See Ya' Real Soon!,
Hi everyone! I'm extremely sorry about not posting lately. But there is a great big new post just a dream away! Coming real soon!
See Ya' Real Soon!,
This video is awesome! I think it somewhat encapsulates the mission and spirit of Walt Disney Imagineering (and me).
I was never lucky enough to get to ride the amazing attraction called Horizons. Although I most definitely would have loved to! I still really want to, but it doesn't look like that's going to happen anytime soon (or so we think). But I am thankful for all those Horizons tribute people, societies/organizations, and websites that are putting forth their time (and some even money) to preserve and continue the legacy of Horizons for future generations. They are now the sprirt of Horizons. So as a tributr to Horizons and a thanks to everyone out there trying to respectfully preserve closed attractions. This post is a kickoff to the Horizons series on this blog (Although, not just straight Horizons posts, they may be spread apart among other ones). So let's begin. This post is packed with ride-thru's and a tribute video (by Martin Smith) to Horizons.
Horizons Ultimate Tribute Video
Disney Epcot Horizons - Complete POV Ride
Horizons - Future World - Epcot - Complete Ride Through
Horizons EPCOT - Ultimate Music Tribute (HD)
Well since I recently went to the Animal Kingdom (and it was AWESOME!!!), I was lucky enough to get a few small sneak peeks at the construction going on; And what I found was this, it's going to be big! Not only from my eyes but also from satellites and from reports and releases I was digging through. It's also going to have amazing technology, which I'll be talking about later. Now let's get started on this great journey, and we might even find some unobtanium along the way.
Well, I was just doing some research and I found this awesome quote by Avatar creator, James Cameron, that practically gives me goosebumps.
"It’s going to have floating mountains. It’s pretty cool. I’ve seen the model and the design work the Imagineering people have done is spectacular. They’ve got a quarter inch to the foot scale model of the whole park and I’ve looked at all the sight lines…it’s not a park, it’s a land within the park but a land is not just a ride. There will be several rides and a number of other attractions. It’s really just a place you’re gonna wanna go and hang out. It’s gonna be gorgeous. Of course it’s gonna be gorgeous at night and they’re using every new trick, every new bit of technology that they’ve created.
Yes , he did say it's going to have floating mountains. I think what he said after that has a lot to do with one of Imagineering's big missions, "...it’s not a park, it’s a land within the park but a land is not just a ride.", it shows it's not just a theme park or attraction. But they are creating what seems to be a whole different world. Well, we better get back to the development.
Well, let's try to break down some of that tech. and I'll try to explain it in simpler terms and figure what makes it tick.
I really like working with and programming robots, so I end up getting pretty involved it and so this why this statement interests so much. An axis is a straight line around which an object rotates. Movement at the joint take place in a plane about an axis. The degrees of freedom of a robot typically refer to the number of movable joints of a robot. A robot with three movable joints will have three axis and three degrees of freedom, a four axis robot will have four movable joints and four axis, and so on:
For humans and human-like animatronics have three vital axis of motion
The sagital axis passes horizontally from posterior to anterior and is formed by the intersection of the sagital and transverse planes. The frontal axis passes horizontally from left to right and is formed by the intersection of the frontal and transverse planes.The vertical axis passes vertically from inferior to superior and is formed by
the intersection of the sagital and frontal planes.
Well, now that you know what axis are. You may now realize how amazing 64 axis of motion are. That would be so extremly lifelike because that essentially means there are 64 points of motion, in just their face! Think about the rest of the animatronic!
Now, for the floating mountains. I'm actually not quite certain what they are using for that. My best guess would be electromagnets/magnets or illusion. But I do know this. It's going to be amazing!
Well, so far the only rides released are a boat ride and a flight simulator. According to ScreamScape the slow family boat ride is intended to essentially serve as a crash course in PANDORA 101, a way to bring all guests up to speed on the world of Avatar, and why humans have traveled across the stars to visit. Intended as a sort of informational family attraction, the overall tone of the ride’s theme may actually have a bit in common with one of the Edutainment rides at Epcot. In short, this of this as a Pandora version of “Living with the Land”, showing guests the various plant and animal lifeforms of this new world. The flight simulator is 3D and seems to be somewhat similar to an more advanced (if you will) version of Soarin'.
