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Disneyland/World and Universal parks discussion thread (where the magic never ends... until a ride you loved is knocked down and replaced with something lame)


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My daughter got excellent grades this year, so I told her to pick her vacation spot.  Knowing Galaxy's Edge isn't open at Disney World yet, she picked Ohio, for the excellent coasters at King's Island

Galaxy’s Edge is very impressive, but I would say that many of the criticisms of it are justified. It looks great, and has an amazing level of detail, but it can feel a bit sparse and feels like there

We leave for Florida on Wednesday. We're spending two days at Disneyworld and going to Magic Kingdom and Epcot, I believe.  My wife was in charge of doing that part. I haven't been to Florida in 15 ye

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A pretty bare bones announcement. No announcement of any particular lands or IPs or even the concept behind it. 

 

Blog post by Mark Woodbury

 

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Concept Art

 

Universals-Epic-Universe-Proximity-Map-1

Map

 

Concept art with labels for the expected areas. 

 

So if this is an Epic Universe, will the different areas be called Galaxies? Does this mean we might soon be visiting the Galaxy of Fantastic Beasts at Universal’s Epic Universe. 

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Hmmm... If that’s a How to Train your Dragon land would that suggest that duelling coasting belongs in that land... effectively giving way to a re-imagined, more modern and technically impressive take on Duelling Dragons?

 

I am SO excited about the prospect of a classic monsters land. If that’s the land as suggested then I wonder what that neighbouring arena like structure is.

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In Mouse related news, Disney’s Imagineering channel on Youtube has a new series of (frustratingly short) lessons on land and ride design.  

 

 

In fairness to the length, there are over 30 videos, so with them ranging from 2 to 7mins that adds up nicely. Looking forward to watching these. On Youtube they’re rather out of context.

 

The workshop with all the tools you can interact with is actually here:

 

https://www.khanacademy.org/humanities/hass-storytelling/imagineering-in-a-box

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22 minutes ago, ChrisBardon said:

 

Is the general consensus that we're looking at 2022 for this?  I suppose 2021 isn't out of the question, but that depends on a LOT getting built in a short period of time. 

 

2021 would be an almighty middle finger to WDW’s 50th Anniversary, but I think that’s too soon. 2022 or 2023 seems more realistic I think. It’s weird. I was expecting more, like a ground breaking date and confirmation of the lands. Lack of confirmation of anything perhaps suggests that not everything is locked down just yet.

 

This seems like an announcement to appease shareholders. It can’t be to take the shine off D23 or else they’d have timed this announcement for later in the month closer to D23 actually taking place, and ideally had some actual details.

 

I’d appreciate knowing when this would be open as 2022 for EPCOT’s 40th is when I was eyeing going back, and possibly running a marathon or half marathon at WDW.... although I don’t know why I am fixated on doing one BIG expensive trip when I could in fact plan to go more regularly. It seems silly for me to go before WDW gets its promised “50 for 50th” updates across the resort, and probably silly for me to go before Future world at EPCOT is re-imagined, but I could still go after that even if it pre-dates Epic Universe opening then return a year or two later.  Any travel potential in my future largely depends on how screwed the UK economy is going to be though.

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Orlando Park Stop announcement roundup

 

Orlando Park stop has done a good job covering the development of this park and has a good roundup of the announcement. 

 

On the opening date:

An opening year for Universal’s Epic Universe was not announced at today’s conference. Estimates have the new park opening by 2023 at the earliest and 2025 at the latest. Work is going on now for warehouses and other back of house support structures for the new park. We should hopefully see vertical construction begin on the park itself by park the end of next year.

 

The Jurassic Park coaster being built is not expected to open until 2021, so the new park is gonna be awhile. 

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That Jurassic Coaster will be interesting. I think it will be a bit of a blight on the landscape though. Mind you, I’ve never much liked coasters with a large footprint (one of a few reasons that Rip Ride Rocket thing makes me angry whenever I see it in Youtube videos 😀 ). I prefer more compact and themed coasters. 

 

It’s also kind of strange to see them following up one coaster at IOA with another. 

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There’s also lots of interesting stuff elsewhere online comparing the two Star Wars lands. Florida’s is a bit smaller, but there’s a broader colour palette throughout, more refined fine details and it’s more obvious that the spires are supposed to petrified trees rather than rocks.

