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Most surprising coaster addition ever?

MestnyiGeroi

Giga Poster
Arie Force One, the multi-million-dollar RMC that clearly promises to be wildly innovative and wholly world class in nature, is coming to what is essentially a municipal park/permanent local fair in Fun Spot Atlanta. No one would dispute that this is a shocking development on several levels.

But this got me thinking: This is, as far as I know, THE most surprising addition to any park I have ever known — or at least that I can recall.

Can anyone think of an equally or more surprising addition of a coaster to a park ever?
 

Steely Dan

Roller Poster
The construction of Dragon Mountain, a gigantic arrow multi-looper with 5,500 of track (the largest arrow coaster built up to that point and still one of the largest anywhere) at Marineland, a relatively random and unassuming aquatic life park not known for big thrill thrill rides, was pretty damn WTF-ish back in the early 80s.

Similarly, the addition of Desperado, a monster arrow hypercoaster, in the mid 90s at some random casino in the the middle of nowhere in the Nevada desert that no one had ever heard of before, was also quite shocking to the coaster world back then.

I don't know if those are the most surprising coaster additions ever, but with both of them being such gigantic rides for their respective times, and in such random, unexpected places, they both seemed awfully "left-fieldy".
 

ChristianPalsson

Mega Poster
Wildfire. I have never been more surprised when hearing of a ride construction. This is a world class coaster built at a zoo where the key audience are 5 year olds. It never gets a line and probably didn't increase attendance to the park by much. The guests who already are there to see the zoo might ride if they have the right height and courage but except for enthusiast nobody visits the zoo especially for it. Parks and Resorts were pretty dumb to build it but I absolutely love them for it.

If they want a bigger target audience they need to build some more thrill rides to accompany Wildfire, then they have a shoot at attracting anybody older than middle school age.
 

gavin

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Phaethon - a huge B&M invert in a park which otherwise had a jungle mouse and an old, crappy Japanese corkscrew coaster. It was also built and almost open before anyone found out it existed.

Dinoconda - the third S&S 4D, one of the most intense coaster experiences anywhere, in what was very much a family park.
 

Nicky Borrill

Giga Poster
I was going to say Wildfire, but alas I was beaten to it. That to me is the most surprising coaster, it surely shouldn't exist.

As I was beaten to it, may I please suggest The Big One? Whilst maybe not 'the' most surprising coaster, it certainly was a surprise. I don't think anybody would have expected a tiny park in the North West of England to build the world's biggest rollercoaster.
 

RcTmix

Mega Poster
Perhaps not as surprising as the above, but Top Thrill Dragster was quite surprising mainly because of the timeline.

Sure it’s a giant coaster at a giant park, but only 3 years after Millennium Force. In 2000 CP open the first 300 foot coaster. The record only last about 20 minutes before Steel Dragon 2000 opens. The two coasters are on opposite sides of the planet, so not really competing for guests. Nobody else in the Western Hemisphere has a giga, yet here come CP in 2003 saying “Ok fine, we built one that’s over 400.”
 

Y. Kim

Mega Poster
Phaethon - a huge B&M invert in a park which otherwise had a jungle mouse and an old, crappy Japanese corkscrew coaster. It was also built
When I visited with bus and train, I was surprised how obscure the park is located compared to other major Korean parks. But they're adding something big every 3 years with removing all the "old, crappy" rides. After that they aggressively added water park, new Supersplash ride, and Draken and its flats, and recently Valkyrie, they were the only Korean park which was financially plus in 2020,2021 COVID era.

On the main question, I might say long delaying 2 Macks at Busan. 2 expensive Mack in a new park nearby feels exciting.
I used to go there with my family to go to IKEA or Lotte Outlet, not knowing Lotte World will be there.
Seeing the tracks assembled made me having expectation but the park itself is delaying for 10 months.
 
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Alessio

Roller Poster
A few in Europe come to my mind, especially in recent years.

For example the small parks in France that almost no one heard before getting a rather big addition (Namazu, Objectif Mars, Vertika).

I would also put F.L.Y. up as a contender. Obviously there were rumors about a Flying Coaster for Phantasialand but after the opening of Klugheim I did not expect that they would add another thrill launch coaster directly afterwards.

Another interesting addition was Pitt’s Special at PowerPark. I think no one would have predicted that the park would build another Gerstlauer Infinity Coaster with the same trains & color.
 

