Thanks for the good feeback peeps! Have another, since these have been hanging over me for too long.
Day 2 - Heide Park
Movie Park was the only park on this trip that I hadn't been to before, so from now on, bar a couple of new rides, we're treading familiar ground. The late night and long drive meant the morning was faffy for a few. I was worried this might put the mood of the group down, but as it turned out, those worries were unjustified. Maybe it helped to cast aside bad vibes by dispatching with the SLC first. Limit is awful and for some reason, I thought being near the back was a good idea. No.
The group started on a tour of the back of the hill to tick off the mass of white coasters at the back of the park. Their bobsled is long and forceful, with some great interaction moments with scenery and other rides. Definitely my favourite of its type.
Next up around to the drop tower, Scream, which is amazing! To make a good drop tower, it turns out the recipe is just to make the train ****ing heavy and the tower ****ing huge.
Continuing down the hill, we stopped at Flug der Dämonen. After being reasonably impressed with it last year, it fell a bit flat this time around. I'm noticing the repetition, and I've started to notice the wobble on the train. Raptor still continues to rule as king of the wing.
Pretentious photo of people taking photos
Queues and faff made an early lunchbreak quite attractive. People who wanted Big Loop went off to do that, and I headed to the Admiral cafe by the Battle Galleons. Sue ordered a jacket potato, which arrived swimming in a lake of sour cream. I went for schnitzel with a million chips and a huge slice of apple pie. Would recommend that place. Lovely.
And the outdoor area is lovely and scenic
"Look, I know he's booked to our hotel room, but I just can't trust a guy in his twenties that's still obsessed with trains!"
We reconvened at the mine train, Grottenblitz. Apart from a bizarre indoor section with a unicorn and the monorail, it's not particularly exciting. It does have some very pleasant viaduct theming, and some terrifying Halloween additions.
I love the wolf just chilling at the back
The plan from here was supposed to be Desert Rita next, but not unlike Forest Rita, Desert Rita was experiencing technical issues, so the group nabbed the opportunity to be shameful again. Luckily, this is a kiddie cred I'd plucked up the courage for last time, so I sat out, took pictures and chatted with goons about future CF Lives (next year gon' be guuud).
Group of goons plus photogenic windswept German lady
Heide Park had a new simulator. Ghostbusters! It's got a big ol' Ghostmobile and a big shed with the ride in it. And of course, being Merlin, the queue has...
Shipping Containers! Actually seriously ****ing shipping containers, well done Merlin!
So, Ghostbusters... there's a lot to like about different bits of the ride but as a whole it falls apart. There's some good work on the physical sets and the vehicles' motion. The whole concept should work as an immersive storyline, but as a shooter, nothing works because I have no idea which of the different coloured beams is mine. Shame, a well designed screen shooter can be wonderful.
Desert Race reopened. It's a critical flop for most, but if a coaster has a good launch, I'm willing to forgive a lot. Desert Race is not as good as Rita, and it's fading on me, but it's still a favourite. It's OK, Chris put Bandit in his top 10, giving us the strength to be comfortable giving our eye-cancerous opinions.
Present from the ride-ops
Attempted launch-face photo
The one on the left just farted
We dropped in a couple of water rides while in the area. I don't remember much from the rapids or the log flume, so I guess they weren't hugely exciting. Some people toyed with the idea of grabbing the super-splash looking thing, but even in an unusually warm October, nobody really fancied it. Just Krake left to go then.
I like to think this is just a decayed summer prop
I swear, the monorail ruins every photo of Heide Park ever
We saved the best until last! Krake is short but sweet, and just as good as it was last time (maybe better). A punchy drop, followed by an airtime filled half-loop and an airtime hill. It feels whippy and doesn't outstay its welcome. Plus the theming looks fab!
The evening was spent unsuccessfully trying to find food in Hamburg that was open and reasonably priced. Turns out McDonalds is usually open late as a last ditch option for a Hamburg/er.
Coming up next: the one we've all been waiting for! Revisiting my favourite roller coaster.
