On June 19, 1998, DisneyQuest opened in the Downtown Disney area (now called Disney Springs) at the Walt Disney World resort in Florida. It was a virtual arcade that could be experienced without Mother Nature being a deterrent. Guest could enjoy not only experiencing the process of designing their own CyberSpace Mountain virtual roller coaster but also find attractions that could only be found here. You could embark on a virtual Jungle Cruise, take flight on Aladdin’s Magic Carpet ride, be a part of the Mighty Ducks Pinball Slam, and be immersed in a Pirates of the Caribbean-themed adventure. They also had classic video games like Pac-Man and Donkey Kong. This gigantic, interactive gaming center was a showcase for state-of-the-art video games.
A marvel in 1998 that raised the bar and delighted everyone, DisneyQuest had one flaw that they did not foresee. Unlike a ride at any of the parks that creates that wow factor or that ‘must do’ that can go on forever with a refurbishment every once in awhile, DisneyQuest froze in 1998. As technology moves forward, DisneyQuest unfortunately did not undergo any major updates in an effort to keep up with the times; this was many guests biggest complaints.
So what will happen to everything in this five story building? Steve Ruffman, general manager of Disney Springs’ West Side and Landing neighborhoods, explains, “DisneyQuest assets will be sent in several directions, including resort arcades or charitable organizations. Some parts will be shipped to the archives of Walt Disney Imagineering. Cast members are bidding online for more than 100 of the games.”
The building will be completely demolished. Two years ago, Disney Parks Blog announced a replacement that has gotten very mixed reviews from guests, The NBA Experience. This is being described as featuring hands-on activities that put families and guests of all ages right in the middle of NBA game action. It will also have a restaurant and a retail store. While DisneyQuest was a missed opportunity, let’s hope the next chapter provides more fun and thrills for guests that head to the west side of Disney Springs!
Have any Coaster Addicts been to Disney Quest? Share your thoughts.