“Chewie, we’re home.” How many of us are going to say this phrase the first time we ride Millennium Falcon Smugglers Run? We’re less than a year away from the most talked about land to ever come to Walt Disney World. Everyone is getting excited and we heard rumors that people are already starting to line up outside Hollywood Studios. We should have asked for a tent for Christmas, what were we thinking? Over the holiday, Walt Disney World released more information regarding the Millennium Falcon Smugglers Run, and we thought it was time for the DVC Duo to chime in on Star Wars Galaxy Edge. Strap in, we’re heading for lightspeed as we discuss everything we know about the Millennium Falcon Smugglers Run attraction.

Millennium Falcon Smugglers Run - Concept Art
Concept Art of Inside the Millennium Falcon

The Concept

Ok, let the debate begin. What is the most iconic spaceship ever created? We say the Millennium Falcon, but we’re sure some Trekkies out there would beg to differ. With the new Millennium Falcon Smugglers Run attraction guests will finally be able to live out their dreams of piloting the fastest hunk of junk in the galaxy. You’ll team up with 5 other guests or family members, we’ll let you decide who you want to fly with, as you embark on an adventure through the galaxy.

Millennium Falcon Smugglers Run Exterior
Exterior of Millennium Falcon Smugglers Run

The Ride Experience  

Pick your favorite method on deciding who gets the pilot seat. We recommend rock, paper scissors, #neverthrowscissors! Each guest will be assigned a different role on the adventure ranging from pilot, to gunner and engineer. Let grandma (or your least favorite family member, we won’t judge) take the engineer role, for us that seems like the less exciting role. The attraction is designed to hold 6 guests per vehicle (some rumors say 4, but all pictures and videos show 6) at about 1,800 guests per hour. Using the 200 plus control buttons, yes you heard us right 200 different control buttons, your team will pilot the Millennium Falcon through the galaxy on one of the many stories Hans Solo hints about in the movies.

Let’s pause for one second and go back to the 200 plus control buttons. We are hoping Disney will be passing out instruction manuals to read while we wait in the 6 hour plus line. At least we’ll have something to keep us busy while we wait. In all seriousness, knowing Disney we’re sure they have thought of this and have put into place ways to make it a great experience.

From the early concept art and videos we’ve seen, the Millennium Falcon Smugglers Run looks to be a cross between Star Tours and Mission Space over at Epcot. The piece that makes it completely unique is the storyline and how it will be created. For the first time the storyline will be created in real time solely based on what you and your team members do while piloting the ship. Disney and Industrial Light and Magic (ILM) have teamed up to create an environment that is “rendered” in real-time and reacts to all the different controls that are and are not clicked. Disney also partnered with NVIDIA to create brand new technology for the graphics. If you’re techie like Nate, check out this article on the graphic cards. A great way to think of the attraction is like a flight simulator.

Millennium Falcon Smugglers Run - Construction Progress
Construction Process

The Testing  

Walt Disney is creating two of these attractions, one in Walt Disney World and one in Disneyland. With the Disneyland Star Wars Galaxy Edge projected to open in the summer of 2019, Disney has begun testing of the attraction in a offsite location. From Jill Hill over at Jim Hill Media we’ve heard the testing is going well with only a few bumps along the way. The one major concerned raised is around the coordination the ride takes between all 6 team members to pilot the Millennium Falcon. With guests coming from all over the world it there could be a little turbulence ahead as you rely on all riders to communicate and have a good experience on the ride.

We’ve heard they working on solutions that would not impact the overall guest experience, but still make it as interactive as possible. We’re hoping they do not do any of the “auto-clicking” of the controls, like we see on Mission Space. Maybe they will do something like tracking rider experience through your magicband and adjust the difficulty based on previous rides.

Corridor to Millennium Falcon Smugglers Run attraction
Millennium Falcon Smugglers Run Corridor

Our Thoughts  

Move over Chewie, it’s our turn to pilot the Millenium Falcon! We love how the ride experience will be different every time you ride it. Usually we are less than excited for a simulator attraction, but we couldn’t see any other way to create this type of experience with physical sets. We think we would all agree that any Star Wars land has to include an attraction based around the Millenium Falcon. The one piece we are still waiting to find out is if the ride will require 3D glasses. We’re hoping Hans Solo’s gold dice don’t come up snake eyes and we’re asked to don “flight goggles”.

We’ll be making our way down the boarding corridor in late 2019. Which seat will you be calling dibs on? You can find us in line, we’ll be the ones playing rock, paper, scissors! Always throw rock!

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