Universal Orlando’s new Despicable Me: Minion Mayhem ride opened to all regular park guests yesterday. This new attraction inside Universal Studios is sure to make you smile. Let’s take a look:
The ride is in soft openings, also known as technical rehearsals. This means it’s not officially open yet, as they’re still testing everything out with guests. This also means the ride may not be open every day until the grand opening (not yet unannounced).
Here’s a video showing the queue, pre-shows, post-show and gift shop. We didn’t record the whole pre show (We don’t want to spoil it all), but the video gives you a good idea of what to expect. Recording is not allowed during the ride.
As it was the first day open, and a Saturday night, and the first night of Universal’s Summer Concert Series, the wait was 90 minutes. The queue area has multiple screens showing some information about what you’re about to do – become a Minion – and Despicable Me trivia. The video is on about a 15 minute loop, so depending on the wait, you may see it a few times. Notice the bombs hanging above guests’ heads. Those are the actually speakers. There are also multiple fans in this area.
Once you’re past the outdoor queue, you enter here to get your glasses and watch the first of two pre-shows. The 3D glasses look the same as the new glasses guests use at the Spider-Man ride in Islands of Adventure.
This is the second pre-show room you’ll enter. Here Gru, his daughters and the minions will prepare the audience to be turned into Minions. Part of the plot of the ride is also set up here as Gru’s daughters are trying to give him a present for the one-year anniversary of his adopting them. A couple of gags will also be played on the guests here. One can partially be seen in our video. The screens here are very sharp. They look great. So great in fact …
Next you move into the main ride simulator room. The simulators are the same that were used previously in the Hanna-Barbera and Jimmy Neutron rides. There isn’t much themeing in this room, just metallic-looking walls. Unlike the previous attractions in this space, Despicable Me doesn’t take you on a always forward motion race. You’ll be going all around Gru’s lab as you’re turned into a Minion, then run through a series of Minion tests before branching off to help the girls get their present to their dad.
After the ride is over, you’re led into the post-show area where a dance party has already started. Unfortunately, if you’re not into dancing, there’s not much to do here except watch. But there are some neat effects on a big screen, which shows the dance party mixed with some Minions dancing on-screen.
Be sure to purchase a copy of the Summer 2012 issue of Orlando Attractions Magazine to read more about the new ride plus Universal’s new parade and nighttime lagoon show, which each feature Despicable Me. The issue is available now through our iPhone and iPad apps, in print Here and in major U.S. book stores soon.