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Coasters that you want to like, but don't

Matt N

CF Legend
Hi guys. In all the years I've been riding roller coasters and visiting theme parks, I've ridden many different rides, and there have been many rides that I've hotly anticipated riding. In some cases, like with my current top 2 coasters Mako and Icon, these hotly anticipated rides blew me away and more than met my expectations. However, in other cases, I've been a bit disappointed. So before I ramble on for too long, my question to you is; has there ever been a coaster that you really wanted to like, but you just couldn't for some reason or another?

As for my answer to this question; the first coaster that springs to mind is Olympia Looping (or Munich Looping, as it was called when I rode it at Winter Wonderland). Now, ever since this coaster had first appeared in the UK back in 2016, I wanted to ride it badly. I'd heard many very superlative-filled reviews, and thought that it looked like a fantastic coaster that I'd really enjoy. When I finally got the chance to ride it in January 2020, I had visions in my head of it being firmly in my top 10, maybe even my top 5 or top 3. However, when I got off, I must admit I was profoundly underwhelmed by it. Now don't get me wrong; for a 30 year old travelling coaster, it's an absolute masterpiece of engineering, it still runs quite smoothly and I'm honoured to have ridden it, and part of my disappointment was probably down to my expectations as opposed to the coaster. Despite this, I wanted to enjoy it far more than I did. I admit that part of the reason I didn't really enjoy it was because I found it too intense for me; the coaster certainly lived up to its billed intensity, but I think I found it a bit too much to handle, personally, as I felt quite nauseous getting off both times I did it. However, the thing that let the ride down most for me was the harnesses. As well as the lap bar, Olympia Looping has hard plastic bars that rest on your shoulders during the ride. I knew this before riding, but I must admit that I didn't expect them to inhibit my enjoyment to quite the extent that they did. As the ride was going round, they got tighter and tighter, so by the end of the ride, they were very painful and I almost felt like I was being crushed by them.

Despite my disappointment after the first ride, I went back for a second ride later on in the hope that I would enjoy it more. I wanted to give the ride another chance, because you often read trip reports where people are underwhelmed by a coaster in the day and blown away by it at night, so I was hoping for Olympia to be one of these cases. As I was boarding, all of the conditions were there for an optimal ride experience; darkness, a back row ride (we rode in the middle earlier), restraints that didn't feel too tight. I thought this was going to be the ride where I would genuinely fall in love with Olympia Looping, or at least enjoy it a little more. However, I somehow think I liked it even less at night than I did in the day, because the shoulder harnesses somehow crushed me even more than they had during the day, to the point where my shoulders were in real pain.

I want to like Olympia Looping, I really do. It's got a good layout, and for a 30 year old travelling coaster, it's an absolutely mind-blowing machine! However, when I think about the nausea and the painful shoulder harnesses, I'm just not sure it's the sort of coaster I enjoy, and I'm afraid I just can't rank it very highly.

Have you ever had a similar story?


Strata Poster
Nice topic idea. A few spring to mind immediately:

The idea of the SLC is a great one. A coaster with a decent enough length, height, max speed, 5 inversions and inverted sounds good on paper. And being a pretty common model, it would be great to have a standard ride type at plenty of parks that you're guaranteed to enjoy as well as increase the cred count. But the rides are rough as a broken mirror edge, so there's no way to really like them (the exception being Energylandia's one, which isn't awful)

Bandit, Movie Park Germany
I love woodies, and Bandit has a nice enough looking layout. Butttttt, it's just dull. I'd love to be able to go on it and actively like it, but I just can't.

Huracan, Bellewaerde
A mostly indoor family ride with a good indoor queue and a fun on-ride pre coaster sequence is everything I like, on paper. But in practice, it just doesn't work and really just bored me.

Calamity Mine, Walibi Belgium
Another case of a ride type I like (mine trains), but an example that misses the mark. I don't know if it's just because Calamity is just a bit run down and in need of some TLC, or if the layout is just a bit meh, but when I went on it, I just did not like it.

