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Pandora: World of Avatar General Discussion

Discussion in 'Disney's Animal Kingdom' started by Joe, May 24, 2017.

  1. rhino4evr

    rhino4evr Veteran Member

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    yeah, I read similar impressions online about the lack of "wow" at night, compared to during the day. I'm just glad I got a fast pass in the first place. Was planning on being at the park at like 6;45am, which totally sucks. The fast pass is for 1:00-2:00 which is perfect for my needs. Can run around and do the rest of the park in the morning, then hit Pandora and jet home. Worked out perfectly to be quite honest. Will probably skip the "river ride", unless the line is reasonable.
     
  2. Ultranel

    Ultranel Member

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    I hate to be negative about it, but I wasn't expecting much from the ride and all from the land, but it end up being all the way around. So when people ask, how is it? All I can say is, ride is awesome, land is better than what they used to have there, and that's about it.
     
  3. JonsMovies

    JonsMovies Newcomer

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    Just a tip for those trying to score FP for FoP. I was there a couple of weeks ago and had no fastpass. I had heard that the system releases some around 11am every day so while riding Kilamanjaro I started checking constantly for a party of 2. A few minutes later, it popped up! After we rode, we were eating lunch at Satuli and I decided to check again (we had used our 3 FP's so we could book again). Amazingly, another party of 2 popped up! So my advice to anyone trying to get on FoP is to make sure you check the MDE app when you're at the park. It definitely makes the difference, as I've never seen it available when trying from off site.
     
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  4. GadgetGuru

    GadgetGuru Premium Member

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    Just did Pandora for the first time on Black Friday. The place was absolutely packed. We got there about 30-40 minutes before open and the line for FoP was already towards Africa. It was a quick line though - we finished up about 40 minutes after the park opened.

    It's a really pretty land. The arch looks like an arch, but there's a lot of great photo spots nonetheless. The outdoor portion of the FoP queue is gorgeous. I almost wish the line wasn't moving so much so I could take a couple pictures.

    The land clearly isn't meant for these kinds of crowds though. The FoP line has to snake through the land's central intersection and there's a lot of crowd control happening to keep things moving well. It's a smaller land and it's made even smaller by all of the people. River Journey will be a great C ticket ride once the crowds dissipate and wait times are closer to 20 minutes.

    Satuli Canteen was the best counter service I've had at Disney. It's an absolute bargain too. I've spent more money on worse lunches in the real world.

    FoP was a fantastic ride and easily the best in AK. The queue is more entrancing than an Avatar queue has a right to be. The pre-show is hilariously long and awkward. The ride itself is magical. It's more intense than I would've thought, but the video is great and the motion is believable. As somebody who's firmly anti-simulator, this is engaging and different enough that I wouldn't call it a simulator. I didn't smell anything special on the ride, but my sense of smell is awful fwiw.

    Avatar merch is also bad. The Banshee puppets are a huge hit and definitely unique. Everything else is either generic or just concept art.
     
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  5. Alicia

    Alicia Premium Member

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    If it weren't always so crowded, this could be my favorite place to hang out in a theme park. Love the food, snacks and drinks. Love the ambiance, and like the rest of Animal Kingdom, it could be a peaceful place to hang out... if it weren't so darn crowded! Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us.
     
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  6. GadgetGuru

    GadgetGuru Premium Member

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    Any time! The land really isn't built for those kinds of crowds. I appreciate that the bar + canteen are insulated a bit because they're far away from the ride entrances. But, the back half of the land near the Africa entrance is basically unaccessible because of the FoP line.
     
  7. Nick

    Nick Staff Member Moderator

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    I agree. I'd love to be there more (haven't been since Pre-July 4th), but either work has been in the way or the crowds are a turn off when I actually want to go.
     
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  8. Alicia

    Alicia Premium Member

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    Having been for the AP preview, I can tell you it's a beautiful and relaxing space that feels a lot bigger without people in it. And just like most of Animal Kingdom there are waterfalls and water features throughout the area that create a wonderful natural sound barrier of white noise I find truly relaxing. I'd give anything to hang out in the land without the crowds again.
     
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  9. rhino4evr

    rhino4evr Veteran Member

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    you may get your chance once SWL opens. It won't stay this crazy forever.
     
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  10. Yabbadabba Doh

    Yabbadabba Doh Member

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    TBH, I was there the weekend before Thanksgiving and the crowds weren't that bad in the land itself. The standby line for NRJ, however, stretched back almost to the bridge.
    Has anyone noticed that the they seemed to have turned up the ambient sounds? They seem louder to me than when I visited in August, or was it because there were less people?
     
  11. Alicia

    Alicia Premium Member

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    They do seem a lot louder with less people in the land.

    Also, the sounds on the bridge (into the area from Tiffins) are purposely louder than the rest of the area... Kind of a way to get you to notice that you're entering an alien jungle by overdoing the sound.
     
