Son of Beast’s Fate Unknown

Roller Coaster News

Son of Beast Closed Again. Will it Join Big Bad Wolf in Coaster Heaven?
Son of Beast at Kings IslandThe wooden monstrosity that is Son of Beast has once again been closed. This time Kings Island (near Cinncinnati, OH) has announced that the ride will be closed for the rest of the season. Son of Beast opened in 2001 as the world’s only looping wooden coaster. The mere idea of a looping woodie, rubbed wooden coaster purists the wrong way. Others thought it was a neat hybrid of the coaster world. I am in the latter camp, but I can’t speak to how good or bad the Son’s ride is as I’ve never ridden it. The looping woodie debate ended in the winter of 2006-07 when the newly Cedar Fair-owned Kings Island removed the loop.

I was 0 – 2 in my attempts to ride Son of Beast. In April 2006, the entire park was closed due to snow (!) and then when I returned in the summer of 2007 for a twilight visit, Son of Beast was down for repairs by the time I reached the park. Reports have been that it’s super rough and the accident didn’t help this reputation. In July 2006, an accident injured 12 riders sending them to the hospital. I’d love to see Son of Beast reprofiled, but I have no idea how expensive or implausible that might be. Besides, what if Kings Island reprofiled it and it was still as rough as ever.

So is the Son of Beast about to be sent of to the scrap heap, reprofiled, or will it live on to abuse riders for another year?

What’s Your Take?
What do you think will happen to Son of Beast? What do you hope Kings Island does with Son of Beast? Leave a comment below.


  1. and continuing my rant

    KI has to consider, is this a long term investment? What happens five years from now after we have just given SoB a $10 million overhaul and it needs another. In my belief, KI should avoid this situation at all cost and put SoB behind them as another 'Bat' and continue foward. If they do remove SoB they will have a large area for expansion which is What They Need! They will recieve bad press for this but it will become a distant memory as the coaster that was too big for its own good.

    I vote, Remove the SoB, and build a ride/rides that will bring a crowd based off of thrills instead of gimmicks.

  2. My daughter and I rode it when it first opened and we LOVED it. Went back the following year and it jerked us around so bad we did all we could to try to keep from getting jerked around. I recently went this past Sat Oct 3rd and was upset to see it wasn't opened. I haven't been up there for about 3 years or so, and had no idea they removed the loop. That was one of the things that made it unique. I had to see it go and become some coaster that is just like all the rest. You have to go with safety though, and for all that ride at amusement parks, you take a risk of injury every time you strap in.

  3. I have A life so I didnt read all the coments but all the people who want it gone you dont know what the word thrill means it's the tallest and fastest wooden roller coaster in the world and dont complain about it being rough because it's a wooden coaster they are all rough if you are such a wuss about it then dont ride it instead of trying to get it sent to the scrap heap and stopping the people who do like it from riding it I bet have of you screammed your ^%* off riding it if you rode it LONG LIVE SON OF BEAST!!!!!!!!

  4. Shut up, alex. I like Son of Beast too(even though the ride was rough), but try to contain yourself.

  5. seriously alex, shutup, i don`t know why you came here being so rude and all, but dude, stop it. also we do no the meaning of thril and SOB isnt it. actualy, scratch that, by the sound of the comments above, it may of had thrill if you you weren`t to busy stoping your self from getting more bruises than you can count. i think everyone is just trying to say that it just shouldn't be THAT rough. nobody minds getting jostled around a bit but its much more fun when its so smooth you feel like your flying and also, we do have lives, were just nerds, theres a difference you know.

  6. Let's keep it civil folks. 🙂

  7. Yeah, you're right. I have ridden SOB with and without the loop, and I think it is fun. It just isn't the best ride out there. That would probably be Millennium Force or maybe Kumba.

  8. Sorry about above. I kind of messed up on my email, and the site gave me another identity.

  9. It Is Rough I Guess.

  10. I have at least 15 rides with and without the loop. I admit its rough but I,m addicted to its speed. I think that they either put bigger wheels on the trains or go with steel rails like Gemini to smooth out the ride. I would hate to see this monumental ride go to waste.

  11. If Diamondback has taught KI / riders anything, it's that you do not necessarily need to build a record breaking roller coaster, but rather one that's simply fun to ride and won't send you to the doctor's office.

