Magic Mountain Announces Details of Terminator: The Coaster Terminator: The Coaster will be a Great Coasters International twister woodie. Twisters offer lots of banked turns and speed. The ride will also feature a station fly-through like the acclaimed Thunderhead at Dollywood. Also, like Thunderhead, Terminator will feature GCI’s Millennium Flyer trains. That’s about where the similarites end as the new coaster does not look like a complete clone of Thunderhead. And even if it were that would not necessarily be a bad thing. Thunderhead is very popular and has won the Golden Ticket Award for best wooden coaster. If that coaster’s success is any indication, Terminator will be an excellent addition.
Terminator: The Coaster will be 100′ feet tall (10 stories), over 2,800 feet long, and reach speeds of 55 mph. There’s also mentions of a “state-of-the-art sound package” and “on-board entertainment” in the official press release. If this means on-board speakers like on the Led Zeppelin Coaster, it would be the first I can remember seeing such technology on a wooden coaster. The total cost of the project will be $10 million.
An Important Coaster for Magic Mountain & California Not only will Terminator add a much needed woodie to Magic Mountain’s huge collection, it will be the park’s 16th coaster, it will bring something to the entire state. While California is both the most populous state and also has the most roller coasters, it’s collection is not among the best. The state particularly falls short on quality wooden roller coasters. To illustrate this point, Terminator will take the place of the much maligned Psyclone. Psyclone and Great America’s Grizzly placed at the very bottom of Mitch Hawker’s Internet Poll basically ranking as the World’s Worst Wooden Coasters.
Knott’s Berry Farm’s Ghostrider is popular, but by most accounts has seen better days. The Giant Dipper at the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk was the best ranked wooden coaster in the state at 39th. And I also hear some buzz from time to time about the Giant Dipper at Belmont Park. See the entire 2007 wooden coaster poll results. Regardless, Cali’s woodies couldn’t hold a candle to many other state’s and Terminator will help with this shortcoming.
Questionable Theming? Lastly, I think the theming is a bit of a mismatch. A wooden coaster tied to a movie about evil machines that take over the world? Maybe the riders, as members of the resistance prefer good old-fashioned, natural wood because they don’t trust steel anymore. But, as I said in a previous post, Six Flags is likely looking for that fun, family friendly ride that will have wider appeal. Under the Dan Snyder-Mark Shapiro regime, going after the families and away from the massive, expensive thrill rides has been the company’s m.o. So all-in-all, this should be a great and much needed addition to the coaster landscape out West.
Terminator: The Ride is set to open Spring 2009 as it will coincide with the release of the Terminator: Salvation movie starring Christian Bale and directed by McG (from Charlie’s Angels!?!) What do you think of the new Terminator coaster coming to Six Flags Magic Mountain? Leave a comment below.