As the lead “new attraction” in the announcement, Paris continues to place all its bets on the Star Wars bandwagon. Newbies may be fooled into thinking this “new attraction”, which “will take Guests on an all-new, action-packed intergalactic voyage”, is indeed totally new.
For others, it laid bare the weakness to chime in that, “actually”, there’s no completely new attraction in this anniversary line-up at all.
Such a gripe actually seems pretty churlish if you’re at all familiar with Disneyland Paris. We’ve waited so long for this new version of Star Tours to come along (open since 2011 at the American parks) that it almost seemed we’d be stuck in 1987 forever.
Now that the investment is actually happening (and it’s really not a modest investment to convert the attraction, either), we should support this financially-troubled resort getting maximum bang for its buck in promoting it as “new”.
With, unfortunately, no other new attractions even strongly rumoured on the horizon yet, between Ratatouille: L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy and the next adventure, this could be as good as we’ll get for a long while.
Star Tours – The Adventures Continue transforms the ride with 3D projection and “multiple destinations”, meaning almost every ride is different. R2D2 and C-3PO are now your pilots, with the adventure being set on board a “StarSpeeder 1000” within the time of the Star Wars prequels. Despite that, a Jakku scene based on Star Wars: The Force Awakens was added later and will be possible to experience at Paris from the start.
Perhaps their word count was purposely limited, but it was disappointing that with yesterday’s announcement no attempt was made to capitalise on the other developments surrounding the new ride.
The transformation is much larger than that at the American parks, with the old Star Traders boutique becoming a new dedicated Star Wars meet ‘n’ greet; effectively a whole attraction in itself, if we count the Princess Pavilion along those lines.
Meanwhile, the space at the exit of the old ride is being turned into one pretty damn big Star Wars store. (Perhaps the largest retail space in Europe dedicated to the franchise?) That, in itself, is a huge selling point for anyone interested in this Lucasfilm universe.
If you’re going to the extent of repurposing an entire roller coaster to pad out your Star Wars attractions, why not make sure people know about these features, too?
Which leads us on perfectly to, prepare yourself…