    I'm sure if they demolish this thing and put in a roller coaster that's actually fun to ride, nobody will complain.

    Oh just FYI, KI has only developed 360 or so of its 700+ acres so it's not like they're that pressed for zoning.

  12. Cedar Fair really does not know how to keep their wooden coasters in good shape. Of all the park chains, their wooden coasters are the roughest. I happen to like Son of Beast. I did like it with the loop. It is certainly NOT the roughest coaster out there. I have many friends, both coaster enthusiasts and general public, who agree with me there. Mean Streak at Cedar Point is much worse than Son of Beast in terms of roughness. Cedar Fair's answer to solving wooden coaster roughness is to add more brakes. The solution is to replace wood and to replace it often. The Voyage at Holiday World is another coaster that is much rougher than Son of Beast. I know that the first half of the Voyage is fairly smooth as it is the hills. The first drop of Son of Beast is not bad as it is just that, a drop. The back half of the Voyage is extremely rough as the track's twisting and turning are uncomfortable for most. I am not a wimp by any stretch of the imagination as I have ridden over 600 different coasters, even the rough ones, with 200 of those coasters being wooden ones. I have been at both Holiday World and Kings Island. I have seen long lines for both the Voyage and Son of Beast. But, as the day progressed, I noticed that the queue for the Voyage diminished…too rough for most. The queue for Son of Beast remained about the same, and that was a decent sized line in 2008 and when it wsa running in 2009. And I do not buy the argument that the Voyage is just an intense coaster but a good design while Son of Beast is lousy. They are different types of coasters. It is tough to compare an out and back with the twister elements thrown in during the last half (Voyage) to Son of Beast that is mainly twister-esque. Let's face it. There are those who like certain coasters more than others. All coasters have the right to "live" and remain. Just because Son of Beast is NOT your favorite doesn't mean that you should want to see it torn down. Those "hurt" on it usually had pre-existing conditions. As to the wood piece that splintered in 2006, the poor wood condition was to blame. Had that piece of wood been on another coaster with similar results, would people be so quick to ask for the removal of that coaster? I think not. I have noticed that certain people tend to defend certain parks as if those parks can do no wrong. You are entitled to your opinion as am I. Son of Beast is an intense coaster, and it should remain with us. If it is too rough for you, then stay off it! The same would be true for any coaster. If you don't like it, then don't ride it. That goes for anyone else out there. Stay off the coasters that are too rough. For those who choose to ride Son of Beast or another coaster, it remains just that. Our choice. Thank you.

  13. Nice comment Derek, and good point, it`s not everyday you find yourself reading a comment more than a page long that dosn`t bore you.

  14. I Disagree with you, Derek. I've ridden the texas giant once and the voyage, mean streak, and SOB over 5 times each and SOB is by far the worst and most painful. At least on mean streak you can pick a good seat. Every seat on SOB causes a painful ride!

    • so don`t ride it, that was what he was saying.

  15. I rode it last May and loved it.

    For me there is a trick to riding wooden coasters: lean forward and 'make like' you are driving it – rather than sit back and get the &%$#@ beaten out of you.

    Riding this way works for me on any coaster that hits you around otherwise, though is more physical in other ways. I do this sitting in the back of the Mean Streak – another ride that many complain about bitterly.

    Don't knock it till you try it…

    • I (and I'm sure many others) know how to lessen the impact on your body while riding bad, rough wooden coasters. The question remains whether it's worth the effort. Just because you can come away unscathed doesn't make it enjoyable. I guess if you like a challenge and you don't mind being punished a bit it could be fun.

      • trust me, it is.

      • 'Chacun a son gout' as the French say (to each their own).

        My best friend (a middle aged woman with two hip surgeries in her recent past – and no, she is not the next bionic woman) and I go to CP and KI every May. I am not a spring chicken myself, yet we ride all of these coasters.

        Remarkably, she gets as much a thrill as do I, riding the ones you deem 'bad' and 'rough' exactly the way I suggested.

        I am not trying to imply that those who do not enjoy these rides are wimpy, just because said middle-aged woman (with two recent hip surgeries) rides them with great joy and no ill effect.

        I would, however, have to strongly disagree with use of purely subjective and qualitative adjectives such as 'bad' when referencing coasters others might find pretty great.

