When Universal Orlando Resort opened in 1990, Disney already had the upper hand.
Decades of a well-known presence in Orlando, combined with Walt Disney World’s reputation for some of the best customer service, high-quality entertainment, and overall Disney magic gave Mickey the upper hand.
Really, it should be no surprise that Walt Disney World was the clear winner in the Orlando theme park arms race. Then, the tide finally turned.
Everything changed when Universal Orlando Resort acquired the rights and permission to host the Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade in Islands of Adventure.
Everything Changed For Universal When the Magic of Harry Potter Became as Real as the Disney Magic
Universal finally made great strides and was soon becoming a theme park Resort to rival Walt Disney World. So, Universal continued, maintaining the momentum, adding a second Wizarding World of Harry Potter to its arsenal (this time in Universal Studios Florida).
For the first time, Guests had a more challenging time picking and choosing between Universal and Disney. Unfortunately, it seems that Universal may have taken two steps forward and two steps back with the addition of Villain-Con Minion Blast, Minion Land, and Illumination Ave.
For starters, Villain-Con Minion Blast took the place of an attraction that was well-beloved by many Guests and, by many accounts, was still reasonably popular (rest in peace, Shrek 4-D).
So, if it was going to replace something Guests loved, there was a clear understanding that the new attraction would have to be something Guests loved even more.
Villain-Con Minion Blast Has Big, Ogre-Sized Shoes to Fill…
But Villain-Con Minion Blast has just opened to the public, and Guests could not be any less thrilled.
The shoot-em-up style attraction is unlike anything Universal or Disney has offered Guests before.
One of the significant differences is the addition of the use of a smartphone to receive the whole experience, including customization settings and receiving one’s final scores.
Imagine sitting down for Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin or Toy Story Mania, only to pull out your phone and connect via the Walt Disney World app. It sounds like a bit of a hassle, doesn’t it?
But that’s not all…We hate to be the bearer of bad news, but it does, in fact, get worse.
How Can It Get Any Worse?
There’s a designated spot for standing, and if Guests move from that spot, their laser will stop firing. On the one hand, we can see the added mobility aiding in the experience, but on the other hand…we can’t imagine a worse idea.
What Do You Think of No Ride Vehicles?
What is the one thing unruly Guests try to do when experiencing an attraction? Try to break out of their ride vehicle. If there’s no ride vehicle to break out of, unruly Guest behavior will surely increase on this attraction.
Not only that, but can you imagine waiting in a long, slow-moving line in the Florida heat, only to continue standing when it’s time to enjoy the attraction? We can’t speak for everyone, but we find that sitting is half of the reward for waiting in line for the attraction!
We may be biased, but it cannot be denied that Disney has won this contest again, without even having to try this time.