I had sort of been putting off writing my final trip report because I didn't want it to end, but here goes. *Beware you're about to read karnan spoilers*
Halfway through the trip I had realised, to my horror that karnan WAS INDEED the coaster with the backwards freefall drop on the lifthill. The only one in the world to exist. And this wasn't any short lifthill! Ok, don't panic I though, just don't think about it. For those of you that don't know I'm not a massive fan of drop towers so this was where my fear was coming from (and the fact it was lying on your back with only lapbars....!) After my Taron stress I decided to literally blank this out of my mind and just not bring it up. I knew I'd have to suck it up and just do it. It got to I think the heide day before karnan really came up in proper conversation. I heard these words. "I'm shi***** myself about it" "omg karnan yes! I'm terrified" "That drop is going to be horrendous!" It turned out everyone else (ok all of the girls and half the guys) were absolutely bricking it about the same thing that I was scared of. There is a god,I thought!! I am not an alien after all!
So the morning came and it was time to face the fear. I knew we had an escorted ride at the beginning of the day so I knew that I couldn't really bail out out of rudeness if they were giving us special treatment. We turned up and were greeted by the cutest sign ever welcoming coasterforce to the park.
We got everyone together and one of the staff members came out and greeted us.....with goodies bags!! I looked inside, it was all karnan merch, I really can't refuse now I thought!! Yikes! What a nice gesture! The park owners came out and had a chat with us too which was fab and you got the sense that they really cared about the park and were keen to see it progress. This was really lovely and you could tell that the whole group were thrilled to meet them.
We went into the park and had this lovely photo taken (I'm posting it again because it's cute). Little did we know that our dolphin friend was to become more than just your average dolphin later......
We were lead through the park by the staff member straight to Karnan. We stopped outside to watch it for a moment and an eerie mist surrounded the tower. Everyone paused for a moment in awe as they took it in. Look at it!
It was time to ride. We were escorted through the exit right to the loading area and you could feel the tension amongst everyone. We excitedly muddled around putting our bags in the themed bag holders and everyone was muttering comments of fear and excitement. We arranged ourselves into rows in the fab batching room and on we got. The atmosphere was something else! We paused in the darkness before climbing the lifthill. Even though you couldn't see anyone you could feel the tension. We got to our stopping point and just stopped there. It felt like an age as we waited. You could hear people winching and letting out shrieks of fear. And whoooosh! Down we went! I personally thought the backwards drop was actually fine! I didn't get any of that horrid stomach feeling I was expecting, but my goodness I can't imagine what you'd feel like if you didn't know there was a drop! You could hear everyone relax a bit as they realised that, yes, they were still alive and we began the climb to the top. This is quite a long climb but it's so dark that you hardly know you're at the top before you're flung down the drop. The drop was long and intense and I got the impression it really made an impact on people at the time! There are some quite strong forces at the bottom of the drop before the rest of the layout. The rest of the layout was great, all the almost-inverting stuff straight after the drop was great and the rest of the swooping bit over the grass was pleasant (if a tiny bit rough in places, but nothing to spoil the experience). We reached the break run and everyone was both stunned and overjoyed. Then we got a bonus inversion in the dark that few (if any) were expecting. What a ride! I was really blown away by it and instantly I knew it would be a top 3 coaster for me. We did a reride and it was just as good (with slightly less lift hill anxiety this time) and everyone still loved it. I really enjoyed the group experience of riding this!
We then went round the park and did all the creds and random other things.
I was really impressed with Fluch also. I feel like because they're quite similar, Karnan sort of overshadows it a bit but it's a fab coaster (that has gone into my top 10 as well) in it's own right. The theming is great and the launch packs a punch! We did the kiddie cred quite early on- it is interestingly themed to a wooden coaster and the story of how rollercoasters came to be in Russia. I gained a nice shin bruise from getting out of this cred weirdly which lasted a good few days! haha
We found these spinning things and some of the group showed off their skills!
The wild mouse queueline gave some nice views of the two creds.
As I'm sure most of you know, I love a good Schwarz so I was excited to ride this one. It even had a speedo that told you how fast you went (that I forgot to look at after we had ridden), oh well.
