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Feb 7, 2012
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Since I'm one of the few people on this site who frequents Busch and KD, I thought I'd make a thread comparing various rides and stuff. Everybody gets their panties in a bunch when you say you like one or the other, so I'm going to compare a bunch of stuff.

Water Rides:
KD definitely gets the edge here. Pompeii is awesome, but it's the themed part that is really cool, the splashdown is like any other theme park boat ride, which is expected. If we're looking at theme, Busch obviously gets the edge because all three water rides are pretty cool. However, personally, I definitely like White Water Canyon over Roman Rapids and I definitely like Shenandoah Lumber Company over Le Scoot. WWC is longer than Roman Rapids, and it has the cool building at the end with the lumberjacks. Le Scoot hurts, lol. I like the station of Shenandoah more, and the strolling through the woods is really nice compared to Le Scoot's up-in-the-air sort of deal like all the six flags flumes have.

Dark Rides:
BGW obviously gets this as DarKastle is one of the best dark rides out there. You guys can say whatever you want, but there really aren't many dark rides that even compare to it. It's definitely up there with Spiderman and Toy Story Mania. I don't know if anyone on here rode Boo Blasters on Boo Hill at KD back in 2010 when it first opened, but it had this cool like wall of fog with Boocifer (the main culprit in the ride's storyline) projected on to it, and you went straight through it. It supposedly scared small children though, so they have it turned off. The new Dinosaurs movie at KD is really cool, and it is definitely better than Pirates. Then there's EITA, but theres not really anything at KD to compare that to.

Roller Coasters:
You can't help but give KD the edge on this. BGW has good coasters, I love B&Ms, but there's just not much of a variety. If you're a B&M person, than Busch would obviously be better for you. KD has a lot of rough rides, but I've been going there long enough to know the best spots on the rides to ride. IMO, KD has some pretty well themed coasters, even though they take a bunch of different themes and smash them all into congo. Busch's coasters are themed better though.

Flat Rides:
I like the rotating, on-board audio, and above all the view from Mach Tower, but I have yet to find a better drop ride than Drop Tower at KD. Plus KD has flying scooters. Enough said.

Food:
Food at BGW is cheaper and better. Anyone ever had a johnny's hot dog at KD? I could barely stomach that thing. Filling my giant Mach Tower souvenir cup with icee for $1.99? Enough said.

Shows:
Busch. Do I even need to explain?

Kids Areas:
BGW. KD's is bigger and has more rides, but it's pretty run down and ghetto. Anyways, SSFoF definitely beats Planet Snoopy IMO, and LoD has that awesome play structure.

That's all I have to say.
 
Apr 5, 2011
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RE: The ever-burning question

With the opening of Verbolten, BG now has more good coasters than KD. Most of KD's coasters range from unridable to "fun, but meh".

edit:
Animals:
BG has a wide and ever expanding collection of animals. You may be able to find a few squirrels at KD.

edit edit:
SF St. Louis has a down to earth log flume. I do like KD's more than BGW's as well.
 
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Jul 10, 2011
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RE: The ever-burning question

I agree with most of what you said.

However, I think DarKastle is good...but nowhere near Spider-Man, Toy Story Mania, or Transformers.

Food clearly goes to Busch, but Kings Dominion does have Rita's now...which is nice.

And coasters...for sure goes to Kings Dominion...mostly because of the shear amount they offer and also the wide range (i305 doesn't hurt either).
 
Feb 7, 2012
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Richmond, VA
RE: The ever-burning question

PzP said:
With the opening of Verbolten, BG now has more good coasters than KD. Most of KD's coasters range from unridable to "fun, but meh".

edit:
Animals:
BG has a wide and ever expanding collection of animals. You may be able to find a few squirrels at KD.

edit edit:
SF St. Louis has a down to earth log flume. I do like KD's more than BGW's as well.

Obviously the Animals, but I do happen to know where you can see some real wildlife at KD. A skunk lives under the boardwalk fries across from Americana.

As far as being unridable and BGW having more good coasters than KD, that is very debatable. A lot of people enjoy shockwave, myself included. If you ride towards the back of the train you're going to be severely injured, but if you ride towards the front it's not as bad. Maybe some head-bumps, but nothing like the one on the butterfly on Anaconda :s. Anaconda is pretty bad, but I can handle it if I'm in the front car.

