All Things Universal Studios Resort

Discussion in 'SHH Community Forum' started by Maximum Carnage, Jul 9, 2012.

  1. Maximum Carnage Tanned User

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    Good morning, folks! Since I'll be moving to Orlando soon, this park is right in my backyard! Figured we could have some healthy discussions on current attractions and rides, events, and even future attractions! :)
     
  2. Maximum Carnage Tanned User

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    I'll begin by reporting, as of today, the addition of a new on-site hotel - The Cabana Bay Beach Resort.

    [​IMG]


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    Source: http://media.universalorlando.com/PressRelease/detail.aspx?id=1351
     
  3. Maximum Carnage Tanned User

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    More exciting things that should be discussed, however, should be the Wizarding World of Harry Potter expansion and/or the Jaws demolition..

     
  4. Erzengel |-o-| (-o-) |-o-|

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    I prefer Disney World. :o
     
  5. bullets bang bang

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    I haven't been there since 2008. I still need to see Wizard world and the Simpsons' ride.
     
  6. Erzengel |-o-| (-o-) |-o-|

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    I was discussing Disney vs. Universal to this guy who just graduated college. He thought he was too old for Disney and would probably have to wait til he had a family to enjoy it.

    I told him that going to Universal to me was always like going to Six Flags, rides, and fun etc. and that going to Disney is a blast even when you're older but you probably should be with friends or a significant other.

    Also that the City Walk put Pleasure Island/Downtown Disney Night life out of business. And how City Walk was better for 20 something year olds to have fun at nightfall.

    I guess with this resort thing, Universal wants to try and be like Disney and have a whole experience in staying there and not just a one and done.

    Honestly, I could spend 4-5 days at Disney. The last time I went to Universal, I went there for a day and then went back to Disney for the rest of my stay.
     
  7. Art Damage Turtle Power

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    I will forever prefer this over Disney World, granted I haven't been Disney in 12 years but I owe a lot to why I love Universal to Islands of Adventure and especially Marvel Super Hero Island. I love being there and I kind of wish they would expand that portion given Marvel's recent boom...but I understand since it's a Disney owned property...we could be seeing the end of it at Universal sometime soon.

    I went to Universal for the first time in 2005 and have gone there four times since. I love it.
     
  8. Samwise Gamgee Registered

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    Universal's Harry Potter area is really cool. I spent a lot of money to enjoy myself there but, a year later, I still think it was totally worth it...got some butter-beers for my family, bought a Slytherin scarf, a Gryffindor scarf for my Harry Potter obsessed niece, tried a chocolate frog.

    Honestly though I wish Universal would just give up on the Marvel land. The Hulk roller coaster is fantastic but the rest of the land is sadly dated and underwhelming. The villains on the Spider-Man ride look like they are from the early-80s, the characters on the street are in costumes than anyone can buy at a local party supply store, and the X-men/Storm themed thing is basically just a copy of Disney's tea pots. It's a complicated situation for them with Disney owning Marvel but I feel like Universal is the bad guy in this....they aren't doing anything to develop the area with the recent movie success and it feels like they are keeping it sad and pathetic on purpose. Disney is developing Marvel areas in other places and I have a feeling it is going to blow away the turd pile that is Universal's Marvel land.
     
  9. Maximum Carnage Tanned User

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    Actually, the entire Spider-Man ride's graphics have been overhauled, and the 3D has been updated. It's clearer and easier to pay attention to the whole time. SCREAM's symbiote is constantly moving, the water in Hydro-Man is constantly flowing, the fire effects with Hobby, the sparks between Electro's mask, Doc Ock's arms.. It looks great. ;)

    Check out the side-by-side of the updated ride..

    [YT]kq7cH-h_Dao[/YT]
     
  10. Maximum Carnage Tanned User

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    The coasters at Universal are worth riding over and over.. Rock-It, Mummy, Dragon Challenge (2 rides in one - Chinese Fireball is faster, and the Hungarian Horntail has more loops/twists/turns), and not to forget The Hulk..

