It's called "Pirates Adventure: Jewels of the Seven Seas" and it will transform the Magic Kingdom's Adventureland into an interactive treasure hunt. Using RFID-enabled tap points, participating Disney World guests will be able to shoot the cannons on top of the Pirates of the Caribbean fortress queue, interact with animatronic idols, parrots and snakes, and search for and open a treasure chest which has been left somewhere in Adventureland.
The adventure will take place in newly decorated scenes throughout the land, including sites inside merchandise shops, along walkways and near attraction queues. A fountain in Caribbean Plaza that was long ago converted to a planter would be restored - and stocked with animatronic piranhas, poised to attack upon your request.
The scale is intimate, much like the new Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom game, so that guests who aren't playing - and who haven't memorized every decoration detail in the park - probably won't notice any of the interactive elements. Unless someone's there activating them, of course.
Disney's not announced or confirmed any of this publicly, of course. And I don't have any inside information on whether this will be opened to everyone to play, like Sorcerer's, or restricted to invited hotel guests, like with the current Fastpass+ test. Nor did my sources provide me with any guess on an opening date.
But "Pirates Adventure: Jewels of the Seven Seas" would take Disney a step closer to that NextGen ideal we've discussed, where themed lands become platforms for customized attraction adventures, rather than simply serving as well-decorated location for rides and shows.
I'd bet that the cost of this system is significantly cheaper than developing and installing a new E-ticket.
People never complained about the theming detials of WWoHP, where the windows are filled with motion and surprises. In fact, that was praised, and set the bar high for themeing. So now that Disney is fixing up it's parks, taking a step further, people are gonna complain? Just doesn't make sense.
As for the cost thing...The money us spent. The tech is there, installing different adventures won't cost enough to steal from new attractions. After the New Fantasyland, redone Test Track, Avatar-Land, Cars Land, redone DCA, newe Shanghai park, expansion in Japan and Hong Kong, the possible Tomorrowland overhaul...I would say that Disney is working on new rides and fixing up old ones. Company wide, I don't think they could fit in a whole lot more R&D or construction.
But people love to criticize and complain.
But if I were a DVC member, an annual visitor to WDW who spends a week or more at the resort? Yeah, this is exactly the type of thing that would help keep the parks perpetually fresh to me. Disney ought to have something that hits that market, and rewards some of its most loyal customers.
Plus, I think Disney could learn something from the intersection of this technology and user experience that could be applied toward creating a genre-busting "E ticket" attraction that would appeal to a first time visitor, or even encourage non-theme park fans to become first-time visitors. It's well worth watching.
Attractions like this definitely have a lower price tag than building a D- or E-ticket attraction, and can be fit into the existing landscape without removing any of the existing rides or attractions. Often the interactive elements provide a small thrill for other park guests as well. They also bleed off a certain number of guests who are not waiting in ride lines but now doing things in the open areas of the park.
Downsides? I don't see any. If people are upset that Disney isn't devoting this capital to making bigger rides, then I think they have their priorities wrong. Things like this probably have as much bang for buck as the bigger attractions, and they actually provide a story. Universal may have higher tech, but they still fall far behind in actual storytelling.
It looks like we've come across the same information. If anyone is looking for more details on this, we have some up at www.wdwfanboys.com
How would all they work together? In my opinion it could work the following way:
You are at a Disney Hotel and ask a wakeup call for 7:00, because you will use the magic hours at MK. At that time, instead of a phone call someone knock at your door. You open and find a message, from Peter Pan, named to your son and daughter. He asks them help in solving a problem.
As soon you arrive in MK, Goofy approaches your family and ask you to take the train and go to POTC (where an electronic fastpass will allow you to skip most of the line). Note that thanks to “talking Mickey” technology, Goofy will speak to you in your mother language.
As soon as you exit the POTC boat, you receive a new message from Peter Pan. You and your daughter should go to Tiki room and your wife and son to Splash Mountain (because the system has analyzed your previous attraction pattern and discovers that you don’t like thrill rides and your daughter is too small for it).
Each group receives a message at the end of the attractions that together will indicate that the next step should be HM. You won’t skip lines that time, but the interactive queue will give you new hints.
By doing that Disney will not only play with you between the attractions, giving a personalized experience, but also can conduct your journey in a way to minimized not only your waiting time at lines, but also the overall waiting time of the park, by managing the crowds during the day.
It could also interact with your iPhone or iPad, gave you a complimentary chocolate ice cream after a lunch, or offer discount in merchandise when you are inside a shop or project your photo on the castle wall at night when you are passing by.
For me these technologies, if well used, have a lot of potential by offering a much better experience, with more fun and less waiting times.
Perhaps Universal could employ similar technology to be more efficient in the way they charge guests staying at their hotels for parking.
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