As far as Busch having more good coasters than KD, I disagree. As you said in the chat, Busch's coasters are quality, more so than the ones at Kings Dominion. However, KD has much more of a variety, and that's where I draw the line between which has better coasters.

Good Coasters at Busch (IMO): Verbolten, Apollo, Griffon, Alpengeist, Nessie

Good Coasters at KD (IMO): Dominator, Grizzly, Volcano, Intimidator 305, Rebel Yell, Avalanche, Flight of Fear, Backlot Stunt Coaster

Let me break this down.
The coasters at busch are good, but it's the only five real coasters that are there. As for KD, Dominator, Volcano, Intimidator 305, and Flight of Fear should speak for themselves. Grizzly is an awesome wooden coaster, I don't care how violent it is. I love the racing aspect of Rebel Yell, and they've had it racing more often this season, so it made my list. Avalanche is a bobsled, and bobsleds are tons of fun. If you haven't ridden one you need to. Backlot gets a lot of hate on these forums, but I've always enjoyed it. It's intense, fun, and they've had all the effects working this season. Plus, it launches one more time than Verbolten, even though it's not as good as Verbolten (obviously).
 
Feb 23, 2012
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RE: The ever-burning question

I really do think I have more fun on Grizzly and Rebel Yell than I do Nessie. For pretty old woodies, they are awesome. Don't get me wrong, I like Nessie a lot, but Grizzly has that rock-em sock-em, down-and-dirty wooden aspect that I like a lot whereas Nessie just kinda goes through the motions. And though RY just goes through the motions too, there is so much airtime it's not even funny. Loch Ness meanwhile roots you in your seat and barely allows movement at all. That would be another thing; the restraints on Grizzly and RY are better. I love lap restraints.
 

b.mac

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May 14, 2011
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RE: The ever-burning question

An inverting steel coaster isn't meant to have air time like wooden coasters. I also don't think it's possible to reliably compare a wooden coaster to a steel, especially two of totally different pedigrees.
 
Feb 23, 2012
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RE: The ever-burning question

That's true. I guess what I'm trying to say is that generally, I have more fun on some of the coasters at KD than BG. However loch ness could have lap restraints like FOF right, so I still thiNk in that respect Grizzly and RY beat it out.
 
Apr 29, 2010
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Virginia Beach, VA
RE: The ever-burning question

Lochness and lap restraints? It goes UPSIDE DOWN! It would be fine for adults but little kids would fall out. Come on people, think before you post!
 
Jul 10, 2011
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RE: The ever-burning question

Crackel said:
Lochness and lap restraints? It goes UPSIDE DOWN! It would be fine for adults but little kids would fall out. Come on people, think before you post!

There are certainly coasters with no OTSR's that go upside down...
 

b.mac

Indiana Beach Vibe
May 14, 2011
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RE: The ever-burning question

again sooperdooperlooper would like a word with you.

Personal note: Foot bar and a lap bar is still a lap bar coaster.
Personal note #2: every schwartz in existance, bar revolution because SFMM sucks
Personal note #3: Son of Beast 2001-2005
 
Dec 8, 2010
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RE: The ever-burning question

PzP said:
With the opening of Verbolten, BG now has more good coasters than KD. Most of KD's coasters range from unridable to "fun, but meh".

edit:
Animals:
BG has a wide and ever expanding collection of animals. You may be able to find a few squirrels at KD.

edit edit:
SF St. Louis has a down to earth log flume. I do like KD's more than BGW's as well.
I have not been to KD since the mid 90's but I have a picture of myself being kissed by a Sea Lion during one of their shows. I assume that stuff has been thrown out.
 
Sep 21, 2011
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London, UK
josephfells.co.uk
RE: The ever-burning question

Busch Garden's Williamsburg is one of the best parks in the world. Kings Dominion is actually not that great of a park. However...

KD has more replay value. BGW isn't designed to be a repeat prescription, it's a destination park. As locals, you all see BGW from a weird perspective. You all know it's a quality park, you all know that it is a better park than KD, but you are also all familiar with what happens to a destination park when you know it like the back of your hand. I think BGW is a lot like Alton Towers in many respects... Both parks have intriguing layouts that seem ever-expansive for first timers, even second and third timers. They present the feeling of something new around every turn. But the more you visit, the more those layouts become a burden. Where Alton differs from Busch, is it is that for many years it was the UKs thrill capital too. Busch doesn't have that redeeming feature after the magic dies.

