Monday, April 24, 2017

Rollercoaster Tycoon - METALLICA WORLD

With Metallica kicking off their US leg of the Worldwired Tour coming up a month from now, I figured I'd post the first of a couple of things dedicated to them starting with a little creation I made over a decade ago (about 14 years ago to be more precise). I'm referring to my theme park based solely on the music of the metal masters, Metallica World!

This was created in Rollercoaster Tycoon 2, with the aid of a bunch of different custom pieces that I got through downloads of some other awesome parks I found in fan forums and what not. This was the first huge theme park that I set out to create. I later followed up with Star Wars Galaxy, which I wrote one of these blog posts on in which you can find here.

The idea for this park came about on the heels of Metallica's release of the album St. Anger, and during high school I would think about names of awesome roller coasters and it suddenly dawned on me that many of Metallica's song names would make for some kick ass names, and thus voila! I had dreamed up the initial phases of Metallica World, and I dove right in to create a world filled with one of my absolute favorite bands songs bracing the nameplates of all the attractions and stores.

So what was the result of my mind hitting the computer game? Below is the overview shot of the entire park.

The park itself consists of seven different areas: For Whom the Bell Tolls Plaza, Haunted Hollow, Mount Metallica, The Sanitarium, Metal Zone, Ancient Isle, and Where the Wild Things Are. One thing you might note, there is nothing with the Death Magnetic or Hardwired albums in here, because, duh, I created this park in 2003. Even if I wanted to add stuff from those, I cannot as all that remains of this park is embedded in the screenshots that I have (which about a third will show up in this blog).

As I stated earlier, this was my most ambitious theme park I had set out to create at the time, and I put a ton of detail into this thing. You might notice that there are little Pepsi vending machines strewn around in some of the images, and that's how in depth I wanted to make it. I wanted to make something that was seemingly something that could be a real thing. I guess you could say this was the beginning of my super in-depth love of theme parks, but I know it started a little earlier than this, this was just the beginning of pushing the game to its max.

So let's dive right in shall we? As you enter into the park, you enter through an old castle because these guys are the Kings (come at me bro). But on a serious note, I just figured it would be sweet and I really wanted to use some of the theming to create a sweet entrance. Sweet entrance means that the park is going to be sweet. I think I accomplished that.

Once inside the gates, you get into the prototypical 'Main Street' area named For Whom the Bell Tolls Plaza that features a bunch of shops and restaurants. But what makes this one a little different is that I included a few rides like Frantic the For Whom the Bell Tolls Tower. The tower ride slowly has you ascend up the tower until you reach the top, then the bell tolls and you fall 150 feet! The area also includes a huge concert venue called Hit the Lights Grand Theater. The Until it Sleeps Hotel is located here as well as the attached Breadfan Casino. I even included a Budweiser Brewery near the hotel, because why not.

If you take a right upon entering the gates, you will head into the first of the themed areas, Haunted Hollow. This area features a bunch of attractions that draw from the 'scarier' named songs. There is a haunted house called The House That Jack Built, a bumper car ride with the cars in the shape of eyes called Eye of the Beholder, the Blackened Lounge, among other things that feature songs like Fade to Black, Devil's Dance, and Damage Inc.
The area also features four roller coasters, with the first one being Creeping Death. This is a corkscrew coaster that has five inversions on it, with a couple that hug the path so guests can get a creeping fear into them as it passes over their heads.
The next coaster is located in the corner of the park and is the massive wooden roller coaster Harvester of Sorrow. The song had to have a ride named after it because it is such a cool name and of course I had to make it a wooden one with Harvester in the name. This is one of my favorites in the park.

