Excitement, or Excitement Rating, is one of three Ratings combined to determine the quality and enjoyability of a ride in the RollerCoaster Tycoon series of games. Excitement is measured on a scale that starts at 0 (very dull), and which in theory can be infinitely high. It is exceptionally rare (though possible, but very few people have done this) to get an excitement rating above 10 without using custom scenery or CTR. Excitement is used primarily as a judge of ride design, and also determines how much guests will pay for ride admission. In scenarios, it is not recommended to build a coaster in a scenario with an excitement above 8. This is because after this point, the cost required to increase the rating goes up dramatically. Also, despite the ride, most guests would not be able to afford more than 8 dollars to ride a ride.
Ride design is crucial for increasing Excitement. Adding variety to a ride, while decreasing parts that cause discomfort or boredom for the rider, will increase the excitement rating. Generally, rides that have sections that enter the ground are more exciting than rides that stay above-ground. Also, rides that have portions of it going over water will have higher excitement ratings. Rides that have lots of sections with high Positive and Negative G- forces or high Lateral G's will have lower excitement ratings; this is evidenced by many rides built that have very low Excitement Ratings while also having ultra-extreme Intensity ratings - the excessive G-Forces of the ride make the ride not enjoyable, and the excitement rating suffers. An intensity rating must always stay below 10, for the ride to stay exciting.
For non tracked rides, the basic excitement rating is set, but can be increased by the surroundings (scenery, rides, etc). In the ride operations menu, making the ride time longer (by increasing the number of swings, turns, the time limit etc) increases the excitement rating. In go karts, having more laps increases the excitement rating.
Nearby scenery and theming can massively increase the excitement rating. It doesn't matter what kind of scenery you place, quantity counts. Nevertheless, If too much scenery (up to 48 items, depending on the ride) had been used, the excitement rating would stop increasing at some point. That does not work for indoor rides like the 3D Cinema.
Also, having coasters interlocking themselves or others, or having pathways or other rides going trough loops or corkscrews also greatly improves excitement ratings.
If you add scenery or interlocking tracks/paths, it will take a few seconds for the ride to recalculate the new excitement rating. In older versions you might have to close the ride and test it again to get the new value.
In RCT1, excitement is measured on a tiered level. Tracked rides must fulfil a set list of criteria for maximum excitement.
1. The primary factor for excitement is intensity. More intense rides generally have higher excitements. But eventually the relationship stops increasing and drops, when the intensity reaches 10.
2. Excitement can only increase by up to 3 points by having other rides passing close to the tracks. The more rides nearby increases the excitement rating, but eventually the rating stops increasing even if you build more rides close by. For some rides, like Car Ride, it's crucial to have the track interlock with itself.
3. Underground sections increase excitement by up to 2. The more underground-above ground intersections in a ride, the higher the excitement increase, but eventually, the rating stops increasing, even if you have more intersections.
4. Having rides go near water increases excitement by up to 1. Having more length of track going near water increases excitement, but eventually, the relationship plateaus.
5. Playing music increases the excitement, but not by much. E.g 0.3 points.
6. Having more scenery /interlocking paths close to the ride increases excitement, but place more than 48 pieces and the rating stops increasing. This works in a range of 5 tiles around the "yellow arrow" every ride has. At tracked rides, this is at the station (only station 1 counts) 1 tile behind the lights. In RCT3, a variety of scenery themes surrounding a ride increases the excitement more than a lot of scenery of the same theme. (This is useful for the "Box Office" scenario where an excitement of 7 is required.)
7. The last way to increase excitement is to "synchronise with adjacent stations". This can increase excitement by as much as 1.5. It doesnt matter if the coasters keep up with each other, just checking this option will increase excitement ratings by a fixed amount.
This tiered system is most probably the reason why roller coasters in RCT1 rarely have extreme and ultra extreme excitement levels.
When the length of a ride exceeds four minutes, despite the elements, the excitement rating will start to drop, and guests will want to get off the ride.
Some rides will characteristically have lower Excitement ratings than other rides. Roller Coasters will typically have the highest excitement ratings, followed by Water Rides and Thrill Rides, then Gentle Rides and Transport Rides, although there are exceptions in each category. Since riders will pay more to ride a more exciting ride, it is typical, in a pay-per-ride park, to have the Roller Coasters have the highest admission cost, since they are (usually) the most exciting.
Excitement is measured on a (nominally) 10-point scale, where higher numbers represent higher excitement ratings. Ratings above 10 are possible, but ratings below 0.00 are not.
Excitement is given a value; x.xx; and that value is associated with a category:
- Low: 0.00 to 2.55
- Medium: 2.56 to 5.11
- High: 5.12 to 7.67
- Very High: 7.68 to 10.23
- Extreme: 10.24 to 12.79
- Ultra-Extreme: 12.80 and up
Unlike Intensity or Nausea ratings, a higher or more extreme Excitement rating is desirable. Additionally, a guest will not intentionally ride or not ride a ride because of its Excitement rating, but usually on the Intensity rating.
The Excitement Rating can be used as a crude estimate of how "fun" a ride is. The more exciting the ride is, the more guests will say "Ride X was great" and return to ride the ride again. As such, it can be used to determine proper admission prices and ride photo prices, queue/line length, and the amount of advertising it should receive. The Excitement Rating also encourages unique building concepts, use of special track elements, and the construction of rides near each other, near paths, near scenery, and underground. In this way, the Excitement Rating works to encourage real-life ride building practices.