Located in the Windtraders shop in Pandora: The World of AVATAR at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, guests have the opportunity to be turned into an action figure in the AVATAR Maker experience.
This large kiosk towards the center of the shop is home to the service, offering two stations back-to-back.
The stations are intriguing and hard to miss, so expect to hear a lot of guests asking what this is every time you visit the store.
Several pre-made figures are on display around the space.
Nearby, accessories are sold for the figures. These items can be discounted (annual pass, cast member, etc.).
So, how does the process work? Well, you begin by going to the podium outside of the ACE AVATAR Maker kiosk inside of Windtraders. Once you make a reservation (provided they are available), you then get an RFID enabled card and proceed to paying for the service. The price point is $79.99 and no discounts are applicable, similar to the shoulder Banshee experience.
After you pay, just return to the podium when your reservation rolls around and the cast members will take it from there. After scanning, it does take some time for your AVATAR figure to be made, so you will have to return to Windtraders once again.
The process of scanning your face is simple, but the cast members make it a show experience, playing up story elements and the process as creating your own real-life AVATAR, rather than just an action figure. The scanning doesn’t take long at all and is over in seconds, but the process can take a few minutes between the cast member hamming it up and the guest choosing the body type, hair style, eye color, and facial stripe pattern for their AVATAR.
We recorded video of myself going through the entire process, from sign-up, to scanning, to receiving the figure with my face on it. You can watch the entire experience below:
As you can see in the video, the pick-up process is pretty neat and completes the process with a simple yet effective finale. Kids will be blown away by the tech involved in my estimation, but maybe quite a few parents as well. Figures are typically completed 45 minutes to an hour after you sit in the chair, but not could be longer depending on how busy it is on a given day.
The retrieval station in Windtraders draws a lot of attention even when it isn’t in use, so expect a lot of guests to be watching you play with this thing when you pick up your AVATAR.
The figure doesn’t really have much of your likeness honestly, just the basic shape of your face essentially. Otherwise, you are customizing the remainder of the figure. Since the AVATAR’s in the film also only have a facial resemblance to their host, I guess this makes sense.
The figures are of a good quality and come in a rather nice display tube.
We did have some issues in that the hair that came out was not what I picked, but I didn’t want to wait any longer to get it fixed so I decided not to complain about it. Otherwise, everything was as ordered.
Overall, the ACE AVATAR Maker isn’t the best souvenir available on Pandora, but it does offer quite the experience. I could see a younger guest finding the process fun and thinking that an action figure with their face on it is just about thew coolest thing ever. If the cast member is half as into it as the one that helped me through the process, then I think kids would have an experience that they would never forget and a nice souvenir to remember their time on Pandora. While I still think that adopting a Banshee is a somewhat cooler offering and toy, the AVATAR Maker is also quite unique and memorable, another positive evolution in Disney theme park merchandise.
Now when do I get to be a Star Wars action figure? I HAVE TO WAIT UNTIL 2019???