- Oct 7, 2011
And occasionally one goes the other way too... like Magnum, which is over 200' tall but does not actually have a 200' drop.
Not Giga but a strange one to think of:And Steel Phantom is called a hyper despite being way short of that based purely on lift height (160'). Apollo's Chariot isn't a hyper if we drop a measuring tape from the top of the lift (170'). But they are both definitely considered members of the club. Elevation change seems to be the primary qualifier.
The definition as it's actually applied seems maximally inclusive: max(lift height, largest drop elevation change) >= 200 ft, with only the number changing to 300 for giga if that situation ever were to arise (e.g. 301' lift, 299' drop).
But that case where the drop doesn't quite qualify seems a bit chintzy, doesn't it?
IMO the open secret with the notion of a "hyper" is that with the elevation change of the drop seemingly being the more powerful qualifier, Magnum is nonetheless allowed membership because it's "close enough" by virtue of pure lift height, and was associated with the beginning of the term "hypercoaster" -- when there was a lot of excitement specifically over ride height, less scrutiny was paid to differences between height and drop, and folks were absolutely motivated on all sides to say "look, we're finally over 200 feet!" with the new nomenclature to match. And with that legacy as part of the hobby and industry, people can't possibly imagine defining Magnum out of the club. So it remains in. A brand new ride with Magnum's height and drop stats might get a different reception, at least until the first direct comparison to grandpa Magnum inevitably arises.
There are lots of other details to nitpick if we want to get deeper, like the fact that Magnum (along with many other rides) is basically on stilts through its entire run, making the actual vertical height change of the lift less than 200' from base to crown. That may or may not matter to one's own strict and not-universally-agreed-upon definition of a hyper coaster (currently it seems nobody cares), even though applying that standard would mean Magnum has neither a 200' lift from base to crown nor a 200' drop. But that's new-thread territory, assuming I haven't already gotten to that point with all this.
I don't think we have an analogous situation with the giga club... 300'+ lift with <300' drop. Millennium force and I305 juuuuuuuust barely achieve a 300' elevation change on their first drop, and unless I'm mistaken, that's the closest we get.
Are there any other gigas besides Orion that qualify based on drop but not lift height? I think Orion is the only one... so far.