Thursday, May 23, 2013

First Look: A Pirates Adventure - Treasure of the Seven Seas

Well, for those of you keeping score...I had an absolutely wonderful trip down to Walt Disney World about a week and a half ago!  I got to do a lot of new things, as well as some old favorites!  (Thanks to those who followed along on Facebook and Twitter!)

One of the new options that I got to experience was the new A Pirates Adventure - Treasure of the Seven Seas.  This new side attraction takes place in Adventureland at the Magic Kingdom.  It has been in testing for a short couple of weeks, but when I tried it out, it looked as though it was the first or second real day of official testing.  They had taken the tarps down that had previously been covering the sign and a Cast Member was beckoning people to come inside.

Of course, being the Disney nerd that I am, and always looking for an opportunity to do something new, I wanted to go test it out.

So, Brian and I went inside.  The Cast Member directed us to one of the touch screens, where we told it how many there were in our party, then it directed us to pick up one of the five maps.  You are then told to find a specific mark on the map and that will be your starting point.

For us, we were following The King's Random map and our mark was the key.

Here is where things get a bit tricky.  I'm not sure if the Cast Member didn't do the whole spiel with us because we were excited and almost walked off without figuring out our starting point our what, (he did eventually stop us and show us we had missed a step on the computer screen) but when  looking at the map, I had a hard time deciphering where it was that we were supposed to go.  The first clue looked as though it was leading us into the gift shop at the end of Pirates, but I really wasn't sure.  After staring at the map for a good few minutes, I felt like that was where we needed to head.

The problem with this is that I am a very large Disney fanatic and had some trouble deciphering the map.  Obviously, this game will be played by those who are not so fanatical and will not know every nook and cranny of Adventureland.  What happens when they try to figure out where the map is sending them and they have trouble?  I'm sure they could just go back to the Cast Member for better directions, but I would think that the Map would want to spell out your points a little bit clearer.  (I felt that the rest of the locations were spelled out a little better, I had less trouble once I figured out the first one, but I can see where those who don't know the parks well could have a little trouble.)

 Once we got started, we put the talisman on the mark found on the object we were looking for (which was pictured on the map)  There are very good drawings of what the objects you are specifically looking for featured in the map.  A short little "show" was put on, telling us what the next mark would be.

Our second clue took us all the way over to the other side of Pirates.  Our third clue was very close to the second one.  However, when it came time for the fourth clue...I almost gave up.  It was a bajillion degrees outside and the clue was sending me back into the busy Pirates gift shop.  A busy land and hot do not mix well. At this point, I kind just wanted to finish, just to finish.  I then got the fifth clue...TAKING US ALL THE WAY BACK TO THE CLUE WE'D JUST BEEN AT!  This was not like it was an easy walk around the corner.  I was really frustrated at this point and actually just glad it was finally over.

It ended with a cute little finale and then directing you back to Headquarters to pick up your next map for your next raid.  

 I don't want you to think that this is a bad game though.  I know it is still in a testing phase and that things are still being ironed out.  I would hope that one of the things they iron out is that they take out the crisscrossing of the land as much.  This area of Adventureland is busy enough already with everyone wanting to ride Pirates, watching the Pirate Tutorial, trying to dine at Tortuga Tavern, and the already popular Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom game.  Now add another game element to this section of the park and you have one REALLY busy area.  That makes it harder to make your way through the crowds to find what you need.  If they made it so that you had to do less crisscrossing, I think that it would be a bit more manageable.

With that, my biggest suggestion would be to play this game during the very late afternoon/early evening.  That way, the heat of the day isn't such a big deal and hopefully the crowds will be lessened.

It is a great distraction for the park, though.  Trust me, your kids are going to have a blast playing it.  And it will take you throughout different areas you've maybe never explored in Adventureland, which is always a good thing. 

More details:  The game is set up as 5 different raids, each expected to take about 20 minutes to complete.  Once you have completed all five missions you become full fledged pirates under Captain Jack Sparrow.

Edit:  The game is now open! 

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