KD doesn't suffer these effects, because it is what it is. It's a cluster of rides, some good, some bad, most meh. They don't differ from your first ride to your 100th. All KD has to contend with is your nostalgia.

From an outsiders perspective... I actually think KD is a pretty nice park. It's certainly nothing outstanding, and it has some hideous faults. On a hot day it's pretty gross, with no trees creating shade or breeze. It has some horrendously designed queues attached to rides with horrible capacity, terrible food and an uninspired layout. But Volcano and Flight of Fear are such interesting rides, and I305 is an impressive addition no matter what your actual opinion. In some backwards logic, having a Togo standup is pretty cool... And I think Anaconda is a great example of something increasingly rare, too. Going to KD for me is like my chance to experience some weirder and wonderful coasters, with some hilariously awful ones thrown in for the lols. KD has a pretty nice atmosphere, too. Without the tourists of Busch, I feel like it's a park filled with people who've been visiting since their childhood. It feels homely. It's a completely different audience to Busch. It doesn't need to contend with Busch.

It's about as opposite from Busch as you could possibly get, and that's fantastic. You're lucky to live somewhere with two very different parks as your locals. You've got great variety here.
 
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b.mac

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May 14, 2011
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RE: The ever-burning question

So you're saying KD is like that freakshow experience at a circus? Sounds perfect to me.

When I went earlier this month I was expecting the obvious rides to be better than others, but some of them really suprised me. Anaconda is a really fun Arrow Looper once you get past the head rattling. Grizzly is a classic even though it's a bit rougher than you'd expect (I still enjoy it a lot especially after the 12 year gap between rides). I absolutely hated Volcano even though it probably has the coolest outside theme in the area. Flight of Fear was a total blast for me, I was surprised at how smooth it was for only my third Premier launcher (if you count Chiller as two rides). Hurler was a bummer all the way around, if they're so worried about keeping the ride together they should just give it some TLC and remove that trim at the first drop, would make it 100x better.
 
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Feb 23, 2012
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RE: The ever-burning question

Grizzly is a really cool ride. It's tucked in all the way at the back of the park, smack dab in the middle of the woods, which Is awesome, and the queue with the bear out front, going through like a hike through Appalachian woods is great. The ride itself is bumpy, yes, but it almost feels like it needs to be bumpy for it to be fun. It's an iconic bumpiness.
I like the speed of it and the first drop. I will say, Windseeker and Dinos Alive take away a little from that Woods-y feel, but not enough that I'll say it's a bad ride.
Oh and B-Mac, what did you not like about Volcano? (you know I had to ask) :p
 

b.mac

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RE: The ever-burning question

Beyond the launch, which is nowhere near the intensity I felt on other rides, the ride is totally subpar. You go up throught the Volcano and basically do three circuits to kill time before going back into the volcano. You sit in what looks like an abandoned warehouse for close to a minute due to just how horrible the capacity is and then you slowly make your way down and around into the station. At this point I noticed all the wires for the ride are on the floor of the volcano and that the whole place is a bigger fire hazard than a field of straw doused in gasoline. I look for a bunch of qualities beyond the ride itself and all those qualities together culminate into a giant waste of steel, in my opinion.
 
Jul 10, 2011
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RE: The ever-burning question

B-Mac said:
Beyond the launch, which is nowhere near the intensity I felt on other rides, the ride is totally subpar. You go up throught the Volcano and basically do three circuits to kill time before going back into the volcano. You sit in what looks like an abandoned warehouse for close to a minute due to just how horrible the capacity is and then you slowly make your way down and around into the station. At this point I noticed all the wires for the ride are on the floor of the volcano and that the whole place is a bigger fire hazard than a field of straw doused in gasoline. I look for a bunch of qualities beyond the ride itself and all those qualities together culminate into a giant waste of steel, in my opinion.

As far as the launch, it was built when LIM technology was still fairly new...so of course its not as intense as newer coasters. It was the first inverted LIM launched coaster ever built. It is also the first, and only coaster to feature a "roll out" maneuver...which is pretty darn cool while blasting out of a Volcano. Finally, how do you not like the slow heartline rolls? Something Busch Gardens doesn't even have.

Not to mention Volcano has more theming than every Busch coaster combined except Verbolten...
 
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