        Other than that, thank you for your site.


        • LOL – and no, the hip surgeries are not wooden coaster related – the coaster trips came later

        • saying a ride is bad is inevitable for some people, you can dissagree, but having opinions is also inevitable.

        • Agreed Rsutherland, to each their own. But also keep in mind that the point of my site is that I give my opinion. So I'm going to call some rides excellent and other rides bad or even horrible. If I didn't, my site would be just like all the others, just reporting the news. As always guests are invited to disagree and voice their opinions like you did.

          Thanks for your comment and I'm glad that you and your friend enjoy (survive :))these coasters.

          • Discussions on semantics can be a rollercoaster ride too. (and I write this all in good fun as much as anything)

            Here goes:

            I find myself able to express my opinions equally well using expressions such as "not my preference", though it does require a few more hits on the keypad.

            "Bad" may imply "not my preference" in a critiques' blog, but it does rather negate someone else's preference.

            For instance (and perhaps I get laughably fussy here) I did not say the use of an adjective such as 'bad' was bad, LOL.

            Don't worry, I will stop as I can foresee multiple trajectories hurled at me in response to this posting…but there it is.

            On a more coaster related front -I read that SOB will indeed run again due to adjustments to the seats. Any truth to this?

          • there`s nothing on screamscape.

  16. Hey, coaster critic, how do you ride a very bad woodie, and not get hurt/ or feel sick? What's the method? I rode the Hershey Park "Wildcat" and dang, swore i'd never ride it again. It banged the crap out of me and when you get off a woodie and feel like crap, then it ruins the rest of the day. please let us know the secrete. ty., rollercoasterdude

    • here`s one tip: when you see a turn coming (an unbanked one) push into the side your about to be thrown into so you don`

      • sorry, i, by accident, hit the finish comment button while typing. let me finish: so you don`t get jerked arond and slammed into the side.

    • Don't give up on a coaster after only 1 ride. Try changing seats … front, middle, back.

    • If I know it's a very bad woodie I won't ride it so I won't get hurt. I'd rather skip a ride then get beat up for no good reason. If I think a ride is going to be pretty rough, then I just try to brace myself like Quil said below. I lean into and go with the turns. I'm sure I do more, but it's hard to describe as it's instinct at this point. But, bottom line, I don't ride coasters that I KNOW will harm me. It defeats the purpose of what should be a fun experience.

  17. There is only one coaster I have encountered to be unacceptably painful – and it isn't a woodie. Mantis at Cedar Point eludes me. I find the apparatus around the ears way too hard (therefore a head banger). Sometimes I get cramps in my legs. Any secrets to riding this or is it just a 'bad' coaster? lol.

    • To be fair Rsutherland, headless people may find Mantis quite enjoyable. Please continue any Mantis discussions on my <a href-"; rel="nofollow">Mantis review post.

      • Speak for yourself, CC! I've never been to Cedar Point, but my cousin has, and she said she loved it! Oh, and she does have a head.:)

        This is the same cousin who I said went on Southern Star at Carowinds and hated it.

        • CFC, there`s a reason CC put the mantis link in his comment before yours, and you were replying to him! 🙂

          • Oops, I didn't see that! I really need to be more observant next time around. 🙂

  18. If only CC has ridden Son of Beast, he could write up an article on the world's roughest coaster: SOB vs. (Riverside) Cyclone. Instead, maybe Predator vs. Cyclone.

    Wait – has CC already made a comparison article on the roughest woodie? Because I don't want to be sounding like an idiot when asking this.

    • To be fair though in recent years Six Flags has rebuilt parts of the (Riverside) Cyclone and replaced the cars with newer ones that give a much smoother ride than previously. Still is a rather rough ride but I would say by no means the roughest anymore. There is also a significant difference if you ride in the front or back cars versus the rest of the train.

      • I rode in the middle last year and it`s still the crappiest ride in the world, no offense.

        • Hands down. SFNE was the only SF park I've been to, and Cyclone SUCKED. That ride and Son of Beast at Kings Island are why I hate woodies so much… and why I'm afraid to go on Hurler at Carowinds.(!)

  19. Here is the link to the article discussing the revamping of Son of Beasts' seats:
    Under 'Park News'

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