After Ningbo was one of the worst things ever to happen, it was time to make my peace with the Fantawild franchise.
Day 4 – Oriental Heritage Jinan
Decided to clear the air straight away and actually get on a Jungle Trailblazer this time.
I didn’t love this as much as the previous day’s Gravity woodie offering, but it’s still a very good ride. My favourite part was the series of tiny hills straight out of the corkscrew that just keep on delivering.
Stuff like the inversion and the overbank didn’t really add anything to the experience for me.
Being particularly picky, it felt a bit more clinical, less out of control and wasn’t as well paced as I would have liked.
Woodies and locals anecdote 2: Upon my first arrival at the station, the train was just pulling in with 2 blokes on it. One of them had been sick mid ride. It certainly kicked his arse.
The creds are all next to each other in this park which would help if you’re in a hurry. I sort of was, but that would change later.
Oh good, the next mine train clone of the trip. Either I zoned out my previous Night Rescue while in a bad mood, or this one had more theming towards the end including a screen with a big demon face. We still didn’t catch what it was about. Tunnels of thorny trees, more screams of the damned, it makes it quite interesting. Just cheap hardware.
Oh good, the next Boomerang of the trip. Vests seemed more shoulder crushing than usual to me, perhaps adjusted to Asian sizes? Ride was manageable.
The new to me dark ride that I knew I needed here was Devil’s Peak. It’s inspired by Universal’s Harry Potter ride robot arm system, but all slowed down a good 10x so there’s no ridiculous rushing through an incoherent amount of scenes, though it feels a lot more awkward in the movements.
It has more of an actual story, being about the Monkey King scaling a big mountain, fighting that golden dragon and a big ass lava bloke (part of Journey to the West).
I want to say it’s better, but I’m not convinced yet. There’s also a cheapness to some of the physical sets and moments like “although this a completely different theme, those skeletons in cloaks we just bounced past look a little too much like Dementors”. But that’s not to say there isn’t a cheapness to Universal’s lack of fresh storytelling and bad screen animations of Potter waving on a broom. I’m torn.
Gave Bridge to Love a go on the way round as it was starting the very second we got to it. This story is a Chinese tale called the Cowherd and the Weaver Girl – exaggerated for visual effect.
It takes place in a moving theatre with screens round the walls and on the ceiling. I quite liked it, mostly for the fact that it’s a relaxing sit down.
I had provisionally factored in rushing this park and heading over to Quancheng Euro Park in the afternoon so at this point headed over to guest services for a second opinion. The lovely lady there did some research herself and concluded it was either triple bus faff or a taxi, the taxi being strongly not recommended personally by her, as apparently they’re all dodgy people between the two parks.
Grabbed a bite to eat and mulled it over, deciding not to bother in the end due to a combination of possible struggles to get back again from there and the fact I’d temporarily put myself off of cred runs over the last few days.
Would rather just spend a relaxing day at a decent park right now.
I liked Legend of Nuwa before. Gave it another go. Seem to recall the 3D on this being some of the most striking I’d seen in a long time, but it didn’t stand out as much on this occasion. Still an impressive Spiderman style ride. Glad to help the magic woman with the whip any time.
The indoor queue areas in these parks are ridiculously elaborate in both theming and length. Sometimes it seems like there should be a preshow or something, but it all gets skipped.
It was a busy day.
These queue boards have the ability to go up to 4 hours. I’d leave immediately.
This was outside the rapids, which despite having a fancy name and description on the map is unthemed and a total waste of time, not sure why the standards slipped there.
More of this? Why not.
Finally coming round to the feel of these places. When it’s quiet and it looks this good, it’s hard not to.
Just pumping out fog for the aesthetic.
Fun fact: It’s actually Jungle Flying Dragon in Chinese, rather than Trailblazer. They do love their dragons.
The history of China. Skip.
Much prefer the legends and fairytales.
Hanging around also meant we could catch this once a day show.
Some clever stuff going on with various set pieces like these doors and some bricks on wires.
The story is a confusing blend of the original and a ‘modern day’ Legend of Lady Meng Jiang. Her husband is forced into slave building the great wall, he dies and then her tears make the wall fall down. But then he wasn’t dead in the modern half. Or it was symbolic. Or something.
There’s people in that hedge. They all waved.
The woodie grew on a me a little over the course of the day. Seemed to get a little less rattly during the bits when it wasn’t doing much, as it ‘warmed up’.
Alright Fantawild, you’re forgiven for now. When your attractions are actually running and the park isn’t full of undesirables, it is possible to have a great day at a park like this.
Let’s see how quickly you can wear me down.