    Not to mention the water rides on hot summer days .. ? Jurassic Park, Popeye, Dudley-Do-Right?

    The last time I went to Disney, I wanted to kill myself with how boring it was.. No offense. It's all expensive, and 1 1/2 rides per park that are worth even riding. :/
     
  11. Erzengel |-o-| (-o-) |-o-|

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    Why would I be offended, I didn't build the park?

    Last time I went to Universal, I was done with Universal Studios in about 6 hours. A couple of years later I went to Islands of Adventure. I really liked the Hulk ride. The Spider-Man ride broke down half-way through it.

    I want to go back there just for the Harry Potter part.

    But I understand how most early 20 something year olds would think that Disney was "boring".

    It's not about just going on rides to me. It's the eating, the shows, the fireworks. It just feels like more of an experience going to Disney. While Universal is kind of the theme park, where you go there in the morning and just leave at night.

    One of our days at Disney, we arrived early and did the rides we wanted to do in Animal Kingdom, got done around 3ish, so we went to Hollywood Studios for a few rides, then to Epcot for dinner and finished with fireworks at the Magic Kingdom.

    I'm sure Universal has better coasters, but I enjoy the overall experience of going to Disney.
     
  12. Maximum Carnage Tanned User

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    Well, my boyfriend will be working there as a lifguard.. so I'll let you know. Getting in for free, my opinions might change.. lol.
     
  13. Maximum Carnage Tanned User

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    Has anyone heard anything about the now confirmed Harry Potter expansion?
     
  14. Erzengel |-o-| (-o-) |-o-|

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    It's also a little different for people who live close near there.

    I live in NJ, so coming to Orlando is a vacation. I have the week off and I enjoy the experience, of getting up, having Disney pick me up, and driving me to the park of my choice. Then after the park, deciding where to eat. (We are trying to eat in every Country in Epcot, I still need 5 more countries). Then which fireworks to watch. Back to the hotel, and do it again tomorrow with a new park, new place to eat, and another fireworks show.

    For younger people, it is an expensive place. But if you have the money, it makes the whole thing more enjoyable, at least to me.

    I'm sure if I lived near there, Disney and Universal might lose some of it's appeal. I live 20 minutes from Six Flags, even if it wasn't as ghetto as it was, Disney has spoiled me and I haven't been there in years.
     
  15. TheDreamMaster The Night He Came Home...

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    As someone who went to Disney last year and is 23, Disney is fantastic even as an early 20's guy.

    I love Universal, but I agree, it can be done in a couple days. I love it, especially the Jurassic Park area (which really needs more stuff. Ride aside the visual look of it all is what I love). But between the two, UnS just wears itself out quickly, especially after a few days. Disney had me wanting to stay past the week we'd been there.
     
  16. danoyse Snikt. Stab. Repeat.

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    Both destinations are great. I usually stay at Disney since I get great discounts there, but since we wanted to see the Harry Potter stuff during our last trip, we stayed at the Hard Rock Hotel for the first few days of the trip, and it was great. Usually, Universal/Islands is a day-trip for me, but after that I totally got the appeal of staying at Universal.

    The best perk of staying on-site is being able to use your room key as an Express Pass. We were able to walk onto nearly every ride that way. We were also able to get into the Harry Potter section an hour earlier, and we got to ride the Forbidden Journey ride (which is incredible!) 9 times during our trip.

    I'm a thrill-ride junkie, so Universal definitely has more for me there as far as rides. I do miss the Back to the Future ride, though. But The Simpsons ride is pretty fun.

    But I had a really great time just on the Universal half of our trip, I'm a much bigger fan of the place now than I was on earlier trips.

    That being said, I'm also a Disney junkie, so I love Disney World. There's tons more to do there, and they're much better at customer relations. They have more in the way of shows and entertainment. We were there at Halloween, so we got to go to trick-or-treating at Mickey's Halloween Party at Magic Kingdom, which was awesome. And even though they don't have as many roller coasters, their rides are still pretty terrific.

