Photo TR: Castles -N- Coasters

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Re: Photo TR: Castles -N- Coasters

Postby bf9 » Thu Jan 04, 2018 7:18 pm

Sheep-O-Matic wrote:I'm from California, but moved to AZ in 2011. Castles 'N' Coasters is trash compared to a lot of parks. It's good for kids though. Over the years there have been talks of them demolishing the nearby mall (Metro Center) and expand the theme park out that way, but that never happened... and never will now that they built a new Walmart store near the park. The Disney knock-off character paintings are major cringe and unsettling. Being an adult, the only rides I found to be suitable for my age were Desert Storm, Sky Diver, Splashdown, Magic Carpet, and Sea Dragon.

It sucks that this is the only theme park in the state of AZ, but whatever. Maybe one day they'll put up a Six Flags park and we'll finally get some real entertainment. :p


You're correct, it's honestly not a very nice place. I've you've never been though, may as well spend an hour like I said to grab the credits and leave. I'm a former Phoenix resident so I've been a handful of times and the only ride I'd even consider "good" is the drop tower. The reasons they won't build a larger park there are a) insanely high summer temperatures (not uncommon to remain in the high 90's well past midnight in the center of town) which prohibits maximized attendance through the summer which is financially critical- even tons of shade wouldn't make much of a difference, and b) Phoenix is the only major market/place to pull from in a several hundred mile radius and Phoenix alone, especially with its demographics, would not be able to support any sizable park. If many people in Phoenix won't consider driving to SFMM because it's too far...people surely won't come out here from the Socal market for something that would equate to far less than that.

EDIT: Sidenote for an interesting tidbit of information, SFMM did actually advertise in Phoenix for a year or two via radio and other targeted internet methods and then stopped as far as I can tell. I think it was immediately before and after the opening of Twisted Colossus, but as I said I don't live there anymore so there is a small chance they still do although I definitely don't remember hearing much past a certain point. Correct me if I'm wrong.

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Re: Photo TR: Castles -N- Coasters

Postby joelwee » Thu Jan 04, 2018 10:00 pm

bf9 wrote:^It's worth an hour or so to experience the Hopkins weirdness with Desert Storm, and the drop tower which is one of ARM's 120ft models so it absolutely kicks A$$. Totally agree that it's better than Lex Luthor as I rode them about a month apart a couple years back.

Desert Storm was definitely a unique experience. I love lapbar-only looping coasters, and this one really throws you around. It's one of the few coasters where I don't recommend putting your hands up, especially when riding in the back. Those inversions should be called "back crackers". :Pr Also, I think the lift hill is steeper than the drop. :lol:
coasterbill wrote:I really want to get to this park just because it's so f*cking weird. :lol:

Great report.

Thanks! It really is a weird park. The theming is a mixture of Medieval Times, pirates, and Disney knockoffs. Patriot's lift hill is spanned with a wall full of Disney knockoffs.
ThemeParkJunkie51290 wrote:Amazing report! =) I've passed by this park coming through Arizona in 2016, and I must say, I was tempting to stop by. Unfortunately, I just didn't have the time.

Thanks! :) I had the same conundrum in 2016, but finally made time to visit this year. I'm glad I did.
prozach626 wrote:ARM towers are fun, but there's something to be said about the unsettling feeling you have when dangling a few hundred feet in the air. The fall is never as thrilling for me as the nervous anticipation.

True, but this ARM tower was pretty dang suspenseful on the way up. The catch car blocks the view above you, so unless you're facing the tower's shadow, you have no idea how far you have left to go. When you reach the top, it doesn't hesitate like Lex Luthor does; after a quick "ker-chunk", it drops you like a hot potato. The fall was just as thrilling as the lift, IMO.
Sheep-O-Matic wrote:I'm from California, but moved to AZ in 2011. Castles 'N' Coasters is trash compared to a lot of parks. It's good for kids though. Over the years there have been talks of them demolishing the nearby mall (Metro Center) and expand the theme park out that way, but that never happened... and never will now that they built a new Walmart store near the park. The Disney knock-off character paintings are major cringe and unsettling. Being an adult, the only rides I found to be suitable for my age were Desert Storm, Sky Diver, Splashdown, Magic Carpet, and Sea Dragon.

It sucks that this is the only theme park in the state of AZ, but whatever. Maybe one day they'll put up a Six Flags park and we'll finally get some real entertainment. :p

True. It's definitely not a destination park, but it's good for a visit if you happen to be in the area. I've wondered why AZ doesn't have any other parks. The ridiculous summer heat may very well be a reason.
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Re: Photo TR: Castles -N- Coasters

Postby JimmyBo » Sun Jan 07, 2018 5:48 pm

Thanks for the report of the only "theme" park in my home state. I do wish that Arizona offered more thrills or decent theme parks but in the long run, I really don't care because we usually just travel to Los Angeles on the I-10 or San Diego on the I-8 to go to more decent parks. There's even another park in the same driving distance in Albuquerque (Cliff's) that has an amazing wooden coaster.
Everyone says that Arizona needs a decent theme park in this state but for the majority of people that live here (freakin retired people and snow-birds in the winter) neither of those groups care about theme parks. I would truly love to see a new park but I've given up hope that it will actually happen and that opens up the fact that I can travel outside of this state to experience other theme parks.
This report was great and thanks for sharing all the unique rides that this place has to offer. I also really enjoy the arcade that it has because there are A TON of pinball machines inside and I love playing pinball.

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Re: Photo TR: Castles -N- Coasters

Postby Nrthwnd » Sun Jan 07, 2018 5:50 pm

^ Maybe Phoenix needs to go the Middle Eastern route....that being a mostly enclosed environment
and operating space for most, if not all, of the park?

Still, with the population locally not mostly condusive to such a venture.... worth a suggestion. :wink:
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Re: Photo TR: Castles -N- Coasters

Postby cal1br3tto » Sun Jan 07, 2018 9:18 pm

I definitely wouldn't mind visiting this park, especially since I've never found Hopkins loopers to be quite as bad as their reputations suggest. I never realized it's open year-round, though, which is good to know.
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