Sunday, December 1, 2013
Last week, WDW1974, a member of WDWMagic forum posted the full list of the names to be used for Shanghaî Disneyland rides, shows, shops and restaurants. The list seems pretty accurate and i'd like to take a minute or two to come back on all this with a bit of explanations.
First, as you may have seen if you already looked at the list, Shanghaî Disneyland won't have a Frontierland, neither a Shanghaî Disneyland Railroad going all around the park, which will be the first time in a Magic Kingdom. Some think they might keep it for a Phase 2 but i'm sorry to say that it won't be the case. There are many reasons why SDL won't have a Frontierland but although SDL Imagineers envisioned to have one at the start of SDL design it's a choice that apparently was done when they were asked to do some cuts in the design for budget reasons. And by the way, it's for the same reasons that they added Toy Story Land which was not included in the first design, as TSL always allow to add a "land" at minimum expenses, exactly like they did at HKDL. You'll note however that one of Toy Story Land rides - Parachute Drop - which exist at HKDL won't be at SDL and i won't be surprised if this was because of the U.S Army Camp theming of it... remember, SDL is in China main land.
There won't be any Haunted Mansion either at SDL but Pirates of Caribbean "Battle for the Sunken Treasure" as it is called will be a new and more "creepy" version of the beloved ride, so this should make the balance... No Space Mountain too, and in terms of roller coasters SDL guests will have the choice only between Seven Dwarfs Mine Train and the brand new Tron Lightcycle Power Run, but the fact that Imagineers don't build a sixth version of Space Mountain don't bother me as long as the Tron "motorbike" coaster will be great... and not too uncomfortable.
They also forgot in the leaked list to notify in the "ride" section at least one of the names, and it's "Voyage to the Crystal Grotto". If i'm right i think it's the boat ride going all along Fantasyland and ending under SDL castle. Disney released officially a while ago a rendering of the final scene - the "Crystal grotto" - and it's the one below. Another attraction named "Once upon a Time Adventure" might not be a ride but just a walk-through inside the castle. I'm not 100% sure for this one but it's clearly include with the castle.
I can't tell you which version of the Winnie the Pooh ride - the TDL one or the one from DL - they will put at SDL Fantasyland but the fact that the ride already exist at HKDL in its DL version might help to have a different version - the TDL one - being built at SDL. The Peter Pan's Flight version should be bigger than usual and include the new projection effects - including rear projected faces on most of the ride characters - which are supposed to be installed at DL during the ride upgrade for Disneyland's 60th Anniversary - or may be "were" supposed to be installed if Mice Age was right in last week's update in which they revealed that DL dark ride upgrades were cancelled for now.
Roaring Rapids will be the big Adventure Isle raft ride and so far it seems that the Audio-Animatronics Dinosaurs are always part of the ride. By the way, i've been told that one of the reason why the park will include a dinosaur ride - apart the fact that all children love dinos - is because China is the country in the world with the most dinosaur paleontological fields. Why not, any reason is welcome as long as the ride is great!
Always in Adventure Isle, "Soaring Over the Horizon" should be more or less identical to the "Soarin' Over the World" that will come to DCA and Epcot in 2015 or 2016. And thanks to the new digital projection system i wouldn't be surprised if - just like they did in Star Tours 2 - the ride would include different movies choosen randomly, which would be great as the only problem with Soarin' is that it's too short. It will also make sense as it will allow to have different movies on different countries instead of one only for the "whole world".
At Tomorrowland, Stitch Encounter should be similar to DLP WDS Stitch Live - or the Stitch attraction at HKDL - and not like the attraction at WDW MK, i.e it will be a show where young guests will interact with Stitch in real time, like in "Turtle Talk with Crush". You may have note in the list the "Buzz Lightyear Planet Rescue" ride and we might have a surprise with this one, as so far there is rumors saying it might be a different Buzz Lightyear ride than the one we know...
There is not that many new rides if you look well... Roaring Rapids, Tron Lightcycle Power Run, Voyage to the Crystal Grotto and the new version of Pirates of Caribbean will be essentially the new rides at SDL. Sure, there will be new shows - like the Pirates stunt show - but even Soaring Over the Horizon will be a SDL exclusive for a few months only. But the main problem for me is the lack of kinetic elements. At Disneyland for instance they have the DL Monorail, the Mark Twain, the Columbia, Main Street vehicles and of course the Disneyland Railroad, and all this is constantly in movement and brings to the park kinetic elements that your eyes notice, even unconsciously. At Shanghaî Disneyland there won't be any SDL Railroad, no Monorail, no Mark Twain or any other steam ship and probably no MS vehicles as there will be any Main Street.
As WDI imagineers know the importance to have kinetic elements they included the Explorer "Indian" Canoes in Treasure Cove lagoon and i'm wondering if this lack of kinetic elements is not one of the reason why the Dumbo ride as well as the Fantasia Carousel will be located in front of SDL Castle, in the "Gardens of Imagination" land, precisely to have some kinetic elements there. Same for Jet Packs at the entrance of Tomorrowland. That said, the boats of the Fantasyland boat ride as well as the rafts of Roaring Rapids will probably be visible by guests from outside the ride and this should add some kinetic elements, too.
Last but not least, WDW1974 also posted on WDWMagic the names of shops and restaurants for the two SDL hotels as well as the name of the dining - entertaining area next to the park which will be called "Disney Town" including of course many shops and restaurants, a World of Disney Store but also a "Broadway Plaza" with a "Walt Disney Grand Theatre"!
Pictures: copyright Disney