If I had to make a guess, we should at least expect animatronics in that awkward boiler room scene at the beginning of the ride. Otherwise I'd be disappointed. Though I heard GHP was working with Knotts on this a while back.
I am hoping they'd try to improve efficiency (continuous load?), though I'm not sure how optimistic about that I am. What really irks me is there's no SR line. There's a lot of empty seats that go by on that thing, and there's a staircase off to the left of the ride that could be possibly used for that.
And while I'm sure it'll be largely screen based, I'd have to imagine there's going to be a few rudimentary animatronics. I seem to recall for an event a while ago, they propped up some musical bears in the barn that were reported from the ride... and I think they even were still able to move! I also think the cartoon art is very cute... those baby coyote thieves look adorable! The plushie souvenirs for this ought to be really cute.
I was really hoping the rumor about Garner Holt working on this would come true. I have pretty low expectations for this. I didn't think Iron Reef was as bad as a lot of people, but it seems like this might end up just being a lateral move that doesn't fix the biggest issues of Iron Reef (screen reliance and capacity).
Knott's really needs to add something that will add capacity to the park. Calico River Rapids was great, but didn't add any capacity. Hangtime is a much better ride than Boomerang, but since Boomerang had longer trains, I wouldn't be surprised if Boomerang actually had better operational capacity.
I do wonder if we are still getting the rumored expansion in the next couple of years, since the park desperately needs it.