could see it being between the cost of TH13TEEN (£15M) and The Smiler (£18M) as a whole attraction.
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Burniel
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NemesisRider wrote:
Dan.B wrote:Wodan, a GCI which is undoubtedly larger than SW8 (but has less theming) cost 10 million euros, or approx £7,765,000.
I beg to differ, Wodan does have some pretty extensive theming, for example the large entrance gate. I think this could be an investment with a similar cost to Wodan overall.
I'm not knocking Wodan's theming at all. I just have faith that Alton Towers are really going to go all-out on the theming, especially as the coaster itself won't be too expensive. This extra theming would counteract the smaller size of SW8, thus making the investments similar in my opinion.
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altontowerskid
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Without sounding ungrateful about the fact we're getting a wooden coaster at last, the more I look at the plans and the No Limits renders 'Spacemonkeys' has shown on the previous page, the more I feel that this coaster will be way too short.

I think the eventual investment in a woody should have been in a lengthy coaster that still appeals to thrill-seeking families and white-knuckle thrill seekers alike.

I really do hope this great opportunity isn't wasted.
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themealgang
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I am absolutely thrilled by this news. We've waited ages (over a decade) for wood and finally, Alton are giving it to us. I just wonder what made them change their minds. This is a day that we never thought would come. And it's being built by far one of the best wooden coaster manufactures out there as well... I'm sure Great Coasters International will deliver something that we will enjoy.

Okay, it looks short. Okay, it could go a bit further out. But SO. WHAT. From the looks of it, we are getting an airtime filled family attraction that I hope makes use of a light-hearted theme. Non of this institution business please. Whilst a lot of people seem disappointed that this appears to be a family roller coaster, I've ridden White Lightning and despite being geared towards the family, that remains one of my favourite roller coasters of all time. White Lightning proves Great Coaster International can work with limited height, space and track length to create a truly magnificent ride.

I'm hoping we are going to get something that packs a small but almighty punch. I'm very happy. Just as long as there's no gimmicky inversion, then I'll be impressed.

But this could be a turning point for Merlin. And this *may* be the first of a new generation of wooden roller coasters coming to the UK. Fingers crossed.
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rbsmith18
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A Q&A session with Mr.Wardley a few years back stated how they designed and built a woodie, at Oakwood, using local materials and businesses to vastly cut down on cost, especially shipping. I wonder if this plan has been implemented here too to keep finances in check, their investment people will surely have remembered this trick from their favourite (non) retired consultant?
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sss1986
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What do you think the secret element could be for this coaster?
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Jack
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I highly doubt this will have a real Secret Element as we have seen in the past, and I hope it is just a coaster we are getting. The layout looks solid with lots of airtime moments, however has a family element to it, and having a Secret Element, I feel, would rather ruin the image the ride has from the plans. :)

In regards to the manufacture of the ride, construction, etc, GCI are looking to be the company behind SW8 and they have their own construction crews for these projects and using that crew will probably be the favourable way to go, especially if Merlin decide to use GCI again. Materials will be sourced the most efficient way by GCI if they are indeed the manufacturer. :)
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Javs
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I'm still a bit confused why it has a lift hill with two different gradients!?
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Benjsh85
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Will this be the first launched woodie in Europe? I assume it's going to be launched as a 10m high lift hill doesn't suggest it will be enough otherwise.
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Spacemonkeys wrote:Hey folks, long time stalker new poster.
Been playing around with Nolimits today. Not perfect and a little artistic licence used but may help to picture the possible layout.
https://www.dropbox.com/s/pthyjf0k2hb9e ... 0.png?dl=0
https://www.dropbox.com/s/ygdszcs0puu9p ... 4.png?dl=0
https://www.dropbox.com/s/f0xst9il0qxwu ... 1.png?dl=0
Well done on these :clap: it puts it into perspective, easier to see than going through the plans .

So the first air time bump into the drop would be in the dark then? could be interesting.

Also looking through the plans there are a lot of wooden walls round the corners for sound proofing but quite close to the track, will it not look a bit cluttered?
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abigsmurf
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My worry about the ride is going to be the length of the track.

Assuming 24 riders and a 1100 hourly capacity, that's 80-ish seconds between trains. Allowing for wiggle room pulling into and out of the station seems like the time from the start of the lift to the end of the ride could be under a minute. Guessing the layout doesn't allow for a blocking system (if a car is stopped halfway through looks like it couldn't make it around the track).

It looks like a fun, fast layout that will be on the edge of family friendly but it does feel like it needs a gimmick or USP to prevent people who've queued for a long time from feeling a bit short-changed. Not entirely sure it could have a launch (the double drop would be insanely intense going into it at any sort of speed) but there are any number of possibilities as to the nature of the pre-show.
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