Okay, roller coaster fans — what makes a new or classic coaster a "must ride" for you?
Do you look for height, speed, Gs, or something else? Obviously, it's the sum of the experience that makes certain coasters special, but I also suspect that most coaster fans have a weak spot for a particular attribute.
For me, it's probably speed. Give me a sweeping curve at maximum velocity, just a few feet off the ground so I can really sense that quickness. Those are the rides I'm a sucker for. Yes, I appreciate air time or the view from the top of a lift hill, but I'm a racer at heart and love speed most of all.
That's not for everyone, of course. So people crave that visual from the top of the park. Others live for the airtime — the negative G "pops" that get them out of their seats. A few masochists among us probably even love the positive Gs that drive them back in their seats to the point of lost consciousness. (Okay, did I just reveal my least favorite coaster attribute? Yeah, I did.)
And while I love speed on a coaster, I'm not always a fan of acceleration. Launch coasters can be exhilarating, but they are pretty much the only coasters that make me nervous anymore. I always end up loving the speed at the far end of the launch, but the moments just before leave me feeling dread.
My explanation? It's the lack of control over the launch. On a traditional lift hill, my body "does the math," if you will, and figures out what to expect from the track ahead, based on the height and angle of the track. But a launch is much more of a mystery.
That is what makes it so enticing for some riders, though. (I suspect that there's probably a strong correlation between loving launches and loving riding coasters backward.)
But forget about me — what's your favorite roller coaster attribute? Let's put that to a vote.
In the comments, please tell us your favorite examples of your favorite roller coaster attribute.
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