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Rank the GCIs

Hyde

I Lied About My Age!
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1. Thunderhead - Dollywood - I'm a sucker for my first GCI love. I remember this one blowing me away when I first rode it back in 2008; the swift layout, aggressive transitions, station fly-through were all foreign versus the Dinn Corp./CCI/PTC I had ridden to that point. And the roller coaster has held up over the years, giving a slightly rougher, but same aggressive ride experience. Beyond the ride, it's setting (along with the rest of Dollywood) in the heart of the Smokies has always made it one of the most gorgeous roller coaster settings out there.

2. Mystic Timbers - Kings Island - I have been eating crow throughout 2017 on this remarkably good GCI. I will admit; I was jaded by a middle-of-the-road experience on Prowler and doubts over the hype train Kings Island was rolling for this opening (not to mention, being right next door to one of the most prolific wooden coasters in existence). But hey! It turned out to be a really good ride! Day or night, front or back, Mystic Timbers offers an airtime-filled layout that (gratefully) focused on a more out-and-back design versus the side-to-side twister layout of Prowler. Airtime moments are frequent and full, and there's even some trick track peppered in. And let's be honest: did you actually expect the Shed to be good?

3. Apocalypse the Ride - Six Flags Magic Mountain - This is the most underrated GCI in my estimation. A layout that harkens in many ways to Thunderhead, Apocalypse features great twister elements and aggressive pace-change. The under-structure moments, tunnels, and station fly-through gives some great close call moments as well. I have really enjoyed getting to ride this not-so-talked about number.

4. American Thunder - Six Flags St. Louis - Similar to Apocalypse, American Thunder does not get nearly enough praise that it deserves. I really enjoyed this compact layout for packing in both large sweeping turns and smaller bunny hills.

5. Lightning Racer - Hersheypark - Undoubtedly my favorite dueler to date - how can you not enjoy the layout on this one? Very fun, large layout with cool train fly-bys.

6. Prowler - Worlds of Fun - I think I hyped myself up too much for this one, and was left wanting more. Riding Mystic Timbers has helped me better frame it's older, smaller brother. The airtime moments and transitions are good... but are just not as much as Mystic Timbers.

This is the general line I would draw between the good and the Meh of GCI. Seriously, they make a lot of good design, and even their lackluster coasters are still fun to ride.

7. Roar - Six Flags America - I was pleasantly surprised by the front row ride on this one. I can see the slow/meandering pace criticism it gets. But riding in the front, you do get bouts of airtime throughout it's larger, drawn out layout. The Roars are what put GCI more on the map, but they are nowhere near as aggressive as their subsequent design.

8. Wildcat - Hersheypark - the coaster that sparked it all, but still is a slower, meandering design versus the rest. Glad they updated it with the Millennium Flyer trains though.
To update with some new rides:
1. Thunderhead - Dollywood - I'm a sucker for my first GCI love. I remember this one blowing me away when I first rode it back in 2008; the swift layout, aggressive transitions, station fly-through were all foreign versus the Dinn Corp./CCI/PTC I had ridden to that point. And the roller coaster has held up over the years, giving a slightly rougher, but same aggressive ride experience. Beyond the ride, it's setting (along with the rest of Dollywood) in the heart of the Smokies has always made it one of the most gorgeous roller coaster settings out there.

2. Mystic Timbers - Kings Island - I have been eating crow throughout 2017 on this remarkably good GCI. I will admit; I was jaded by a middle-of-the-road experience on Prowler and doubts over the hype train Kings Island was rolling for this opening (not to mention, being right next door to one of the most prolific wooden coasters in existence). But hey! It turned out to be a really good ride! Day or night, front or back, Mystic Timbers offers an airtime-filled layout that (gratefully) focused on a more out-and-back design versus the side-to-side twister layout of Prowler. Airtime moments are frequent and full, and there's even some trick track peppered in. And let's be honest: did you actually expect the Shed to be good?

3. Apocalypse the Ride - Six Flags Magic Mountain - This is the most underrated GCI in my estimation. A layout that harkens in many ways to Thunderhead, Apocalypse features great twister elements and aggressive pace-change. The under-structure moments, tunnels, and station fly-through gives some great close call moments as well. I have really enjoyed getting to ride this not-so-talked about number.