    They definitely need to do something to the Hollywood Studios park, though. It's barely a half-day destination now, and the waits at the Toy Story ride are ridiculous. Basically, if you're not there as soon as the park opens, you're stuck on 90+ lines for the ride for the rest of the day. It's crazy. They need new rides and attractions there - some of it has been there since the park opened.

    But I do love both places. On my last trip I was having so much fun at Universal that I almost forgot we were going to Disney World, and then I was having so much fun at Disney World that I almost forgotten that we'd gone to Universal. That's an awesome vacation. :up:
     
  17. Maximum Carnage Tanned User

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    Agreed. That toy story line is insanity.
     
  18. POWdER-man Ancient but wise

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    I have been to Disney World four times (1996, 2006, 2010, 2012) and Universal Studios twice (1996, 2012).

    I enjoy both parks greatly for what they are and provide. Universal Studios certainly has the leg up on more thrilling rides (Rock-it, Hulk, Forbidden Journey, Dragon Challenge, etc), they also have much better water rides (Jurassic Park, Popeye, Dudley Do-Right's Ripshaw, etc) and the whole wizarding World of Harry Potter section is a dream come true for any HP fan from the wand ceremony (which my daughter got chosen) to drinking Butterbeer at the Three Broomsticks to simply walking through Hogsmeade. The downside to Universal is that it needs to be bigger, possibly adding some shows, and some updates to some rides. It needs to be more of an experience to go to than simply another Amusement park. After spending two days there we managed to ride every ride multiple times, while some we rode several times. I couldn't imagine spending any more than two days at Universal so I hope there is some more expansions.

    I do have to say I was blown away to see the difference of Universal from 1996 to 2012. There was only 1 ride left from when I was first there in 1996 and that was (can anyone guess?)[blackout]...ET.....[/blackout] I was sad to see some rides go like Back to the Future and Jaws but was thrilled to see all the new rides.

    As for Disney, there is no place that matches the experience you get from there. From the variety of restaurants, multiple live shows, variety and vast amouts of rides, all the characters, the parades,the fireworks , the iconic moments and places, etc. It all provides a moment to remember from the time you enter the gates until you find your bus to take you back to your hotel.

    I have two gripes with Disney though, the first being that there are very few thrilling rides and the ones they do have I have rode on them more times than I can count and in some cases very outdated. There is a huge need in adding rides that compete with Universal Studios.

    My second gripe would be the need to update certain areas and rides. I suppose that is what Disney is trying to do in keeping those older iconic rides so that people can relive their childhood moments, but I think it gets a time to update certain things for the sake of progress. When I was last there earlier this year, they had closed Toon Town and were updating and expanding that whole section which is good to see and I look forward to visiting it next time.

    While Universal Studios had changed greatly from 1996 to 2012, Hollywood Studios (formerly MGM) is so sadly outdated, and hasn't changed much in 16 years. Basically the same Indiana Jones show has been going on through that whole time, and the few "new" attractions such as Toy Story draw 2 hour long waits because it is only a newer ride, while shows like American Idol have no appeal to anyone who doesn't want to waste an hour listening to amateur singers trying to sing pop songs.

    Animal Kingdom is a great smaller park with Lion King being my favorite live show of all the parks, Mount Everest being the best coaster, and the River Rapids being the best water ride (besides the ones at the water parks). I think it needs to be expanded though.

    In conclusion I enjoy going to both and can spend two days at Universal, two days at Magic Kingdom, a day and half at Animal Kingdom, a day at Epcot, and 1/2 a day at Hollywood Studios. Anymore than that and it becomes stale and boring as too much of a good thing certainly applies here.
     
  19. Erzengel |-o-| (-o-) |-o-|

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    I think they try and release something new at one of the parks in Disney. Last year when I was there, you could see they were rebuilding part of Magic Kingdom.

     
  20. Art Damage Turtle Power

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    Yeah when I went a couple weeks ago, it did look fantastic with the overhaul. I hadn't heard of them retouching anything so it was a super awesome surprise when we went on it.

    They even updated the costumes and they all looked amazing. I love it that Universal hires actors that know the characters they're playing. Captain America was so cool.