So yeah, my examples of these cases come from ones where I don't have particularly high expectations, but I've done similar-ish rides which have impressed me, and I've been on a ride which is just the other end of the scale.


Donkey in a hat
Intimidator 305.
When I was headed off to Eastern USA to mop up some truly bucket list creds, the 3 coasters I was most excited for were Kingda Ka, El Toro and this bad boy - the unholy trinity of Intamin excess! If anything, I305 was the most anticipated of the three - I thought it just looked mental.
But nah, somehow me & Timmy didn't quite gel. I loved the other 2 - even KK with its shaky launch, OTSR's and snot-green paint job - but I305 left me feeling distinctly underwhelmed and... unmoved.
300ft tall and yet it doesn't actually feel very high. 5100ft long and yet it actually feels quite short. Not really any noticeable airtime either... just... nothing.
Would love to ride it again one day, I feel like I should have been blown away by it... but I just wasn't. :(


Roller Poster
Galactica / Air
I want to really like the B&M Flyer, but I just don't get any sensation from it at all. Hopefully other flying coasters offer more thrilling and interesting rides.

The Oddysey
I know you shouldn't expect much from a Vekoma SLC, but I wish it should be smoother than it is. It's a custom layout, but it's too much of a headbanger. It could possibly be improved by the new inverted trains with the vests.


Hyper Poster
Icon: Blackpool pleasure beach

I love launch coasters and always wanted to ride a Mack multi launch, so when I heard we were getting one in the UK I was so existed, I finally went at the end of last year and rode it in the front, back, morning and evening and I felt so..........eghhhhhhhh

It’s fine, a good backing coaster but nothing special, I felt little force and it was more of a nice scenic tour round the park than a thrilling experience leaving be a bit bored. The icon of this park is the big one for me and I left with Icon not being in my top 5 in the UK. I really wanted to like it but I barely remember it ?


Roller Poster
Gold striker comes to mind as it was super rough when I rode it and had little air time. West coast racers was also simultaneously tame and banged my head around... although the softer restraints helped that.


Previously AndrewRollercoaster
Lost Gravity
Was back at Walibi Holland for the first time last year since the days it was called Six Flags Holland. I was underwhelmed the first time I rode Lost Gravity, it was a middle seat. It just didn't seem to do much for me. I went back later and got on an outer seat which was definitely better. But compared to the likes of Goliath and Untamed I think it just isn't a great or special coaster. I guess I prefer coasters with more height and/or speed.

It's ok and I ride it whenever I'm at Blackpool Pleasure Beach sure but after riding Taron and falling in love with that one, I think BPB missed the opportunity to go with Intamin which would have been far better. The last part on Icon is really weak and the launches are too slow. Front row through the mister and top hat and Immelmann are worth the ride though. The music is better than the ride. That deserves a Taron-esque coaster I reckon. Wish I liked Icon more, but I just don't. The Big One is still the re-ride machine at the park for me.

Wicker Man
The best part of the coaster for me is the theming; incredible. It shows what Alton Towers can do. It is a "decent" wooden coaster to complete the lineup and something we needed in the UK but the building height restriction I think really put a downer on this one. Troy is much better and shows what GCI can do when not marred with tree line height nonsense. Ridiculous I think. I'm pretty sure no one living in the vicinity of the park would have been bothered if Wicker Man had been another 30 feet taller. That bit taller and thus faster and longer and I think this truly would have been one of the best coasters in Europe. It is remarkable for its theming but not for the ride itself. I've ridden Troy 10 times in a row and I'm always stunned at how out of control it is and love the different ride experiences you get at the front and at the back. Wicker Man I've done at most twice and I wasn't too fussed about not getting more goes or cared much about front or back etc. Wicker Man also doesn't seem to have high enough capacity. Perhaps a duel loading station would have helped somewhat (and a larger preshow room).

Colorado Adventure
Awful shallow seats. Not enough straights to gain speed or get any airtime it seems, bit weird. Big Thunder Mountain at Disney Land Paris is so much better. Thought I would really like this coaster as I love BTM but twice during my first 3 day visit at Phantasialand was enough. It's just a bad layout I think. I know they struggle with space at Phantasialand but some more straights with little airtime hills would have made this awesome. Every drop and every hill is associated with a bend. The seats make it a bad experience then.

