Do you have a science-based or partially science-based method that you created yourself for ranking roller coasters? If so, share it here! A well-known example would be Mitch Hawker's Best Roller Coaster Poll.
Using technical data from rcdb.com and other similar sources, I made a ranking system using Microsoft Excel that gives a sort of objective total score for a roller coaster and rank them all based on that total score. I also take those scores and combine them based on the parks in which they are located and rank the parks as a whole. I can explain in further detail how the scores are calculated if asked, but basically it comes from bell curves from six separate sets of technical data, which are opening date, track height, track length, top speed, number of inversions, and ride comfort (the ride comfort is based directly off of the speed stat and the type of roller coaster).
The primary goal with doing this is to create a legitimate roller coaster ranking system that is 100% objective with no influence from polls, opinions, or anything else subjective.
Let me know what you think, but please don't tear my head off if you think it sucks.
It looks like you have a good start. My only complaint is how high SFMM is ranked.
1: Lightning Run, 2: El Toro, 3: Maverick, 4: Xcelerator, 5: Voyage, 6: TTD, 7: Gold Striker, 8: El Loco (Vegas), 9: Millennium Force, 10: Kingda Ka Coaster Credits: 110 (89 steel, 21 wood); Last Coaster Credit: Raptor (CP) [8/22/14]; Last Park Credit: Waldameer [8/21/14] What a season pass??
XYZ wrote:It looks like you have a good start. My only complaint is how high SFMM is ranked.
Because this ranking system is based on tech specs, roller coasters with higher, more impressive tech specs tend to get more favorable scores. In the case of SFMM, a big factor for why it gets ranked so high has a lot to do with being the park with the most total roller coaster inversions in the world. No other park even comes close.
I should also note to everyone, just for the record, that my rankings for parks are based solely on their roller coaster line-ups and no other criteria such as friendly staff, cleanliness, value for the money, etc.
Jackdude101 wrote:The primary goal with doing this is to create a legitimate roller coaster ranking system that is 100% objective with no influence from polls, opinions, or anything else subjective.
this is one of the most bafflingly absurd and misguided ideas I've ever heard in my entire life.
I don't even know where to begin. you want "no influence from polls or opinions or anything subjective" in determining a roller coaster ranking system. the concept is logically bankrupt. all you are doing is discarding the opinions of all others in favor of your own subjective opinion, as the author of whatever methodology you concoct. which is fine! but don't make the mistake of thinking it's any more objective than any other individual's opinion.
any methodology, no matter how rigorous or number-based, is still just an algorithm you chose to apply, that you made up. it is exactly as subjective as someone who ranks a coaster number 1 because it's in their home park. you can do all the math you want and compile and calculate as many stats as you want -- but your end result still amounts to a single person's subjective opinion (yours), no more or less valid than anyone else's, both from a scientific and a logical standpoint.
Mitch Hawker's poll doesn't seek to discover the "objectively best roller coaster" it merely attempts to measure, more accurately than any other poll, which coasters are the most popular.
Here's another sample from my spreadsheet. It lists the top 50 wood roller coasters in the world (on my spreadsheet, all of the wood roller coasters in the world known to be currently operating are included).
I should also take this opportunity to correct some things I stated earlier to appease the critics. This ranking system is still subjective even though it is based on objective data.
I was interested in the first list because it did give some reasonable numbers as to how appealing various parks seem to be, and I figured you would continue to find ways to improve upon it (factoring in airtime, flat ride choices, etc.) before it becomes a very accurate representation of how desirable an amusement park should be. But looking at that wooden roller coaster list, I am very confused as to what your spreadsheet sees when making its decisions. I mean, Boulder Dash doesn't make the list, but Wildcat does?
I still think you've got something interesting going on here and I'd love to see more of what you can do with Excel, but I think that last spreadsheet has a long way to go before it comes even close to accurate.
"Lazer Snake Horse On Fire looks too intense for me"
VinTheAttendant wrote:I still think you've got something interesting going on here and I'd love to see more of what you can do with Excel, but I think that last spreadsheet has a long way to go before it comes even close to accurate.
Yes, I am still tinkering with how everything gets scored. Since I started this thing in May 2009, my main focus has thus far been adding roller coasters to the list with the most accurate data possible, some of which I had to go to great lengths to estimate their stats when none were available. It was a nightmare with some of the smaller roller coasters located in poor, foreign countries especially. Very recently I successfully passed a milestone where just over 50% of the operating parks with roller coasters (according to rcdb.com) are now included (860 total as of this writing). All together that includes over 2/3rds of the operating roller coasters in the world in fixed locations (2,285 total as of this writing).
On a side note, I can tell you the reason why Wildcat is ranked so high is because the age of the roller coaster (based on its opening date in the park where it is currently located) is factored into its score. I designed this criteria, when plotted on a graph, to be U-shaped where brand new roller coasters that opened recently get high marks and gradually decrease as time goes by until they reach the average age of a roller coaster on my spreadsheet (14 years) at which point it goes back up again. For example, Matterhorn Bobsleds has a high score because its the over sixty years old, but so does Outlaw Run because it opened this year.
On another side note, the reason Boulder Dash is ranked lower is because I have something factored into the score that accounts for ride "roughness" on traditional tech wood roller coasters. It gets the max score for comfort if its top speed is very low, but once the speed is ~20 mph (33.333333 kph), the comfort score goes down and becomes zero once it passes ~62 mph (100 kph). I do not apply this rule to wood coasters using newer technology such as special trains and track systems that make the ride smooth, such as the Intamin Prefabs, the GCIs with Millennium Flyers, and so forth. Those get the maximum score for comfort. Now, when I say "roughness," I mean ones that are consistently rough during the entire ride. Certain steel roller coasters can have certain spots where your head gets jammed to the side when they exit a corkscrew loop for example, but are smooth during the rest of the ride. Hence, I give all steel coasters the highest score for this criteria simply because there is no accurate way that I know of that can factor in roughness when it is only for very brief points of the ride and not the entire ride.
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