 

Lots of comparison shots over at Laughing Place:

 

https://www.laughingplace.com/w/articles/2019/08/02/star-wars-galaxys-edge-disneyland-vs-disneys-hollywood-studios-a-photo-comparison/

 

I definitely prefer the colour scheme in Florida.

 

More from this Twitter feed:

 

 
Interesting that the archway on the First Order side is closed off at WDW. As far as I know it leads to backstage in Florida, it wasn’t just a closed off part of the land during previews but one of the major design differences.
 
 

 

 

Mentioned in the Defunctland podcast, there’s also an entire piece of scenery not in California of a crater and remnants of a crashed escape pod.

 

 

 

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Cool to see some of the differences between the two. Took me forever to figure out why Bret was taking pictures of his phone. 

 

I’m glad that Disney isn’t imposing the strict rules on photos during cast previews that they were at Disneyland. 

 

I’m surprised at some of the difference in the details. I assume this is just the product of 2 different teams applying things a bit differently?

 

The different color of the marketplace is quite surprising too. 

 

If Hollywood Studios is a madhouse at the end of the month, will the people calling Galaxy’s Edge a failure have to backtrack a bit? 

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6 hours ago, Graeme said:

I’m surprised at some of the difference in the details. I assume this is just the product of 2 different teams applying things a bit differently?

 

I wonder if there’s a little bit of friendly competition between teams in these situations? I suppose it could also be that because the Studios version of the land is a little smaller they could throw a little more money into details, or perhaps the details are merely a benefit of having the extra time between Disneyland and WDW’s opening.

 

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The different color of the marketplace is quite surprising too. 

 

It’s something I started to notice in Bioreconstruct’s photos some months back. The belief is that it has to do with Florida’s weather and a greater need to have some vibrancy to the land to offset overcast/rainy periods that would otherwise render everything too gloomy. 

 

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If Hollywood Studios is a madhouse at the end of the month, will the people calling Galaxy’s Edge a failure have to backtrack a bit? 

 

I don’t think the Youtubers making those videos are the type to ever admit they were wrong about anything.

 

 

A really big surprise for me about Galaxy’s Edge seems to be the quality of the food. In the Dunfunctland podcast Kevin echos the sentiment I’ve seen from others that it’s not great, and in fact from what I’ve read from CM previews it might even be a little worse than Disneyland’s G.E (I think the menu is also said to be more limited in Florida too. I’d have to double check though). Disney Food Blog did not rate the Disneyland version highly at all.

 

Whenever I read about, or see videos of, the food at the canteen in Pandora I’m really impressed by how nice it all looks. I thought that would be the blueprint for Galaxy’s Edge to match, especially so in Florida since the Hollywood Studios park seems to have such poor quick service options.

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Galaxy's edge might be a ways away, but if you're anywhere near one of their locations, go give the Secrets of the Empire VR experience a try at the Void.  They have a location at downtown disney, but they've also been putting them in other cities, and there are now two locations in the Toronto area that have it.  We checked it out this afternoon, and it's kind of like a combination of a game and really good dark ride.  It's all custom VR gear with an associated physical space, but it works really, really well.  Full field of view, hand tracking, physical props, and effects like heat and scent.  When you're outside on Mustafar, you can feel and smell the lava...  It's maybe a 20 minute experience, and it's not cheap, but it's extremely cool.  Really interested in seeing where they could go next with the tech.

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Do you have to stay on property to do Fast Passes? We are looking at going in March and my kid only wants to do Star Wars at Disney, he’s never been into the rest of Disney or Marvel so the rest of the park he isn’t interested in and he still doesn’t like riding rides. He also wants to do Harry Potter at Universal.

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17 minutes ago, kelley said:

Do you have to stay on property to do Fast Passes? We are looking at going in March and my kid only wants to do Star Wars at Disney, he’s never been into the rest of Disney or Marvel so the rest of the park he isn’t interested in and he still doesn’t like riding rides. 

 

No, but booking your tickets in advance is advisable (you can book for rides 60 days in advance of your visit with Fastpass+).

 

Bear in mind there’s not yet any indication of when Disney intend to open up Galaxy’s Edge rides to Fastpass even though Smuggler’s Run and Rise of the Resistance are both equipped with fastpass queues. Obviously  there will be a fight to obtain ones for the most popular attractions so I don’t believe that you’re guaranteed to get the ones you want either.

