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Walt Disney World Magic Kingdom Discussion Thread

P. 144: More entertainment coming back across WDW!

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The official Disney Parks blog has been updated once more to include additional details and photos regarding the soon to re-open Space Mountain.

 

We have more details to share about the Space Mountain attraction at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom Park as renovation work wraps up.

As you know, the classic Space Mountain experience still exists — it’s just being updated with new technology and 21st century gadgetry. Inside the attraction, there’s new lighting as well as special “darkening” effects. And you’ll see updated color schemes for rocket capsules, line and load areas. Imagineers worked with Walt Disney World Facilities Asset Management for even more enhancements, including new paint, carpet, seat fabric and other décor elements.

 

But what caught my attention during a recent walkthrough were details about track upgrades. It’s the same track layout and overall look and feel but workers integrated new technology into the track while not changing the classic Space Mountain ride experience. “As technology evolves, it helps us enhance those elements without losing any essence of the attraction,” Walt Disney Imagineering Senior Show Designer Alex Wright says.

You should also know that a ride photo system will capture guests during their space flights on Space Mountain. It’ll utilize Disney’s Photopass, allowing you to access, share and purchase photos during and after a visit.

Alex says he thinks you’ll be “pleasantly surprised” with the enhancements. The attraction is scheduled to reopen on November 22. Let us know what you think in the comments.

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^ I was thinking the same thing. The part I hate are the people who think they are the only ones in line. I always get stuck behing them. Like when your in a line that only has a few shady spots. The idiots stay in the shade until the line moves all the way to next shady spot and then they move, which means you are in the sun the entire time, and complaining is utterly useless with these people. I could see the same thing here. People will play the game while the line moves way down, and then will move, causing a bunch of people to miss playing it. This is the one place where I wouldn't care if people line cut.

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This is exactly the kind of refurbishment Space Mountain was long overdo for, IMO. They kept the original ride layout which is classic and original, and altered the rest of the minor things in the ride that really needed some work.

 

The covered queues; making the ride darker, the slightly modified standby queue, the exit ramp, and even the ride's controls system. To which my knowledge, if I am correct, runs like Magnum XL-200, where if you get "set up" you have to run to blocks and release them manually with switches or keys... not fun, trust me. This is now functional through controls, which will decrease the amount of downtime a lot.

 

I'm excited to be back and be ale to ride this! I will definitely be going back to ride this, as I have missed soft openings.

 

-Justin

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While I could see this being a problem I also see two very simple solutions:

 

1. If people are playing the games and not moving forward in line, the people behind them will be all "Um, stop playing your game and move up."

 

2. If they continue to play the game, the people behind them will just blow right past them.

 

Luckily where the games are located the only people that would be able to line jump are the people directly behind the ones playing the game. And IMO, if someone isn't moving up, pass them. I don't consider that "line jumping."

 

Looking at it more though, these do look like less of "games" and more like "buttons to press while waiting in line."

 

A little bit more involving than the pole room and rope in the Indy queue or the "stick your hand in the hole" gag in Mummy's queue.

 

--Robb

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Hello there from the Magic Kingdom! Today before my pointless six hr shift at P o C... I was able to stop by Space to see what was going on and luckily I got there 5 min after they had soft opened for the day!

 

Not all the rumors are true, first of all the queue theming has some what changed they have finally gotten rid of that fedex crap and brought a more original feel and kept the star tunnel music and of course added in some pretty decent way better than soarin' games...

 

secondly the loading area is really updated of course with covering the queue the ceiling is made to look like looking out of a space station and they finally also added gates a little similar to the ones at disneyland

 

Thirdly the ride it self has a few changes... first the light tunnel is a bit different with newer sound, and some cool synchronized lighting and i think the big flash at the end is for the picture before the lift. After that the ride is a lot smoother, and awkwardly silent barely any rumbling noises.... honestly it was kind of weird i could hear myself think lol the second light tunnel is the same and the projection on the ceiling of the dome is like they have added 1000000000000 more stars and a galaxy here and there

 

Finally, the crappy transition into unload is the same, but hey for the low budget they did a pretty good job repainting and adding a photo pass view at the end with new crater scenes as you exit the on the moving walkway

 

Overall it seems they did a pretty good job at updating space for the 21st century and keeping all the original loved elements of the ride

 

if anyone would like photos I will try to get some tomorrow while I am off tomorrow

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There was a rumor going around a while back that said they were adding in a special transfer track so they could give disabled guests an easier way to board and unload without holding up the other trains on the course. Did they do this?

 

Squid

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^^Thank you for the update bpfraser and welcome to TPR. We definitely appreciate your update and look forward to further insights from your visits to the parks during your time here on the site. While your report was certainly exciting, I am going to recommend that you take a look at the Terms of Service page to get a feel for our posting rules regarding spelling and grammar. Your posts are appreciated, but will be far easier to read with a little bit of spelling and grammar revisions.

 

Once again welcome to TPR and thank you for sharing your time and information with us!

 

^No specific work was done to change the ride's existing layout in any way, so I doubt this was anything more than a rumor. Logistically, I can't even see it as a possibility, but even so, I think such a feature would have required substantial work to put into place.

 

As far as I know, the only track work that was done during this refurbishment was to replace a few pieces of track and to smooth and sand others. The only specific track removal I could note was on the Tomorrowland Transit Authority (TTA) Peoplemover in which the old Space Mountain TTA maintenance bay (the one closer to the exit of the TTA/Space Mountain tunnel) track was completely removed.