Well the groundbreaking ceremony has happened and the construction has begun. Below are some inside peeks on the ceremony and the construction.
We've also got some aerial/satellite imagery for you to check out.
An ERST roller coaster car is a roller coaster car that visually encapsulates passengers of the car from the surrounding environment during the normal operation of a roller coaster ride such that only interior components of the car (including, but not limited to, simulated ride images produced by the car's internal simulation technology) are within the field of vision of passengers. The normal operation of a roller coaster ride is the period during which passengers are inside an ERST roller coaster car as the car is moving along a ride track of a roller coaster ride while an internal ride simulation system is running so that passengers are simultaneously experiencing motions of the roller coaster ride and presentation of the simulated ride theme adventure. As stated above, the passengers are visually encapsulated from the surrounding environment to the vehicle during this period. This period does not include the act of unloading and loading of passengers as the roller coaster car is both open and not moving during unloading and loading of passengers. Also, the displayed images in the car created by the simulator components can be of real images or artificial images (and in the latter case, being images like those created by computer generated imagery techniques). The ERST roller coaster car's internal simulation technology also produces audio output to passengers of the vehicle to compliment both the car's internal visual simulated ride theme adventure and the car's roller coaster ride motions. First, second, third, and fourth embodiments of the current invention present four roller coaster car designs with integrated encapsulating and reusable ride simulation technology that meet the requirements of ERST roller coaster car technology as detailed in the claims. Also, it is remarked that the term “roller coaster car” used in this publication relates to a wide variety of motion rides that achieve ride motions by use of ride vehicles and ride track systems.
Roller coaster type rides have been appreciated for about two hundred years as riders have enjoyed viewing large skylines as they fall, climb, and roll with great velocities and strong accelerations up, down, and over hills of ride track. Such adventures, however, are limited in type of ride themes that can be effectively implemented. With desires to explore more fantastical themes, ride simulators emerged as self-contained systems of visual and audio presentations but such systems have proven to be severely limited in their full capabilities of motion movements. For example, the Advanced Technology Leisure Application Simulator (ATLAS) is used for amusement park rides like Disneyland's Star Tours and EPCOT's Body Wars developed by the Walt Disney Imagineering Company. While these rides present exciting video and audio simulated environments, the motion movements experienced by passengers on these ride simulators have not achieved the velocities and accelerations comparable to roller coaster rides. Furthermore, roller coaster rides have not captured the extensive and excitable video and audio effects of simulated themes and environments created by ride simulators. This has created the problem of a divide between amusement park attendees—“thrill-seekers” often flock to roller coaster rides while virtual-enthusiast riders commonly flood ride simulators. Another issue only worsens the current limited use of roller coaster cars.
Another key problem in the design of roller coaster cars is the limited practicality of ride theme variability and reusability. Roller coaster rides and cars are routinely built around a single theme. Ride construction and operation are limited by this theme: In contrast, other fields of advanced technologies are thriving on principles of variability and reusability of components and services like object-oriented programming and service-oriented architecture—such implementations are common in the industry of software. These practices of variability and reusability are applicable and highly beneficial to roller coaster rides and cars considering the extensive planning, allocation of resources, time, and cost in designing, constructing, operating, and maintaining these systems. Between amusement park attendees growing accustom to the repetitive sceneries of roller coaster rides (with such scenery often being narrowly composed of trees, bodies of water, skylines, other park attendees, and parking lots) and roller coaster rides and cars risking becoming outdated and underused within a few years after introduction into the market, it is time for a new direction in roller coaster ride and car design. Furthermore, it is time to recognize and act in response to the limiting motion movement capabilities of modern ride simulators and seek new simulation technology integrations into other applications to capitalize on the full potential of simulator components. The present invention offers an encompassing and unique solution to these problems as discussed in the following sections.
OBJECTIVES & ADVANTAGESA hybrid motion ride and ride simulator vehicle is designed as an Encapsulating and Reusable Simulation Technology (ERST) roller coaster car and proposed as an encompassing and unique solution to the current problems in the designs and operations of modern motion rides and ride simulators as identified in the present invention.
