Zanstabar

Ride pre-shows

38 posts in this topic

Do Pre-Shows really help the ride not be overwhelmed with guests? 

I read an article somewhere (can't remember where) that mentioned many of the tricks that parks use in order to make queue lines not seem so daunting (e.g make that 45-minute experience feel like a 15-minute line). One of these, in the same vein as @Richard's post, was pre-shows. The theory is basically that pre-shows trick guests into thinking they aren't waiting in a queue when they actually are.

I can see how they can help the queueing experience, but wouldn't the experience still be brought down by sub-par operations? Batman Adventure always flowed through pretty quickly, but I don't think that the pre-show holds responsibility for that. If we put a pre-show on a lower capacity ride, such as Arkham Asylum, you would get out of the pre-show only to have another long wait ahead.

A pre-show would only work wonders if the operations are running as smoothly as they possibly can. This feels almost circlejerky right now, but operations have to improve for anything to make an effect. 

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I remember pre shows in rides were quite common at the GC parks. Bermuda Triangle, LTRR, LW, etc. And when done well, I thought they were quite good, but some weren't as good.

I didn't realise WWF had a pre show. What was it and where did it happen? I imagine it happened in that room that has two doors just before you go onto the ride.

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I thought the pre show in Roxy theatre used to be quite good when they had the screens in each corner of the room and the little puppets that popped out. Now it's a waste of time and you may as well just go straight through to the cinema. 

Best pre show I've seen in the Gold Coast was on Bermuda Triangle though. Really wasan important part of the whole experience. 

Edited by pushbutton

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35 minutes ago, pushbutton said:

Best pre show I've seen in the Gold Coast was on Bermuda Triangle though. Really wasan important part of the whole experience. 

Seriously? They hustled you into a tin shed with extensive "crap screwed to the wall" (which admittedly was very well themed) and played a video to you on a screen... THAT is the best pre-show you've seen on the gold coast?

:puke:

You must have missed the elaborately themed pre-show for Looney Tunes River Ride...

Spoiler

...which started you in a queue, then moved you into a room painted with every character that ever graced the WB screen, setting the scene for entry into sound stages (and walking through a magical portal that transports you straight to hollywood) before entering an apparent film set of looney tunes characters in the middle of shooting, with elaborate animatronics, thought, authentic voice-over recordings that sound like the real thing (and probably were), all setting the scene for Bugs' escape to Australia, whereby we must proceed to board an "Earth Drill" (which apparently is set on the moon), which is well over 12 feet tall, huge, and quite genuine looking, before the doors shut (the bouncy floor is a nice touch to suggest vibrations of the drill) where video screens overhead (shhhh! they're windows!) open to reveal the earth being chewed up and spat out by the drill, before closing again as the vibrations shut down and the door opens to reveal the most ocker of aussie characters to welcome us to "Australia" (remembering of course we had just been transported from Hollywood), before boarding this Aussie Ocker's boat cruise to go hunting for Bugs Bunny...

Ok, but surely if you missed LTRR, you didn't miss Batman Adventure - The Ride...

Spoiler

...Where you enter an imposing facade of Wayne Manor into a dimly lit and musty library, before an opening spiel to inform you that you're actually a guest on a tour of wayne manor, where we then see a live cross to show the unveiling of a new monument in gotham city, until suddenly, a crime! Quick! Proceed to the batcave - all these people are going to help fly the batpods to save gotham again! <cue opening of secret door in library wall nobody knew was there> <walk through elaborately themed "cave" walls before queueing and then entering a cavern... The Bat Cave!!! Televisions and screens adorn the wall and it's not long before (animatronic) batman appears in the flesh! he analyses the situation and talks to both lucius on screen and to us directly! Wow!! Batman talked to us! He needs our help!!! Wow! Hurry into the batpods quickly! We need to save Gotham!!!