    Harry Potter world on the other hand, was way too crowded. I didn't really care for...but everything else on Islands of Adventure is great.
     
  21. danoyse Snikt. Stab. Repeat.

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    From what I've read on a few theme parks boards (and take those with a grain of salt, obviously), between the Fantasyland expansion at Magic Kingdom, and all of the new editions to the Disney California Adventure park at Disneyland, there are no other park additions planned for awhile, so Hollywood Studios might not be getting an update for awhile, which is too bad, since the Studios desperately need it.

    There's so much they could do there too. Maybe finally bring in that Monsters Inc coaster that's been rumored forever, have some new stage shows - the Little Mermaid and Beauty & the Beast shows are more than 20 years old now. Even Fantasmic (my favorite live show at WDW) could do with an upgrade, since a big part of the show is centered around Pocohantas. Upgrade to include Tangled, or Brave.

    The situation with Marvel is tricky, since Universal has the characters...but why not open an Incredibles ride?

    I would love if they brought over the Indiana Jones ride from Disneyland. That was my favorite ride when I went to Disneyland a few years ago. It's essentially the same thing as the Dinosaur ride in Animal Kingdom, but it's Indiana Jones-themed, so it's much better.

    Universal, on the other hand, could use more family-friendly thrill rides. I never realized this until I went with my friends who had 6-year-old twins. As much as they loved the kid rides at WDW, they loved all the Splash/Space/Big Thunder Mountain rides. They even went on Tower of Terror a few times.

    But at Universal, they were too small for any of the roller coasters...and the coasters they had were really baby-sized. They loved getting to see Shrek, and Spongebob, and Spidey...but they wanted to go on rides, like they did at Disney World, and there really wasn't a whole lot at Universal for them.
     
  22. POWdER-man Ancient but wise

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    Yeah as I mentioned above Toon Town was closed when we went in January and they were doing a large overhaul of the area and expanding. I heard about the other additions (which sounds great) but I believe the Dumbo ride is the same carousel one as they removed it when we were there.
     
  23. Erzengel |-o-| (-o-) |-o-|

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    Must have missed that.

    Another Disney Story

    The last time we were at Disney, we ate a place named Victoria and Albert which is located in the Grand Floridian.
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    I was hesitant about it because you had be formally dressed. Now formally dressed in the middle of the summer wasn't fun. And I didn't like the fact that we had to cut our day short in the park to have dinner here.

    But, I can't regret eating there.
    [​IMG]

    There is one server assigned to you.

    Your menu is personalized.
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    Children aren't invited, so it shows that Disney doesn't always make everything family friendly. They do give you youth programs to occupy your children while you are at dinner.

    You then have a 10 course meal and each serving was phenomenal.
    [​IMG]

    It was probably one of if not best meals, I've ever had. If you do have the money, obviously not a cheap place, I'd highly recommend eating here.

    Just another example of the experience of Disney.
     
  24. POWdER-man Ancient but wise

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    I could be wrong but Fantasmic was closed when we were there and was going to be for a couple of months while it was being renovated. I figured because of the length of the closure they were going to make some serious changes to it (which I hope as well). I enjoy the show and would rate it just behind the Lion King as my favorite show, but I agree that they need to make an upgrade.

    I like your other suggestions and would be back in Florida in a heart beat if they would make them.

    Sadly you are probably right, we shouldn't expect any changes for at least a couple of years but they desperately need to do something.

    Fortunately my youngest was 8 at the time and could ride all the rides at Universal including Hulk and the Dragon challenge which I believe have the highest height requirements. The Hippogriff ride has nothing on the Dragon Challenge. :doh: I probably wouldn't bring a child there unless they were 48" tall, as that will enable them to ride everything except the Hulk, Rockit, Dragon Challenge, and Doom ride but still allow them to ride some of the other coasters and rides including the Forbidden Journey.

    Of course 48" is the height limit for a child to be considered an adult instead of a child though for ticket prices. :whatever: My boy was 48" when he was 7...
     
  25. ComicChick I Work Too Much

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    i actually just won 2 tickets to here and won't be able to go :(
     

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