I braved the potential crowds and the distinct possibility that it would be a waste of time because of not winning the #RiseOfTheResistance #BoardingGroup #Lottery, but I had to experience it for myself. I hoped that Disney would open Mickey and Friends Parking Structure early, but was not so. At 5:55 am, when I arrived there, it was still closed, so I continued to the Toy Story Parking lot, that Disney had announced would open at Midnight. After parking and getting through the new security that is at the parking lot, I arrived at the esplanade at about 6:40 am. Disney had started letting the early risers in at 5:50, so by the time I arrived the esplanade was empty, and I was able to enter the gates with absolutely no wait---YEAH!!! I met up with a couple friends, we settled ourselves inside the Opera House for warmth but then moved out front of the opera house around 7:45 to await the opening of the Boarding Groups (BG). Right at 8 they opened up and the cheers and expressions of frustration started. I was lucky enough to get 43, while one friend (our passes aren't linked) got backup 115 and another 125. It is truly a lottery, and the speed of your internet, the lack of a phone "issue" and your quick fingers is what determines what boarding group you get, if any.
It took about an hour for the ride to open, and when it did BG 12 was the first. It closed again 50 minutes later for another hour. My boarding group was called at 12:23, and I was given 3 hours in which to report. I waited about 15 minutes in the queue to arrive at the "Briefing Room" then boarded the Transport. Upon exiting the Transport, we arrive in the hanger of a Star Destroyer and the then the experience continues. NO SPOILERS HERE. It truly is better to experience it the first time without any spoilers.
Rise of the Resistance is not a thrill ride, so if that's what you're hoping for, you'll be disappointed. What it is is an incredibly immersive, story-telling experience. It's a dark ride on steroids.
I was able to experience it again the second day of operation, and I have to say I enjoyed it even more the second time. There's so much to see that the first time it can be somewhat overwhelming. I also think I will enjoy it even more the more I go on it. I can't wait to do it again.
I documented much of my experience, without spoilers, in this video
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