Rise of the Resistance is a fully immersive experience that is done in several steps and utilizes many different effects and technology: providing a ride attraction like no other.
Disney has taken many great steps forward recently in updating, adding and improving guest experiences in all their parks. One of the biggest additions recently added to both Disney World and Disneyland is their Star Wars land: Galaxy’s Edge — a completely immersive experience for all guests and a real treat for the die hard Star Wars fan.
The biggest and one of the most anticipated attractions in Galaxy’s Edge recently opened in Disney World and is scheduled to open later this month in Disneyland: Rise of the Resistance. This is one of the biggest and technologically advanced attractions that Disney and Disney Imagineering has ever produced. With all the anticipation for this attraction, it has become one of, if not the most, popular attractions at Disney World currently.
Unlike other attractions in Disney World, there is a very different system in place that allows guests to ride this attraction. I will take a few moments to break down how you can get yourself one of the highly coveted “Boarding groups” for this incredible and mind blowing attraction.
How to access Rise of the Resistance
Disney has implemented a new system for guests to access the “virtual queue” that will allow them access to this attraction. I recommend you arrive at Disney’s Hollywood Studios at least an hour before it’s scheduled to open. (Make sure that you pay close attention to the park opening time each day as they can change). Most likely there will already be other guests lined up when you arrive but I suggest at least an hour.
Depending on the day, cast members will most likely start letting guests into the park prior to the park being officially open. At that time, cast members will either stop guests near the entrance of Galaxy’s Edge or if you’re lucky, might allow you to enter Galaxy’s Edge. If you are stopped prior to the entrance, I recommend finding a guest experience cast member and standing close to them. They can become incredibly helpful if your “My Disney Experience” app has any technical issues when the park is open.
Once in the park make sure your “My Disney Experience” app is updated and open. When the park is officially open, access the app and click on the Rise of the Resistance link. This is an important step. You need to make sure that you are inside the park and past through the turnstiles in order to be able to access a boarding group.
When you click on the “Join boarding group” link, you will confirm the members that are in your group. The app will then automatically assign you a boarding group. If for some reason, the app “crashes” or does not allow you to access a boarding group due to technical issues, go see a guest experience cast member who can scan your magic band and assign you a boarding group.
Typically the boarding groups range between 1 and 200. When you are assigned a boarding group, you can monitor the progress of which boarding groups are currently boarding on your app or on various digital boards throughout Hollywood Studios. In theory, the app should send you a notification when your boarding group is called but do not rely on this (As I discovered on a recent trip).
The importance of getting a boarding group is that the attraction can only accommodate a certain number of groups and will hit capacity very quickly. In my experience, most boarding groups were no longer available anywhere between 15 and 60 minutes from the park opening.
Once your boarding group has been called, you will have two hours from that time to access Rise of the Resistance. I suggest getting there as soon as you can as this attraction can sometimes have technical issues and can be closed from time to time (This happened to me recently).
When you get to the entrance of the attraction, all you need to do is tell the cast member (there will be several stationed at the entrance with mobile scanners) that your boarding group was called. They will scan your magic band and you are on your way to experience one of the best attractions Disney has ever produced.
Ride experience: Rise of the Resistance
One of the many things that I love about this attraction is how it is staged in several steps and it tells a full and complete story. You don’t just stand in line, get on a ride vehicle and then exit the attraction. Disney has taken their time to really immerse the guests in the story and the experience. Once you are in line, you will be able to see the equipment that the resistance has been using in their fight against the First Order.
Once you make it through the line, you are placed in a briefing room where you receive your mission from Rey and Poe. Make sure you listen carefully as they have vital information for you as they emphasize the importance of the mission and how it cannot fail. When you are finished with your mission briefing you are moved to a cargo shuttle where you will be able to hopefully complete your mission.
Once onboard your shuttle you are escorted by a squad of x-wing fighters but … there’s something on scanners: A large group of TIE fighters approaching your position at high speed. Looks like we are in for a fight.
Sadly the Resistance is not able to fight off the TIE fighters and you are caught in a tractor beam. This doesn’t seem like things are going according to plan. Your shuttle is brought to a docking bay onboard an Imperial Star Destroyer where the First Order has plans to interrogate you in order to gain the location of the secret Rebel base. The doors on your shuttle open and you are met with a large amount of Imperial Stormtroopers and officers that escort you to your holding cell so that you can be properly interrogated by Kylo Ren.
Even though things may seem bleak and it appears that the First Order may have won, don’t give up quite yet. The Resistance may be small in numbers but they are a fierce and determined group. They will find a way to get you out of this predicament and hopefully allow you to complete your mission.
Having experienced this attraction in the last few weeks, I feel that this attraction is a real game changer in the ride attraction world. Not just for Disney but for all theme parks. I have not given away all the elements of this attraction in order to preserve some of the surprises that await you. If you take the time to properly plan and are aware of the steps you need to take, you should be able to experience this incredible attraction for yourself!
May the force be with you!