An ERST roller coaster car is a roller coaster car that visually encapsulates passengers of the car from the surrounding environment during the normal operation of a roller coaster ride such that only interior components of the car (including, but not limited to, simulated ride images produced by the car's internal simulation technology) are within the field of vision of passengers. The normal operation of a roller coaster ride is the period during which passengers are inside an ERST roller coaster car as the car is moving along a ride track of a roller coaster ride while an internal ride simulation system is running so that passengers are simultaneously experiencing motions of the roller coaster ride and presentation of the simulated ride theme adventure. As stated above, the passengers are visually encapsulated from the surrounding environment to the vehicle during this period. This period does not include the act of unloading and loading of passengers as the roller coaster car is both open and not moving during unloading and loading of passengers. Also, the displayed images in the car created by the simulator components can be of real images or artificial images (and in the latter case, being images like those created by computer generated imagery techniques). The ERST roller coaster car's internal simulation technology also produces audio output to passengers of the vehicle to compliment both the car's internal visual simulated ride theme adventure and the car's roller coaster ride motions. While the design of encapsulating and reusable simulation technology to roller coaster cars is new, partial integration of non-encapsulating simulation technology into passenger seating is evident as early as audio seat components in U.S. Pat. No. 4,696,370 to Tokumo, Takagi, & Mori (1987) and visual accompaniments in U.S. Pat. No. 5,669,821 to Prather & Headrick (1997). Such modifications for roller coaster cars are non-encapsulating and merely additive to external effects of the surrounding environment to the car (and are limited to the single theme constructed for the roller coaster ride) and therefore do not attain the full array of synergistic effects and benefits (including, but not limited to, ride reusability, ride variability, and heightened intensity of the ride experience) that are accomplished from using ERST roller coaster car technology.
There is no indication from designers, manufacturers, or users of motion rides or ride simulators that an integration of encapsulating and reusable simulation technology into roller coasters cars would be a desired technology. In fact, those in fields of motion rides and ride simulators may argue that combining these two separate technologies in the manner of ERST roller coaster car design is counterintuitive to their original applications. This would be valid reasoning; however, this radical departure from the traditional applications of motion rides and ride simulators is also the great novelty and utility of ERST roller coaster car technology. ERST roller coaster car technology eliminates the weakest effects of both systems by novel and selective integration of components and mechanisms unique to each separate system that results in a final product composed of only the best effects (and with new effects) that overall create a ride experience more intense than what is performed separately by these individual technologies. For example, visually encapsulating passengers from the surrounding environment to the ride vehicle gives ride designers and ride operators control over what passengers see and don't see during the ride. This creates heightened moments of intensity of the ride experience for passengers that cannot see but can still feel turns, drops, loops, and other dynamic movements of the roller coaster ride. This lack of visual presentation of the surrounding environment to the ride vehicle is replaced by a simulated ride theme that has the new advantages of being variable, reusable, and rich in technological and artistic capabilities that further increase the intensity of the ride experience.
In conclusion, the present invention replaces traditional motion rides and ride simulators with ERST roller coaster car technology. This new technology goes beyond additive effects of the separate technologies of motion rides and ride simulators and accomplishes synergistic ride experiences and from a greater spectrum of ride theme possibilities relative to the single theme construction of modern roller coaster rides. This is evident in that the individual contributing technologies of ERST roller coaster car technology enhance one another. For example, video outputs and audio outputs presenting a simulated ride theme adventure visually contained inside a roller coaster car enhance the ride motions of that roller coaster car running along a ride track and vice versa. This results in riders experiencing a total ride effect in ERST roller coaster cars greater in intensity than the total ride effect of what is created separately by motion rides and ride simulators. This also creates a heightened sense of realism of the ride experience as riders only see the simulated ride theme environment and not scenery of the amusement park environment (such as other rides, park attendees, and concrete walkways) surrounding the ride vehicle that otherwise would diminish riders' experiences. Thus, the synergistic effect of realism is accomplished by simultaneously matching motions of true roller coaster velocities and accelerations of the ride vehicle to the visually encapsulated simulated ride theme adventure.
