Graeme

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Graeme last won the day on July 13

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About Graeme

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  1. K, I'm done for the night. Sorry for the flood of posts, but I haven't had access to a proper keyboard for a while.
  2. I don't think we'll be seeing too many more movie based attractions anymore. The repeat-ability of them is low and they tend to suffer from low attendance after a few years. Plus the novelty of 3D is no longer novel. The current theaters are being used more and more for sneak previews of movies instead of their actual show. The Shrek 4D show at Universal is being changed to be a rotating attraction of various Dreamworks properties and the Muppets theater at DHS just got a new sign that makes it look like it would be real easy to change out when/if they want. I also don't think Ant Man is a big enough property for them to make an attraction. Maybe something temporary, or maybe just because they could actually use it in Florida.
  3. So much announced at D23! It was crazy. And there may be even more announced for Marvel at Comicon! My quick thoughts on some of the announcements. Star Wars - Not sure about the name Galaxy's End. I understand where they are going, but if you don't know the back story of the land it could be confusing and it just doesn't have a ring to it. I even think I would have preferred The Galaxy's End or At Galaxy's End. The model looks fantastic and I have no doubt they will get it looking like that. I love the ambition they are going for in terms of your reputation and how you interact with people and things in the world. Apparently they are also trying to get rid of anything real world in the land like company logos and no sponsorships. My only concerns are how all the reputation stuff and interactions they are planning will play out, especially in the early days. How will this work when the land is just crawling with people? Will people not want to leave once they get out because they want to get more credits or don't want to miss anything? Will operations be able to keep it all up and maintained or will they slowly start having to phase things out once they become too much of a hassle? I hope it all works. Glad Rex is back. Star Wars Hotel - I love the idea, I love the ambition. Again, I hope it works and I hope I can experience it some day. I've heard they're looking at about a $650 a night for a room with extra people being $200 a night or something like that, and a maximum 2 night stay. Tron Rollercoaster - Love that its coming to North America. The ride looks amazing in Shanghai. Really really glad that they are using some empty land instead of replacing something as had been rumoured. Guardians of the Galaxy - I have concerns with the Guardians change to Universe of Energy. I don't see how it fits, and to call GotG "timeless" seems ridiculous considering just a few years ago, most people didn't even know what it was. Epcot Changes - The concept art for the changes to (what some people hope it will be called) Epcot Center looks nice, but it doesn't look like there is actually anything there. I'm not convinced they still know what they are doing with Epcot. Ratatouille - It fits France. I'm fine with where they are putting it. I understand why they are putting IP and character rides into Epcot. I just wish it was a better ride. I found it quite underwhelming when I rode it in Paris. The screens look like big screens in a room, the props are somewhat minimal, and it feels like a huge waste of the trackless vehicles when half the time they are sitting still looking at a screen. I hope they plus it up a bit and decorate the rooms a bit more. Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway - Already commented on this. Looks great. Maybe oversold it a bit. Wish it wasn't replacing Great Movie Ride. Toy Story Land - Next year seems right. Hope its good. The one in Paris is OK, but it's not the most lavishly themed and the rides are low capacity carnival rides dressed up with super long lines. New Theater on MK Main Street - The big discussion seems to be where this would go. Speculation is that it could go behind Main Street which actually seems to make the most sense and be the most likely based on current information. Epcot Transportation - The Skyway gondolas could be a game changer for transportation at WDW. If it works well, and is cheap enough to expand on, there could be skyway connected the entire south end of the property before we know it. Anyone who's tried to get around on their bus system (especially to park hop), will know how good this could be. I was a bit surprised how small the gondolas appear to be in the concept images they showed. The "Minnivans" has already started and apparently cost $20 a trip. So, they're for people with money to burn. They're not even vans. A bit disappointing with all the rumours of driverless cars going around. Marvel Land - No real surprises as it was one of the worst kept secrets at DL. We may find out more at SDCC. Read somewhere that one of the rides may be the Tron coaster with an Avengers or Spidey theme. Paradise Pier - I don't understand this one. Why are they taking an area of the park that just had so much work done on it just recently and changing it again? It seems completely unnecessary. Just about everything on that Pier was recently re-themed and would need to be done again to be Pixar. The carnival games, Silly Symphony Swings, the carousal, Mickey's Fun Wheel (which has become one of the icons of the park) and Goofys Sky School. What about Little Mermaid? I am curious as to what could happen to California Screamin though. This is especially frustrating that they are spending time and money on this and Tomorrowland continues to rot. Granted, that's probably a lot more work, but it is needed. Pixar Fest - Seems like a lot of Pixar in both parks. Too bad they couldn't do the big Pixar night show in DCA. Paint the Night is probably going to require taking down the fake electric trolly wires which is kind of a shame.
