Disney Kills Iconic Dragon After Fire, Show Delayed Until 2024

Disneyland Park’s popular Fantasmic! special effects show is delayed until 2024 following an April incident where its Maleficent dragon animatronic caught on fire. The Snow White animatronic will not return when the show resumes next spring, though Fantasmic! will continue to prominently feature a battle between Mickey Mouse and the dragon, Theme Park Insider reports.

After the April 22 fire, which appears to have been caused by errant fuel leaking from the dragon animatronic and reportedly resulted in no injuries, Fantasmic! was initially only meant to be closed through Labor Day. Disney officials have not elaborated on why its Disneyland closure was extended, but a version of the show is currently still running at Walt Disney World’s Hollywood Studios park; Kotaku reached out for comment.

What is the Fantasmic! show?

An “incredible nighttime show,” as Disneyland puts it on its website, Fantasmic! opened in 1992 in a burst of light, fireworks, and adults singing musical theater on a riverboat. In it, Mickey has an elaborate and incredible dream featuring “memorable scenes from Disney classics,” Disneyland says, until Maleficent pulls him into a nightmare with “enhanced special effects, state-of-the-art projections, and superb pyrotechnics.”

Of course, these superb pyrotechnics are precisely what turned decades of delighted screams into astonished silence in April as Maleficent became a 45-foot tall flaming effigy of U.S. gluttony. Enhanced special effects, state-of-the-art projections, and pyrotechnics? Come on, pick one.

Despite the fire’s appearing to melt off all of the dragon’s plasticine skin, shutting down a wide swathe of Disneyland park, and allegedly collapsing an entire stage area, some Disney fans are angry that the 27-minute show won’t be returning as soon as they thought it would.

“Well, this certainly is going to put a damper on my winter SoCal trip,” said one disgruntled Theme Park Insider commenter. “Do I even bother with Disney for a third day?”

“What we had: Maleficent robot balloon. What I’m hoping for: Maleficent made of drones,” said another commenter.

Disneyland has so far only made vague statements about wanting to deliver “the best possible show for our guests,” and, aside from its 2024 return date, the future of Fantasmic! is uncertain. If I may offer an idea, I’m imagining it offers fewer opportunities for mass evacuation.


Twitch Streamer Kills Halo Enemies With Her Mind

Earlier this year, Twitch streamer and psychology researcher Perrikaryal used her electroencephalogram (EEG) device (which records the brain’s electrical activity, but also has telekinetic research history) to beat Elden Ring, “using [her] mind for everything but movement.” Now she’s taking things even further, gunning down opponents in Halo multiplayer without touching a controller at all.

“Killed ‘em without even lifting a finger,” Perrikaryal, who goes by Perri online, responded to a video clip esports reporter Jake Lucky posted to Twitter.

Though Perri’s whole set up—the black nodes strapped to her skull that evaluate her brain activity and let her shoot, the way she nods her head to move, and uses her eyes, through an eye-tracker, to aim—might seem to you like a swathe of inconceivable, Gattaca (1997) nonsense, it’s really the child of all-natural trial-and-error.

“There are still always comments about how this must be fake, but that just serves to show me how exciting and innovative this actually is,” Perri told me over email. But “there is still so much to improve and add. I still don’t have a full controller working—only four working [data] visualizations, which means four working button keybinds. I can only really, in practice, have two-to-three of those running at any one time; otherwise the EEG gets confused.”

Read More: Twitch Streamer Plays Elden Ring Using Only Her Brain

It’s all in the name of her ultimate goal, “to make the hands-free controller all-encompassing (all buttons and triggers accessible) and easier than a regular controller […] so that anyone can use it for a comparable gaming experience,” she tells me. In pursuit of this, she’s making things more complicated by streaming Minecraft, or, as she affectionately calls it, “MINDcraft,” on September 12.

“A game like Minecraft is going to be an insane challenge because of all the menus that are required to navigate,” she said. It’s a good thing, then, that Perri has big brain ambitions. In addition to calibrating her existing inputs like eye and head movements, she’s also working with a “few labs and research groups […] experimenting with biosignals,” like blood pressure and heart rate, “and EEG in order to integrate all of this into VR and a more immersive gaming experience.”

“Playing Elden Ring […] served as a great practice ground for trialing out different visualizations and figuring out what worked for me,” Perri said. “I’m not afraid of scrapping a visualization I spent hundreds of hours training for […] because I know now that that’s just a part of the process, and an important part of getting stronger as a mind-control gamer.”


New Starfield Patch Kills Mud Puddle And Credit Exploits

Today, we mourn the loss of something great. A quiet little spot in the middle of a big galaxy. A puddle that simply wanted to help you and was always there, ready to provide. And now, following Bethesda’s latest Starfield patch, it’s gone. Gone, but not forgotten.

Shortly after the release of Bethesda’s massive space RPG Starfield, players discovered an exploit that had appeared in previous games developed by the studio was alive and well in this newest one. In Akila City, in the middle of a dirt road, was a small puddle of mud. And if you got close to this puddle, and gave it a moment of your time, it would provide you with the entire inventory of a nearby shop thanks to a “merchant chest” that was buried underground there…but not buried deeply enough.

This small, humble puddle provided many players, myself included, with stacks of free-to-grab ammo, credits, and other valuable items that could then be resold to other vendors or hoarded for later use. After a few days, the puddle would refill its items, never stopping you from getting what you needed. A hero unlike any other.

And now it’s dead. Bethesda killed it in Starfield’s 1.7.33 patch. Also dead after that patch: another popular money-making exploit that relied on a similarly easy-to-reach merchant chest. A dark day for us all.

Bagpipe Master

I’ll never forget that magic mud puddle. It provided me with so many guns that I sold to a nearby vendor for extra credits. Countless aliens and pirates across hundreds of planets lay dead and rotting thanks to the ammo provided by that once-glorious magic mud puddle. I made a habit of always visiting the puddle to grab some gifts and say hello to it whenever in Akila City. It was nice. In a universe so cold and filled with death, the puddle—my puddle—stood out. A constant. A beacon of hope. Something everybody could rely on, no matter what.

Now I fear what I’ll find the next time I land on that dirtball. Instead of some mud-covered hope buried in a friendly puddle, I’ll find the empty corpse of a friend, of someone who never let me down, murdered by a software update. Rest in peace, Magic Puddle. You were too good to last forever in such a cruel world.

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