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Why is Scream at SFMM so hated?

Before visiting Six Flags Magic Mountain for the first time I got to know that Scream is absolutely awful, one of the worst rides in the park and one of the worst B&M creations ever. With that in mind I rode all the other coasters (with some rerides) and left Scream for last, just to get the credit. It was dark by this point. I went to Scream and saw a big freshly painted B&M coaster. The queue was pretty bad as there were just some trees and nothing else, the theme was nonexistant, the station was very bare. By this point the park was pretty empty and the train for Scream was about 50% full but the ride ops did a great job dispatching quickly so they didnt wait untill the train would fill up.

The train left the station and I was bracing for the worst. I had heard all kinds of horror storries of extreme headaches and all that but what I found was an extremely smooth ride with lots of inversions and quite a good layout. The parking lot setting was awful but it was dark and it didnt really bother me. I was surprised and had to ride again just to see I didnt have an exeptionally good ride. I asked the ride ops if I could reride and they let me continue on. The second ride was equally good. Then I asked if I could ride the other train and I did that too and that was also really good. After 3 rides I left scream completly in awe. I reached the conclusion that Scream is an above average coaster in the park. Easily better than the terrible Goliath (sooo boring ride), short Full Throttle (the breaks on the drop bothered me), meh West Coast Racers (decent ride but didnt do much for me), jolty Viper and the Superman drop tower (let's face it, it's a drop tower with a launch). Scream is not in the top tier at SFMM and can not compare Twisted Collosus, X2, Tatsu and Riddler's. But in my opinion it fits very well with Apocalypse and Batman as good coasters but nothing outstanding for SFMM. At most other parks Scream would be a top tier ride. I would surely want Scream in Europe.

I really tried seeing the bad parts with Scream but couln't find them regarding the ride itself. Sure the theming is awful but that's not B&M's fault. Could someone please explain to me what makes this ride so bad?
 

opivy028

New Member
Soooo with you on this. Scream is a fun ride! Line’s not too bad in my experience, and a front row ride is a blast. It was honestly prob my number 3 at the park behind X2 and Twisted Colossus; tatsu was great but the pretzel loop gave me a headache every time. I’ve ridden Batman clones 1000 times so not v exciting, and Riddler’s is the best stand up imo but still don’t like standing up on rides.
 

Hutch

Well-Known Member
I haven't done it personally but I don't think it's really that hated? The big issue is it's awful location/surroundings, and I think when you combine that with it being a pretty standard B&M, it's not a memorable ride. I've only heard of a couple people truly disliking it over the years.
 

Howie

Active Member
I thought it was fairly decent to be honest. It's a big, smooth B&M which can never be a bad thing. It's just... well, it was kind of an odd choice to start with, not really bringing anything new to SFMM's line up (apart from being floorless, obvs, but as any enthusiast will tell you, that in itself doesn't actually enhance the ride experience that much. In fact, I personally prefer all of the B&M traditional sit-down loopers I've ridden to any of their floorless models).
They didn't even do anything new with the layout, just the same 7-loop recipe that we'd seen dozens of times before on big B&M's.
Then there's the car park thing. To this day, I believe you can still see the parking spaces marked out on the tarmac beneath the ride.
That's it really, nothing too horrific, a very respectable coaster in many respects. Just... coulda been better.
 

Antinos

Slut for Spinners
Social Media Team
Scream gets a bad rap because it's just so average in many respects. The layout is an average B&M layout. The ride's intensity is average for what B&M has done both before and after the ride was built. Pacing? Again, average. I first rode it back in 2005 and thought similarly as you, but I rerode it in 2017 and it just was not hitting. It's not awful by any stretch, but there are a lot of better rides out there.
 

Hyde

I Lied About My Age!
Staff member
Moderator
Social Media Team
Yeah the coaster itself is fine, nothing wrong with it as such.

It just looks atrocious with it being on the parking lot.

And it's really forgettable when you've got the rest of the SFMM lineup.
Bingo. At the time of opening, Scream's awfulness was less because of the ride (it's a Medusa layout, they're pretty decent), but just the blatant "parking lot coaster" appeal of the ride.