It was cute and themed to the loch ness monster randomly. Decent cred with some nice tunnel interaction.
We did the crazy space dogems which had some funky music. Still no idea how well I did or whether I managed to get any targets but it was good fun all the same!
The sky and fog had cleared by the afternoon.
Everything looked pretty.
The dragon kiddie cred was really well themed and had the characteristic "door opening" that we'd noticed a lot of hansa's creds had. No complaints here! Some of us did the sky fly. I was on my continued mission to get a spin on one but it wasn't to be on this day. The paddles on this one felt heavier to move and I just didn't have the timing right. I quite like them as rides though. Some of us also did the bell ride. Which was better than expected. The ride op pushed down the weird restraint into my leg a bit hard and the metal bit dug into my thigh. Yet another bruise to add to my collection haha! I think that one has just about gone now! The added fire on this ride was cool too.
We did some other things like the log flume and stuff while we waited for the fireworks (the other group had gone to the parade at this point). Oh and Rachel and Serena got their feet spited in the water assault course. Badtimes! We had been planning to do a night ride on karnan (or as close to night as we could manage) but this wasn't to be as the ride closed earlier than others in preparation for the fireworks. Oh well. We did a fluch night ride instead which was ah-mazinggggg. Coming out of the darkness into the park flying over all the halloween light decorations was something else! Everyone commented on how beautiful it was. I think I could hear an audible gasp from everyone on the ride at this point!
We did the boat ride with all the pretty lights on and it was cute. Photos didn't turn out so good though.
The firework show started off with quite a long character bit that none of us could understand. We enjoyed the german barbie girl remix though. This was when our friend Mr Dolphin really came into his own!
Then we got some nice fireworks to end the day!
This was a great end to the trip. It was such a lovely day. The park really shone in the autumn colours and the extended opening hours meant we could enjoy it at our leisure. Fab park and two new top 10 coasters for me! Not bad!
Oh Ghosterforce 2017, that was a bit good wasn't it?
The trip officially kicked off with a morning stroll through the German countryside, to meet latest CF member Barking Dog. He's usually pretty quiet on the forums, but my oh my, did he kick up a fuss when the cred as Schloss Beck was closed. He was in fact, so disgruntled, he decided to sack off the rest of the Live to wait patiently outside the gates of Schloss Beck for it to open. Like a good boy.
Movie Park looked great in its Halloween costume of a Theme Park at Halloween. Star Trek looked really slow. Like, Warp Factor 0. Which was actually quite good because watching the coaster trundle around in the morning significantly lowered my expectations, and thus heightening my enjoyment when eventually we rode it. Funny how that works isn't it. I've realised the key to rollercoaster enthusiasm is expecting everything to pretty much be a let down. Once you've set yourself up for disappointment, the only way is up. Well, during the lift hill anyway.
Routine procedure for the Live saw us tick off the SLC first thing. And you know what? It wasn't that bad. Didn't see any politicians on board though.
Bandit followed, with its box-themed queue. It was a fun, wild and juddery ride. Watched the maniacs in the group ride the drop tower. Rode the Disk-O With Hump because ONE DAY THEY ARE GOING TO COUNT GUYS. In that moment, I forgot I've been seriously ill for months, and threw up after the ride. That's the first time that has ever happened to me. Embarrassing.
Then it was time to discover what they make in Van Helsings Factory. The answer is: fab indoor Gerstlauer Bobleds with LIGHT UP QUEUE effects. Lovely stuff.
Then it was onto Star Trek: Operation Enterprise. When Movie Park phoned me a couple of years back and asked, we want to build a coaster that specifically appeals to your nerdiest passions, I absolutely insisted on Next Generation. What with the JJ Abrams Star Trek movies being new and relevant, I thought it of central importance that they themed their biggest investment to characters that no one younger than 25 yrs old would recognise. Thanks Movie Park for listening to me and building this queue that makes me squeal like an idiot in front of a herd of goons. The coaster's not bad either.