We then head over the inverted roller coaster named Phantom Lord. Inverted coasters are usually crowd favorites as your legs dangle below you. This coaster has seven inversions on it and most voted to make you puke. Seems right for an evil named ride, right?
I didn't want to make Enter Sandman a roller coaster because of course everyone thinks you are going to do that. So I took a different approach and made a somewhat of a Splash Mountain style ride where you slowly build up to the climax of the solo and plunge into the night and the dark depths of the ride. From the overview, it looks like nothing as seen below.
But once I turn off the scenery and give you the underground view of the ride, you can see there is a huge build-up to the drop. The little sign above the drop that you view from the path says, "EXIT LIGHT, ENTER NIGHT" as you drop into the darkness.
The last coaster in this area of the park is the floorless roller coaster Master of Puppets. I wanted the legs to dangle like a puppet, naturally, so I used the floorless design. Why not make it an inverted roller coaster then? Well because I wanted this ride to be big, and this style can be built higher and faster than an inverted one. If I remember correctly, this thing goes over 60 miles per hour and it still has numerous inversions as well. Just a note, if you haven't noticed in the screen shot, I even put the little white crosses out in front of the ride entrance just like from the album cover!
In the back corner of the park, I wanted to create a nice scenic overlook of the entire place so I created Mount Metallica. This section has a chairlift for those who don't want to hike up the side of the mountain, and you still get to see the cascading waterfalls and rock outcroppings. At the summit of the Mount is a shopping plaza with an overlook out over the park.
Smack dab in the center of the park is the Metal Zone. Along with its three roller coasters, there a ton of other attractions like the Orion Café, 2x4 Go Karts, Disposable Heroes laser tag, Ride the Lightning Theater (where I envision the experience like an electric chair!), and the Wherever you May Roam Arcade. Metal Militia and Whiplash also have their representation here as well.
The first coaster in this area is Battery, and it is a steel twister that is situated right above the go karts. This coaster also has seven inversions in its very compact nature and which really makes you feel pretty beaten after you get off of it.
The next coaster here is called Motorbreath and this one is an LIM Launch coaster that fires you out of the station at nearly 70 miles per hour and then you navigate is twisted metal track until your face is melted.
The final ride in this area is the steel screamer named Fuel. This is one of the fastest in the park, and it's so fast that the color of the train fades from red to white from the front to the back! Okay, you can control that, but I'm going for effect!
As you head to the back of the park, you cross a bridge and into Ancient Isle. Some of the heavy hitter songs are represented in roller coasters back here, but also some cool little rides like Through the Never time machines and a Prince Charming spinner. The Four Horsemen Lounge is another great bar here.
The coaster that is located in the middle of the area is the wooden twister named The God That Failed. A wooden twister provides for steeper curved drops, but the difference mainly lies in the design of the ride vehicles. As you can see, there are a lot of twists and turns on this roller coaster.
The two behemoths that loom large over Ancient Isle though are two of Metallica's most well known songs. The first is the massive steel hypercoaster called One. This guy goes up to speeds over 80 miles per hour through numerous tall drops.
The other huge coaster in this area has its entrance found in a small castle that spans the midway and is called King Nothing. This steel hypertwister also goes over 80 miles per hour but features a lot more twists and turns as opposed to the massive hills on One.
Going back up to the front corner of the park, where if you would take a left after entering, you would enter the area known as The Sanitarium. Different songs featured here are The Unnamed Feeling, Dirty Window, Escape (in a launched lift ride), The Cure, Leper Messiah, and The Memory Remains. The area is heavily themed in a gothic cathedral style. Two other attractions that can be found here are the My Friend of Misery boats that have you navigate a channel filled with nightmares as a grim reaper sits on your boat a la Charon and the Of Wolf and Man Woods. The Woods is a hedge maze that tells you that if you don't make it out in time that you will turn into a werewolf!
The first coaster here is a stand-up twister roller coaster named Somekind of Monster. Always have to get a stand-up one in a park somewhere, and I enjoyed making this one in its compact and narrow form. It still packs in quite a few inversions, which is essential for stand-ups.
Located in the center of the Sanitarium in its own church-like confines is the dual steel launch coasters The Unforgiven and The Unforgiven II. Yes, I know there is now an Unforgiven III, but again, it wasn't out at the time so it was super convenient to make these two. These two get up to speeds over 85 miles per hour before scaling the tower and dropping you in reverse back to the station.
The tallest and fastest roller coaster in the park honors though belongs to the giga coaster enclosed in its own cathedral. A coaster with this name has to have the 'honor' of being the most extreme in the two big categories, so of course its name is St. Anger. As stated, you enter into the unholy shrine of this colossus before you get your face blown off by speeds over 95 miles per hour and drops over 300 feet.
The last section of the park is a jungle themed place called Where the Wild Things Are. In addition to the last three coasters of the park, the other songs that are represented here are Slither, Bad Seed, The Thing That Should Not Be, The Outlaw Torn, Whiskey in the Jar, and Sweet Amber.
Upon entering the land, you will come face to face with the vertical coaster Minus Human. It's called a vertical coaster because it has the ability to have a drop at 90 degrees. You might say that most can, but this one has a brake system that pauses you before the drop so you in essence stare straight down for a few seconds before it releases you (Google: Oblivion at Alton Towers). In this case, the pause comes before the ride drops you into the Minus Human Thicket making you plunge into the bog and underground in the back half of the ride.
The other titanic wooden roller coaster of the park is located here and is one of my favorites, Call of the Ktulu. This is the tallest and fastest wooden roller coaster in the park and is rated way more extreme than Harvester is. This is also the one of the longest coasters at over 7,000 feet in length.
The last coaster of the park (which is #16 I believe), is another steel twister coaster, but this one has a ton of inversions and is tall and really long. This voodoo inspired creation is entitled Fixxxer. You really zoom through the jungle and swamps and try not to get those pins stuck in you!
So that does it for my first foray into highly detailed roller coaster tycoon antics. It's hard to believe that I completed this 14 years ago, but alas, time flies I guess. I know there are a bunch of songs that are represented throughout the park that I forgot to mention in this post, but I know that I think I had pretty much every song up to that time covered. I know a bunch of the Garage Inc. ones didn't make it in here except for only a handful like Breadfan and Whiskey in the Jar. But most of their original songs I think all made it in here in some form or fashion.
I know I was extremely proud that I completed this thing back in the day, and I still think of it as one of my masterpieces (this is my art guys!).  I've heard from some of my friends that they couldn't believe how this turned out and I agree with them. When I started it I never thought it would look like this, but it did and I remember I had a blast doing it. Which that is why people have hobbies isn't it? To do things that you enjoy to do, and creating this was a lot of fun. Too bad it won't ever become a reality, but if it did, you know you want to visit, don't you?
Thanks for reading,
Mike G.

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