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3 hours ago, Angry the Clown said:

No, but booking your tickets in advance is advisable (you can book for rides 60 days in advance of your visit with Fastpass+).

 

This is assuming that you’re going to Florida. Fastpasses at Disneyland are done day of. 

 

If if you are not staying a a Disney hotel in Florida, you can book Fastpasses 30 days out from your dates. 60 day advance bookings are for Disney hotel guests. 

 

3 hours ago, kelley said:

he’s never been into the rest of Disney or Marvel so the rest of the park he isn’t interested in and he still doesn’t like riding rides.

 

I’d be very curious to hear how your trip turns out. I feel like people who say they wouldn’t be interested in Disney because they don’t like rides, are mostly thinking about crappy carnival rides and thrill rides. While Disney has some of that, so many of the rides like Haunted Mansion and Pirates are about the experience and the visuals, and not at all about the ride. The rides that do offer some thrills are usually quite mild and offer an experience unlike what you would get at a typical amusement park.

 

Plus there is so much more than just rides. 

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3 hours ago, Angry the Clown said:

 

Bear in mind there’s not yet any indication of when Disney intend to open up Galaxy’s Edge rides to Fastpass

 

Was just reminded that, while Smugglers Run doesn’t have Fastpass, you can make advance reservations for the Cantina, Savi’s Workshop (Lightsabers) and apparently also the Droid Depot. 

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Removal of the second block of EPCOT tombstones has begun, and the entrance fountain has been blocked off too (the fountain is not known to be going, but is expected to be restored to something resembling its original design with the prism sculpture).

 

Apparently these walls will be up a lot longer than the ones were for the opposite side as the plan is to tear this second wave out and immediately begin implementing the new landscaping elements, open that up then shift back to doing the landscaping where the other Legacy stones have already been removed. Makes sense.

 

There’s going to be a lot of construction walls going up at EPCOT in the coming weeks once they start shutting down many of the buildings. Hopefully we get some new Future World concept art at D23. I’m keen to see what they do with the Innoventions building (I only ever knew it as Communicore).

 

It’ll also be interesting to see just how quickly they re-landscape the entrance and Future World and whether it can be done by the end of 2020 or whether it will be timed with WDW 50th celebrations the following year. I guess it depends on whether they are tearing old buildings down or just altering the existing strictures. I can definitely see the name Future World being put to rest. It makes less and less sense these days. I love the rumour that it might be called EPCOT Center as a throwback to old timey nerds like me. If they won’t build Horizons 2.0 then I’ll take what I can get. 😀

 

One of the most reliable insiders at WDWMagic puts the planned changes for EPCOT (which is to say the entire park, not just Future World) at a cost of over $2 billion. 

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Googled for a schedule reminder of just what’s closing at EPCOT in a matter of weeks. The place is going to be a maze of construction walls come Christmas. You might want to consider skipping the park entirely in March, Kelley.

 

O'Canada - closing 8/1/2019 for rehab. I believe this is to finally update the film.

 

 

MAJOR CLOSURES/REMOVALS THIS SEPTEMBER:

 

Club Cool - closing 9/8/2019 (expected to re-appear in a new location as part of the finished Future World re-design)

 

Character Spot - closing 9/8/2019

 

Innoventions/Colortopia - closing 9/8/2019

 

Nanooze Break - closing 9/8/2019

 

Fountain of Nations - closing 9/8/2019. 

 

Camera Center - closing 9/8/2019

 

 

FALL CHANGES (precise dates TBA):

 

Mouse Gear - Location to undergo refurbishment (it will be move to a temporary home in the winter until the existing building refurb is complete).

 

Art of Disney - Will eventually be moving to a new a permanent location at Heritage Manor in The American Adventure pavilion. In the meantime it will be housed in a temporary location. 

 

Pin Central - To eventually be permanently housed in the current Camera Centre building. It the meantime it will move to a temporary location in the Fall. 

 

 

MAJOR CLOSURES/REMOVALS THIS NOVEMBER:

 

Electric Umbrella - closing 11/23/2019

 

Fountain View - closing 11/23/2019 (Starbucks will move to a temporary location until it finds a new home in the Future World re-design).

 

 

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Happy 50th to my dear Haunted Mansion. Sad I couldn’t get out to California this year for the celebration (I had genuinely considered it). The 12am-4am party last night sounded amazing, and they apparently even went so far as to have a cast member in the armour suit on the ride just as there was during opening.

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