Norway + Sweden 10/18 – Liseberg

Day 2 – Liseberg

So this trip wasn’t consciously planned around the opening of Valkyria. It was more of a case of I’m always looking for an excuse to come here (have I mentioned how much I like the place) and oh look, the new ride is here too.

These days I’m firmly in that mindset of ‘oh, how uninteresting’, when these B&M dive coasters get announced and this one was no exception. It’ll be better than Kanonen, but not excited at all.

Valkyria

So here we are. Nice looking station there. The area has changed quite a bit, particularly during this halloween time as there was a scare zone directly in front that doesn’t quite tie in – a crashed bus and some zombies.

Bags aren’t allowed in the queue here, so they’ve got a free locker system in the shop below. It’s a quick and easy system.
These things always make me think of Arthur and how much of a farce that was.

(Western Regions Heaven – Happy Valley Chengdu)

Clearly they missed out by not investing in one of these though.

We had our free fastracks from booking park tickets online for this on both days so didn’t spend much time in the main queue. It’s got a little shop and some household objects. There’s a dedicated front row queue towards the end, splitting off from row 2 & 3. Seemed pretty popular in this quiet period, being the same length as the main queue but obviously moving at half the speed.

A few features in the station – some nice looking fiery pots and shield on the wall. There’s also a shadow projection of wings flapping on the far wall, which looks pretty neat.
A final check for loose items is carried out while you’re at the air gates, they can take a tray of your smaller stuff to the other side for you, so you dont really have to bother with lockers if you’re bagless.

On to the ride then. Is it good? Yes. I was pleasantly surprised in a number of ways.

It’s got pace and purpose to it. The bigger dives have that slow lumbering feel to them, spending an age in each dull inversion and mincing around giant corners.

As soon as the drop is over on Valkyria, it hauls arse through everything else in the sequence at a noticeably different rate and that makes a big difference to me. Even the lift hill is weirdly quick.
It reminded me most of Krake. The punchiness of that, but with a more significant and superior layout.

The vest restraints, which worried me, don’t hurt the experience at all.
No restriction on the air time of the drop.
No weird tightening halfway through.
No uncomfortable hanging in the inversions.
There’s hope for this lot as well.

The view from the top is pretty unrivalled (with Liseberg bias) and the interaction of the drop is insane. It’s a busy area, with pathing between the two cleverly shaped holes and if you’re sitting on an outside seat, it feels like they’re standing directly under you as you fall. I said Draken was the first time I’d felt so up close and personal with the main drop on one of these, but Valkyria took it another stage further.

Really liked it then. My new favourite dive coaster. Well done Liseberg.

Loke the Gyro Swing was also new to me, the park sure have been busy since last time.

It’s really good of course. Lap bar effect on a stupidly massive swinging arm, great views all round, both upside down and otherwise. Well done again.

Balder has a new sign and a new entrance through a different part of the structure. The old queue has turned into express pass. It still has the old TVs playing the instructional videos, but now that it’s trying to blend in with its new friends, there isn’t the interesting mix of music in the station and barely any horn action on dispatch.

Think this ride has suffered in my eyes from this visit. It’s still a lot of fun, but the formulaic Intamin layout bugs me a little too much now. 90% waiting for air time to happen, 10% air time happening. If that’s all you’re into, then it’s perfect.
I find myself sitting there with way too much time to think about how laughable the corners are and how the design process went down:
“How many hills can we fit in this between this corner and this corner? 2?”
“Nah just 1 here mate, stick an extra bit of straight in, that’ll do.”

Aerospin was new to me as well. Another great flat ride with incredible views.

Lisebergbanan hasn’t suffered. Still a stupidly good adventure of a ride with stupidly good throughput. Watching one of the 5 trains going past every 20 seconds is a great way to spend a mealtime.

We got one of those perfect runs where you race a Helix train along the hillside as well. That hill bit with Uppswinget… pretty much my favourite area of any park ever.

Some other random thoughts:

– Didn’t know the dark ride had gone, went round the corner looking for it only to be confronted with grass and more Valkyria. Then laughed.

– Already being a fan of Max in Sweden, them replacing Burger King is a vast improvement.

– I’ve never really got into Halloween at parks, but damn they make it look amazing. Easily a million pumpkins distributed, but plenty of subtle touches as well.

– Everything was pretty much walk on all weekend so, you know, awesome as always. Can’t not have a good time at this park.


I’ll leave you with some Helix porn. Still the next level.

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