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Reviews & Reactions - Scooby Doo Spooky Coaster: Next Generation

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What they should do is have a paid section to the Coaster with awesome theming and better coaster elements and a free section with alright theming and average coaster elements.

You can agree with me or not on this one. But it seems like it’s the beginning of the end for Scooby. So the ride is still no where near what was expected (especially after watching the TVC). Eve

Finally got to ride and HOLY SHITBALLS what an absolute Doggy's breakfast!! Wow seriously MW, way to go with this one! A pile of cash successfully wasted in taking the Park's best themed 'experience'

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9 hours ago, Levithian said:

As opposed to it sitting as a stripped out shell?

Movie World for some reason were happy enough for it to sit there like that for as long as it did.  That's egregious enough, I'm not about to give them a free-kick by making that somehow the baseline for this project.

9 hours ago, Levithian said:

You are familiar with how advertising works right?

More than you'd think.  Your advertising has to be connected with reality though if you don't want people to feel ripped off.

9 hours ago, Levithian said:

They did everything they promised. It has been transformed. It has new technology, and whether you like them or not, the effects are improved. I think people are remembering what scooby was like in its prime, not what it was like when it closed initially to be gutted. Sets may have looked good but everything else was a mess and what effects hadnt been removed was very hit and miss.

Rubbish.  It hasn't been "completely transformed".  Getting it back to a condition that is similar to what it was like when it was new is not a transformation.  "New Technology" was not on the list of promises, and even if it were the use of it is sloppy, uninspired, and dated.  Tip: 'dated' is not a word you want to hear when people are talking about your use of new technology.  That Movie World allowed the ride to deteriorate to the point that it was internally a mess of barely-working effects does not move the baseline they set which was the condition on opening day.  You don't buy a Lamborghini, crash it around, not mechanically maintain it to the point that it stops running and then buy a Hyundai Excel and call it an upgrade.

9 hours ago, Levithian said:

infinitely better than the state of the ride the day it suddenly closed and was gutted. The fact it has working effects in multiple areas is a huge improvement than its ever been in the last decade.

I think this is where our views fundamentally differ.  Under your logic repainting a roller-coaster that hasn't been done in fifteen years would count as an upgrade.  Under mine it would count as maintenance/refurbishment.

9 hours ago, Levithian said:

Its arguably the best it has ever been

Yeah... I guess I'm old-school in that I believe that if you're going to tell the media you're going to be completely transforming the ride, taking people on a ride experience like never before, and changing the name of your ride to include the term "new generation" that you probably ought to be aiming a little higher than "arguably the best it has ever been".

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1 hour ago, webslave said:

Yeah... I guess I'm old-school in that I believe that if you're going to tell the media you're going to be completely transforming the ride, taking people on a ride experience like never before, and changing the name of your ride to include the term "new generation" that you probably ought to be aiming a little higher than "arguably the best it has ever been".

I do think the marketing team got carried away on this one - it would have been better positioned as a mild retheme (Scooby-Doo Spooky Coaster: Scrappy's Revenge... or whatever). The new additions are good, but "next gen" is probably better used to describe Star Wars land, rather than adding a few projectors and flatscreens to an indoor mouse.

They also would have done well to hold off on the social media announcements until it was out of tech rehearsal, kind of a rookie mistake there...

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It was mentioned before, but i'm hoping that the fact they 3D scanned the disco room means something else is coming - i wanna hope there's more to come, and they've just rushed it open to cater to the holidays.

If there's nothing more to do, it is great that it isn't a hollow shell anymore, but it is underwhelming.

I still stand by my earlier comments that a lot more work has gone into it than people are giving credit for, but i still hope there's more to come.

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On 19/12/2018 at 12:53 AM, GoGoBoy said:

The ‘reflection’ of your car with the monsters chasing after it is awesome, very Haunted Mansion-esque;

I appreciate the ambition with that part, but the distance to the monsters didnt feel right at all, and at one point they're just clipping through the car. Hopefully they can fix that part up.

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9 hours ago, joz said:

 When I talk about the evils of installing technology for technology's sake, this is exactly the sort of thing I'm talking about.

I can't help but echo these sentiments. In terms of how well they have utilized the mediums, the 'next gen' screens and animations stand out as poorer quality than the original 3D set pieces and animatronics. The drop down monster actually gave me a jump scare as it has been so long since riding with effects that I forgot it was there, but that pitiful attempt at a scare at the end was just pathetic and out of place, I doubt it'd even scare small children that much.

