Monday, 28 May 2012

Ride Crossovers!

source: omnitographer

The nostalgics amongst us shed a tear or two when Snow Whites Scary Adventures closed indefinitely in May 2012, but the announcement of a replacement ride was the handkerchief to dry our eyes upon. As one of the original 1955 opening day attractions, it was sad to see it finally close its doors. There are very few opening day attractions left in Walt Disney World and this saddens me, but Disney is all about progress and moving forward.

On that note, Disney announced that they would be bringing their first animated feature film Snow White and the Dwarfs, back to life in a new attraction, Seven Dwarfs Mine Train. This steel roller coaster construction is part of the ever growing Fantasy Land expansion that (I think) will sit over, or at least near, the original place of Snow Whites Scary Adventures. Sweeping and swooping indoors and out, the carts will be designed to sway and jolt much like a regular mine cart. Unfortunately, the thrill seekers amongst us will not find any Sheikra style drops into the mouth of the mine (seriously, that would be pretty amazing, wouldn't it?). They plan on keeping the ride, like most of the other rides in the parks, very family friendly. Don't get me wrong, the little'uns need rides too, but another Rock n Roller style coaster is needed somewhere on property if you ask me!

The above video, released towards the end of 2011 gives us a brief insight into what we can expect from the new ride. I actually think releasing these kinds of things is an awesome move by Disney Imagineearing, especially for those of us who are really interested in all the nuts and bolts of developments throughout WDW property. Now, is it just me or does that simulation look a lot like Big Thunder Mountain Railroad? The entrance at 0.06 really looks like you're heading into Big Thunder Mountain. The caves have been replaced with mines (kind of the same thing though isn't it?) and it switches between an indoor and outdoor track that just mirrors Big Thunders! Even the cars (ok, they're yellow digital boxes at the minute!) remind me of Big Thunders - and are we not on some sort of run away mine train on Big Thunder?

The shots that show the animatronic dwarfs remind me of Splash Mountain, especially the shot at 0.14 where you see the water wheel coming into view. Even at 0.26, it looks like the initial bend in the track of Expedition Everest.

Lets set the record straight, I am not an engineer, ride designer, creative expert etc, I'm just a viewer like the rest of you and of course, I accept that there are limitations to track design, space, ride vehicles etc but, there are an awful lot of homages to other nearby rides! They are doing something imaginative with the ride cars, adding pistons and such for the mine cart movement, but is that enough? Are we not just going to be riding the same ride through different scenery?

C'mon Disney, lets see something a little more original, you've just demolished an opening day attraction, at least replace it with something with a little more progress!

Any thoughts on the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train?

Until next time,

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