Sunday, March 28, 2010

Backstories: StormRider

The StormRider attraction at Port Discovery in Tokyo DisneySea is an amazingly immersive simulator. This backstory comes from the Tokyo DisneySea Press Kit, as provided by the great Disney website I highly recommend their 'Tales From the Laughing Place' magazine.

StormRider Backstory

Located on a shore not yet known, in a time yet to be, Port Discovery is a vision of a unique tomorrow: a time when science and nature are in balance. It is the home of the Center for Weather Control where scientists from around the globe are gathered to probe the intricate workings of the earth's weather. They are engaged in intensive research and experimentation with one goal in mind: to control severe weather systems such as tornadoes, hurricanes and typhoons. To that end, they have designed and built a new type of flying weather laboratory known as StormRider. Aboard these airborne weather research stations, scientists arc able to locate, analyze and combat the planet's most devastating storms. To celebrate the success of StormRider and the arrival of a bold new scientific era, the Center is hosting a festival and open house. As part of the festivities, guests are invited to join a mission aboard StormRider for the flight of a lifetime.

Once inside the Center for Weather Control, guests learn that a major storm has developed and is rapidly approaching Port Discovery. They must quickly prepare to join the next flight, whose mission is to neutralize the storm before it makes landfall. To prepare for their flight, guests are introduced to the Storm Diffusion Device, or 'Fuse'. One of the most important inventions from the Center, the Fuse will be launched from StormRider into the eye of the storm and detonated to negate the destructive force of the winds - effectively to diffuse the storm.

Entering the hangar that houses the StormRider vehicles, guests board one of the two flying labs docked there. When the protective windshield cover is opened, guests can see that their vehicle is now hovering outside the hangar, awaiting clearance to take off. As they wait, guests are treated to a spectacular view of the waters of Port Discovery and the ocean beyond. They can see that the other vehicle is hovering ahead. Clearance is given and the flight is underway. The sensation of take-off is exciting, accentuated by the view out the windshield as a floating city quickly disappears beneath the vehicle.

Nearing the huge, dark storm, it is clear to see that this is not just any average weather disturbance — this is the storm of the century, the greatest challenge for the StormRider pilots, and possibly, the most deadly. Suddenly a lightning strike renders the other StormRider incapable of completing the mission and it must return to base. Although the StormRider with the guests aboard is ordered to return as well. the pilot, feeling that he is within striking distance of the storm, ignores the order and continues on. But when the Fuse doesn't operate as expected, the real thrill of StormRider begins with a while-knuckle race against time to make it back safely to Port Discovery.

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