Having been around the Disney internet-sphere for over a decade, I’ve certainly heard of MouseAdventure, and knew it was a scavenger hunt-like game held at Disney parks. Despite taking part in a few Disney scavenger hunts myself, I’d never done MouseAdventure. Well, my procrastination and forgetfulness to figure it out and sign up myself came to an end this year, when the fine folks at MouseAdventure invited us out to experience it first hand. I soon found out it was much more than a scavenger hunt!
What IS MouseAdventure?
If you are completely unfamiliar, MouseAdventure is a scavenger hunt/brain puzzle game that has been taking place for the past 20 years! Looking back at the timeline linked above, I am kind of really regretting not doing this earlier, some of the themes sound so fun. This year’s theme was “Night and Day” like the Pixar short “Day and Night” that was shown before Toy Story 3. It was named this because it was taking place over 2 days; the first at night in the Magic Kingdom, and the second the next day at Disney Springs. Teams could sign up for either both days together, or just the Saturday night or just the Sunday day. We were given a full ticket, so we were able to do both Night and Day events.
How Do You Sign Up for MouseAdventure?
From the MouseAdventure site for the most recent Walt Disney World registration:
MouseAdventure registration does not include theme park admission. All registrations are final. Registration is strictly limited by the capacity of the event venue, and teams may not change divisions or add players after registration closes. Once we are fully registered, we cannot make special exceptions or extend registration. There is no waiting list for this event.
Your MouseAdventure team must consist of at least two players and no more than four players. Some people like having four brains on their team; some teams work better with just two or three players. It is up to you to decide whether you want 2, 3, or 4 people on your team, but there are often advantages for larger teams.
MouseAdventure events can sell out very quickly, so you’ll want to have your team’s details before registration opens:
Pick a team captain who will be responsible for registering your team. Don’t assume your teammate is going to register for your team!
Signup for an account at thirdgategames.com. You will need an account to register for the event.
Decide on a team name. (optional, but if you are going to have a team name, you must provide it during registration)
Be sure to have the first name, last name, and email address for each member of your team. This is a really good time to add firstname.lastname@example.org to your e-mail client’s approved sender list. (If you use Earthlink or Hotmail, we can not guarantee that you will receive event-related e-mail from MouseAdventure. We STRONGLY encourage players with Earthlink or Hotmail accounts to register for another e-mail address [GMail is free, and works just fine] to ensure you receive all of the messages from MouseAdventure.)
Names for personalized buttons (optional)
Then, the fun can begin! When we arrived at the Magic Kingdom bus loop area, we didn’t really know what to expect. Most exciting was how MANY people there were participating with us. One of the organizers, Stephanie Wien, who invited us, let me know that there were 63 teams signed up for Saturday’s game (If I got that wrong let me know Steph!). Since each team can have up to 4 team members, that adds up quick!
The MouseAdventure folks were amazing at keeping us all organized and passing out all of the info, and then quest packets in an orderly fashion. I was very impressed. Knowing that MouseAdventure has 20 years of experience behind them lets you know this is not some Mickey Mouse operation (sorry, couldn’t resist).
Once we got our quest packets, we were set loose upon the Magic Kingdom and had 4 hours-ish to complete our quests. We were ready. I think.
Previously, I participated in D23’s Walt Disney World Scavenger Hunt (which took place in May of 2011 over 2 days with 4 parks being visited and an average “feels like” temperature of about 157 degrees. :P).
I also competed in a Goofy’s Mystery Tour. Goofy’s is a Walt Disney World Cast Members-only trivia/puzzle event where you and 3 teammates are bungee corded together and compete in a park after hours. It’s as crazy as it sounds. My husband, Scott Otis has a record 3 consecutive Goofy’s wins. He won a 4th time in 2014, when I was on his team and it was enough for me to want to retire and rest on my laurels after that.