If you don't have the budget to get the new tech done properly, you could have better spent your money improving the original effects. I can imagine with the money wasted on the screens they could have added extra lighting to spice up the original set pieces and scares in the haunted house section. They could have improved the smoke and lasers in the wild mouse section, maybe even still adding the cool lighting effects that we now have in that section. I think going for a 'next generation' approach when in reality you only have the money for a bit of a refurbishment was a bad idea.

It's not just smartarse enthusiasts who pick up on this stuff either. Most of the GP have an understanding of what makes good and bad animation quality through movies and video games. They also know a lot less about the challenges involved in making theme park attractions and won't take it into account when they evaluate their enjoyment of the experience. A friend of mine can attest to that, he was more disappointed with the screens than I was.

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I can’t believe they ripped out all the theming in the queue hall, surely they could’ve got that all sorted and replaced in time. 

From everyone’s comments it seems like there is currently only one moment of projection mapping. Is there definitely more and how well are they done?

Its a shame the shadow projected onto the wall of the mystery inc in the TVC isn’t a part of the ride, because that would be awesome (hopefully it is added)

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2 hours ago, pushbutton said:

The projection mapping at Australian Outback Spectacular is incredibly good!  I was hoping for something of that quality. 

And that's the thing.

They got that so right at Outback Spectacular no doubt testing it between the previous shows and fine tuning it during the brief shut down. 

But with 5 months straight of closure they screwed it up so badly. That's assuming the one company did both facilities. 

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That has been the problem at VRTP historically in that everyone worked in silos. They’ll say have a team of experts at Outback, yet at MW there will be a different group people ‘trying to figure something out’. 

Or they will use two totally different suppliers from the same industry at different properties. 


Hopefully those days are behind us. 

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On 19/12/2018 at 11:31 AM, AlexB said:

How long did Scooby take to construct when it was first built? How much of that was actual track build, and how much was theming?

Warner Bros. Classics & The Great Gremlins Adventure closed in mid-2001 & Scooby-Doo Spooky Coaster opened on June 17 2002. So Scooby-Doo Spooky Coaster's installation took no longer than about a year.

This photo shows that theming and track installation were happening roughly around the same time however it's fair to say the track was installed before theming was added. This photo shows track installation took no longer than 4 months (February to June 2002) while this photo and this photo show the 'Spooky Castle' exterior theming alone took no more than a month and a half (Early April to late May 2002). All this should give an idea of how long it took to create/install the overall theming, though the duration depends on how many people were helping install the ride.

General Comment

Whilst I understand people's disappointment due to their exaggerated marketing, I'm amazed that so many theme park enthusiasts thought the ride would be completely new from start to finish when firstly, the exterior 'Spooky Castle' theming remained (that should imply the queue would be similar & the ghost train section would be fairly similar. After all, it is based on the movie - there were some parts of the ghost train they could add (such 'The Dinner Show') but most of the ghost train section from the movie was already there so there would be minimum change) and secondly, the trains were the same (they were in the new TV commercials too), which meant the ghost train section would be there, which I just detailed. Otherwise, why have 'Spooky Castle' and the same trains if they weren't going to travel through the ghost train section of the original ride? They were never going to stray from the movie's 'Spooky Castle' plot device (not to mention a fully-projection mapped ride would look unconvincing after a while) and I tried warning fellow forum members of this 2 years ago:

On 27/12/2016 at 7:03 PM, Jamberoo Fan said:
On 26/12/2016 at 5:13 PM, Glubbo said:

I hope they go with Mystery Incorporated - a more modern take albeit just as spooky/quirky as the previous versions.

On 27/12/2016 at 8:49 AM, Themeparkfan said:

I think  either it's a complete retheme or a fresh new Scooby storyline

It would be very difficult to do a Scooby Doo re-theme - it has to be based around Spooky Castle as that is the entrance to the ride and the carriages are the same as Spooky Castle's carriages. Unless MW changes the carriages (or re-themes them - I don't know how easy that is), it has to be themed to Spooky Castle.

