Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance – What You Need to Know Before You Go

Earlier this month I had the opportunity to visit Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Orlando, Florida, to preview the new attraction, Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance. Now I’m bringing Resourceful Mommy readers everything they need to know before they go.

Where is Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance?

Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance is currently open at Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World in Florida. The grand opening of Rise of the Resistance at Disneyland Park in California is scheduled for January 17, 2020.

What Type of Ride is Rise of the Resistance?

The short answer? A ride like none other. When I attended the opening of Seven Dwarfs Mine Train in Magic Kingdom, I thought that the Disney Imagineers had taken ride innovation to an unmatchable next level. Then I experienced Avatar: Flight of Passage and was completely blown away. That was it – it could not get any better in my mind. I could not have been more wrong.

Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance takes theme park attractions to an entirely new galaxy – literally. This ride is fully immersive from the moment you enter Galaxy’s Edge, the Star Wars section of Disney’s Hollywood Studios. The cast members that greet you as you make your way to the ride are in character, welcoming you to Batuu. The “queue” that leads you to the ride itself is so completely immersive that I honestly did not know when the ride began. Distinct moments: queue, preshow, ride – they blend so perfectly that they are indistinguishable. Every moment – from when you step through the turnstile to when you exit the ride – is part of the experience of Rise of the Resistance. There is not a single moment of your time wasted.

Technologically, I have never experienced a ride such as this. Walt Disney Imagineers have created new, trackless technology. The floor of the ride appears to be polished concrete, like any warehouse floor. There are no distracting steel bars or sensors, no watery channel to guide your ride vehicle. You move through the ride smoothly, seemingly randomly, but clearly perfectly programmed so that you’re facing exactly the right way at exactly the right moment. Because of the audio-animatronics, thousands of special effects, and brief simulator experience, you truly feel as though you are experiencing the story that is happening around you. And speaking of story line…

What is the Rise of the Resistance Story Line?

Guests board an I-TS spacecraft and blast into space alongside Poe Dameron and his X-wing straighter. But before they can make the jump to lightspeed, the spacecraft is caught in a Star Destroyer tractor beam and pulled into a First Order hangar bay.

It is here that you will encounter a squadron of Stormtroopers. But there’s no time to panic (and not to worry…they always miss). You’ll be quickly rushed away by members of the First Order who are, if I do say so myself, quite cranky. It’s up to you and your fellow captured Resistance rebels to make your escape via a commandeered First Order Fleet Transport with the help of an R5-series astromech droid. Can you survive being hunted down by Kylo Ren himself as you try to get away?

Is Rise of the Resistance for Young Children?

AT-ATStar Wars: Rise of the Resistance is for guests 40″ or taller. This height requirement means that most elementary school aged children and even some preschoolers will make the cut and be able to ride Rise of the Resistance.

Things to consider when deciding if Rise is right for your little ones:

  • There is one sharp drop akin to the brief drops in Tower of Terror.
  • The special effects are incredibly realistic. If your child is afraid of “bad guy” characters, this may be a pass for your kiddo.
  • Cast members are brilliantly in character throughout the entire experience. Be sure to prepare your child for snippy First Order members. Bring them into the game and into the fun!

My children are both teenagers now, but my younger child has never been a fan of thrill rides. With that said, I would have encouraged him at even a much younger age to ride Rise of the Resistance. The experience is simply too incredible to miss.

How Can I Get to Ride Rise of the Resistance?

There is currently no Fastpass option for Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance. Thankfully, there are also no six hour lines to wait in. In order to ride Rise of the Resistance, follow these steps:

  • A Disney Hollywood Studios park ticket valid for that day is required to visit Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.
  • Download the My Disney Experience app before heading to the park. (Not using a smartphone during your day at the park? Visit a Guest Experience Team kiosk once you arrive.)
  • Arrive to the park EARLY. Do not plan to arrive at rope drop. Get there as early as the members of your party are willing to arrive.
  • Once you are inside the park, join a Boarding Group in the My Disney Experience app. This will place you in a virtual queue. You are now free to enjoy the rest of the park while you wait for your Boarding Group time slot to begin.
  • When your Boarding Group time slot arrives, you have two hours to make your way to Rise of the Resistance to enter.

There is no guarantee that you will be able to join a Boarding Group simply because you have a ticket to the park for that day. Once you are in a Boarding Group, there is no guarantee that you will make it on to the ride due to capacity issues or technical problems. You can learn more at the Disney Parks site.

Is It Worth It?

YES. Yes, yes, yes. The first time I took my children – aged two and four at the time – to Walt Disney World, I set a crazy early alarm and called the Disney Dining number repeatedly until I got through. As soon as the Cast Member said hello, God bless them, I yelled into the phone, “CINDY’S TABLE, PARTY OF SIX.”

These are the crazy things that we do to experience the magic.

Just do it. Trust me. It’s worth it.

Do I Need to Be a Star Wars Fan to Enjoy Rise of the Resistance?

First of all, are there really people who aren’t Star Wars fans? My first recommendation would be to rethink that state of being! But the answer to the question is that no, you do not need to be a Star Wars fan in order to enjoy Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance. If you know the storylines, if you have ever had a conversation about how to pronounce AT-AT, if you’ve got a crush on Kylo Ren (rawr), the ride will absolutely blow your mind. If none of that describes you, you will still be in awe of what the Disney Imagineering team has created in their amazing and infinite wisdom and creativity.

Star Wars Giveaway

Experience Rise of the Resistance with Resourceful Mommy!

All opinions are my own. This post and giveaway are not sponsored in any way by Disney Parks. My trip to experience Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance was provided by Disney Parks as part of the Rise of the Resistance media event. No other compensation was provided.

Written by: Amy Lupold Bair

Leave a Reply

6 Comments

  • Denise M

    Ooh this was so helpful, thank you. We are going to WDW in January and I was wondering whether my 5 year old should ride. He is tall enough and a huge Star Wars fan. I hope the boarding groups calm down a little by then or I guess i will wait to ride is at Disneyland. I wonder what that is going to do to the entire Galaxys Edge crowds at DL.

  • Jason

    Great info for an amazing attraction. #RiseOfTheResistance

  • Tiffany Schmidt

    You made this sound like so much fun. I can’t wait to get to enjoy all the Star Wars fun with my family!

  • Wolfen M

    I heard that riders actually have to get out and battle the First Order. Is there really a sequence like this? This idea sparks panic in me — I’m not a fan of audience participation, am not the most mobile or coordinated person, and struggle with instructions (probably due to dyscalculia). Also, my mom is in a wheelchair — how accessible is the ride?

    • Amy Lupold Bair

      Great questions! The First Order is definitely present on this ride – and very much in character! But no need to battle. One woman riding with me burst out in laughter at them, I think as a nervous response to their very serious demeanors. I just avoided eye contact, much like I would if my high school principal walked by me today. 🙂

      The ride is definitely accessible for your mother. If you have any questions, just check in with a cast member, but I promise you will both enjoy it very much!

  • Amy l

    #RiseoftheResistance