No? Ok - well clearly you have seen the Shrek pre-show. I mean seriously - animatronic Pinocchio and 3 little pigs, with inbuilt video screens showing their faces, crowd participation ( "A Flogging! ooooOOOOOooooooo!"), well known characters both in voice and on screen (not to mention the effort of animation). Even this little pre-show to a 4D movie, in my opinion, is still better than the Bermuda preshow, which was literally just a couple of actors in costume on screen, with no automation, animatronic, interaction, participation...

I mean - Bermuda could literally have been replaced with this:

Quote

Welcome Aboard researchers! We've noticed a lot of planes and boats go missing in the bermuda triangle. You will be part of our research team - and we're sending you into the volcano to investigate. standby for launch!

Although I must admit - your claim is just about on par with all the other statements and claims you make - so i'll just chalk it up to 'just another crazy wacky push statement to gloss over....'

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@AlexB, you can disagree without writing a thesis about just how wrong you think someone is. 

For what it's worth, Bermuda Triangle had an effective pre-show that set into motion a cohesive plot that reveals itself steadily throughout the ride. The ride was corny, camp and ridiculous, but it was a better example of theme park storytelling than any other ride in Australian history, including those that you mentioned.

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@skeetafly - i'm just mindful not everyone enjoys reading really long posts. those who want to - can. those who don't can scroll on by.

@Richard I absolutely agree with you that Bermuda as a whole was the best story \ theme \ ride combo we had, as you say... my comments however were directed only at the pre-show itself. The statement was the pre-show was the best (he had seen). My statements were to ask if he had seen LTRR, which (granted IMO) had a much better preshow for the reasons i mentioned, and again, BATR, which, (granted IMO) was also a far better preshow than BT for the reasons mentioned.

Overall BT as a package was far better than LTRR or BATR, but if you look at pre-show in isolation (which is what Push's comment referred to), I don't think anyone could say BT's pre-show was the best on the coast.

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I disagree with your interpretation of his point. the two sentences are clearly separate and stand alone. I absolutely agree the preshow contributed to the whole, but i wouldn't say contributed to the whole better than the others. 

That said, I have in fact (at least once) on quiet days been on BT when there was no pre-show attendant. The video ran on a loop, doors at both ends were open, and people just went up and over. I have to say i've never experienced that on either BATR or LTRR.

I mean no disrespect to the ride. It was fantastic, and easily the closest we ever got to 'disney' quality in an attraction (until budget cuts and other development degraded it). For me it's a big thing about Sea World - the first time I went to SW, it was under construction, and I didn't return to the coast for many years - so I frequently wondered about what it would be like before I finally got a chance to ride... I just don't see that the pre-show was anything special. It set the scene and the theme, it did it succintly and it made its point. Yes it was a bit silly, a bit camp, but overall it was just a video, on a screen, in a dark room that was (thankfully air conditioned and) themed statically, but very well. The same video could have been played in an empty room and achieved the same result.

However, you've made your point, and i'm pretty sure i've made mine. I'm pretty sure we're not actually debating the same issue... but there is no sense beating a dead horse, so i'll leave it at that.

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15 hours ago, AlexB said:

but overall it was just a video, on a screen, in a dark room that was (thankfully air conditioned and) themed statically, but very well.

Did you ever ride in its heyday when staff were uniformed, in character and actually sold the experience? Your glowing descriptions of Looney Tunes and Batman Adventure are consistent with those rides at their peak (though BATR2 was always a rambling mess), but your unembellished description of Bermuda Triangle reads like the budget cuts version.

Interesting tidbit while on Bermuda Triangle: the story goes that when Disney/Universal execs were out for an IAAPA convention at the Gold Coast years back, they were amazed at the quality of the ride, and gobsmacked when they found out the price it was built for.

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Just now, Richard said:

Interesting tidbit while on Bermuda Triangle: the story goes that when Disney/Universal execs were out for an IAAPA convention at the Gold Coast years back, they were amazed at the quality of the ride, and gobsmacked when they found out the price it was built for.

 

I might have my information wrong, but wasn't Bermuda built in-house after a quote was higher than Sea World was willing to pay? 

