Rameses Revenge (Chessington World of Adventures)
I could sound like David Attenborough
describing fair rides in their ‘native environment’. Like a male peacock,
fair rides use bright colours and dazzling displays to entice you. Of course, at
home (German fairs, naturally), rides are run to full potential, offering a
tough challenge to those willing to accept.
parks seem to try their hardest to ensure subdued versions of these rides
shoehorn their way into parks. Like caged lions, they offer merely a glimpse of
their former majesty and are overly tamed, offering little more than an idea of
what it must be like to enjoy these beasts in their indigenous home.
have gone surprisingly and almost unnecessarily over the top for Rameses
Revenge, whereby the majority of a whole area – Forbidden Kingdom – has
actually been built around the ride.
such, it looks well settled in, and with the theming, the ride doesn’t seem as
out-on-a-limb as many other park-based spin rides.
Imagine if you will a 40ft tall structure consisting of two arms supporting what is essentially an elongated sofa. This sofa itself is 20-seats wide, consisting of two tiered rows. This sofa is suspended from the arms and swings freely below as the arms can rotate in large circles.
At given times, this sofa can be flicked over backwards and/or forwards and in the case of Rameses Revenge, lowered slowly into fountains below.
ride is as much fun to watch as it is to ride. The ride is situated in a small
hole, so the fountain finale, as it were, is well observed from the surrounding
pathway where pained expressions of riders can be clearly seen before their
cranium is doused in water.
entrance is hidden behind you under a crumbling stone archway, emblazened with
the modern Rameses Revenge logo. Uneven steps take you up to a balcony walkway
crossing over the Arabian Camel Derby below, and crossing a mock rope-bridge.
sandstone walls are richly decorated with lanterns and masts supporting the
canvas roofing, whilst you follow the wall to a staircase leading down into the
lush oasis that Rameses Revenge is nestled in.
you’re someone who wants to focus on the fun of the ride and not get soaked,
you have to be quite cauculating at this point. Sitting at the ends of the
gondola will secure you a ride sans H20, so make sure that these seats aren’t
taken – or are unlikely to be taken – by the time you make the short walk to
are expected to fill up every row, but should you wish to stay dry, there are
about 12-or-so seats on the outer edges that escape the plumes of water. People
sitting in the middle of the ride and not filling seats up further stall the
loading of this ride, something which is hardly it’s forte.
seats are snug but feel well formed. As the last person sits, first the overhead
restraints automatically lower, before a lap bar tightly pushes down on top.
People curse and scream for nothing more than effect, as although tight, the
restraints being tight will only make the rest of the ride far more comfortable.
ride whirs into life. Slowly, the 40-seat gondola is taken backwards, upright
until the arms supporting you get to around 45-degrees. You then slowly swing
forwards, the ride motion scooping you up towards the sky.
your back, you slow and again swoop backwards in a gradual arc. So far,
movements have been slow, gradual and unassuming. You swoop forwards again,
climbing towards the sky before you pause upside-down. As the blood runs to your
head, you continue skywards before with a hiss of pneumatics, the gondola rolls
around 180-degrees, barrelling around the back of the ride towards the ground
below, swinging sharply towards a wall of water.
water drops just in time as the ride once again continues to tease you. This
time upright, you gently go backwards and forwards. Suddenly, you quickly
accelerate, rushing backwards and over the top like a magic carpet before
returning to the top, where you pause.
you creep forwards. Like you’re teetering on a cliff edge, you slowly turn
downwards, staring towards the fountains below. Suddenly, like you’re falling,
the water rushes towards your face. As your eyes close, the cool water soaks
you, as the ride swings into an upright position.
quiet days, if you blush whimsically at the ride operator, you may be entitled
to another ride, normally a far more intense program.
slowly creep up backwards, and just before you get to the top, you stop. Slowly,
you’re taken backwards towards the ground, before the ride speeds up, climbing
up to the top, before flicking you over the very summit of the ride, over, and
over, and over about five times.
the fifth flip, you teeter upside-down above the ground before you swing
upright, go back up to the top and are once again soaked by the satanic ride
busier days, you only get one rather unfulfilling program that spends time
building up to something that doesn’t materialise. Obviously this is a
capacity issue, but I would far prefer the ride to get down to the nitty gritty
and spit you out after a whirlwind of sensations than to nonchalantly saunter
backwards and forwards before soaking you.
two rides in a row, you will come up trumps. The second program, whilst not
fairground quality, is highly entertaining, balancing the subdued swinging well
with the intense rolling of the gondola.
Rameses Revenge is a watered-down version of what can be found at the fairs.
Rides on it range from moderate to fun, and although visitor reaction seems to
be somewhat favourable, why run a ride so it is good when it can be great?
3/5 Marcus Sheen