Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Avatar Coming to Walt Disney World

Disney Parks blog has announced that Animal Kingdom will have a new land in the park. Based solely on Avatar. This seems to be Disney's long awaited response to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Personally, I have yet to see Avatar, but I will be seeing it now because of its eventual inclusion in the parks. This is something that maybe we didn't know about or think about but was necessary. At this point it is a perfect match to have an attraction based on the highest grossing film of all time. I think putting it in Animal Kingdom is perfect in that it makes the park relavent in a way it never was. Hopefully this is done well and with WDI's string of hits in updates I think we are in for an amazing replacement for Beastly Kingdom. I think Disney might have a knockout punch on their hand.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Ranting and Raving: "Minusing"

While on my most recent vacation to the most magical place on earth, a new thought entered my head. For all of the "plussing" that the Walt Disney Company does in the parks, there is some minusing as well. "Plussing" was a term that Walt Disney created when referring to adding on to an attraction to make it better. Us in the social media world have begun to use the term "minusing" to describe what it means to change an attraction for worse; not better. I have found through the years that for all the good that has been done, they have done some questionable things. Below are a few I noticed on this past trip

Instance 1:

Splash Mountain: On this past trip I noticed quite a few things different that were there last year when I went around the same time:
     1. There were lap bars-  We posted about this in the past so I was prepared. No problem here
     2. The Roadrunner with no friends was gone. Seems he was not replaced but just removed. This
         bothered me actually. It was pretty funny.
     3. In the "Laughing Place" there was no more shooting streams of water or raising turtles. This was
         quite disappointing.
     4. In the riverboat scene a few roosters and chickens were "dead". They didn't move and actually
         they appeared dead. Traumatizing for children I'm sure.

Instance 2:

TTA Peoplemover: I noticed only that the upkeep for the Progress City model is lacking. There is no movement, and it just seems as though they just dim the lights.

Instance 3:

Innoventions: I know they are in the process of updating this, but the world of walls just didn't do it for me. I was a bit upset by this one.

Instance 4:

Test Track: I know they are refurbishing this in a few months, but the pre-show film was not even on. The room was just an extension of the queue. I found this a bit disturbing actually.

These were just a few of the glaring ones for me, but I know there were others. I do not want to sound as though I am knocking Disney all over the place here, but I think it is a little upsetting when things like this happen. I know not every guest will be happy all of the time, but when negative changes happen I feel as though it needs to be mentioned. Disney does many great things, but like all giant companies, they are not immune to missteps. This I fear is a few missteps in the parks division. Overall it was still a magical experience, but these few things did put a chink in the armor so to speak. Just do not let me get started on Universal. Oh I feel another rant coming on.

Friday, September 16, 2011

40th Anniversary Afterall

So it is true. There will be SOMETHING for Disney's 40th. It seems strange to me because through the years it always seemed as though Disney needed an excuse to celebrate something. From the 100 years of magic to Mickey's birthday and such it always seemed as though some Disney related celebration was looming.

This time... Not so much. Surprisingly, it seemed as though The Walt Disney Company was content with letting October 1, 2011 pass without so much as a peep, a few merchandise opportunities and that be it. What I heard was that something will be done, just not as a long celebration like people expected. What exactly is being done seems to be a bit hush hush. I hear many groups and Disney people are doing their own celebration. I just wouldn't be too far from Magic Kingdom on October 1st. It seems something is definitely brewing.

UPDATE: It appears that Magic Kingdom has in fact changed its hours for October 1st. It will now be open until 12am. I wonder what this means now?

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Walt Disney World News: Sorcerers, Narnia Departs

It appears that the Main Street Fire Station is closing for a reason after all! Amid rumors for the past few weeks into what the plan is for the closed building it seems that DisneyParksBlog has an answer. That answer is the Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom. This seems to be the Kim Possible type interactive game that was rumored to be coming to Magic Kingdom. It is slated to open in early 2012 and we will keep you up to date on the news regarding it.

Also it seems as though Hollywood Studios is trying to cleanup a few low attended attractions. Since Star Tours opened in May, the attraction closest to it (Sounds Dangerous) has not been open, and now it seems that the Chronicles of Narnia will be joining Drew Carey's fate. It is scheduled to close on September 10, though no new attraction has been slated to replace it. We shall see what happens in that area though I suspect it will not be a major attraction being that the congestion in that area due to Toy Story Mania would make that idea almost impossible.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Test Track's New Vehicles

A few weeks ago I reported on a rumor of major changes in Test Track. It is scheduled for refurbishment and their have been rumors of something big coming. I do not know if this news feeds into that rumor or squashes it but it seems as though Test Track has changed to a newer style ride vehicle. The new vehicle looks almost identical to the original (so much that I barely even noticed that that I was riding in it) The new vehicle sports a newer color scheme, GM logos on the front of the vehicles but not much else it seems. I would believe that this will coincide with the refurbishment that is scheduled just after the new year in regards to this attraction. I would believe that this means that GM will be remaining the official sponsor of the attraction, which means no Radiator Springs Racer overlay for this attraction like some people had thought.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Back and Raring to go!

Well... I have returned from my trip to the world (which is why it has been a bit since I have posted) It was fun but extremely busy. Some things have changed, but not a bunch in a year. I will have hopefully videos and photos to share, as well as opinions. I will be adding a separate page to this blog that will be based more on my opinions than anything else. I know that people may not necessarily agree with everything I do, but I think it will make people think a bit about certain topics.

There will be much more to come in the coming weeks.