Howie

Donkey in a hat
Fénix at Toverland certainly raised some eyebrows. Where did a small, relatively young park which, on the first day I visited, had about 6 guests in the entire park, find the money to buy a B&M wing coaster and build an entirely new themed area with supplementary rides to put it in? 🤔

Hyperion. How did Energylandia aka Vekomaland, suddenly build a monster Intamin hypercoaster with the tallest lift hill in Europe?

Zadra. Before the paint had even dried on Hyperion, how did Energylandia aka Vekomaland, throw up a monster RMC aswell? Twice?

Abyssus. Why on earth have Energylandia aka Vekomaland gone back to buying multiple Vekomas when clearly the 2 absolute star attractions at that park are... not Vekomas?
 
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Matt N

CF Legend
Fénix at Toverland certainly raised some eyebrows. Where did a small, relatively young park which, on the first day I visited, had about 6 guests in the entire park, find the money to buy a B&M wing coaster and build an entirely new themed area with supplementary rides to put it in? 🤔

Hyperion. How did Energylandia aka Vekomaland, suddenly build a monster Intamin hypercoaster with the tallest lift hill in Europe?

Zadra. Before the paint had even dried on Hyperion, how did Energylandia aka Vekomaland, they throw up a monster RMC aswell? Twice?

Abyssus. Why on earth have Energylandia aka Vekomaland gone back to buying multiple Vekomas when clearly the 2 absolute star attractions at that park are... not Vekoma?
So is the basic gist of your post “Energylandia is full of surprises”?

I think I did a similar topic to this not too long ago, and I’ll concur with some of the things I said in that thread before, but also add some new ones.

For starters, I think Project Amazon at Chessington was a big, big surprise for me. When Chessington announced a new coaster, I don’t think anyone expected a B&M shuttle wing coaster, and it goes against a lot of what the park has been doing for well over a decade now!

I’d also say that Cu Chulainn at Tayto Park was quite a surprising addition from my end. As much as it’s probably not the first coaster on many people’s lips, it’s not every day that you hear of a previously unheard of Irish park suddenly building one of Europe’s largest woodies!

If I had to be honest, I’d also nominate Tempesto at Busch Gardens Williamsburg for this too. I remember that coming as a real surprise, and I remember it generating a surprising amount of rage!

And not to mention Dr Diabolical’s Cliffhanger at Six Flags Fiesta Texas, which came out of nowhere seeing as Six Flags had been presumed to have ditched B&M for good!

I’ll concur with some of the others in this thread as well, though; Fenix certainly turned my head, as did Wildfire, and I’ll also agree with the Energylandia ones too. And I’ll admit that the scale of ArieForce One does surprise me; I was honestly anticipating something more Twisted Cyclone-sized, but I have to say that throwing a near-Zadra scale RMC at us was a real blinder by Fun Spot!
 

Sandman

Giga Poster
Troy at Toverland.

Did you ever go to Toverland before 2007? In fact, did you even know much about Toverland prior to '07?

Picture this. An incredibly small, mainly indoor children's park. A limited selection of rides.

Suddenly, news spreads that GCI (a manufacturer that as this point has not entered Europe) are building a 100ft 'modern' wooden coaster in this quaint, unassuming little kid's park.

15 years later and you've got to appreciate what Troy did for Toverland and how far the park has come.
 

Rupert

Mega Poster
Got to add The Ultimate to this. A tiny park in Yorkshire decide to not only build the longest roller coaster in the world, but also basically designed it in-house (with input from Big Country Motioneering) rather than go with a tried & tested manufacturer. And British Rail had to finish construction after BCM went bust?! None of it makes sense.

I can’t help but feel the park’s fate would have been very different if they’d built something more conventional and expanded the line-up with more tried and tested coasters, rather than effectively bankrupting themselves with a maintenance nightmare. It’s kind of the opposite outcome to the gamble Toverland made in @Sandman ’s example above.
 

emoo

Mega Poster
Fuji Q does a lot of surprising things that make me wonder what are they thinking. From mega thrill minor capacity, to a platform and wallet busting family ride. Constant 🤔

The Ride To Happiness, what a brave/bizzare move for the park.

I didn't believe a word of the rumours that Flamingo land was getting a colossus copy.
 

Indy

Mega Poster
I was pretty stunned by the Palindrome announcement. Obviously, COTA has been adding rides over the last few years, but anybody who has been to the circuit knows that it is a essentially a glorified carnival, if even that. There are a few rides randomly plopped down somewhat near one another. The fact that they have gone all in for a permanent launched looping coaster was quite shocking to.

For that matter, Ring Racer was a pretty shocking addition as well.
 
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