4. American Thunder - Six Flags St. Louis - Similar to Apocalypse, American Thunder does not get nearly enough praise that it deserves. I really enjoyed this compact layout for packing in both large sweeping turns and smaller bunny hills.

5. Lightning Racer - Hersheypark - Undoubtedly my favorite dueler to date - how can you not enjoy the layout on this one? Very fun, large layout with cool train fly-bys.

6. Prowler - Worlds of Fun - I think I hyped myself up too much for this one, and was left wanting more. Riding Mystic Timbers has helped me better frame it's older, smaller brother. The airtime moments and transitions are good... but are just not as much as Mystic Timbers.

7. White Lightning - Fun Spot Orlando - A roller coaster that I was very excited to ride given it's tight footprint and picturesque wrapping around the park... it was a pretty rough ride. Granted, I think this is partly the fault of riding it without a fully-loaded train, and the coaster having short trains at that; but the trains had a good deal of shuffle that knocked it down a peg or two during my ride.

This is the general line I would draw between the good and the Meh of GCI. Seriously, they make a lot of good design, and even their lackluster coasters are still fun to ride.

8. Roar - Six Flags America - I was pleasantly surprised by the front row ride on this one. I can see the slow/meandering pace criticism it gets. But riding in the front, you do get bouts of airtime throughout it's larger, drawn out layout. The Roars are what put GCI more on the map, but they are nowhere near as aggressive as their subsequent design.

9. InvadR - Busch Gardens Williamsburg - From a kiddie/family coaster perspective, this hits a great stride with a fast-paced layout that doesn't put you too far outside your comfort zone. When compared to other coasters, it is surely tame; but gives a good ride, for what it is, regardless.

10. Wildcat - Hersheypark - the coaster that sparked it all, but still is a slower, meandering design versus the rest. Glad they updated it with the Millennium Flyer trains though.
 

KJ7500

New Member
I've only ridden two GCIs but here's how I'd rank them
1. Renegade An absolute blast with plenty of airtime and sicker crossovers than Allen Iverson. My friend and I were falling all into each other on the first ride cause we'd lean one way in anticipation and it would throw us to the other side.
Fun from the back seat, front seat and middle of the train. We got in 4 rides on our trip to Valleyfair, including a bonus reride at last call which helped make up for getting stuck on Delirious for 10 minutes. It was really hauling at the end of the night, too.
2. White Lightning Not as intense as Renegade but a more airtime filled layout. I think I can back up what the previous poster hypothesized about it being rougher on empty trains as I rode this in 2017 with full or mostly full trains and didn't find it at all painful. In 2019 I rode WL on almost empty trains and it was considerably more bumpy. Not a terrible ride, but it just didn't have that same reridability. Also, it just wasn't as fun without a train load of eager riders, many of whom were clearly marathoning it. The night-time party atmosphere really made my rides seem more exciting. No, last year one of my two rides was just me and another lone enthusiast who ended up riding the Harry Potter Forbidden Journey ride with myself and my parents the next day via the single rider line.
It's definitely perfect for that park though, and the lighting package really makes it pop at night. If only there was a way to get everybody off the go karts and on White Lightning.
 
Only done 3 so far.

1) Troy. - Superb, one of my favourite coasters easily. Superb speed, height, awesome station fly through. I love it. Really warms up during the day. At the back it's mental.
2) Joris en de draak. Great fun and probably the most intense coaster at Efteling, Feels out of control in parts.
3) Wicker Man - It is pretty decent and it just scrapes into my top 3 at Alton Towers. It's not as good as the others I reckon as the height restriction lets it down, also bizarre shaped lift hill I always think and thus is somewhat short. Also shame about the flat turn towards the last part. Without the nonsense height restrictions at Alton Towers this could have beaten the others for me. The theming is stunning I have to say. For the money you would have thought this could have been like Joris and a double racing woodie but I guess the construction costs are so vast at Alton Towers and it is a complex area to build, so this was always out of the question. The park definitely could have done with a racing woodie capacity. Only woodie out of the 3 I've never been able to make up my own mind where to sit. Kind of sad that approach. Pure luck where you sit, even during an ERS/ERT which is crazy.
 