So naturally, it would be the mostly-the-same 'ghost train' section with a few technical changes - mostly the touted projection mapping, which so far it is not and if it is, not applied well. Those technical changes though I'm waiting until they finish 'technical rehearsals' before making a final opinion on them. But one change that can be deemed 'finished' (in a way) is a change in narrative. The original ride's narrative was just trying to escape monsters inside the 'Spooky Castle' ghost train. You then try to find a scared Scooby-Doo who has escaped up into a disco up on ground level in the 'Spooky Island' theme park. After you escaped the 'ghost train' though and found Scooby-Doo, you 'fall' back into the 'Spooky Castle' ghost train but quickly find a safe way out to go back into the 'Spooky Island' theme park.

My theory (due to technical rehearsals still ongoing) on the narrative of the new edition is below:


It seems you are in the 'Spooky Castle' ghost train, which is being overtaken by 'demons'. As you can read in my detailed theory to @Slick below, at some point you are 'possessed' by one of the demons as your 'soul' is taken from you. You enter a cave (bottom of the elevator) where you see Scrappy-Doo briefly turned into a monster using you and other people's 'souls' but Shaggy removes the device allowing Scrappy to be like this (seen at the top of the elevator), thus reverting Scrappy-Doo to his initial state. The 'demons' possessing you and your group then escape during the backwards drop and in the new room housing the turntable is when you and your 'demon' first see sunlight reflecting from the hidden skull-shaped disco ball. The slow destruction of the 'demons' and 'souls' travelling around are reflected in the former 'disco room' through mist, lights, sounds and projections. When you leave the former 'disco room', you see the 'demons' seeing the skull-shaped disco ball and are finally fully destroyed. Their destruction pushes you out of the cave and into the 'Tiki Doll Lounge' of the 'Spooky Island' theme park but you immediately re-enter the 'Spooky Castle' ghost train, which you quickly leave again and go back into the 'Spooky Island' theme park.

The narrative is quite complex now and VRTP need to do a lot more work in order to make it work. It doesn't follow the order in the movie but can still make sense if the technology is there and applied well. In technical rehearsals so far though, it seems quite a few things are currently left unexplained. I haven't watched the movie in a while but from what I can tell from YouTube videos, it doesn't help the ride that the actual movie doesn't explain how a 'demon' possesses you. Their green breath is just shown as the 1st step in the process.

The ride is now themed mostly to the climatic scene of the movie, though not in chronological order, so spoiler alert:


On 21/12/2018 at 10:55 PM, Slick said:

The turntable is a...thing? Is it a mirror room now with kebab-shop LEDs? Is it a breaking mirror room because of the car entering it? Is it supposed to be a laser and i'm being zapped? It doesn't make sense and I don't get the story being told there.

This is just a theory based on the movie:

The turntable has a glass breaking noise, which is the noise that occurs when the 'demons' are destroyed by sunlight. Assuming the ride is still under technical rehearsals, I assume, at some point earlier in the ride, there would be a green mist when you see one of the 'demons' breath on you. You travel through the mist causing you to be 'possessed' by a 'demon'. During the backwards drop, I assume is when the 'demons' 'escape' from you (for some reason, you can't see the 'demon' 'escape' you at this point but this could be the rumoured projection mapping at this point). Someone referred to the 'protoplasm vat' being on the former 'disco room''s floor, which I assume will be in a 'tipped over' position to reflect the film. The 'souls' escaping from the 'protoplasm vat' and Scrappy-Doo are to be represented throughout the former 'disco room' as mist and projections onto the mist. When you enter the new room housing the turntable, this is when the first sunlight from the skull-shaped disco ball (seen later in the ride) is seen affecting the recently escaped 'demons'. The 'reflections' from the skull are also represented throughout the former 'disco room' as light beams etc. When you leave the former 'disco room', you see the 'demons' that have escaped from you and they are destroyed by sunlight reflected off the skull-shaped disco ball, which is finally now seen.

Edited by Jamberoo Fan
Fixing spoiler tags
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I expected the ride to be what it is now storyline wise. They said it was taking more aspects from the movie, so I expected more demons. Just from what I’ve seen online, the execution was poor. I think what they’ve done are great additions, just needed to be done to a better standard.

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I reckon youll find that refers to the queue hall being stripped, and i wouldnt be surprised if it takes longer to be repaired. Its a big area with a lot of either created or molded pieces, so i wouldnt be surprised if it needs another 150-200k spent just on this room.

Unless the company finds a pot of gold over the rainbow (maybe aquaman will blow the doors off), it would be like trying to get blood from a stone for a big spend during the final financial quarter. Maybe next year if its one of the first budgeted items to be approved. 

Edited by Levithian
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