It is a goal of many amusement park operators to provide enjoyable rides but with high capacity and predictable pacing to facilitate providing show elements and entertainment to passing vehicles. With the goal of higher ride or attraction capacity in mind, omnimover rides have been utilized in many theme parks. Anomnimover is a ride system that has been developed to provide an experience that is similar to a walk-through experience or ride-through tour as it moves guests at speeds similar to walking speed such as less than about 2 feet per second. The omnimover is a ride system used for theme park attractions such as haunted houses or movie-based theme attractions in which two, three, or more passengers sit in a vehicle that is towed or moved along a track. Theomnimover ride system includes a large number of such vehicles that are each attached or linked into a continuous loop or chain. The vehicles are connected into a chain, and the vehicle chain moves along a track, with the track typically hidden beneath a floor.
The chain of vehicles is kept in continuous and predictable motion, typically at a constant speed, throughout the entire course of the attraction such as along an irregular path to move through the rooms of a house or set of a show or attraction. High throughput or increased daily capacity is achieved because the vehicle chain continues to move throughout the day, with riders loading and unloading while the vehicles are in motion. Standard loading and unloading occur with a next set of passengers standing on a loading belt, which is moving at about the chain/vehicle speed, and then entering adjacent vehicles. At a different location or station, passengers in vehicles exit their moving vehicle at the end of the ride to step onto an adjacent unloading belt, which is also moving at about the speed of the vehicle chain.
The omnimover ride system continues to provide a popular platform for rides in many amusement parks as the omnimover ride system effectively delivers high capacity with a simple mechanical drive and control system. However, many park operators continue to search for different and new rides, and it may be undesirable to simply add another conventional omnimover ride to a park as the ride experience may be very similar to existing attractions. Hence, there remains a need for a ride system that provides the high capacity or passenger throughput of a conventional omnimover ride but that also provides a new, unique, fun, and exciting or at least different ride experience. Preferably, such a ride system would enhance the variability of rides at an amusement park while preserving the benefits of conventional omnimover rides including high capacity, a continuous chain of vehicles, and a simple and/or well-known propulsion and control system for moving the vehicle chain.
But a floating omnimover ride with high capacity throughput and enhanced control over speeds of passenger boats a very completely new experience while being very efficient and with very short wait times. The proposed ride includes a water containment structure with spaced apart sidewalls defining an elongated guide channel that defines a loop-shaped ride path or circuit. The ride includes a volume of liquid contained in the guide channel to a desired depth. The ride also includes a chain of passenger boats floating in the liquid contained in the guide channel. Each of the boats is linked to the two adjacent boats with a connecting link such that the chain of boats is a continuous loop. The chain of boats has a length that is approximately equal to a length of the ride path, and during operation of the ride, the boats in the chain are moved along the loop-shaped ride path at a predefined rate by a pump station moving the liquid in the guide channel. In addition to the guide channel or trough, the ride system may also include an open bay or free-floating portion or section in which the boats are not guided by and do not contact nearby sidewalls. As long as a sufficient number of the floating vehicles are contained in and guided within the guide channel (or flowing or drive) portion or section of the ride system, other sections of the vehicle chain may be “undriven” by the water in the free-floating section or bay portion of the ride system. In this portion, the water may be relatively still or unflowing, but the boats in the vehicle chain will still follow a path between an exit of the guide channel and an entrance to the guide channel because they are pulled and/or pushed by the boats or vehicles traveling in the guide channel (where water is flowing to push the boats along the path between adjacent sidewalls). In the open bay or free-floating portion, the boats or vehicles may even be caused to traverse over land or out of the water by placing ramps in the path of the boats and providing pads or rollers/wheels on the bottom of the boat hulls/bodies. The pushing and pulling forces provided along the vehicle chain by the boats in the guide channel due to the flowing water will roll the boats in the open bay or free-floating portion over the dry or shallow portion of the ride. By including an open waterway in the ride system, the ride experience is enhanced as the boats appear to be magically guided and propelled through the still water with their boats spaced apart from guiding sidewalls. Or, in other words as long as you've got the boats chained together, you can take away the guide channel for a section of the ride, and the boats will continue to follow one another through that section. You could possibly even move the chain of "boats" onto a land segment for a bit.
