Welcome to this month’s Blogorail Black Loop. Today we are sharing some the best attraction ride vehicles at Disney.
Even from the very first sketches of plans for Disneyland, Walt Disney always wanted to include a haunted house attraction in his park. Unlike haunted houses at other amusement parks, Walt’s haunted house would have a lighter, friendlier, comedic feel to the attraction. He originally planned to make his haunted house a walk-through attraction. Guests would stroll through at their own pace, taking in the sights and sounds of Walt’s haunted house. After further research, this walk-through attraction posed a few problems; How would the imagineers ensure a high enough capacity to allow each guest a chance to experience the attraction? How you the direct the guests’ attention to certain the elements of the attraction?
In their search for an efficient way to guide guests through Disneyland’s Haunted Mansion attraction, the imagineers turned to a ride system which had previously proven itself on Adventure Through Space – the omnimover. This type of attraction vehicle consisted of a continuous chain of ride vehicles which would move throughout the attraction as one unit. The individual vehicles would be able to turn in any direction. The Haunted Mansion’s onmimover vehicles, affectionately called Doom Buggies, are the perfect ride vehicle for directing guests’ attention throughout the attraction and enhancing the eeriness of the Haunted Mansion.
A walk-through attraction would not be able to ensure a set length of time each guest would visit Disneyland’s Haunted Mansion. The imagineers brainstormed several ideas to combat the capacity issue; At one point, they even considered building two Haunted Mansion attractions in order to double the number of guests who could experience the attraction at one time. Ultimately, the imagineers found the perfect solution to increasing guest capacity for the Haunted Mansion in the onmimover ride vehicles. In addition to 999 Happy Haunts, Disneyland’s Haunted Mansion is home to 131 Doom Buggies. Each Doom Buggy can hold 2 – 3 guests, allowing for an hourly capacity of 2,000 – 2,400 guests, a much higher number than a walk-through attraction would have allowed.
The usage of Doom Buggies didn’t just solve the capacity issue; These ride vehicles also allowed the imagineers the ability to tell guests exactly where to look and which show elements to focus on throughout the attraction. By turning in a variety of directions, the Doom Buggies are able to direct guests’ attention to the endless corridor, to the ghost just dying to escape from his coffin, and to Madame Leota in the seance room. In the graveyard scene, where there is so much taking place it’s hard to take it all in, the Doom Buggies turn to direct guests’ attention to the ghostly band, as well as, to the singing busts. The ride vehicles are also an essential part of ensuring guests direct their attention to the famous Hitchhiking Ghosts scene at the end of the Haunted Mansion.
The on-board sound system is another capability which makes the Doom Buggies one of the best ride vehicles in Disney parks. Because each Doom Buggy has it’s own set of speakers, the Ghost Host is able to travel throughout the Haunted Mansion with you. In fact, you may feel as if he is riding in the Doom Buggy with you! As you climb aboard, the Ghost Host will lower the safety bar for you. Then he will proceed to give you a personal guided tour throughout the rooms and corridors of the Haunted Mansion. For many guests, the Ghost Host is as beloved a character as Madame Leota or the Hitchhiking Ghosts.
The Perfect Ride Vehicle
The imagineers were able to overcome the obstacles of capacity, directing guests’ attention, and providing a tour guide for the attraction all with the use of the perfect omnimover ride vehicle, the Doom Buggy. While Walt’s Haunted Mansion has evolved quite a bit from those first sketches, it has also become a family favorite for guests of Disney parks around the world. In fact, each Disney resort around the world is home to a Haunted Mansion style attraction.
check out the other great posts from the Blogorail!
Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail Black | Best Attraction Ride Vehicles Loop:
- 1st Stop – Frontierland Station | Haunted Mansion Doom Buggies
- 2nd Stop – What’s the Point? | Space Mountain Rocket Trains
- 3rd Stop – Mousekatools Mom | Autopia Cars
- 4th Stop – Adventureland Pam | Jungle Cruise Boats
- 5th Stop – Disney Nouns | PeopleMover