Walt Disney World in Orlando has opened the brand new Tron Lightcycle Run at Magic Kingdom and now the question is whether or not it is worth the wait.
After a month of cast member and annual passholder preview runs and first looks, every guest can now ride the hottest new roller coaster at Magic Kingdom — if you can get snag a spot. Tron uses the Disney parks Virtual Queue via the Disney phone app or you can buy a Lightning Lane pass early in the day to try and get on the ride.
Tron is a fast ride and the first of its kind at any of the U.S.-based Disney Parks. You board a Lightcycle — a motorcycle-like vehicle — and are propelled through the ride as if you are riding it. You are hunched over the front of the cycle body. Your posture during the ride sort of resembles the one in the image below, only your hands are more out in front and your head is more up.
The wait for the ride through the Virtual Queue can last up to about an hour, which isn't really all that different from most Disney rides that use a queue system. It took my group 45 minutes to get inside the building from the outside waiting area, and then another 15 to 20 minutes to get onto the actual ride.
The ride is only 110 seconds long and that timer begins when you are on the lightcycle and set up for the start of the ride. It ends with you getting off the lightcycle. That brings the ride length to well under two minutes. Disney claims the ride is two minutes long, it might be if you include the time it takes you to climb onto the cycle and get situated.
For me, it was a very short ride with more of a 15-second thrill followed by nothing special. The first 15 seconds are incredible. Imagine Rock 'n' Roller Coaster's take off but face first. It was indeed thrilling. The bad part is that once you enter the building, it all becomes more or less, a "been there and done that" type of coaster. There is nothing new or exciting.
This is where I think the Imagineers missed the mark. They could have made this feel more like a Lightcycle Race out of the movie. Though that technically is the theme, you don't really feel it.
It also becomes hard to look up as you are riding, and I found my neck starting to hurt a bit from trying to look forward.
I spoke with several people from other groups after the ride was over and while all of them thought it was a lot of fun, only 4 out of the 10 that I spoke with said they would definitely wait to ride it again. The others all said it would depend on the wait time.
All 10 of them believed that while it was fun at the beginning, the interest faded once inside the building. But they still thought the speed made up for the lack of length. I would agree with that to some degree; this is a fast roller coaster, especially at the start.
Would I ride it again? I would if the wait time wasn't huge like those I spoke with. The hour mark may be the cut-off point for me. If I had planned on buying a Lightning Pass there is no doubt this would be on my list of rides that I would prioritize because it is fun but this is going to be one of those rides that leave a lot of people disappointed when the virtual queue eventually go away and stand-by times exceed 90 minutes.
Personally, I would recommend riding it now if you can get one of the virtual queues as the ride itself is quite unique in style but if I am being 100% honest, I had much more fun riding the new attraction at EPCOT, Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind.
I would give Tron: Light Cycle Run three and a half stars out of five only because the time is so short. But during the time you are actually on the ride, it's an easy 4.5.