Description And Comments

Toy Story Mania! ushered in a whole new generation of Disney attractions: "virtual dark rides." Since Disneyland opened in 1955, ride vehicles have moved past two- and three-dimensional sets often populated by audioanimatronic (AA) figures. These amazingly detailed sets and robotic figures defined the Disney Imagineering genius in attractions such as Pirates of the Caribbean, The Haunted Mansion, and Peter Pan's Flight. Now for Toy Story Mania!, the elaborate sets and endearing AA characters are gone. Imagine long corridors, totally empty, covered with reflective material. There's almost nothing there...until you put on your special 3-D glasses. Instantly, the corridor is full and brimming with color, action, and activity, thanks to projected computer graphic (CG) images.

Conceptually, this is an interactive shooting gallery much like the Magic Kingdom's Buzz Lightyear's Space Ranger Spin, but in Toy Story Mania!, your ride vehicle passes through a totally virtual midway, with booths offering such games as ring tossing and ball throwing. You use a cannon on your ride vehicle to play as you move along from booth to booth. Unlike the laser guns in Buzz Lightyear, however, the pull-string cannons in Toy Story Mania! take advantage of CG image technology to toss rings, shoot balls, even throw eggs and pies. Each game booth is manned by a Toy Story character who is right beside you in 3-D glory cheering you on. In addition to 3-D imagery, you experience vehicle motion, wind and water spray.

The ride begins with a training round to familiarize you with the nature of the games, then continues through a number of "real" games in which you compete against your riding mate. The technology has the ability to self-adjust the level of difficulty, and there are plenty of easy targets for small children to reach. Tip: Let the pull-string retract all the way back into the cannon before pulling it again.

Finally, and also of note, a new generation "living character" audioanimatronic figures was introduced in the preshow queuing area of Toy Story Mania! A 6-foot-tall Mr. Potato Head breaks new ground for an audioanimatronic character by interacting with and talking to guests in real time (similar to Turtle Talk with Crush).

Reader reviews of Toy Story Mania! have been over-the-top enthusiastic. This praise from a Fanwood, New Jersey, reader is typical:

Toy Story Mania! is the best ride at Disney. The combo of a midway competition and the 3-D is an experience worth the 70-minute wait. Five stars from one teen and two over-30s!

Touring Tips

Because it's a ton of fun, and it has a relatively low rider-per-hour capacity, Toy Story Mania! is the biggest bottleneck in Walt Disney World, surpassing even Test Track at Epcot. The only way to get aboard without a horrendous wait is to be one of the first through the turnstiles when the park opens and zoom to the attraction. Another alternative is to obtain Fastpass+ reservtions for Toy Story Mania! as far in advance as possible. Don't count on any Fastpass+ reservations being available on the same day as your visit - if there are any, the'll almost certainly be gone by 11 AM.

From a Boston reader:

Toy Story Mania! was great, but the line was a nightmare. I had to duck out and use the ladies' room when I saw what the main queue room looked like!

Toy Story Midway Mania! Wait Times

This chart shows you roughly how long you'll wait for Toy Story Midway Mania! when you visit on a day with a given Disney's Hollywood Studios Crowd Level. The blue bars represent the average "peak" wait time (that is, how long the line will at its busiest). The bottom and top black lines represent the range of peak wait times to expect (for you fellow nerds out there: it's the 5th percentile and 95th percentile of peak wait times). Please note that these are estimates, and for a better forecast for your travel dates, see Toy Story Midway Mania! Wait Times.

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Touring Plans with Toy Story Midway Mania!

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