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Done a good handful:

1. Thunderhead - Absolute masterpiece. One of my all-time favorite layouts, the flow & pacing are excellent. The retracking the park has done has made an insane difference. FLIES through the layout and never lets off till the brakes. Probably my favorite traditional woodie.
2. Mystic Timbers - PACING. Thing keeps its speed incredibly well, no dead spots IMO, great airtime, and is still glass smooth. Can't get enough.
3. Gold Striker - A little rougher than I would like it to be, but still wonderful. Killer layout
4. Wodan - Oddball of the group. Don't really remember it all that well, but it was pretty decent. Wish they could've taken full advantage of the height.
5. American Thunder - An incredible surprise. Essentially a small Thunderhead. One heck of a little ride!
6. Wildcat HP - Never understood the hate for this one. It doesn't necessarily do anything, but it's not bad.
7. Lightning Racer - Never understood the love for this one. Understandably it's focused on the dueling aspect and that lessens the "kickass GCI" aspect that a single track could have. Just very ok.
8. White Lightning - Decent. Serves its purpose. Highlight of this was meeting Schilke in the station.
9. InvadR - Decent as well. Pretty fun, a couple cool moments.

Don't care to rank:

-Roar, SFA. Not worth a review.
-Gwazi. Rode it when I was just getting into coasters and all I know is that it was awful.
 

MestnyiGeroi

Active Member
GCIs I’ve ridden so far:

1. Renegade
2. American Thunder
3. Joris en de Draak
4. Mystic Timbers
5. Troy
6. El Toro (Plohn)
7. Lighting Racer
8. Apocalypse
9. Wodan
10. InvadR
11. Thunderhead
12. White Lightning
13. Kentucky Rumbler
14. Wildcat
15. Roar (SFA)
 

SDaniel

New Member
Joris en de Draak is the only GCI I've ridden and I love it! (I go to the Efteling every year, because it's my favo park and I have young children...)
 

Cstrcrzy1

New Member
Wow, I've only been on 2 (3 if you count each gwazi side as seperate rides).

3. White Lightning - Smoothest of the ones I've been on (which doesn't say much) and provided some nice airtime but it lacks in intensity despite a fast paced ride. Decent coaster overall and good for families but as a fan of a coasters intensity I was underwhelmed.

2. Gwazi Tiger - The rougher side of Gwazi. It was easy to tell the tiger side was not maintained nearly as much as lion. Fast paced and intense which made up for the rough ride and the near miss elements were always a good whoa moment. If only tiger was kept up better and not closed 95% of the time.

1. Gwazi Lion - Not as rough as Tiger but still not exactly smooth either. Regarding intensity speed and pacing the same as above and the near-miss elements again made it a cool experience. Lionel so felt like the fastest side because it was open more of the time so the trains were always full as compared to less than half full trains on tiger side the rare occasion tiger was even open.

When all this madness comes to an end in the Parks reopen I'm hoping to at least add Thunderhead to my list of wooden coasters before the year is up.
 

Matt N

Well-Known Member
Sorry to bump this thread, but have any CFers been able to ride Texas Stingray this year? Only asking as I’d be very intrigued to know how it compares to some of the other GCIs.
 

Matt N

Well-Known Member
I was merely intrigued as to how it rode, as I always thought that it looked like a very strong GCI in the early POVs!
 
1 - Mystic Timbers
2 - Gold Striker
3 - American Thunder
4 - Wickerman
5 - Thunderhead
6 - Apocalypse: The Ride
7 - Texas Stingray (Good ride, but ranked low from overhype)
8 - Renegade
9 - White Lightning
10 - Lightning Racer
I have two other GCI credits but I wanted to do a top ten
 

EDjanaika

New Member
I would like to contribute more to this poll but unfortunately I've ridden Wicker Man however I really enjoy it and I hope to add to my list in the future two years at least!
 
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