It’s the dog days of August, and nothing screams summer more than theme parks, fried chicken, Star Wars, and ice cream… except for episode guest Mark Larson, but you’ll have to listen to the end for that story. In this special release of a patron-exclusive bonus episode from S5E11, Peih-Gee and David discuss their recent trips to Disneyland’s Galaxy’s Edge and Knott’s Berry Farm’s Ghost Town Alive. We’re joined by editor Steve Ewing and game designer Mark, who chats about his involvement with DASH: Different Area, Same Hunt, a global puzzle hunt. Mark also created the ridiculously fun Shop of Theseus game exclusively for RECON23. (Tickets are still available for this limited edition event.)
We start with fried chicken ice cream. Then Peih-Gee gives a short history of how Knott’s Berry Farm grew from a roadside stand selling berries and fried chicken dinners to a massive theme park. She also discusses Ghost Town Alive, Knott’s Berry Farm’s interactive Western-themed experience, and the gang regales you with the hilarious story of Peih-Gee’s unhinged rise to Mayor Law in Calico.
Mark Larson explains how DASH works, and we talk about some other approachable puzzle hunts. David raves about the ride Rise of the Resistance at Disneyland’s Galaxy’s Edge and talks about snagging some of the last tickets for the Galactic Starcruiser. He also discloses that his wife Lisa had never watched any of the Star Wars movies and breaks down her live reactions to watching them for the first time. We close out with a chat about the now-discontinued Battlestar Galactica board game.
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RECON Remote 23 will take place August 19 – 20, 2023, online.
RECON 24 will be in person.
Topics Discussed in this Episode
- [2:43] David tells us about a birthday gift he received, which is Not Fried Chicken Ice cream.
- [4:00] Peih-Gee wishes for ice cream with crunchy fried chicken skin bits… (and she finally got her wish!)
- [5:11] Peih-Gee talks about the history of Knott’s Berry Farm, a theme park in Southern California. She explains that it started off as a berry stand that also sold fried chicken dinners. It was so popular that the owners built attractions like a Ghost Town to keep all the diners entertained. Eventually it was purchased by Cedar Point and became the rollercoaster filled amusement park that it is today.
- [7:22] Peih-Gee and David talk about Ghost Town Alive, which is an open-world, immersive and interactive experience filled with actors, missions and an overarching storyline.
- [9:40] Peih-Gee shares more detail about the storyline at Ghost Town Alive and how the missions and gameplay work, including a track to help steal artifacts, as well as the track to becoming mayor.
- [13:09] Peih-Gee tells a story about running into a certain kooky possessed baron at Ghost Town Alive, and the hilarious bombshell he drops on her.
- [14:33] Peih-Gee and David describe her ruthless and unhinged rise to becoming Mayor of Ghost Town.
- [18:00] Peih-Gee talks about D.A.S.H., which stands for Different Area, Same Hunt, and is a global puzzle hunt that Mark helps organize.
- [19:01] Mark tells us a bit about how DASH works.
- [20:05] David and Mark share tips for playing DASH, such as making sure you have a teammate who is good at cryptic crosswords and ideal team size.
- [21:15] Mark talks about the difficulty level of DASH.
- [23:18] The group discusses other approachable puzzle hunts including Puzzled Pint, Colby’s Curious Cookoff, and Puzzle Snacks.
- [26:09] David talks about snagging some of the last few tickets to the Galactic Starcruiser.
- [26:45] He also mentions that Lisa had not seen any of the Star Wars movies, and walks us through her live reactions to watching the Star Wars franchise for the first time, including thoughts on C3PO, Princess Leia as a sex symbol, and Jar Jar Binks.
- [31:55] David and Peih-Gee wax nostalgic about watching the movies in the theaters for the first time.
- [37:21] David mentions that they’ll be releasing a short podcast miniseries about their experience on Disney’s Starcruiser. (In the meantime, read some quick reactions here.)
- [37:54] David shares his reaction to visiting Galaxy’s Edge in Disneyland and riding Rise of the Resistance for the first time.
- [41:29] David breaks down Rise of the Resistance and what made it such a great experience for fans of immersive entertainment.
- [44:51] Peih-Gee shares a pro tip for avoiding the long lines for the Smuggler’s Run ride at Disneyland.
- [45:24] Peih-Gee shares another hack for activating a secret mode on Smuggler’s Run.
- [47:45] Peih-Gee talks about some of the gamified aspects of Galaxy’s Edge, including some of the mini games and Easter eggs hidden at Galaxy’s Edge.
- [51:35] The discussion turns to the now discontinued Battlestar Galactica board game. David and Mark share some of their favorite memories from the game.
- [57:11] Mark tells us about the screaming good time he had on the Tower of Terror at Hollywood Studios, and Peih-Gee shares her story of a close call with her beer while riding The Guardians of the Galaxy tower drop ride at California Adventure.
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Resources Mentioned in this Episode
- Not Fried Chicken Ice Cream
- Cinnamon and Honey Fried Chicken Ice Cream from Salt & Straw
- History of Knott’s Berry Farm
- Ghost Town Alive at Knott’s Berry Farm
- REPOD Spoiler’s Club
- DASH puzzle hunt
- Colby’s Curious Cookoff (REA review)
- Puzzle Snacks (REA review)
- Disney’s Galactic Starcruiser
- Galaxy’s Edge at Disneyland
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