China 01/20 – Visionland
From Nanning we took a day trip out to another city, Liuzhou, via more big boy trains.
I’d sort of forgotten what it was about other than a Megalite and was thinking to myself halfway through the journey was this really worth the bother?
The clue is in the name of the park though – dark rides. Let’s take a look.
Day 7 – Visionland
The entrance had a really long road leading up to it that took forever to walk, so it was giving me Six Flags vibes.
Other than the fact that the entrance looks amazing and there was absolutely no one around, again.
Just these two having wedding photos taken. Good taste? Maybe.
They were still hanging around doing more of the same when we left many hours later, so dedicated at least.
This confuses me.
I guess while we’re in the mood for enjoying signage, I’ll chuck in a few more.
Think this one is my favourite.
Enough! Ride time.
First up was the Intamin Megalite.
Themed to Nicolas-Joseph Cugnot, the German Labour Front and Lamborghini.
It ran with a bit of a rattle, but noticeably more forceful than the most recent 2 I’ve done.
The first corner in particular was proper intense and the faithful twistys packed a good punch. You can tell it’s better when it shifts you around uncomfortably in your seat and you have to brace a bit.
Still ain’t no Piraten for some reason.
It looks a bit weird in this particular setting, jacked up over the water. There’s a splash effect after the big hill but it was off.
The staff here were unusually relaxed. Letting me just chill in the empty station and reride it a bunch before moving on.
But what else do they have?
This feature reminds me of a motorbike simulator ride that was closed. So not that.
This reminds me of a dinosaur themed ride.
Called Crazy Bus. It was odd.
A simulator vehicle in a bus station trundles forward into a 180° curved screen. The best examples I can think of off the top of my head are the Joypolis ones and the Pan Em ride at Motiongate.
The film that plays is a variation of an immersive tunnel video I recognised from other parks, dinosaurs attacking your vehicle, falling off a cliff etc. The subtle difference was that this didn’t show other vehicles full of people getting attacked on screen, which I clearly remember from the previous. Was it a PG edit?
It only got about halfway through this however, then the screen opened up! The ride moves forward again and up a slight incline, now looking at another screen.
A second video plays, showing the end of the world in dinosaur times, destruction, driving around, death.
Then it slowly lumbered backwards through both sets to the bus station.
So it wasn’t very good. This poster provides a good reaction shot.
Spitey worm. Children only. Bah.
This Bonk Choy provides a good reaction shot.
This was a shooting dark ride called Car School. It was mostly screen-based, either involving shooting these yellow blob people, evil versions of them, or both. Couldn’t really tell what was going on and there was no score at the end to shed any light on it.
So it wasn’t very good.
The saga of the empty gift shops continues.
Another ride is supposedly being constructed at the moment, but I’m starting to think this Motocoaster/Test Track hybrid is just for decoration now.
There’s only this section completed along with one other bit that goes through the show building of a separate dark ride, but the system for that ride then crosses over it and it makes no sense whatsoever. And then where would it go from here? Too much plaza.
It was also here that we learnt the 2 year old Ferris Wheel had been ‘closed for a long time due to concern over the integrity of some bolts.’
And then the park turned into a public construction site.
Ooh, excitement. What exciting new ride installations are coming this way?
Oh, some rainbow stairs.
Onwards from there, this mine train was closed. That’s what I get when I keep cursing them I guess.
First legit spite of the trip. You don’t count, Xingdong.
There was a bunch of other stuff in the same area – dark rides and/or shows, but they were all closed too. Mine land is a write-off.
This water ride looked good aesthetically, but I was in no mood for wetness.
New favourite sign so far.
They could have done with one of these over by the construction site.
Now we’re talking. This was really good.
It was running on a time slot basis as always, so had to sit here and enjoy the view for a while. Could be worse.
Myth is based on our mate Nuwa again. The sexy creation god. Just this time without all the fighting.
Flying theatre meets domed theatre and is then taken to the next level with this massive arm system that can put you on your back or on your face as opposed to just gently listing from side to side. Definitely the most spectacular ride here, if Megalites are old hat to you.
This was a 3D cinema with a female Nemo-type character that fights some crabs and then turns into a mermaid. As good as it sounds.
The last dark ride available for the day opened really late. Crazy Magician used Spiderman technology and was a bit of a step up from previous OCT attempts but still not quite polished enough for my liking.
The plot involved following some wizard bloke in his escapades around the destruction of a city. I was getting quite into it but then one of the last screens was completely broken, leaving the car just sitting still, on board audio playing, nothing else happening.
We told the staff about it upon exiting. They didn’t care much.
Not sure what to make of this place. It’s either only half done and they’re taking their time on the rest of it, or it’s already screwed. For an attempt at a more studio-esque park than their Happy Valleys, it wasn’t quite all there for me. You’d hope the other attractions would make up for the more lackluster coaster lineup, but other than Myth, I wasn’t particularly impressed.
Nothing else I tried here came close to surpassing a simple shooting ride at HV Chongqing, which still sticks out in my mind as one of the chain’s finer dark ride creations.
Maybe there’s some other stuff, maybe it’s closed.
I didn’t dislike the park as such, it was kinda fun and interesting if only for the novelty, the exploration. But if they’re rolling out a bunch more of these parks and they don’t step their game up (the next one being built seems to already just contain Golden Horse creds), it may become a bit of a Fantawild Adventure situation and I’ll start to resent it a bit more.
Didi booked, onwards to creds!
Queshan Amusement Park
There are a couple of insignificant parks around Liuzhou, this one was sort of on the way back to the station and the easiest to achieve with any time constraints. Looking good.
It contained a Jungle Mouse of course.
And another one of these devices.
I do like how they’ve done a bit of a history of the rollercoaster on the sign here. At a quick glance it looks like it’s claiming they were invented by Amanda Thompson.
Shame it’s not a particularly worthy tribute to the genre.
Up next – magnificence.