I've fallen out of love with the following coasters too
Hyperspace Mountain DLP
Rock N' Roller Coaster DLP (closed)
Indiana Jones and The Temple of Peril DLP

I don't know if it is due to the age of these coasters or me haven ridden much better rides over the last 10 years (or combination of this) but the Vekomas are near unbearable in the corkscrews (even the vests on Hyperspace Mountain don't help enough, it just means your whole body shakes rather than just your head bangs around). Indiana Jones feels like the trains are grinding horribly on the track. I remember this being a lot better and fluent with a nice train riding/wind sound, especially when it went backwards. Came away quite disappointed with those coasters and the state of the two parks at the resort now. Would have been better if the great rides I had stayed in my memory rather than trying to recapture that which no longer was possible. Looking forward to the trip last year I thought I would marathon Rock N Roller dozens of times but I barely managed 1 go each of the 5 days I was there. The speakers on quite a few seats I had on Rock N Roller were all messed up/distorted too & no memorabilia of the ride for sale. I'd rather be at Alton Towers or Blackpool Pleasure Beach.
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Mega Poster
Manta - Sea World Orlando

I wanted to like it as I loved the idea of flying. It was my 3rd ever B&M having ridden Nemesis Inferno and Dueling Dragons. I was excited to ride...and then the pretzel loop happened. I HATED that element. It felt so unnatural and too forceful and it honestly spoiled the rest of the ride for me.


Mega Poster
My biggest one is probably

Kawasemi- tobu zoo
Maybe this is just running slower than other megalites but I was so ready for airtime and twists and fun and got a good-but-not-great ride. Perhaps I hit it on a bad day? I almost ended up preferring Regina just out of pure nostalgia for oldschool, rickety woodies with slightly weird/nothing layouts (looking at you, timberwolf)

on the same trip, while my mind is on the subject:
Bandit- yomiuriland
I know togo coasters aren't usually worth getting massively hyped up for, but this beauty is an awesome looking terrain hyper- literally my ideal coaster. In the end, its not rough or bad or anything but the drop profiles do almost nothing force-wise and it sort of is just a giant mine train. I know, I know, togo... but still a man can dream. I still liked it, just didn't live up to what it could.


Mega Poster
I do like these rides to varying degrees, but no where near as much as I want to:

Storm Chaster @ Kentucky Kingdom
This appears to be a beloved ride and I agree that the first couple of elements are just fantastic. While it hasn't got the height of SteVe the first drop is clever enough to roll its way into my heart. I want to love this ride due to that.
So why then must it ruin itself and attempt to snap in half the smaller patrons in the later stages of the ride? It's a mess of miniature bunny hills darting in all directions in RMC's own special way, but the blistering pace is shocking. Before airtime can gather itself you are already heading somewhere else. They should redo all of that bit.

Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts @ Universal Studios Orlando
This ride has excellent tech, theming and has my favourite Potter queue line by far. I'm even ok with the heavy usage of screens especially the bit where the screen folds away to allow the car through (I hope that's still working). But there's something about what the available actors ended up doing with the given scripts that I thought was a bit lame - i.e. the miscellaneous Wesley saying everything is ok at the end (cringe) & Belatrix ending a scene just standing there patiently with angry face and ineffective wand sparks. The trains were huge in a great way and do clever trick track stuff, but it wasn't what I was expecting or looking for. I would have liked it to have motion similar to the films like the non inverting 360 roll (Tranan was a good prototype I expected them to build off).

Alpinabahn @ German Fairs
2nd largest portable roller coaster, very historic and lets say iconic to fairs. But one of the early turn drops made me bang my head on the far side of the car so was grumpy for the rest of the ride. Halfheartedly tried to enjoy it, didn't bother to have another go.

