A couple weeks late, but here is Part 2 of my ramblings focused entirely on SW:GE.
The scenery, rock work, ships, inside of restaurants and other aesthetic details were amazing. It rivals and perhaps tops WWoHP.
I loved seeing the characters walk around the land. At one point I was approached by Kylo Ren and 2 Stormtroopers and accused of sending signals to the rebels. It was very cool! I also saw Chewbacca and Rey giving a young kid a hard time because he was wearing an imperial officer outfit. I miss the days when characters would roam freely throughout the Magic Kingdom and this was a reminder of the magic of those days (but even better because Kylo and Rey can talk).
Now a huge negative … not just for me, but I suspect it is a reason that crowds have been much lower than expected. Other then the roaming characters and the ships/fighters (and I suppose building a lightsaber), there is nothing really Star Wars about SW:GE. And absolutely nothing related to Episodes IV-VI. To me SW:GE is more just a really cool sci-fi area than Star Wars. More on this below …
Oga’s - Very impressive. The detail in amazing and it really feels like you are in an alien bar. But, I would have enjoyed it much more if it were the Mos Eisley Cantina. Again, Oga’s is awesome as a theme park attraction, but not really Star Wars.
MFSR - Biggest disappointment of the entire land. As someone who has dreamed about a theme park with a Millennium Falcon ride since the late 70’s, it did not come anywhere near meeting expectations. The storyline of the ride is un-interesting and not compelling. The buttons to push are distracting. I wasn’t pilot, but given that one pilot does up/down and the other pilot is left/right, that just seems silly. And it didn’t appeal at all to the Star Wars fan side of me. If given the choice, I prefer Star Tours to MFSR (not exactly a ringing endorsement).
I think MFSR should have been tied to Episodes IV-VI in some way. Maybe the storyline would be that you are recruited by the rebels and part of the training is to relive a mission of years ago (ie maybe one of the Death Star runs). Or even better, that whole area could have been themed to be an actual place from IV-VI. In any event, Imagineering is more creative than me and likely could have come up with something better if the directive was a IV-VI tie-in.
Conclusion: (Caveat - I realize that RofR was not open so I was not evaluating a completed land). I think WDW made a big mistake by not making at least a portion of the land focused on Episodes IV-VI. I don’t think SW:GE will draw the Star Wars fan crowd to the extent WDW hoped (the way Universal draws Harry Potter fans to WWoHP). If the Star Wars hotel follows the same theme of SW:GE (great sci-fi theme, but not really Star Wars), then I think the hotel may be a disaster for WDW. At the rumored price range, the hotel needs to be an incredible experience (not just very cool). Those of us big Star Wars fans that grew up in the 70’s and 80’s (and are now a big spending age group) want the real Star Wars!
Totally agree. I went to the DL version solo during a business trip out to Long beach, CA, and while SWGE was neat, it didn’t resonate Star Wars for me as someone, who is old enough, to see the original trilogy movies in the theater. I think they should have picked an actual place from the original movies. The current films just don’t have the same passionate fans, IMO.
It is kind of sad they didn’t just go with Tatooine really. Mos Eisley would have been spectacular and you could still have the Falcon there of course. And then RotR could have either been a shuttle to the Death Star for the attraction or even a battle on Tatooine with Stormtroopers, Vader and maybe even a Greedo or Jabba thrown in. Seems perfect to me.
Almost exactly what I wrote about it. ST all the way…much shorter line too!
As for the rest of the land, I tend to agree again. We did the Cantina (needs more seating, we were disappointed that reserving barely saved any time and didn’t get you a seat), tried the Blue Milk, bought a Porg, wandered around for about 20 minutes looking into the Den of Antiquities, Droid Depot, Savi’s etc., but there was nothing super-compelling about it as there was nothing much linking it to the Star Wars I recognise.
Perhaps we are getting old eh?
Caveat: I’m not an original original fan - old enough to have seen the SE in cinemas but not the original releases. Watched TPM several times back-to-back when it came out, was at the RotS London premiere and midnight TFA, but am not very keen on “new” SW. Favourite bit of TLJ was the Porgs (disclaimer: I may be holding a Porg right now). Have seen RO but not Solo, will see tRoS sometime, markedly not fussed when. Perhaps I am not the target market!
I found the Disney Play app adds a whole new level to experiencing SWGE. It really helped me connect the land with Star Wars in general. I’m glad to hear there are more characters out than when I was there last.
Without having yet been to it, I (based on photos, videos etc) agree with your assesment. I’m going in dec and am of course excited to see a new land and it seems impressive in many ways, but I imagine I will have a similar lack of connection because it’s not a “real” (lol, real…) place to me. I would’ve made it half Endor, half Tatoiine (oesn’t matter if it’s a mash up, so is the whole theme park).
I guess I am in the minority, but my DS and I loved SWGE. I’m not a huge SW fan, but I’m old enough to have seen the original movies in the theater. My DS is a big fan and we had a blast at SWGE. The Disney play app was so fun–DS loved “hacking” into things in the land. We went to Oga’s twice, built a droid, ate at Ronto Wraps twice and Docking Bay 7 twice. We rode MFSR 6 times. We interacted with characters. Drank blue and green milk (green milk is better). So much fun. We can’t wait to go back for our trip in March when RotR will be open.