I went to the fair yesterday and went on a few rides. Here is my objective analysis:
Exhibit A: Tilt-a-Whirl
Concept: You spin around in a circle basically at random (seriously, read the bit on chaos theory) while spinning around in an even bigger circle. Meanwhile gravity plasters you to the wall. It’s loads more fun than it sounds.
Verdict: This is my all time favorite ride. I go on it every year and it never gets old. So obviously it was my first stop this time around, before it was on to bigger and better things!
Grade: A+ !
Exhibit B: Star Trooper
Concept: You fly around in the air, first forward, and then backward. Or the other way around, depending on which side of the seat you’re sitting on. You also go up and down and stuff.
Verdict: Going forward is tons more fun than going backward. The Going Backward experience on this ride basically just consists of not being able to move, breathe, or talk, because you’re stuck to the seat. It was an okay ride I guess.
Exhibit C: Pharaoh’s Fury
Concept: Giant swinging ship that sticks you at a 90 degree angle at its zenith.
Verdict: I had a bad feeling about this one and initially I refused to try it, but then I was talked into it with various arguments like “It doesn’t look that bad”.
Now, before I start on this one, I need to clarify that I am not afraid of heights. I’m that person in most other rides who twists around in the seat to stare at the ground, usually much to the chagrin of my ride partner when this causes us to bounce all over the place. But this is different. This ride is gravity hating you. Do you know what it feels like when gravity hates you? It’s an interesting feeling that can best be described as feeling like you are about two seconds away from floating out of your chair and over the safety bar and plummeting to your death below, but the boat thing swings the other way riiiiight before you do. If you want to experience this feeling for yourself, my advice to you is: DON’T. I spent the bulk of this ride with my eyes shut, praying to every potential deity I could think of for the whole thing to end.
I should note, though, that the guy behind me was completely smashed and sounded like he was having the best minute and a half of his entire life, so Beer Goggles may make this ride slightly more bearable. Your mileage may vary.
Grade: F for FREAKING TERRIFYING AND I AM NEVER RIDING THIS THING AGAIN.
Exhibit D: Spider
Concept: Tilt-a-Whirl, except in the air, basically.
Verdict: This ride works by lulling you into a false sense of security and then pouncing upon the unsuspecting victim that you become. It starts out tame enough, it’s a nice spinning ride and you think “Oh this is actually kind of relaxing”… and then you hear It. “It” is a comforting noise that sounds something like creeeeeeeeeak CACHUNK CACHUNK CACHUNK creeeeeeeek, and by comforting I mean terrifying. This noise is accompanied by whiplash inducing spins and both of these things combined quickly send you into WE’RE ALL GONNA DIE territory. Then, just as quick as it arrived, it’s over, and you’re back to thinking this is a nice relaxing ride.
Just beware the CACHUNK CACHUNK CACHUNK.
Grade: Pretty good overall, even if the ride itself is in dire need of some WD-40. B+
I also went on the Ferris Wheel and the Carousel. The Ferris Wheel involves standing in line for 45 minutes to get to a ride that lasts about 5 (4 of which are spent loading and unloading the cars), and the Carousel involves me complaining that the stirrups are set to a rather inconvenient length, because I’m a nerd like that.
Sadly that was all I had time to experience. People were trying to talk me into the Zipper, but, um, no.
I would not ride this for any less than $10,000. Just so we’re all clear.