Either way, I'm really bummed I never had the chance to experience Bermuda back in its heyday. I only got to experience the sub-par version before it closed, with no audio, no fire, and many effects seemingly not working. 

Let's hope we get something in the same vein one day...

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I saw Bermuda in its heyday, including the pre-show.  The costumes and all were lovely, but ultimately it was being herded into the room to watch a video clip, and then over the top onto the turntable.  There really wasn't a lot to it.  It added about as much to the experience as a video clip you'd be shown before a game of laser tag.  The fact that the storyline of the ride tied into the video clip was nice, but that's about it.  Come back late in the day and you'd find the video clip on a loop and people allowed to walk through.

If I contrast it to the Batman ride you had the library set with the bookcase, then the tunnel where there was a back and forth between the host and video clip, then the bat cave, and then you'd be pushed through to the ride which constantly referenced the pre-show.  That was a multi-stage pre-show with much higher production values.

LTRR's pre-show was a mixed-bag.  The room with the painted characters was fun to kill some time, the animatronics were a bit goofy but the kids probably liked them.  The elevator was... an elevator.  Whatever.

As far as quality of effects in the ride itself Bermuda craps on the others pretty comfortably, but if we are simply taking the pre-show I don't think we can say the same.  If I had to wonder - I'd say the Batman pre-show was double the length of the Bermuda one.

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I'm afraid I never got to experience the Batman ride, but from what I've read it sounds like it was probably a lot better than what's replaced it. 

As were Bermuda Triangle and LTRR, which I have experienced. 

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Thanks. That confirms for me that it was a lot better than Justice League. 

I don't mind if rides are replaced with something better, or even different but just as good.

However this just seems a big downgrade to me. Same goes for LTRR and BT.

 

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Based on that video the pre show is definitely much better in the Batman ride than the BT pre show. 

 

A good pre show isn't just a distraction from the queue. It's part of the experience. 

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I was never a fan of the Batman ride. I got to ride it a couple of times, and I just never got into it. The journey through it all was good, but I personably didn't think it was anything special. And despite the JL having a very quick ending, I do think it's a really good replacement.

I loved the LTRR. The pre show and the river part. Despite the ride getting on in years, I still thought it was a great ride, and do wish that MW had upgraded it. I do think that JDS is a good addition, but not the best replacement of a ride like LTRR. 

I got ride BT a few times, including when the pre show and flame was in operation. I loved this ride as well. But I didn't find the pre show anything exciting, I remember when I was younger getting a bit bored by the pre show video as it felt like it went for ages (but it probably didn't). I always thought every part of the ride was really good, and was dissapointed when it went. Again, I do think that the storm coaster is a good ride, with good themeing, but once you splash down there isn't much to it. If the inside section had a few part turns to it, and more to story of you going through a crashed ship, it would have been even better, but probably wasn't possible due to the size of the building. I wish they'd put it out the front of the park, like originally planned and they could have spent some money on upgrading BT, but because of the penguin encounter, this would have restricted this.

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I loved the pre-show elements for BTR, being a bit of a batman tragic, the whole library/batcave had that immersivness to it that isn't seen often in Australia. the ride itself lost its appeal when they changed to 2. I think JL is a solid replacement. The ride itself is a better attraction than BTR2 was, just missing the immersive pre-show.

I wish LTRR was still around simply so my son could experience it and what a 'complete' experience it was with many elements not found now on the coast (faux elevator/goofy hazards like falling trees/rocks) and obviously a themed looney tunes attraction. I think Jnr Driving School is really well executed and a good attraction too, but I don't view it as a LTRR replacement as they are such different attractions 

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Pre-ride shows and line-hiding certainly provided a more enjoyable experience, especially at Movie World. It comes down to staffing. LTRR, Gremlins, BTR, Studio Tour, all required acting staff.

Whoever the bean counter was that decided it was too expensive never understood the importance of immersion to enhance the ride/attraction, and how these pre-shows made us forget we were still lining up.

Gremlins' was great (if you hadn't experienced it before / in a while). LTRR as well if the riders participated.




Oh, and yeah. I'm back.

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