Star Tours 2 News
Hey all! Scarlett here. It's been a fun couple of months, but now Star Tours 2.0 is open on both coasts, Star Wars Weekends are over at Disney's Hollywood Studios, and we've all gotten back to everyday life. StarToursLive.com was an amazing project, and we just wanted to say a few things before we move on.
First of all, the StarToursLive team and I could not be more grateful for all of you who followed along, retweeted us, came to see us during #startourswatch, and kept us going through the whole thing. We had no idea that we would get such a fantasic response, and it really made everything worth it. Every sunburn, long day, all-nighter, bug bite, and Backlot Express hamburger was made more tolerable by all of you. Thank you so much for all that you did and all of your support.
Secondly, so many of the people we met doing this project commented on our fire for an attraction. Fans really seemed to love how aggressively we tackled an attraction opening. We all are used to having that kind of passion on our other sites TouringPlans.com and StudiosCentral.com.
TouringPlans.com is devoted to saving you and your family the most time in line possible. We want you to see as much as you can, as efficiently as you can, so that you can have the best vacation possible. To make all that happen, we have a team of researchers, statistitions, and many others who put in a ton of time developing the Crowd Calendar, Touring Plans, the Lines smartphone application, and lots more.
At StudiosCentral.com, they have information on anything you ever wanted to know about Disney's Hollywood Studios. Park hours, construction photos, show schedules, special event information, rumors, news...it's all there, along with forums and a great community. Matt and the team go to Hollywood Studios at least once a week to do updates, take pictures, and find out anything that you need to know to experience what they consider to be the best Disney theme park.
Third, we really want to apologize for how we handled the attraction opening at Disneyland. We know that we neglected the west coast. Please don't think this is any indication to how we feel about Disneyland or it's fans. The attraction was opening in Florida first, we figured it would be ready first, and we could focus on it first, and then jump to Disneyland. However, soft openings happened much later in Florida than we expected, and much earlier in California. There were lots of unexpected surprises, and quite frankly, we weren't prepared for them. Something had to give or we were all going to crumble. Unfortunately, it was the Disneyland coverage that went. That was totally our fault, and we sincerely apologize to all the Disneyland fans we disappointed. This was our first flight...and we're still getting used to our programming.
Lastly, I would like to get a bit personal. Because of all the time I spent on this project, and the countless hours spent sitting in front of a closed Star Tours, I feel very connected to StarToursLive.com. This became very personal for me, and there are some people I would like to thank. First, I would like to thank all the staff at StarToursLive.com. Henry Work, Matt Hochberg, Scott Barrett, Tom Bricker, and Darcie Vance all worked so hard to make this project great. I want to thank my friend Ben, who was with me for almost all of #startourswatch, helped me with so many technical questions I had, spent countless hours brainstorming, and really had a lot of the great ideas, but got none of the credit. I would have gone out of my mind by day 2 if it hadn't been for him. Thanks to Glenn Sonoda for answering every Star Wars question, listening to my crazy theories about the rides storyline, and putting up with my Star Wars fanaticism. Thank you to the amazing Disney Cast Members who became such an important part of our journey (I can't name them all, but they know who they are). Thanks to TheForce.net and ForceCast for taking us seriously and reporting so much of our news. Thank you to all the incredible unofficial Disney sites who worked with us. Again, thank you to all of you who followed along, this would have been nothing without you.
It's been a fun ride. But, it's time to get off. We'll still report any fun Star Tours news, and we'll keep you posted on what the next big project is (FantasylandLive?). Until then, May the Force be with you.
Only a few days after the soft openings began for Star Tours: The Adventures Continue in Walt Disney World, an excellent web app appeared on the scene that allowed you to cleverly keep track your Star Tours flight combinations.
We're happy to announce that StarToursPassport.net, the brainchild of Paul Chadkin, has now been integrated into our free Disney World and Disneyland iPhone and Android apps. Click on "track your flights," and you'll be able to view an embedded version of the StarToursPassport.net, so you can easily switch between the wait times for the attraction and getting the cathartic feeling of entering a new flight into the system. If you're already a user on StarToursPassport.net, just login and you'll have access to all your existing data.
Major thanks to Paul for creating such an awesome tool, and for allowing us to integrate it into the app!
