Star Tours - Disneyland May 20th preview event

May 23, 2011, 8:49 AM · Star Tours, May 20th, Disneyland. Been there, done that, got the pin to prove it. Here's what the experience was like.

The line for the May 20th preview started at 4am and ended at 7:30. By about 7am everyone had registered so the table was taken away but there was a neat photo-op by a Star Tours sign to make things interesting, not to mention free coffee and hot chocolate. ( Thanks Disney! )

At 8am they started letting us into the park, much to the surprise of many who had lined up at the main gate and may not have understood this was a pre-registered by-invite-only event. The line lead down Main Street and weaved back and forth around Plaza Inn, in front of Star Tours and back into the ride.

By 9am the ride was open and the line was on the move. The first difference I noticed was in the line's overflow room. Previously this had been done up to look like a security checkpoint with some kind of security gate and a lone Mon Calamari alien seated in a security station looking over everyone. The new change has removed all that in lieu of murals around the room. Of all the changes that happened, this was the only one I didn't care for. If anything I expected they would make this room more interesting and more interactive, not less.

The main entrance room remains basically the same with the exception of a repainted StarSpeeder and some additional details about the ship.

In the next room over the theme has changed more to a security checkpoint with some droids in quarantine and another manning the security console.

In less than 2 hours they had run 2400 of us through the ride so I'd give Disney administration a huge kudos for a smooth opening. Everything went right on schedule and as far as I know, there were no ride malfunctions. At the end we all got some pretty spiffy pins that looked like this:

So how was the ride? Completely worth it. Just as previously described, it is a single ride to two different locations with outside selections altering the course of the ride and who could be involved. Our ride included Kashyyk, Darth Vader, Boba Fett, Admiral Akbar and the Death Star. I'm already looking forward to going on this ride a few dozen more times just to see what other combinations turn out like. Disney's got a huge hit on it's hands with this one.

Replies (4)

May 23, 2011 at 1:35 PM · Thanks for the report, Bryan. Just rode it myself this morning, and the quality of the video is just stunning. It's tough to give the ride a thorough review, though, until I've seen all 54 alternatives. Looks like I'll have to do more research. ;^)
May 23, 2011 at 3:12 PM · I'm glad the video is high-def, but how is the simulator? Have they improved its smoothness?
May 23, 2011 at 3:13 PM · Also, does Akbar say "It's a trap" at any point?
May 24, 2011 at 7:50 AM · I tend to think the ride was a bit smoother. The action felt very fluid so I'd say yes, it was improved.

Did Akbar say his magic line? There's only one way you'll ever know. Stand in line and ride it. ( Then exit into the souvenir shop. It's a TRAP! )

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