  4. EPCOT is an odd one. It has so many things working against it in terms of what it was originally designed to be, what they've tried to do to appeal to more people, and how it has always relied on sponsorships. It also suffers from the same problems as tommorowland, where time moves on, and their looks into the future start to feel dated all too quick. It certainly has its fans, but you have to want what it is offering. if you want to walk around a beautiful park, eat at a wide variety of restaurants, take part in their ongoing festivals, and ride a ride or two, then it's great. If you want to be continuously entertained, it can be a bit of a slog. It certainly has some a few fun attractions, but it can be hard to find them sometimes. I'm personally not a huge fan of Epcot. I still go each time I visit WDW, but it's almost because I want to experience all the parks since I never know when I may be back. I like Test Track (I've done both), but I don't love it. The fast 60MPH run outside the building is fantastic, but the rest of it is kind of dull, and back in original version, felt too much like it was trying to educate about how they test cars.... which isn't the most interesting topic. The new version is cool looking, but is the same ride and the conceit that you're designing a car and then testing it is a bit far fetched. Mission Space is ok and a very interesting simulation, but it's not fantastic and I feel a bit woozy afterwards regardless if I do Orange or Green. Soarin is great and The seas is good and Spaceship Earth is the last remnant from the animatronic wonderland Futureworld used to be. The World Showcase, to me, never feels like it achieves what it is trying to attempt. There are pavilions that are filled primarily with restaurants and shops. The ones without an attraction don't have much else. I was disappointed on my first visit that there wasn't more on the countries and the monuments/buildings they have replicated. My wife seemed to think they were nice, but not the real thing, so somewhat pointless. Even the attractions that are there, don't do their job quite as well as they should. I really like the show in America and the film in France really has an epic and grand feeling. The rest don't do what they should to show off their countries, or need to be updated. I really wish I could have experienced Epcot back in the day. The first time I visited WDW, was shortly after Mission: Space opened. This means Horizons was gone, World of Motion had been long replaced by Test Track, Wonders of Life was shut down, Imagination pavillion was infected by Eric Idle, Communicore was no more, and while Nemo hadn't taken shop in the seas, the ride leading into the base had been shut down. I've seen videos of Horizons, World of Motion, and the original Imagination ride and I really really wish I had had the opportunity to experience these. I feel like there is a time I would have absolutely loved Futureworld, especially Horizons. The sad truth about Epcot is that it was built and maintained with as much sponsorship money as possible. This means the sponsors had a say as to the content of the attractions, the sponsors paid for upgrades and operation, and if the sponsorship ended, then in most cases the attraction was closed or run seasonally. Many sponsorship renewals and changes also required or mandated the changes to the attractions. Almost every story of every pavilion in Futureworld revolves around sponsorship. It's not just Futureworld too. World showcase also relied on money from the countries they represent to be built. There are numerous expansion pads in world showcase for new countries that have never been used because countries were not lining up to join Epcot. Likewise, the countries without rides or attractions, is simply because there wasn't enough money to build them. Beyond that, Epcot has always had a reputation for being boring and not for kids. The attendance of Epcot in its early day was not what Disney wanted and there are stories that when Eisner took over, the board told him that Epcot was now his problem to fix. He and Frank Wells when to all the Disney parks and rode all the rides and apparently Frank Wells kept falling asleep in Epcot. They then started putting characters in park for the first time and there was a mandate for more thrills. The first "thrill" ride was Maelstrom with its drops, then we got Test Track and finally Mission: Space. I really hope Epcot can be fixed, I don't have much faith though. The new issue is if they can't convince sponsors to pony up money (and it seems Disney is getting away from that), then any new attraction must be based on an IP. So now they're forcing IP and characters into where they don't belong, or using IP that may not have the staying power and needs to be replaced again. They say they want to replacing aging attraction with new ones that are timeless.... to then bring us Guardians as their first big "timeless" attraction is like a slap in the face. Sorry, this is long.
  5. Obviously the movies use them too.... and so does Toy Story Mania. That ride is a little different though in that you're not simulating motion while watching the screen. You're just sitting in front of a screen while playing each game.
  6. I find it funny that you say it's full of kiddie rides since one of the chief complaints of Epcot has always been that there is nothing for kids there. The thing with Epcot is that there are a few kids rides, a few thrilling rides and then a bunch of rides and shows that aren't thrilling or for kids. I would say the only real kid rides are Nemo, Frozen (which is new, I'm sure Maelstrom bored most kids), and maybe Journey into Imagination (but I don't think anyone really likes that one anymore). I understand why they are putting something new there for sure. I understand that they need new attractions in Epcot and that Epcot needs a lot of work to keep people coming. I do not understand why or how Guardians of the Galaxy is what they are putting there and how it in anyway fits with the theme of Futureworld or Epcot (except that it takes place in the future). There is some IP that makes sense in Epcot. Ratatouille in France makes sense, Nemo in The Seas makes enough sense, Inside Out into Imagination makes so much sense that they'd be foolish not to do it. GotG in Universe of Energy, of Epcot's Futureworld..... it's going to be a stretch. They are absolutely well done, and I honestly have to applaud Universal for pushing their technology, and using 3D screens in many different ways. But in the end, when nearly every single attraction is using screens.... there's something missing. It's hard to put a finger on it, but it starts to feel a bit samey. Like something real and tangible is missing from the experience. There are people that argue watching video of a ride spoils the ride and means you don't have to ride it. But there is always something to be said for experiencing something live and in person, whether it's a ride, a play, a concert, a great work of art, or a scenic view. Somehow, watching something on a screen, even while experiencing everything else going on around you, lessens that feeling. Compare the 2 Kong rides that Universal has had. One has a faux city you travel through, with a helicopter falling from above, and things going on around you trying to tell a story, and then you get this giant robot monkey that shakes your car. The new one has a great building and queue, and there's certainly a lot of action and things going on, but the sense I get from the reaction of it is that you're in a car driving through a couple rooms with screen tunnels and then you see Kong saying "so long" to you. I think there's also a lost sense of wonder. Similar to what has happened in movies since computers started taking the place of practical effects and models. People still ride an attraction like the Haunted Mansion and Pirates and still wonder how they do it. In a ride using screens, we know it's just a 3D movie, with maybe some practical sets built around the screen. With that said, I think 3D screens (or non 3D for that matter) certainly have a place. Spiderman is one of the best rides of all time, I love Star Tours, the new Pirates ride in Shanghai looks amazing and I like how they're used in the Pandora boat ride from what I can tell. The problem is when every ride is doing mostly the same, it starts to lose the magic. I might have said all this in another thread.