Check out the patent at: United States Patent Application: FLOATING OMNIMOVER RIDE
Adventure Thru Inner Space
"Miniaturization Control to Blog Readers: Blog Readers approaching Adventure Thru Inner Space post"
"Miniaturization Control: We are in Phase Blue, increase U angle"
"Miniaturization Control: Roger that, U angle increased to 14* degress 28 units. Adjustments are now made for an Adventure Thru This Blog Post"
Sound familiar? Well maybe not exactly, but if it does you are pretty lucky! This is from Adventure Thru Inner Space an attraction sponsored by Monsanto a chemical company. Be ready to go on an adventure thru this blog, for though you may feel like your shrinking into the ride, your mind will expand.
" YOUR ATTENTION PLEASE: This is the tracking procedure of an adventure through inner space. Adventurous men of science who have made this journey before you are carefully plotting every phase of this incredible journey as you shrink beyond the smallness of an atom: the smallest building block of matter. We wish you an enlightening experience. For though your body will shrink, your mind will expand."
Adventure Thru Inner Space was an immersive, amazing, eye-opening, convincing, detailed, and very educational attraction taking guests on a journey through innerspace, the world of the molecule. Back in the days of ticket books, Inner Space was one of the few free attractions at the park. Monsanto had been a Disneyland sponsor since opening day in 1955, and company president, Charles Allen Thomas enjoyed a close relationship with Walt Disney. The company had backed the Hall of Chemistry, also the House of the Future We'll start you off in the planning stages and take you thru to the very end of the attraction and the post show.
The "Protozoa Ride"
Adventure Thru Inner Space was developed by WED designers with input from Monsanto. One of the most significant disagreements in the design phase concerned the molecule guests would explore. The original plan, back in the “Micro World” days called for guests to explore a single drop of water (or the liquid form of snow after it has melted, which in the ride the snowflake you're exploring actually does end up melting as you begin to exit). Around WED, this attraction also had the unfortunate, but well earned and somewhat respective nickname the "Protozoa Ride”. Since the ride vehicles were originally going to be shaped to look like protozoa cells. which are a diverse group of mostly motile unicellular eukaryotic organisms. The first piece of Micro World concept art released looks very close to what would later become the Adventure Thru Inner Space pre-show area that was built a decade later, well of course minus the protozoa car and minus the liquid form of water that guests initially encountered. Seeing as Monsanto was a chemical company, executives there felt that the ride might center on another type of molecule, specifically one of the man-made polymers produced by Monsanto. But the WED designers ultimately held their ground, arguing that water was the single most important liquid for human existence and therefore related universally to the human condition. In doing so, the WED designers also preserved in large part the overall integrity of the attraction. The ride is about the exploration of water, both in a frozen and liquid state. Only the post-show area explores the manipulation of natural molecules into chemical compounds.
Well, as we will find out guests obviously didn't ride in protozoa ride vehicles. But what the ride vehicles did end up where the famous and well loved omnimover. But what isn't so famous is that Adventure Thru Inner Space was the first use of the “Omnimover” ride system. While at the 1964 World’s Fair in New York, WED designer, Bob Gurr, studied the type of vehicle systems used by non-Disney dark rides, including the one in GM’s Futurama attraction. Futurama employed a system of chain-linked, over-sized chairs that moved along a track. The Futurama system allowed for continuous loading and unloading—therefore giving the ride high guest throughput. But there was one drawback to the Futurama system: guests could see the entire show stage, including areas not intended for viewing. Gurr’s adaptation of this system is brilliant. His new ride system adds “directionality” and “timing” to the dark ride experience. In Adventure Thru Inner Space, the Omnimovers pivot to control the angle at which guests view the attraction. This allows vehicles to turn so that guests are surprised by show elements. This also allows ride designers to control the way guests visually experience a show stage. In short, the Omnimover, with its wraparound hood, allows ride designers access to the same type of image control enjoyed by film directors. A very compelling addition to the dark ride experience and a significantly more elegant vehicle design than the “protozoa cars” proposed back in 1957.