Furthermore, there was an optics problem; 2003 was a pretty lit year for coasters. Here's a quick survey of other attention grabbing rides that opened that same year:
- Atlantis Adventure, Lotte World
- Ozark Wildcat, Celebration City (RIP)
- TTD, Cedar Point
- Balder, Liseberg
- Nemesis Inferno, Thorpe Park
- Superman: Ultimate Flights, SFOG, SFGAdv

In comparison, a mirror clone built on a parking lot was not well received at SFMM.

TL;DR Hate the park planning, not the coaster
 

Bathtub Gin

New Member
There was definitely grumbling about it's smoothness early on (I remember people speculating about track imperfections/defects on various message boards) , in addition to the parking lot factor, and even complaints about the name.

I've not ridden it, but have yet to ride a B&M coaster that I would call rough.
 

rideguy70

New Member
I don't know if it's really hated... in many other parks, Scream would probably be a near top level ride. But SFMM has such a huge, diverse, and really intense line up of coasters, much more so than a typical park, that it sort of gets lost in the shuffle. Being located pretty far out of the way and lacking any discernible theming doesn't really help it stand out.

I do find it pretty smooth, with the exception of the first vertical loop. That part can be pretty bad.

During a Q&A at an event, the management was asked about Scream. They replied they were thinking of repainting the parking lines back in to keep up the theming. 😄
 

Pokemaniac

Mountain monkey
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
I haven't ridden it myself, but the impression I have of Scream is that it was just thrown into the park for the sake of a +1 to its coaster count, and that's kind of strange to see for such a big coaster. One would think a ride like that would have gotten some sort of fanfare, but apparently SFMM had zero interest of paying for anything other than the ride hardware, so it got nothing. It has a generic name, a generic logo, no story or themeing whatsoever, not a trace of landscaping or decoration - they didn't even tear up the parking lot. The park gave it the same amount of recognition as a travelling fair coaster (heck, at least travelling fairs tend to put lights and decoration on their coasters), so it's no wonder the fans never gave it much recognition either.

And I think it bears repeating, this coaster is big by modern standards. It is bigger than anything Six Flags has built since 2006. In terms of height, length, speed and number of inversions, it actually matches Helix's stats pretty well. If built today, it would have one of the biggest multiloopers seen in well over a decade (behind Banshee, Steel Curtain, and a few Wing Coasters). A coaster this size would have been a headliner attraction for years to come in almost any park out there.

Heck, scratch "almost". There's nowhere this could be built today without becoming a keystone of the park's lineup. It's a 46-meter B&M with seven inversions. So in a sense, it's almost insulting that SFMM threw up a few fences in its parking lot and slapped it down without further thought, like a first-time RCT player who has just discovered he could save a ton of money on his rides by turning off the scenery.

I think it could have been a really memorable ride if it was just given some themeing and landscaping, though. But Six Flags aren't quite the right people I'd trust to do so. It's amazing it hasn't been renamed into a DC character already.
 
We all seem to agree that the ride itself isnt too bad but what about those rough rides. Has anyone experienced that awfull rattle? I tried really hard findning the roughness but couldnt.
 

rideguy70

New Member
From what I've heard, one train is supposedly worse than the other. But it's had to say how much of that is fact, and how much is just made up. Like I said, I actually don't find it all that rough with the exception of the first loop.
 

hendrixmarshall

New Member
There was definitely grumbling about it's smoothness early on (I remember people speculating about track imperfections/defects on various message boards) , in addition to the parking lot factor, and even complaints about the name.

I've not ridden it, but have yet to ride a B&M coaster that I would call rough.
Mantirou and the stand up at Carowinds says, "Hold my beer..."
 

