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The Smiler - your thoughts?


From CoasterForce
Staff member
Social Media Team
One of my mates and his girlfriend when toAlton last week and rode Smilier. They loved it but felt it was a bit too much. Too many loop-de-loops they said. He did mention there was a funny smell on the ride, too (probably the restraints reading what others have written above).

This is the one coaster that seems to separates the casual riders and enthusiasts. Most enthusiasts (except AT fanboys) consider it to be mediocre or worse. Casual riders enjoy it. I wonder what I'd think of it if I rode it before riding the other 600 odd coasters in my count. I'd probably enjoy it, too.

Darren B

Giga Poster
^When you've not got anything to compare it too it's going to seek like a decent coaster.

Ok so we have Nemesis - the only world class coaster in the UK, that's it!

All the fanboys that lack any ambition to travel will love it sadly.


CF Legend
I don't agree, Darren, I think Ian is right. The more you ride, your taste changes. It is not that one thing is undeniably better than the other.

We can rate coasters on their actual qualities, but like judging fine wines or fashion clothing, it becomes somewhat pretentious to assert that certain aspects that aren't measurably objective are desirable. You can argue built quality with Smiler is... Poor, the same as you can with a Primark T-shirt, but outside of operations that means little.

People who are particularly enthusiastic about something tend to have pretentious taste. Its the same with movies, music, food, drink, books, art... Its because annoyances are magnified when you're doing something a lot (roughness, repetitive layouts, uncomfortable restraints) and anything unusual or of a high applied effort standard stands out.


Strata Poster
AFter the ride I had on wednesday - I think it should be renamed "Smeller" - I could smell that sickly, poopy, rubbery smell in the loading station!! Still quite like the coaster itself though...


Roller Poster
I wanna ride this so bad but international travel is out of the question for me.

anything like this being constructed in the US?

Darren B

Giga Poster
remixedcat said:
I wanna ride this so bad but international travel is out of the question for me.

anything like this being constructed in the US?

Nah, the Americans aren't stupid. You get decent coasters over there.


Roller Poster
what's the current in the US with the most inversions?

BTW I live in the NE USA region and it would be awesome to have one close to the WV,OH,IN,KY,PA area

Darren B

Giga Poster
^Forget about the amount of inversions it has. It's about quality over quantity and Smiler has no quality whatsoever. It's rough, it's spew inducing and smells really bad (literally). The only thing it's got going for it is it looks fantastic!

You've got loads of B&M loopers in the states, and these are far superior to The Smiler. Be happy with those :)

Darren B

Giga Poster
I don't think it's even overhyped. A few enthusiasts think it's half decent, but many, including me find it to be nothing special at all. Nobody ever raves about how good it is.


Staff member
Entry: 2-4-1 = £50
Petrol: 368 miles @20p per mile = £74
Lunch * 2 = £15
Evening meal * 2 = £30
General theme park stuffs = £20
Total = £189

Best part of £200, though obviously you CAN shave off a bit here and there.


CF Legend
Yep £200 for two of us so £100 each.

Fuel alone will be £100 as our car is bad on fuel.

If we don't want to drive there and back in a day it's hotel on top.

It's just not worth it.

We don't have an ap.


CF Legend
No but if we want to eat etc it's a long day and an early start so yeah...

I don't buy tat there anyway.

But is still fuel, tickets, break fast, lunch, dinner.

All in all its a £200 day which I don't think is worth it for Alton.

Don't get me wrong I like the park but cannot justify it for one new ride.


Giga Poster
I started to warm to The Smiler, yes it is rough, it does stink and has horrible theming but this coaster does exactly what it is meant to do, impress people, as soon as people see it they are excited, it's the most talked about ride in the UK for sure and still has a massive amount of hype, if you prepare for the rough parts it's actually a decent ride and rather forceful.


Donkey in a hat
Sorry for bringing up this topic again.. but I'm fairly new here and I've not yet added my tuppence worth.
Reading through the comments is fairly disheartening - lot of hatred going on here.
I for one am firmly in the 'loving it' camp.
There, I said it.
I think it's ace. No... really. So ace, that I've actually sneaked it into my all time top 10... just. To put that into context, that means I actually rank this thing higher than the likes of Leviathan, i305, Verbolten, Nitro and Montu.

Let me also say that I'm not just an AT fan-boy. I used to be - back in the 90's I used to think that Alton could do no wrong - but I've expanded my horizons since then. Nowadays I'm just as critical as the next man. Air was ok. Sonic was ok. Rita was ok. Th13teen was an EPIC fail. But The Smiler? A massive step in the right direction in my book.

'But whyyyyyy?' I hear you cry.
Well, first up, let's not forget that it IS a world record holder. Not just any old record either, having the world's most inversions IS quite a significant one. And it didn't just beat the previous record by a little bit, as most world record rides are wont to do, but it smashed it by 4 whole inversions. Sorry, but that's cool.
Secondly, it looks fantastic. Such a twisted, confusing mass of loopy steel, brilliant. From my visits in 2014, it seems as though operations are much smoother nowadays and the two halves of the ride are 'duelling' much more frequently than they were in season 1, which also looks fantastic.
Thirdly, I love the theming. Let's not beat around the bush, the entire ride from queue line to gift shop is themed around an acid trip. Even the logo is remarkably similar to the old Acid House smiley face :--D
They can disguise it behind this whole 'Ministry of Joy' thing if they want to, but those of us with a, shall we say, more 'colourful' past know exactly what they're referring to!
If you ask me, deliberately theming a major coaster around an illegal, mind bending drug is quite a bold move for a family theme park. Unique too. I admire that!

And finally, it's a bloomin good ride. It is!
It lasts for ages, it's varied, forceful, dizzying, disorientating and I think it's loads and loads of fun.
It's not rough. People who say it's rough are just pussies. Too many years of B&M molly-coddling, that's the problem. Made people soft.
You CAN feel the thing mind you, and there is a tiny bit of a jolt at the top of inversion 12, but it's definitely not rough, not by a long shot.
I can't say that I noticed any funky smells from the restraints either. Don't know where that came from...

So there you have it.
The Smiler - Howie's 10th favourite coaster. Deal with it.