Avengers Campus: 5 Can't-Miss Things To Do At Disneyland's Marvel Expansion
We visited Avengers Campus at Disney California Adventure. Here are the experiences you absolutely cannot miss.
After almost a year of delays, Avengers Campus at the Disney California Adventure theme park is open. Originally, the new Disneyland Resort expansion was set to open last July. However, the COVID-19 pandemic threw those plans out the window. Now the Marvel-themed land is here and there are plenty for fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe to sink their teeth into, from a surprising number of character meet-and-greet opportunities to a pair of rides--including the existing Guardians of the Galaxy: Mission Breakout--and a buffet of in-universe food to taste.
After sampling the completed land, GameSpot has the five things you need to make sure you don't miss during your first trip to Galaxy's Edge. The land is packed with so much to do, tackling everything--along with the rest Disneyland has to offer--is no easy task. However, this is essentially your Marvel cheat sheet to the experiences you don't want to miss when you set foot on campus.
Avengers Campus is open now at Disneyland Resort's Disney California Adventure.
1. WEB Slingers: A Spider-Man Adventure
Obviously, you can't miss the centerpiece of the entire land. WEB Slingers is the only new ride in Avengers Campus that will be open with the debut of the land. In it, Tom Holland reprises his role as Peter Parker/Spider-Man, introducing the Worldwide Engineering Brigade (WEB), a group of young scientists and inventors developing the technology of the future. One of Peter's inventions goes a little haywire and guests have to step in to save the day.
If you've ridden Disney's Toy Story: Midway Mania ride, then you'll have some idea what this is like. You sit in a large vehicle that takes you through a series of rooms, where the action plays out on screens that you shoot at. In this case, you’re slinging virtual webs at an army of invading spider robots to save Avengers Campus from total destruction.
What makes WEB Slingers stand out is that, unlike Midway Mania or any other similar ride, there is no blaster gun or slingshot you're using to fire at the screen. Instead, the ride is equipped with motion trackers that precisely follow your movements, shooting webs at anything you wave your arms at. It might be a bit of a cardio workout depending on how intense you get on the ride, but it's a new and fun experience in a Disney attraction. It also helps that the ride is loaded with Easter eggs from throughout the Marvel universe (and the Disney universe, as well). The ride is also equipped with scoreboards, so you can see how your team stacked up against others on campus.
2. The Ancient Sanctum
What Avengers Campus has over most areas in Disney's parks--including Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge--is an abundance of in-land entertainment. One of the more notable experiences is a magic show hosted by Doctor Strange. None of the magic will blow adults away, but it’s a very entertaining outing with a Marvel-centric storyline. As his tricks go on, you'll begin hearing the voice of Dormammu, be led in a chant to repel the evil being, and then send Doctor Strange off on his next adventure through a portal (which looks suspiciously like a massive screen with an animation playing on it).
3. Pym Test Kitchen
After a long day of avenging, you're going to need to eat and Pym Test Kitchen automatically ranks as one of the best and most interesting restaurants at California Adventure. While it's technically a quick-service eatery (you walk up to a counter to order your food), the aren't the kind you walk around with.
From pasta dishes with Impossible plant-based meatballs served in oversized ladles to massive chicken sandwiches with tiny buns, all of the food served at the Pym Test Kitchen is visually appealing, so expect to see lots of people posting photos of their lunch on Instagram. However, it's also all really tasty and well-themed. The storyline for the restaurant is that Hank Pym and the Ant-Man crew are using quantum technology to make some food gigantic and other food tiny. It leads to a unique dining experience you likely won’t forget. And if you want to add a bit of a kick to your meal, stop by the attached Pym Tasting Lab for an assortment of themed beer cocktails.
If food on the go is what you're looking for, Avengers Campus has that too. There are two shawarma carts in the land that nod to the post-credits scene from the first Avengers film--you can get either plant-based falafel or chicken, depending on your dietary restrictions.
4. Dora Milaje encounter
Another of the land's character experiences happens literally in the middle of the campus. Multiple times throughout the day, Black Panther's Okoye will lead a group of Dora Milaje soldiers through the crowds to host what plays out as a miniature training camp. They put their fighting style and weapons handling on display for those who gather around--and pose for photos, of course.
This up-close experience is one of the more unique at Avengers Campus. For one, this is the first time Okoye has appeared in the parks, though the Dora Milaje have appeared with Black Panther previously. What's more, this particular "show" isn't on a stage somewhere in the land. Putting it in the center of the campus makes it feel impromptu in a way the other experiences--including the Black Widow stunt show that we did not get to observe--don't.
5. A genuine flying Spider-Man
Everyone knows about this because the over the last year-and-a-half is pretty breathtaking. Yes, there is a flying Spider-Man experience in the land. The figure is what is referred to as a "stuntronic" and pulls off an impressive aerial maneuver above the WEB Slingers building.
That's just part of the experience, though. Prior to the web-slinging, you'll get to watch Spider-Man doing some acrobatics across the roof of WEB Slingers, showing off for those assembled below. Then, after the high-flying theatrics, Spidey emerges once more to come down to ground-level for a meet-and-greet with fans.