Download the FREE apps here:
Shown just before the official webcast opening of Star Tours in Disneyland this morning, Disney Parks has put up a great video entitled "Star Tours: Darth Vader Goes To Disneyland." We'll let you enjoy it without more comment (but we have to say: it's pretty awesome).
Our fearless researcher Robbie is in #Disneyland today, tweeting photos, wait times, and crowd reports from the Star Tours 2 grand opening in Disneyland.
Line backs into Shuttle Area:
Diehards who showed up at 10pm PT the night before!
We're in the park!
Tomorrow morning at 9:30 PDT, Disneyland will begin their Grand Opening Ceremony for the new Star Tours: The Adventures Continue. They will be live streaming the event, just as the did the Walt Disney World Ceremony, at disneylandevent.com. According to the site, "pre-boarding" will begin at 9:10am. Guests who visit that site now can watch a preview video showing Star Tours, Ariel's Undersea Adventure, Mickey's Soundsational Parade, and the newly refurbished Disneyland Hotel.
Guests visiting Disneyland tomorrow should expect large crowds and long lines as many of the local passholders will want to see the opening ceremony for themselves. We'll have one of TouringPlans.com's Disneyland researchers, Robbie, on the ground tweeting and reporting wait times. If you're around Disneyland tomorrow, let us know what you think!
Check out this video Lauren Anderson took of the silhouettes screen at Star Tours 2 queue in Disney's Hollywood Studios
Friend of the site, DisneylandFan1997, has sent in another video from inside Disneyland's queue. Enjoy!
One of our readers, Brandin, sent in this video from an Annual Passholder preview showing at Disneyland and was able to take footage of most of the ride
Special thanks to Don Sullivan for capturing these great photos of the special event that began at 12:01 a.m. on May 20 and ran until 2 a.m.
This report comes from one of our readers, Dean Clark:
got to test the new Star Tours at the Disneyland Park out here in Southern California. All I can say is its awesome. The line experience is completely updated and you pass under a GIANT LCD screen displaying flight information and short CGI videos introducing you to Star Tours and the benefits of taking one of their flights.
Also you pass through an area where you are "scanned" by a droid who interacts with the people in the line by talking to them, of course he doesn't respond to you he just kind of tells you to keep moving and cracks jokes. The scanner is a camera that is linked to another LCD screen and shows the crowd in different colors... closest thing I can describe it as is like a negative image, the colors are reversed.
Then you walk a small distance and grab your 3D glasses and board the ride, the experience I got started inside a hangar of sorts(sorry I don't know many Star Wars terms") and C3P0 accidentally ended up pilot of out craft, on our way out of the hangar bay we were stopped by Darth Vader and a bunch of clone troopers, our craft was being tossed about by Vader who was using the Force.
Darth Vader was apparently searching for a rebel agent that was on our craft. We escaped Vader and proceeded out into space where we received a message from friendlies who wanted us to deliver the rebel aboard our craft to certain coordinates. We complied and entered lightspeed... or hyperspace... anyways when we came out we were directly in the middle of a giant space battle above a planet.
We weaved in and out of ships and avoided fire from enemy crafts, eventually some Buzz Droids attached to our craft and climbed on the front window, this is one of the moments the 3D really shines. It was amazing to see them scurrying around on the window drilling on the glass while a battle raged on behind them.
From here we had R2D2 eliminate the buzz droid and we were hit by enemy fire and began to plummet to the planet below. We fell through the atmosphere and ended up getting power back to out engines just feet before we would hit the ground. It was a snowy planet and there was a battle going on involving those giant 4 legged walker things and other crafts. We again dodged fire and flew closely under a walker that was falling and one's foot that lifted up just at the right moment to let us fly through.
From there we proceeded to end up teetering off the edge of a cliff and slid down the face of it like a Olympic skier doing one of those giant jumps.
We took off into the sky and away from the planet... from here I don't remember details but we ended up docking again and safely delivered our rebel agent.
Overall I was greatly impressed by the improved CGI and the 3D was top quality. Star Tours 2 is a step up from what we are used to seeing at Star Tours, from the newly redone interior to the ride itself, this is sure to impress Star Wars fans.