  7. From the concept art of Epcot you posted, I think it's pretty obvious the Innoventions buildings are simply going bye bye and becoming whatever they are doing in this art (it looks like a big area with fountains and green area similar to the gardens at Shanghai Disneyland). They have said that new space restaurant is going next to Mission space, and there isn't much "space" there, so next to it would probably mean replacing Wonders of Life, and Test Track, and only one of those buildings is sitting, mostly unused. Speculation is that Wonders of Life becomes this restaurant.
  8. I think the Mickey Mouse ride that is replacing The Great Movie Ride looks like it could be a lot of fun (although I think the Imagineer introducing it at D23 was certainly overselling it just a tad). I am disappointed that it's what's replacing Great Movie Ride however. Great Movie Ride certainly needed an update, and I would understand if Disney wanted to get away from non Disney properties in it. But I wish they had kept something similar but maybe a ride through Disney movie history, showcasing Disney movies that have little or no representation in the park along with some of the more well known classics. How great would it be to have a ride showcasing classic Mickey and Oswald cartoons, Fox and the Hound, Rescuers, 20,000 Leagues, The Love Bug, etc. For me though , it's just sad they are taking this big animatronic ride and replacing it with what looks to be a ride with screen tricks. I'm sure they could have found some other place for the Mickey ride without having to replace one.
  9. I'm borderline obsessed with Disney (and Universal) Parks. Especially lately with the arms race Universal and Disney have been on, and all the major rumours that have been going around. This weekend has been hard to keep up with all the D23 Expo news. I have made 5 trips to California with visits to Disneyland, Universal, Knotts, Six Flags Magic Mountain and Seaworld contained in those. The last one was in 2007. I've been to Orlando 3 times and have visited all 4 Disney Parks, Typhoon Lagoon, both Universal parks and Kennedy Space Center. Last trip was in 2013. I have also been to Disneyland Paris and the Studios Park in 2015. Im glad to have a dedicated thread for this (we've talked a bit about theme parks in the Disney acquiring LucasFilm thread and the Nintendo/Universal thread). I look forward to Angry and I have some good discussions.
  10. For a second there, I was wondering why you were comparing Spider-Man to Garfield.
  11. So there are some hands on with the hardware (not actually plugged into anything) and the controllers use the Wii port just like the NES Classic did. A little flap flips down to reveal the ports on the front of the machine.
  12. I follow Best Buy's Rewards Zone Gamers Club and GameStop on twitter. Both were very helpful when trying to secure a Switch. Both are saying they will announce when preorders will go up soon.
  13. I like the lineup. All good games. Would have liked to have seen Super Star Wars, but I guess we all have games we'd like to see. Im just glad Nintendo doesn't really have any SNES games like Ice Climber and Balloon Fight that they feel compelled to include all the time. I'm much more interested in this one then the NES, despite the higher price and fewer games. It looks like the controllers connect with mini versions of the original ones?
  14. Thanks. I went on a bit of an Infinity figure buying spree during the clearances. I have all 3 games across some different platforms but it'll be good to have all 3 on PC.
  15. Got Full Throtle Remastered. Was pretty much waiting for any sale for that one. Got Mordor just because it was so cheap and the GOTY edition, and The Room 2. I feel like my spending on these sales has gone down, mostly because I have already bought so much on previous sales, and because I'm realizing more every day that I'll never play most of the stuff I already own. But also my expectation for these sales is too high from previous years. Nearly every single game in my wish list is on sale right now, and I'm only buying one of them, and the reason for that is that they're still too expensive for me to make that impulse purchase. For example, I have Rise of the Tomb Raider on there. It's on a good sale right now at I think 60% off. It's still too much. I got the first Tomb Raider on one of these sales for like $12. It's on my wish list simply because I'm waiting for it for be less than $15. $28 is a great price considering its normally $70 here... But it's still too much because of what my sale expectations are.