Hyde

I Lied About My Age!
Staff member
Moderator
Social Media Team
I haven't ridden it myself, but the impression I have of Scream is that it was just thrown into the park for the sake of a +1 to its coaster count, and that's kind of strange to see for such a big coaster. One would think a ride like that would have gotten some sort of fanfare, but apparently SFMM had zero interest of paying for anything other than the ride hardware, so it got nothing. It has a generic name, a generic logo, no story or themeing whatsoever, not a trace of landscaping or decoration - they didn't even tear up the parking lot. The park gave it the same amount of recognition as a travelling fair coaster (heck, at least travelling fairs tend to put lights and decoration on their coasters), so it's no wonder the fans never gave it much recognition either.

And I think it bears repeating, this coaster is big by modern standards. It is bigger than anything Six Flags has built since 2006. In terms of height, length, speed and number of inversions, it actually matches Helix's stats pretty well. If built today, it would have one of the biggest multiloopers seen in well over a decade (behind Banshee, Steel Curtain, and a few Wing Coasters). A coaster this size would have been a headliner attraction for years to come in almost any park out there.

Heck, scratch "almost". There's nowhere this could be built today without becoming a keystone of the park's lineup. It's a 46-meter B&M with seven inversions. So in a sense, it's almost insulting that SFMM threw up a few fences in its parking lot and slapped it down without further thought, like a first-time RCT player who has just discovered he could save a ton of money on his rides by turning off the scenery.

I think it could have been a really memorable ride if it was just given some themeing and landscaping, though. But Six Flags aren't quite the right people I'd trust to do so. It's amazing it hasn't been renamed into a DC character already.
Great point which I forgot to mention - 2003 was peak "Coaster Wars" between Cedar Point and SFMM. With Cedar Point building TTD in 2003, that put the park at 16 roller coasters; there was a strong sense SFMM built Scream! to keep up with CP's coaster count (also bringing SFMM's count up to 16 coasters). Cedar Point was even so petty as to make public statements about how Superman: The Escape (now Escape from Krypton) was not a roller coaster but rather thrill ride, and made the argument that SFMM only had 15 roller coasters, giving Cedar Point the lead.
 

rideguy70

New Member
I've not ridden it, but have yet to ride a B&M coaster that I would call rough.
Partriot and Rougarou are pretty bad. But I will give Patriot a bit of a break, as it was the #2 coaster B&M made. Not really sure what the excuse is for Rougarou is, though both rides were originally stand up that have been converted.
 

Bathtub Gin

New Member
Mantirou and the stand up at Carowinds says, "Hold my beer..."
Partriot and Rougarou are pretty bad. But I will give Patriot a bit of a break, as it was the #2 coaster B&M made. Not really sure what the excuse is for Rougarou is, though both rides were originally stand up that have been converted.
The Stand Ups have never been an issue for me. Never got to ride either of the Vortex Stand Ups (or Patriot), but Iron Wolf came earlier than either of them, and I think it's fantastic. Mantis (was) and Rougarou is as well.
 

Pokemaniac

Mountain monkey
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
Great point which I forgot to mention - 2003 was peak "Coaster Wars" between Cedar Point and SFMM. With Cedar Point building TTD in 2003, that put the park at 16 roller coasters; there was a strong sense SFMM built Scream! to keep up with CP's coaster count (also bringing SFMM's count up to 16 coasters). Cedar Point was even so petty as to make public statements about how Superman: The Escape (now Escape from Krypton) was not a roller coaster but rather thrill ride, and made the argument that SFMM only had 15 roller coasters, giving Cedar Point the lead.
If not for this coaster war between CP and SFMM, or even with it in mind, one could almost suspect that Scream! was at some point meant to be a temporary installation at SFMM. Put up for cheap in a location it could easily be taken down again, quickly converting the area back into a parking lot. It would have been a headliner attraction at any other Six Flags park, even if it had served at SFMM for a season or two before it got there.

Then again, the fact that it wasn't relocated, even when the whole chain had a severe drought of new big coasters and it was kind of redundant at SFMM, suggests there's nothing to this theory. If it was ever intended to be relocated, I guess it would have done so a long time ago.
 
It's almost sad that it hasnt been relocated. Imagine what a popular ride it could become at some other Six Flags park. Riddler could have been converted into a floorless and it would have become fantastic ride. Also imagine what SFMM could have done with that large plot of land, after they ripped up the parking lot ;).
 
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