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I'm both excited and disappointed from finding out that the ride has not been changed much. Honestly, I hope the trains are the same. I think they are so comfortable and I love the 1 in a row seating.

 

I also hope that they keep the music from the original queue in some form.

I like the new enclosed station a lot!

 

And....

I think it was on the side with the most drops.

Both sides are the same! Only mirror images! Gahhhhhhh!!!

 

Totally agree on the music. I looove Space Mountain's music, especially the star tunnel music.

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Today I had the chance to get back to the Magic Kingdom to ride Space Mountain. Let me just start by saying that this newly refurbished attraction has completely blown all of my expectations out of the water. I've always loved Space Mountain, so I'm a little biased, but for those that enjoyed the ride in its previous state, I doubt you'll find any reason not to applaud the Imagineers that have only plussed this classic Tomorrowland staple.

 

As detailed earlier, this ride has been "refreshed" with some new track work, effects and an even darker setting that preserves the story originally laid out when the ride opened in 1975. The addition of a newly interactive queue game and a futuristic detailing of a previously dated station has helped to set the pre-show experience apart on a level I couldn't have anticipated. All that I loved from the previous iteration remains intact--the "star tunnel" loop continues to play in the queue, which is certainly a relief. The new air gates have made the process of loading even easier, especially for those guests that used to trip on the loading safety lines. Surprisingly, an additional set of air gates sits towards the back of the station track, indicating the possibility for a two-train loading procedure in the future.

 

Once seated, riders will note that the newly repainted trains feature a more comfortable (and more snug) seat and fabric. Overall, the train is all that could be expected, if ruling out the possibility of onboard audio.

 

The ride's layout has not changed, so those familiar with Space Mountain will know where everything goes from here. The star tunnel features a new audio and a new light-sphere as the end that makes your launch more believable. The launch ends with the typical turn, interrupted only by a set of flashes, later revealed to be for your "passport photos." Moving up the lift, tributes adorn the main shuttle's body while the new astronauts and station control workers look on (in stylish new shades, just so you know). The rest of the ride is virtually the same, save for some projections that look clearer than ever and a slightly longer re-entry tunnel. The ride itself is smoother than ever and seemed to be running a little faster than I remembered. Even better, it seems that airtime can be appreciated more when you don't have to worry about your lap bar damaging your innards... And with the newly sanded track, the worry is no longer present.

 

The post show has been tastefully updated, utilizing some old sets and some even older tributes to bring this exit into the future. Space Mountain no longer resembles the transport-line of the FedEx past; rather a savvy option for space travel. From entry to exit, this new attraction offers an experience akin to an airport-to-airport flight, complete with destination advertising and some brief bouts of turbulence.

 

I have to stop once again to commend those involved in this refurbishment for all of their incredible work. It isn't easy to plus a classic attraction like Space Mountain, but Alex Wright and his team have found a way to do so with much success.

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Something old is now something new!

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No... Thank you!

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It seems that the chromakey green may be used for a new camera-based experience at the end of the post-show.

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Approaching the end...

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I spy something with my little eye... Something that is a geodesic sphere!

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This seems eerily familiar...

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Another clever tribute... Sneaky, sneaky!

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I hear the Disney Fantasy may take a cruise to here in 2032...

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Note: With every hover vacation you get two free Snuggies: the blanket with sleeves!

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New hotness...

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I want to go to there.

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I love how everything that was reused looks brand new!

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I hope they don't lose my bags... I've got my favorite Yo Gabba Gabba tee in there!

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The original of originals...

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Hello Matt!

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Is that a Horizons tribute I see?

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The Tomorrowland Chamber of Commerce sponsors Starport Seventy Five.

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The air gates look great and are quite effective.

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The station has been upgraded to include fences and air gates.

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The newly enclosed station features a porthole into space showing off Disney's newest DVC resort.

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The plastic looking panels have been painted a fluorescent purple that glows well under the newly installed black lights.

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The control tower's windows have been darkened. Guests can no longer see tower workers at work.

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Queue lighting certainly makes a difference...

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The old ride video loop remains on the television, but the screen itself seems to have been replaced.

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For the index... Here's one for you Larry!

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A look at the trains before departure...

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The game screens wrap around much of the queue, allowing many players to take part in the interactive experience.

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A queue game panel.

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The queue posters no longer feature images of galaxies and nebulas. Now Starport Seventy-Five reminds guests of its available routes of travel.

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Some additional tributes are hidden in this destination listing. Can you find any of them?

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Alpha and Omega are recognized as such even in the queue signage. Old is new, and I like it!

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The new queue-based game experience is timed specifically to work with the flow of the queue. When guests are at a stop, the game begins. When they prepare to move, it ends.

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The entrance queue has been altered slightly to include an additional exit.

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Star Tours isn't the only company in the transport business...

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Just in case you forgot where we were...

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This is a good sign... Really. Its just a good sign.

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Thanks for the update!

I like everything that I see, except that you can't see the people in the control tower anymore

 

And I LOVE that Space Mountain Shirt!

Finally Space Mountain gets a T-Shirt that isn't incredibly cheesy and doesn't involve disney characters.

 

I'd buy it!

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The original of originals...

 

I have a "Space Station X-1" poster hanging in my office: "See America from OUTER SPACE."

 

Although I was rather fond of the old "holographic" stuff in the old queue, it was all looking pretty beat up and rundown. I'm glad that Disney has given this classic some TLC. Thanks for the pictures, Adam.

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