Vote of the week: What is your favorite roller coaster element?
Yeah, I know the site's name is Theme Park
Insider, and we talk about a wide variety of topics here, from dark rides to live shows, and table service restaurants to readers' favorite junk food. But this week, I'm saying to heck with the theme stuff and turning the vote over to our hard-core roller coaster fans.
So what is your favorite roller coaster element? Sure, some chickens shut their eyes as soon as the brakes release in the station and can't tell one element from the rest. These are the folks who think that "Cobra Rolls" are a type of sushi.
This week's vote, alas, is not for them. It's for you readers, with better inner ear function than mine, who treasure every moment, every twist and every element on a roller coaster's track. Pick your favorite, from the classes of elements below, and tell us why you picked what you did, in the comments.
Here are the options, with short, simplistic explanations for those who want them. Note that I've combined several similar elements into single options. Some are the result of different manufacturers using different names for what are essentially the same thing, others are combined because the elements are similar enough that I felt like I would be splitting hairs keeping them separate.Batwing/Boomerang/Cobra Roll - A double inversion, with one facing the other, returning you in the direction from where you came.
Corkscrew/Heartline Roll - Any twisting inversion around an imaginary axis. The broader ones are corkscrews, the really narrow ones heartline rolls.
Drops - Straight-ahead, high-speed drops down a hill. No inversions or twists involved.
Dive Loop/Immelmann - Half a vertical loop leading into, or out of, a twisting curve.
Helix - A turn of more than 360 degrees, usually in a horizontal plane.
High-Speed Launch - In lieu of a traditional lift chain, the use of a magnetic or hydraulic to propel a coaster instantly from a standing start to full speed.
Interlocking Corkscrews - Two corkscrew elements, with one going through the other's axis.
Interlocking Loops - Two vertical loops, with one going through the middle of the other.
Spinning Cars/Seats - Adds additional motion beyond just riding along the roller coaster track.
Top Hat - You launch up, crest a narrow hill, then drop back down. A la Top Thrill Dragster.
Traditional Vertical Loop - Just what the names says. The train flips through a straight-ahead, upside-down loop.
I love the feeling of drops, especially on hyper coasters. My second place vote would go to Zero-G rolls, the feeling of Anti-Gravity is sick!
Drops without a doubt are what really bring me satisfaction. The bigger and steeper the better.
I voted drops because its that moment as you are at the peak just before the plummet, that is the helpless can't stop this happening sensation that is so good! :)
Drops? Drops? How you vote Drop as an element? It's not even a true element. It's falling, you can get feeling on any ride. Granted I like the drops I just don't count them as an element.
And they do the Hulkster with *(TIRES)*!!!
The first time I went on the Rock n Roller Coaster and experienced the launch, I knew I was riding the future of coasters. The fact that the rest of the coaster fails to fully live up to the launch says miles about the excitement of a great launch.
It's kind of funny, I really love all aspects and features of coasters, but my two favorites deal with the first rush you get whether it be by "Super" launch or the first big drop. I think that most features after those just try to catch up to the initial rush.
Wow! I said drops too! I love drops for the same reasons as the others on here. Another favorite is Magnetic Launch, especially California Screamin!
I love the Immelmanns. From this way to that way, all at great speed, It's my favorite.
I like airtime hills the best, so I chose drops.
I gotta go with loops. There is nothing quite like the sudden rush as you enter the loop, then the intense push as you leave. It is too bad standard vertical loops seem to be going the way of the dodo.
"The beginning of Hulk is the best 5 seconds in theme park history"
drops by far....are the best!
Didn't even have to think about it. DROPS! Nothing else that's out there gives me that total rush like a drop. From the anticipation of it during the climb, and then that evil hesitation that many of the new rides have right before your heart goes straight to the top of your throat. That split second when you question the safety of your belt/harness. Till you come out of it and head to the next treat, and know you're going to live. Yea,,,,baby.
I would go for a good ol drop too!
Loops just don't give me the gut-in-the-throat feeling that drops do.
I had to go with drops. It is even better if there are long trains and you are in the front car. As you crest the hill you get to look down just before you drop. The end cars holding you up and giving you the anticipitory adrenaline rush.
I had to go with the DROP, the look of terror in my husband's face as we crest over a lift and hang there waiting for the last chain dog to disengage is priceless. I humor him with a 2nd ride so he can go in his perfered spot - the last coach- I'm a front seat rider, I want to see whats next.
Can anything top the traditional first-hill and drop? The clickety-clack of the chain, the anticipation! I like the front seat where you seem to hang there for a few seconds until the rest of the train completes the climb - then WOOSH!
I do not see how a drop is an option. Considering this is a vote for roller coaster elements, a drop should not be included. You can experience a drop on a drop tower or a log flume at that. With that said, I had to go with an immelman. A launch is a close second.
Batwing!!! There are only technically two on the planet (Top Gun--oops Flight Deck at Carrowinds and Montu at Busch Gardens Tampa), and both are incredibly intense inversions.
Russell, my very own home park, Worlds of Fun (KC, MO), had the first ever batwing loop. It was on a coaster called the
No matter how much I love inversions, I gotta go with drops. On boost coasters, drops are worthless (especially without a top hat), but with a lift hill, it's amazing! The only awesome drop that I've been on a boost coaster (not the first one) is Stormrunner's Flying Snake Dive... "Pure Bliss".
This article has been archived and is no longer accepting comments.