Disney is just breaking ground on the upcoming “Star Wars Land” at Disneyland and Walt Disney World, building up our excitement for amazing new Star Wars-themed rides and attractions to come. This first step toward making this new park a reality got us thinking: What would we most want to see become part of that Disney Star Wars experience? Here is our wishlist.
Like many fans, I’ve had a life-long fascination with these four-legged vehicles, pretty much ever since I first saw them appear on the icy horizon in Empire Strikes Back and played with my first Hasbro playset. When I recently walked up to the entrance of the “Star Tours” ride at Disney World, I gazed up at the giant AT-AT and thought, “When will I get to climb inside?” Imagine entering an elevator at the foot of a massively-tall AT-AT or climbing up Swiss Family Robinson Treehouse-style (or Tarzan’s Treehouse, if you’re at Disneyland), and ascending up into the belly of that beast. Then taking photos from the Stormtrooper-eye view in the cockpit. Badass. [Annette Cardwell]
Dagobah Swamp Ride
I’m a big fan of boat-based rides at the Disney Parks. There’s something about the ride experience that’s transportive. On a ride like Pirates of the Caribbean, for instance, it’s so easy to imagine that you’re in another place and time. What better way to take visitors on a Dagobah swamp adventure than with a dynamic, multi-sensory, boat-based attraction. Maybe you’re a young Force-user like Ezra Bridger, summoned through the Force by Master Yoda. Your ship crashes into a bog, where you encounter fearsome (and icky) creatures. There’s torrential rain, dense fog, and a violent lightning storm, but the Force is with you. Suddenly, a cloaked figure pops out of the shadows. You’re startled, but soon realize it’s Master Yoda. He greets you, but will not begin your training until you’ve passed through the Cave of Evil. In its depths you come face to face with your own Dark side. Having passed your test, Master Yoda beckons you back to his his hut. As he’s speaks with you, he’s interrupted by the voice of another great Jedi Master. But before you can make out what they’re saying, the whole scene begins to fade away, and now you’re watching other scenes play out around you — as if you’re passing through them in a tunnel. Just then you emerge into the light. It was all a Force-dream… or was it? [Brian Linder]
Mos Eisley Cantina
After a hard day of line standing, ride riding, and souvenir shopping, what better place to rest your weary feet and enjoy a cold one than a movie-quality replica of the toughest dive bar this side of that galaxy far, far away. And while a “space cantina” of sorts has been confirmed for the park, I specifically want to immerse myself in Mos Eisley. Blue milk on the bar, alien misfits roaming about, and the Modal Nodes belting out some dance tunes. I want it all! But watch out. Every hour, an unsuspecting Aqualish is bound to get his arm chopped off by a lightsaber, while every hour-and-a-half that Rodian in the corner takes a blaster to the gut. Why that roguish looking smuggler shot first, we’ll never know. [Eric Moro]
BB-8 Racing League
This idea immediately popped into my head once people at Fandom started getting their Sphero remote-controlled BB-8s on Force Friday last year: How cool would it be to race against a legion of other BB-8s? They could race through a miniature version of Jakku, skirting around tiny ruined X-Wings and Star Destroyers. If you’ve ever tried to control a Sphero BB-8, you know the end result might look something like a wiener dog race, but you can’t deny it wouldn’t be fun. [Brett Bates]
The Bothan Spy Network
Using a special app on their phone, fans can search the park for hidden augmented reality “messages” from Bothan spies hidden in plain sight. For example, the Rebel Logo appears on a nondescript door next to the restrooms, only visible through the app. Behind the door is an employee with a limited edition trinket for the fan. As one accumulates these hidden spots, they “unlock” perks in the park. Unfortunately, it also attracts the attention of Bounty Hunter characters dispersed around the park and it becomes a value-added and constantly changing mini-game that enhances repeat visits to the park. If a fan somehow achieves 100% completion of all the goals, the park PA congratulates them for acquiring the Death Star plans. Through the app users gain points, and with publicly shared leaderboards, fans get one step closer to their favorite fandom. [Nick Nunziata]
Visit an Ewok Village
If there is one thing Disney does well, it is creating experiences tailored for kids that the entire family can enjoy. Setting my idea for a Naboo submarine voyage hosted by Jar Jar Binks aside for now, the current section of Disneyland being carved out for Star Wars is perfect for an Ewok village retrofit. Since the “Rivers of America” is being diverted, there is a ton of marshy land and forest area to utilize. Add a few more giant trees, treehouses, and some rope bridges, and you have yourself a rustic experience set on the moon of Endor. It would be the Star Wars version of Tom Sawyer’s Island, complete with arts and crafts made by the locals (with a hefty mark-up of course), opportunities for themed food stands, and even a photo op with everyone’s favorite cuddy aliens, the Ewoks, or perhaps even a Wookie or two. [Matthew Allen]
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