  12. Nick

    Nick Staff Member Moderator

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    I finally got back to Pandora this morning with the goal of getting a Banshee for my sister for Christmas. I was able to grab a NRJ FP+ last night for 9:30am, which was nice.

    Was inside Windtraders at The Rookery slightly after 9, didn't take long to grab the Banshee we wanted. Although a fairly lengthy line formed just after I got in line so we got lucky. Wait times were 180 mins for FoP and 40 mins for NRJ.

    As for NRJ, this was only my second time on the ride. The first and only time prior was during AP Previews. It left a bad taste in my mouth at the time and was in no rush to get back. Roughly 7 months later, I actually really enjoyed it. The usage of screens on this ride is great in how it creates a perception of depth. The Shaman is obviously great as well. The short ride time is a clear negative, but if the ride has a short wait, it's worth a ride as it's a decent C-Ticket.

    Lastly, I finally saw the drum show and I really enjoyed it! It reminded me a bit of a Luau performance. It added much needed life to the land and it fit right in with FoP and NRJ in that it was all about exploring Pandora and it's culture.
     
  13. Alicia

    Alicia Premium Member

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    I feel exactly the same way about NRJ now. Was sorely disappointed during AP previews but kinda enjoy it and marvel at its ingenuity now. I loved the fan lizards hopping on leaves above you the first time, but now I love watching the depth in the side projection stuff. Great use of layers. If the line was shorter I would ride every visit for certain.
     
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  14. Mad Dog

    Mad Dog Premium Member

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    These last couple of reviews buttress my long standing opinion that one needs to experience an attraction multiple times before "officially" reviewing it.
     
  15. Alicia

    Alicia Premium Member

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    Tried the new holiday Cinnamon Cream Cheese Mousse at Satu’li Canteen. Tastes like cheesecake with cinnamon. The apples on the side is a nice touch. Actually tastes more like cheesecake than the regular blueberry mouse. I would actually buy it year round. (But you gotta like cinnamon.)

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    5A82804A-3F18-4912-8BE3-4E35F59F0F26.jpeg
     
  16. AlexanderMBush

    AlexanderMBush Legendary Member

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    To speak in a way, the middle-man has now been cut out and TWDC now owns the Avatar IP, which I think may be something to look at.

    This is now their own responsibility and their own challenge, on not just the films, but also of what to do with the IP at Animal Kingdom, whether it's an expansion or to leave it. Either way, things just got a lot interesting.
     
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  17. Alicia

    Alicia Premium Member

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    But Fox only distributes Avatar. Cameron and Landau's company Lightstorm Entertainment are the ones that actually produce the films, so any changes still have to go through them.

    Not sure it will change much on this front, (except where some of the royalties from Banshee toys go.)
     
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  18. bmj60

    bmj60 Newcomer

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    Not sure if this is a permanent thing, but realized when I went this past weekend to visit that the walkway to Africa was completely shut off. Not sure if this is because there is too much traffic on that walkway being that the FOP line forms that way. I was disappointed that a CM directed me all the way around to the Tree of Life and back to Africa.
     
  19. Nick

    Nick Staff Member Moderator

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    They do this when crowds are extremely large. The Africa bridge becomes the only exit for the land and the main land entrance becomes the only way in.
     
  20. rhino4evr

    rhino4evr Veteran Member

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    So FINALLY got to experience Pandora this past weekend. Here are my thoughts.
    First off. We had fast passes for Flight, which was a huge blessing, as the line was 90 at 8am, and was 200 mins by 8:30.
    We were able to go on the river journey first thing with a 20 min wait.

    The Land...We were really impressed. The amount of detail and overall immersion is probably the best in any theme park I've been too. It may not feel as nostalgic or iconic as Potter, but it definitely feels more encompassing. Several times I looked in every direction to see if I could "see outside" of Pandora, and it was almost impossible. They did a really good job at enclosing the area so you feel like your somewhere else.

    The Rides - I had super low expectations for River, so maybe that's why I enjoyed it overall. I also didn't wait 2 hours. It was kind of a harmless ride, with some pretty scenery. I do feel they could have done a lot more with it. The ride needs more AAs. Plain and simple. The shaman AA was pretty impressive though.

    I tried to have average expectations for Flight, and in the end, I was pretty blown away. I'm not a fan of Soarin (especially the new movie), so I was really surprised how much I enjoyed it. Like the land, the ride felt immersive. As close to a VR experience without the VR set. I was really shocked at just how large the screen was. My only complaint was the glasses that were given to us felt loose, and I was holding on to them throughout the ride. Both my daughter and wife had the same problem. It took me out of the experience a bit.
    Now would I wait 3 hours for it? Probably not. Hopefully in a few years the crowds won't be as bad.

    The Drinks - Was disappointed with both beers, but I'm a beer snob. The margarita was tasty.

    I didn't try any of the food, as my daughter showed no interest in eating a pod. We ate at Harambe instead which was fun and a much more relaxed atmosphere.
     

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