Twister @ Gröna Lund
A compact park full of coasters in Sweden's own Blackpool except it has far superior views outside the park. They manged to squeeze in a wooden ride, likely a much bigger challenge all round that a steel coaster. Its got those cool new gravity group trains allowing it to work its way through the tight course. The pictures make it look great and has a lovely showing as you approach the park on the local ferry. Was so looking forward to it for so many years and ran over to make it the first big ride of the day. I didn't like it :( Maybe it was just too cold, I certainly was. Everyone involved exceeded all challenges which I don't want to crap all over, but I would have preferred a better ride at the end. Its fine I guess.

Thunder Dolphin would have been on here had my expectations not been set correctly before riding. I can therefore see it as a good fun ride in a cracking location instead of focusing on what you'd want that type of Intamin to be.
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Strata Poster
Boulder Dash was really underwhelming for me, despite expecting it to be my cup of tea from the things people said about it.

I'm willing to accept that it was running especially poor for me, but it doesn't help that park and going to that area of the country FOR coasters feels mighty lackluster. So It just sits in this limbo of "I know it must be good - bad rides dont get that kind of hype, wtf happened??"

Coaster Hipster

Giga Poster
I love the creativity behind the ride. All the tricks, dueling layout and charming Wuze Town scenery. The actual ride dynamic mostly lets me down though. For some reason I find it never has the same forces as Spinball Whizzer or Dragon's Fury.

The sheer size of this machine and its vertical drop should at least provide a spectacular moment aboard. Not only Valravn is massively overshadowed by Steel Vengeance and the Intamins nearby, but the vests and lack of any scenery to enhance the drops made the whole experience feel underwhelming.


Mega Poster

A beyond vertical drop, launches, inversions, Intamin! On paper it ticks all the boxes and everybody else seems to love it. But I just don’t. I find the transitions between elements to be too quick and jerky, which combined with the vile restraints really detract from the ride. The extra padding on the restraints in recent years is a huge improvement and maybe even a B&M vest style restraint would make it more enjoyable and allow me to enjoy the Coaster rather than constantly bracing for whiplash. It’s also maybe a bit of jack of all trades master of none where there’s not enough of a standout moment to be worth the uncomfortable riding experience. Every year I try to learn to like Maverick, but it’s still to happen.


CF Legend
Icon for me. People genuinely seem to love it and honestly I'm jealous of them having a coaster they adore riding that much right here in the UK.


Mountain monkey
Staff member
Not a coaster, but Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey.

On paper, it's such a good ride that has everything. A trip around Hogwarts! Spectacular effects! Ride vehicles that move on several axes! Screens! But the execution is just so dark, noisy and scary everything falls flat. The ride rushes from one dark, spooky and gloomy scene to the next, never taking time to breathe. Suddenly, there's a dragon! Suddenly, you're in the forbidden forest encountering spiders the size of horses! Suddenly, the whomping willow is whacking you! Suddenly, you're on the quidditch pitch and there's ... a match going on? And suddenly dementors everywhere! Suddenly, you're diving into the Chamber of Secrets, where there's a sudden rockfall, and... oh, everything is fine and the ride is over.

Here's a POV for reference. Notice how often it just descends into darkness and noise while it's impossible to tell what's going on until there's suddenly a monster in your face.

Don't get me wrong, the sets are well-made and riding it feels very intense, but the ride seems to be more concerned with sticking every monster in the Harry Potter franchise into your face while blasting loud noises than to create a cohesive experience. It was as if the designers had too many boxes to check, decided to go with only all the dark and scary stuff in the books while skipping the lighthearted whimsy, and then just threw it all in with quick transitions between them and called it a ride. It tries to cover the entire Harry Potter franchise in four minutes, and as a result you don't get nearly enough time with anything.

But hey, the queue line is amazing, at least.

Yoris Kerkhoff

Roller Poster
Both Untamed and Zadra.
I really wanted to like RMC's because almost every enthusiast in the world does but I can't enjoy them as long as my legs are getting bruises from those awful shin guards. Also, they never felt as out of control as everybody made them seem. The forces just didn't do much for me. I prefer sustained ejector like on Goliath (WH) as opposed to these pops which just feel like you're driving on a bumpy road.