WED Enterprises created and designed the attraction The Magic Microscope with much help from Walt Disney and Dr. Charles Allan Thomas. WED opted to use a transportation system called Omnimover first used for their Magic Skyway attraction at the New York World's Fair. The Omnimover consisted of an endless loop of vehicles moving on a fixed track. All the vehicles were attached to one another. Because the vehicles would not stop for loading and unloading, guest would have to use a moving ramp. In 1965, Bob Gurr designed a version of the Omnimover for a ride system that was never built at the La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles that looked promising for The Magic Microscope attraction. Together with John Hench, Gurr tried to figure out how it could be possible for the Omnimover to travel up and down steep hills, and look in any direction. Gurr assigned a new engineer, Bert W. Brundage, to start the Omnimover drawings based on Gurr's original designs. At the same time, WED made arrangements to use a recently acquired warehouse as an indoor test track. Bert W. Brundage along with Roger E. Broggie completed the design for what became known as the Atomobile. The Atomobile comfortably carried two-and-one-half passengers. Each individual vehicle could rotate 180 degrees to each side to highlight special points of interest in the attraction. Claude Coats served as the main designer for the attraction. Yale Gracey supervised all the special effects such as the projected images from film and transparencies, dimensional reflections, and delicate crystalline etchings on glass that made up much of the experience. Over 85 projectors and reflecting devices would have to be built. X. Atencio wrote the script and Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman wrote the song Miracles from Molecules. The Sherman brothers had already written songs heard at Disneyland such as It's a Small World and There's a Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow. Buddy Baker wrote the ethereal music for the attraction. All his compositions were new except for the piece heard in the queue area. That composition, titled Mysteries of the Atom, was originally composed and recorded for a scientific segment of the attraction Progressland but never used.
Adventure Thru the Ride
Below are a few witness accounts from the site devoted to this ride (by the way it's a great and amazing site I really suggest you visit it) from http://www.themightymicroscope.com/, thanks mighty microscope!
"WHEN YOU FIRST ENTER THE LOBBY ENTRANCE YOU ARE IMMEDIATELY FEEL LIKE YOU ARE IN THE SCIENCE LAB SET OF THE CLASSIC SCI-FI MOVIE "FANTASTIC VOYAGE" THIS HUGE LASER CANNON LOOKING THING CALLED THE MIGHTY MICROSCOPE TILTS TOWARD A LARGE PETRI DISH OF SNOW THAT FLICKERS DOWNWARD (LIKE IT WAS SNOWING INSIDE). LARGE ROUNDED CHAIRS SEATING 1-2 GUESTS WOULD TRAVEL ON A TRACK INSIDE THE MACHINE TO A DARKEND TUNNEL.
A small sign outside of the attraction that read "Adventure thru Inner Space and 'Miracles from Molecules' Presented by Monsanto. Admission free." Guests would then enter through one of three turnstiles to begin curving past 8 display pods showcasing Monsanto product and miniature key scenes from the ride ahead. Ominous music, sci-fi sound effects and a deep voice narration played in the background while voices of a tracking crew were heard speaking technical jargon: "Phase orange. Forward units obscured. Cannot, repeat, cannot locate Atomobiles...still no evidence of Atomobiles. Critical phases continue precision scan procedure." A 33 foot long by 16 foot high electronic tracking board showed the guests the target of their trip. On the tracking board, there was a giant, blue snowflake with an orange and red center.Concentric rings of white light were on behind the snowflake. Each would turn off in sequence to give the illusion of dark rings pulsing towards the snowflake's center. The most impressive feature in the queue was a massive, 37 feet long and 12 feet high, microscope designed by George McGinnis. The microscope was officially named the "Mighty Microscope" and bore a Monsanto logo. Those waiting to board the continuous line of Atomobiles which carried them into the "Mighty Microscope" could see inner space travelers apparently shrinking as they moved passed a transparent section of the microscope. Through this transparent section one could see miniature Atomobiles complete with miniature people moving upwards to the tip of the microscope that was focused on a slide where a snowflake flurry was occurring. The miniature Atomobiles were passing by at the same speed as the actual guest-loaded Atomobiles and a flashing white light seen by the miniature Atomobiles mimicked one seen at the entrance of the big Atomobiles into the microscope. All this helped the illusion of guests shrinking which often scared the impressionable children waiting in line."
