Nearly five years in the making, Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind is now open for previews before its official debut on May 27, 2022. Christina and I got the chance to ride a few times yesterday.
Here’s our review. Warning: Spoilers ahead.
The ride begins with a familiar ride element: a backward launch, very, very smiliar to the one in Expedition Everest over at Animal Kingdom. Then your ride vehicle turns around to face forward, at the exact moment you’re supposed to enter deep space.
This might be the best effect of the entire ride. Disney’s programmed the ride vehicle to spin and tilt down just a bit, as you enter the massive room, pitch-black other than some simulated stars and planets. On my first ride, I actually felt like I was floating in space – an actual “wow!” moment.
Much of the rest of the ride felt similiar to Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster: lots of tight turs past a few scenic objects. Guardians of the Galaxy’s ride track doesn’t have any loops or invesrions, though, while Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster does. And, like Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, you’ll get a rock-and-roll soundtrack during your ride. Songs include A Flock of Seagulls’ “I Ran,” Blondie’s “On Way or Another,” and Earth, Wind, and Fire’s “September.”
The ride ends with the Guardians’ mission succeeding. The whole onboard experience takes just under 3 minutes. That potentially gives Guardians an hourly capacity of around 2,500 to 2,800 riders per hour, which is very good.
A few other operational notes for Guardians:
- It has a height requirement of 42″ (107 cm)
- Audio descriptions and assistive listening devices are available
- Guests must transfer from wheelchairs/ECVs to the ride vehicle
Touring Tips: Guardians of the Galaxy is one of EPCOT’s three thrill rides, calling it a “family thrill ride”. In practice, this means it’s about as intense as Space Mountain or Expedition Everest.
Guardians of the Galaxy will use Boarding Groups when it opens to the general public. That’s typical for a new ride, especially one with new technology. We expect boarding groups to run out very quickly, so you’ll need to be quick (and lucky) right at 7 a.m. on the day of your visit.
If you’re unable to get a boarding group or Lightning Lane, your best bet to experience Guardians without long waits in line is to ride as soon as the park opens. Disney resort guests will (eventually) be able to ride during Early Theme Park Entry, which will help keep waits low. Off-site guests should expect waits of at least an hour once they’re admitted to the park.
We don’t think boarding groups will run at Guardians for very long. During its testing phase, Guardians was more reliable than Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure, Frozen Ever After, Test Track, or Spaceship Earth. So if EPCOT’s willing to accept more than an hour of downtime per day, on average, for those attractions, without boarding groups, then there’s no reason to use boarding groups for Guardians once the ride is broken in. We’re guessing it’ll be about 4-6 weeks at the most, assuming no major ride systems issues are uncovered.
Likewise, we expect Guardians to be available for Early Theme Park Entry and Extended Evening Theme Park Hours once that 4-6 week break-in period is done.