guardians of the galaxy mission breakout

The Ride

But what you’re probably most curious about is the ride itself. How does it differ from the original Tower of Terror drop? This time there are six different experiences, each with its own soundtrack and show scenes. Unfortunately, none of the songs from the Guardians of the Galaxy movies are used on the ride, I’m not sure if it was a licensing issue or what, but the Imagineers claim they picked rock songs that better fit what they were able to choreograph with the ride movement. I’m not sure I buy that, as I can think of a handful of songs from the soundtracks that would probably work just as well.

The ride features a bunch of new effects. As the gantry lift pushes back from the doors, we see a shadow projection of Rocket putting his plan into motion. The ride vehicle rockets up really fast and the doors open to reveal a practical scene featuring the power core of the building, which Rocket needs to shut down in order to break the Guardians out. But when that happens, power to the whole building goes out and the gantry plummets. It ascends again and the gantry doors open to reveal a first show scene (which was directed by James Gunn), which is displayed on a screen. We go up and down to the music and are then treated to another show scene directed by Gunn, before rising to the top of the tower, where we are given a view of the outside world (Disney California Adventure and Disneyland). This part of the ride barely makes any sense in the construct of the story, but I guess the Imagineers didn’t want to get rid of that WOW moment. The ride plummets again, and we get a final show scene, which is the same in all of the configurations, featuring Mantis rescuing the gang. The ride goes up for one final drop.

I was only able to ride one of the six experiences during the press day, which was set to the song “Hit Me With Your Best Shot.” But I rode that experience three separate times, and each time it was a lot of fun. I would expect the randomness of the six different experiences would add to the re-rideability of this attraction.

So, what did I think? Is it better than Tower of Terror? Honestly, it’s no better or worse than Tower of Terror – it’s a very different experience. It’s not as scary. The tension of the original attraction is cut by the fun of the music and show scenes. The show scenes themselves are funny, and I heard many people laughing out loud and the ride feels longer, with more ascensions and descensions than the original attraction. It might also be worth mentioning that the ride may be more tolerable for those who suffer from motion sickness. My girlfriend, who usually had trouble on Tower of Terror, said that the breaks provided by the show scenes made it a much more tolerable experience for her.

Exit Through the Gift Shop

Part of the storyline is that Rocket needed to cut power to the building to break out his friends. As you leave the ride, you hear many of the other creatures and beings who were trapped in the Tivan collection also escaping. The attraction exit leads to the gift shop, which features the Collector’s helpers selling off the remaining bits from his collection. In theory, this is cool, but it’s mostly a shop filled with generic Guardians of the Galaxy merchandise. Some of the cooler items include Howard the Duck and Cosmo the Space Dog plushes, which come encased in their own Collector cases, and some “Terran artifacts” from Starlord’s childhood. I wish this gift shop would embrace this kind of thing more and not just become a generic outlet for Marvel merchandise.

Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT!

My Overall Thoughts

Fans of the Marvel films will have a blast exploring Tivan’s collection, unearthing Easter eggs and decoding hidden alien messages. The Rocket Raccoon audio-animatronic figure is worth the wait alone. The fact that the collection will change, update, and evolve over the years will give regulars a reason to return to the ride for years to come. The Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT! ride is a lot of fun, and surprisingly funny. While it’s not as tense or scary as the original Tower of Terror ride, it provides more drops than the initial attraction.

I wish they had chosen some better songs from the movies, but not having ridden all of the available experiences, it’s hard for me to judge the music selection yet. I also wish they had done more work to the boiler room space, and while I’m still not loving the look of the exterior building, it looks cool at night. I’m sure it will be a better fit once they evolve the surrounding area into Marvel Land.

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About the Author

Peter Sciretta is a film geek and popcultured fanboy living in Los Angeles. He created /Film in 2005.