Saw: The Ride

Thorpe Park

Do you want to play a game? Experience Jigsaw's traps first hand on the ride based on the Saw movie franchise...

Theme ParkThorpe Park
Park AreaSaw Island
Opened14 March 2009
Height100 ft
Length2362 ft
Max Speed55 mph
Vertical Angle100°
DesignerMerlin Studios
Cost£13.5 million
Duration1¾ minutes
On-Ride Photos
At the top of the lift

At the top of the lift

Upon opening, Saw: The Ride was marketed as the world's first horror movie themed rollercoaster. It takes its theme from the Saw movie franchise, and was produced in close partnership with Lionsgate and Twisted Pictures which produced the films.

The ride sits on its own "island" at Thorpe Park, with the whole area taking on an abandoned warehouse style theme in keeping with typical locations from the movies. The rollercoaster itself is a Gerstlauer Eurofighter, which are characterised by their vertical lifts, beyond vertical drops and tight elements.

Ahead of the main coaster section, the first part of the ride takes place in the dark inside a warehouse which also acts as the station building. Here riders are exposed to the first set of Jigsaw's traps, narrowly escaping swinging axes by diving steeply beneath a set of metal spikes, before being shot at by bows and arrows. The train transitions through a zero-G roll above a dead corpse which squirts "blood" up into the riders' faces as they hang upside down above it.

Emerging into the sunlight we realise Jigaw's games are only just beginning, as the car begins its ascent up the vertical lift hill at the start of the main outside coaster section. Cars right themselves briefly at the top, before plunging down Saw's signature 100° beyond vertical drop, which when the ride opened was the steepest rollercoaster drop in the world. Riders are given no time to recover from the experience, as the train immediately enters an Immelmann loop, then navigates through the rest of the twisted layout before coming to a stop on the brakes and re-entering the first storey of the warehouse building ready for riders to disembark, having outwitted Jigsaw and survived his murderous tortune machines.

... Or have they? As TV screens down the exit path suggest, the games have only just begun ... Following the success of the ride, Thorpe Park opened Saw Alive, a live action horror maze which was initially open all year as a sequel to the rollercoaster, before latterly becoming a Fright Nights only attraction.

Saw's theming is very good, and generally of a higher standard than most of Thorpe's rides. In the early years of its operation, rumours suggested that the contract signed with Lionsgate meant that the ride could only be opened if all the theming elements were working. Whether or not that is true, most of the theming has been well cared for over the proceeding years and all the important effects are still intact.

The rollercoaster itself has aged less well, and has become quite rough and uncomfortable. It's nowhere near as bad as Colossus, but still not the kind of thing you'd choose to ride many times in one day. Regardless, let the games begin!

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