Yesterday, Disney went live with their new webpage for Toy Story Mania!, the new attraction for Disney-MGM Studios and California Adventure (where it will be known as Toy Story Midway Mania). The page (pictured above) is still rather sparse, but features a few pieces of concept art and behind the scenes images (through the ViewMaster on the left) and a short video blurb by Imagineer Tom “Walking, Talking Press Release” Fitzgerald (via the videocamera on the right).
The attraction, an interactive dark ride set to open next year, seems to be a combination of two earlier concepts. It’s partially a next-generation Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin, but instead of dimensional sets and laser guns the ride will use computer animation and stereoscopic 3-D effects to simulate a shooting gallery environment. As can be seen in the pictures on the site, the “spring action shooters” that are attached to the ride vehicles seem quite similar to the cannons in the Pirates of the Caribbean shooting game at DisneyQuest. Toy Story Mania! thus seems to combine the VR technology of the Pirates attraction with Buzz Lightyear‘s omnimover system.
In the ride, guests will pull back the spring on the shooters attached to their vehicles, launching a virtual projectile at a series of targets themed to different environments and characters from the Toy Story films. Guests will wear 3-D glasses, giving a depth of field to the shooting galleries and adding realism. One of the more interesting aspects of the attraction is that the computers running the show will change the difficulty level for each individual rider based on their skill, thus changing the show every time you ride it.
So load your shooters, take a double dose of your A.D.D. medicine and head on over to Disney’s site for a preview. Be sure and enjoy Fitzgerald talking about “the classic carnival games that we all know and love”… whatever, dude. The L.A. Times has also posted a short article about the attraction.