Disney's Hollywood Studios - Pixar Place

Pixar Place now occupies a small section of the old Mickey Avenue area. The area currently consists of a single straight piece of road with Toy Story and some restrooms on one side of the street and on the other an outdoor giftshop, food cart, and a small photo location. In the coming years this area is slated to grow and expand with the addition of Toy Story Playland.

Geek's Thoughts & Suggestions

As I mentioned in the intro above the main attraction here is the Toy Story Midway Mania! For those who have visited Disney's California Adventure it is the same attraction that you find in the Paradise Pier area there.

Since the attraction itself is the same as Anaheim's here are my initial thoughts on it from June 2008 and my expeience on the WDW version in December 2008 confirmed these:

  • Gameplay: I have never been a huge fan of 3D glasses.. they always seem to bother my eyes, but in this attraction the effects seemed to work perfectly and it did add a new dimension to the gameplay. Another aspect the geek in my found fun was how each game tried to apply real physics to the projectiles you were shooting. So the rings behaved differently than the darts or baseballs. This was fun to see and play around with. The games you play are:
    • Pie Throw Practice
    • Bo Peep's Baa-loon Pop (retired in May 2010)
    • Rex and Trixie’s Dino Darts (added in May 2010)
    • Hamm & Eggs (hosted by Hamm and Buttercup)
    • Green Army Men Shoot Camp
    • Buzz Lightyear's Flying Tossers
    • Woody's Rootin' Tootin' Shootin' Gallery
    • Woody's Bonus Roundup

  • Some nuts and bolts: As you saw in the pictorial update the ride trams consist of two cars that each seat four people (2 back to back). They dispatch two trams at a time out of the main loading area. There is a separate loading area off to the side for guests needing assistance (handicap access). This seems to keep the trams moving nicely. Also note there is no Fastpass or Single Rider line (the Florida version has both). The queue itself is fairly boring with the notable exception of the Mr. Potato Head Barker who is an attraction unto himself. If Monday was any indication they still have kinks to work out with Mr. Potato Head. He was stopped when I arrived then working but later he was behind a tarp for the rest of the evening. I have seen they are having similar issues with the WDW one too. I guess this can be expected with a piece of equipment as complex as him. Only the last 20 minutes or so of it covered and the over flow out in the open. Last note if you have infants or other small children they have to sit on the seat, you cannot hold them. We had an 11 month old in our group and he did ok, but making sure it was ok disrupted the game play (or at least that is the excuse the Lazygeek used for his score). They really pushed that option over a baby swap, but I think if he would have insisted the CMs would have let him.

  • I was a little disappointed that they did not have an on-ride photo/score/email option like they have on Buzz, I thought that was a great idea and fun for the once in a lifetime folks as a keepsake and for those of us who play all the time to see our scores. Maybe someday they will add this. In terms of setting the story for the attraction, I thought the set up was a bit awkward where you come from the Pier and basically put in the Toys world with no real transition. In Orlando they use the queue to bring you into the Toy World. Here you really do not get what is going on until the last scene in the loft of the gift shop where you see the Midway Mania box and other toy boxes on the ground.

  • I received a couple emails asking if it was worth it or lived up to expectations... I think it really depends on what you were expecting. It met my expectations, but I would not say exceeded them, say in the way Indiana Jones did on my first ride or my first viewing of Fantasmic but I walked away satisfied and wanting to go on again. I think the attraction is well done, the games are fun, and it fits on DCAs Pier nicely. I enjoyed the games and see myself riding somewhat frequently, depending on the wait.

Comparing the two is relatively hard to do as the games and trams are identical. The main difference between the two is the queue. At DCA it is an outdoor queue and you only have a standby line (and sometimes a single ride one). At WDW the queue is inside and you have the option of using Fastpass, assuming you can get one before they are gone for the day. I was a little disappointed at WDW to see that Mr Potato Head is located in the middle of the Standby Queue so if you use Fastpass you will not see him, where as in Anaheim he is outside for everyone to see, even those walking by. The WDW queue is much more elaborate and consists of Toys, games, etc.. that are sure to bring back some great memories for many. In Anaheim you pass some of similiar props as your game tram goes from the queue area back to the show building and then when it returns at the end, but it is not as impressive as WDWs.

I am somewhat at a loss for how Toy Story Midway Mania thematically fits into the Hollywood Studios park. First its not about movies or Hollywood or the making of movies, it is not even based on a movie, but it does feature characters from a film. The experience also has nothing to do with movies/tv/etc... the theme of the attraction does work better in Anaheim where it is on a Boardwalk so midway games fit right in, but in Anaheim I don't think the story of the Pixar Characters plays well in the turn of the century seaside park. Anyways... with that said I do recommend the attraction, its one of my favorites. Be warned that Fastpasses for Toy Story Midway Mania are usually long gone by lunch time. So if you want to get one stop by early in the day or else you will be in the long stand-by line.

In May 2010 they made the first revision to the attraction. A new game Rex and Trixie’s Dino Darts replaced the Bo Peep's Baa-loon Pop. As was hinted at when the attraction opened this transition basically happened over night with the park closing one night with one game and opening the next with the new one. Of course before this a lot of work and testing went into it by the Imagineers but the rollout was smooth.

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