Disney has recently changed its registration process for Goofy’s to a lottery-type system, so Scott has pretty much retired as well. Point being, I knew what to expect a little. Although I was a bit rusty with my puzzle-solving, it wasn’t like we were coming in blind to how the game worked.
How Does MouseAdventure Work?
Basically, you receive a packet of quests, which contain mini-quests and clues within them, and then formulate your final answers to the main quest, and answer on the answer sheet. There are puzzles and visual clues where you have to find signs or letters etc. Lastly, there are trivia questions on both days, which can also help make or break your scores.
How to Choose Your MouseAdventure Team
MouseAdventure is a great cross-section of quests that involve finding details throughout the park you are in (or Disney Springs in this case), brain-teaser puzzles where you have to unscramble word puzzles or even math, and trivia, which if you’re signing up to do MouseAdventure, you probably are prepared to answer random Disney trivia questions. But be prepared to cover allll areas of Disney – parks, attractions, movies, tv, etc!
This is why it’s great to have people on your team that also represent this cross-section of skills. For example, Scott is really good at word jumble type filling-in-the-missing-letters type puzzles and math too. Me, not so much. I can do some word puzzles, but under pressure, and when you really have to dig in to do things like “3 letters up from and 5 letters down from” I kind of zone out. But that doesn’t mean this wasn’t fun for me, it was a blast! I love high-energy, complex situations where you need to stay on your toes and still get surprised.
The best plan is to look over the various quests that you receive, and see first if there are any answers you can fill out on your own (but it’s always good to double check even if you think you know it!). Next you should be reading all the clues to organize your paths within the park. See if you can tell up front which clues will send you to Tomorrowland vs. Fantasyland vs. Frontierland, for example. That will hopefully save you a lot of zig-zagging back and forth across the park. This is both for the sake of your feet and the time expiring with every step you take!
Our Zannaland MouseAdventure Video!
To see more of what this edition of MouseAdventure was like, Christian put together a fun video of our experience. Since we kept joking that it was like The Amazing Race (a show which our entire family watches religiously and likes to pontificate about what we would do in each situation), Christian themed the video to The Amazing Race, which makes it worth a watch just for that comedic value.
Some notes on the video and our game play while you watch…
The first quest we did, the Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor quest – we got wrong. 😛 This was a case of Scott solving the clue by filling in the blanks. We were thinking we knew the answer to the final clue – but we didn’t. THAT is where these quests trip you up. You might think “The future of energy at Monsters Inc….” is LAUGHTER, but turns out, it’s a JOKE. So we lost points on that. I take full responsibility for that one, because Scott wanted to double check and go back in the queue. However, we had spent so much time in there…and the cast working the attraction were NOT too happy with all of us looking at the bulletin board in the queue for 15 minutes. So I said “No, what else would it be?” haha joke was literally on me.
Additionally, at Disney Springs, one of the questions was “name all of the parking lot fruits listed on the Disney Springs map.” We included the garages as well, which was NOT what they were asking. So things like that really make a difference between ranking high or winning, and getting knocked down a few pegs. But that’s all part of the fun and it definitely makes you want to play again and “prove” yourself if you’re the competitive type (which Scott definitely is).
The End Result
There is a reason they have teams “master out” after 3 consecutive wins. Teams can still play, but won’t compete to win any longer. And some teams just do it for fun anyway, which I think is really the best way to approach a MouseAdventure scavenger hunt! At the end of the event, there is a ceremony to award winners their Disney gift cards and buttons and other fun stuff. Scores are later posted online with answers to the quests (but not trivia) so you can see how you did.
Anyway, we had a great time and we are so grateful to MouseAdventure for inviting us out. As always, our opinions are our own. We hope you enjoyed our experiences too! If you’d like to do more research and sign up for the next event, head to MouseAdventure.com and also be sure to check out the MouseAdventure forums to see lots of great conversations and more puzzles too.
Have you ever participated in MouseAdventure or another theme park scavenger hunt? Let me know in the comments, I’d love to hear what you thought!
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