As you can see this attraction was a very immersive and detailed attraction. Below are some old WED blueprints (super cool by the way) and maps of the attraction.
Your Adventure Thru Inner Space
Well, It may be a bit too late to actually experience Adventure Thru Inner Space in real life. There are some really great people out there who put out ride videos and recreate attractions so we all can get a taste of them and enjoy them too!
Where is it Now?
Well, Adventure Thru Inner Space was (very ironically) was replaced by an attraction of an adventure thru outer space, in a galaxy far, far away. Star Tours, but as is often said in Imagineering an idea is never just trashed or completely forgotten. Adventure Thru Inner Space is paid two settling tributes one of which being a hidden Mighty Microscope which seen on the left side of the tunnel as you exit the space station.
The other tribute is where G2-9T, the talkative robot who avoids work (which is actually an animatronic goose ripped out of the musical show America Sings, so it still has its native webbed feet and tail) who is supposed to be scanning luggage, and the insides are visible, to guests. Almost every suitcase contains an inside joke of some kind, one of these being a suitcase that contains snowflakes, molecules, and a microscope, seem familiar?
The Maelstrom is to Become a Whimsical Ride Through the World of Frozen
For my first article on this blog I have decided to write on the biggest topic in the parks currently. The creation of a Frozen ride in the place of the Maelstrom. I am going to be extremely positive on this one and going to talk from more of a technical/factual point of view because I'm going to trust in our great and creative Imagineers. I do know one thing the Frozen ride is going to be detailed, of great quality, immersive, and fun and I know the Imagineers will do great job. It's up to you which ride you like the best but keep this in mind the Frozen will be great one too.
The Past and Recent of the Maelstrom
Before we start on the future of the Maelstrom let's look at the past and the Maelstrom itself.
"You are not the first to pass this way, nor shall you be the last. Those who seek the spirit of Norway face peril and adventure. But more often find beauty and charm. We have always lived with the sea, so look first to the spirit of the seafarer."
So let's start off in the planning stages and the very beginnings of the ride. It all started when the Imagineers wanted to get a thrill ride or better yet a flume ride in the EPCOT Center. They had it decided that the ride would be located in the World Showcase Pavilion's Norway. This ride was to be called SeaVenture. Guests would go through a 946 foot flume ride as they encountered mythical creatures of Norway's folklore, legends, and myths. The attraction's main thrill was to be where they would a new mechanism that was designed to get the boat headed backwards "into the drop" but they would reach they edge and right about as they were about to drop they would head forward again into safety.
As you can see a whole lot of this was incorporated into the final Maelstrom but Norway government (who was one of the sponsors) wanted their attraction to be more of a travelogue showing all that Norway had to offer, as opposed to a mythological adventure. They also gave the Imagineers a list of things that they wanted included in the attraction including: Vikings, a fishing village, a polar bear, a fjord, and an oil rig. In order to meet the demands of sponsors, Imagineers eventually decided that the ride would take guests on a boat tour through Norway's history, beginning in Norwegian Folklore and ending in modern day Norway. They also wanted and there was originally going to be a full scale replication of a North Sea storm. The storm was going to include wind, waves, rain, thunder and real lightning and did for a while. But the wave and rain effects in the North Sea Storm scene have been diminished, and the Tesla coil that originally created the lightning effect has been replaced with strobe lights. After all this was finished the ride was opened on July 5, 1988 and closed on October 5, 2014.
What Will the Future Hold?
No one knows for sure what the fate of the Maelstrom ride. But through sifting through press releases, blog posts, Disney company statements, and a few other things here is what we do know for certain at the time of this article's posting.
We can estimate a few technical things based on area and Maelstrom ride setup and location. Here's what I think could happen with the Maelstrom.
Sorry Oden, but it really does look like we were the last to pass that way.
Author: Imagineer Boy
I live for Disney and Disney Parks and love talking about, blogging, researching, doing, and creating anything that has to do with Disney, Disney Parks, Imagineering, and more! I also enjoy designing and modeling rides, restaurants, inventions, resorts, and much more!
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