Lunch, then BAD GOON behaviour from me when I opted to watch the stunt show with Jordan and Conor, as opposed to ride the kiddie creds. Silly park shows > plus ones.
....you're still here? My profile hasn't been deleted by a caterpillar train that has developed the ability to type?! Wow.
Err, where was I. Kiddie area was quite cute in a garish way. Loved the Neverending Story rapids. The Bermuda Triangle log flume freaked me out though. It was really sombre and creepy.
Dusk was falling and it was starting to get crowded in the parks. I felt a dash of maze-anxiety rising as the queues for the (due to open at 6pm) mazes getting longer and longer. After much faff we regrouped and joined the *sings* 'Neverending Queueliiiine' for Deathpital. Entertained ourselves in the queue with glitter and vaseline. Maze was good if a bit disjointed.
Then The Walk Through Dead. Nice themeing, shame about the zombies.
Western area looked amazing full of smoke and scare actors in the scare zone. Food, then Insidious. Where you can't take beer into the queue. Maze was really haunting and featured some grotesque masks. I liked it.
Slaughterhouse was, ironically, on the chopping board as we were running out of time. But luckily we squeezed it in. It was my fave maze of the night, such a great, unique theme and well-decorated scenes. Then we finished up in Hostel, which due to its Over 18's restriction, I had hyped up too much in my head. I presumed it was going to be of 'Face It Alone' style madness, but it was comparatively tame. Cool and different, yes, but I spent the whole time waiting for horrible things to happen and they just kind of...didn't?
I thoroughly enjoyed our day at Movie Park. Wish the park had stayed open later as we didn't have time to get all the mazes done, but overall they have a great Halloween event and it was the perfect way to kick off Ghosterforce
One of the things about visiting foreign theme parks in a big group is hearing everyone's different pronunciations of things. Today we were going to Heide Park.
Hay, de park? @Hyde Park?
Barking Dog had informed his other mates over at coasterdoggos.de that CF weren't entirely a bunch of mongs, so they should come hang out with us. There was MANY A LOVELY DOG AT HEIDE PARK. Or should I say Heide Bark?
It was good that there was so many nice dogs at Heidi Park as it gave me something to do when I was busy not really riding anything all morning. See, I have already visited Heide Park before, and was overcome with nonchalance toward the whole day. I had a small ebb of excitement stowed away for the Bobsled because I remembered it being excellent. I remembered correctly, had fun singing with @Ian on the lift hill.
I pretended I was going to ride Scream because I LOVE THE SOUNDTRACK TO THIS RIDE and I just wanted to stand and listen to it, but when I realised you couldn't really hear it in the queue I gave up on all pretence of bravery.
Flug Der Daemonen next. Again with the pronunciation - everyone was shortening it to Flug, which I don't believe is what Mr. Big Scary Daemonen wants. Flug. It's be like calling Flight of the Pterosaur 'Flight.' Missing out the very thing that makes it scary and exciting. What am I waffling on about?! Normally I would say something about the coaster by there's no point it's ****.
Moving on. Buffet lunch and How To Train Your Dragon area was great.
So was Ghostbusters. I like Shooty Dark Rides With Screens because they remind me of when I got the Time Crisis with Light Gun Pack for Christmas. The vehicles were fab and the whole ride was lots of fun. So fun, we re-rode it whilst the others Deserted us.
As the day went on I started to feel a bit gutted seeing all the Halloween decor and the mazes lurking, would have been great to experience those, but alas, we were too early for their event.
We finished the day on Krake.
Err..we finished the day on the B+M Dive Machine. Easily the best coaster in the park. Lovely airtime in the back. Great visual from the top of the drop. The definition of short but sweet.
Then we went to the wonderful Heide Park Hotel, which if I'm honest, was my overall highlight of the day. Toothless sat atop the hotel! The swimming pool had mood lighting and slides! Amazing tasty buffet! Mario Kart in the Games Room!
Best of all, we got to stay in an awesome themed room, with vines all over the walls. I don't usually stay in Park Hotels, they're a real treat, and this one is probably the best one I've stayed in. Thanks to @nadroJ for sorting it out for us, it was a really great night.