Disney’s Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge has launched, and the Jurassic Park ride has reopened as the Jurassic World ride at Universal Studios Hollywood. But if you’re more interested in Universal’s upcoming Nintendo-centric land when it comes to theme parks, there’s been an update on Super Nintendo World.
According to Attractions Magazine, the news was shared during Comcast's 2019 Media, Communications & Entertainment Conference on Sept. 11. Super Nintendo World will fittingly debut in Universal Studios Japan next spring, in a likely attempt to coincide with Tokyo's 2020 Summer Olympics. According to Polygon, Universal Parks & Resorts chairman and CEO Tom Williams added that though there’s no timeline yet, Super Nintendo World "will come to other Universal Parks."
A previous TechRaptor article focused on Super Nintendo World speculation, such as a Super Mario Kart ride and an area for Bowser's castle. Attractions Magazine and Polygon have confirmed they will be part of the Nintendo-themed land.
Super Nintendo World will open with two rides for its “first phase.” One will be an adaptation of Super Mario Kart. The other will be Yoshi's Adventures, described as a brief Omnimover-type ride. (Think of the Doom Buggies moving through the Haunted Mansion at Disneyland.)
Williams praised the work on Super Nintendo World so far. “It’s a great lineup. It takes it to the whole next level," he said. "It’s gonna redefine what a park experience is like. It really is special.”
The theme park version will also apparently try to adapt more video game elements.
According to CNET, Williams said the Nintendo-themed land will be "built on three different levels." Super Nintendo World will have interactive elements thanks to a magnetic wristband emblazoned with Mario's red symbol. This wristband will be able to keep some sort of score. Other than stating that the wristband will be able to share scores with Nintendo consoles and save park attendee's progress, there have been no other details about how exactly this scoring system works, what are all the park activities it can apply to, or what the benefits of keeping score will be. But it shows a clear attempt at trying to honor the source material for Super Nintendo World, as well as capitalize on it. (And for those not interested in wearing a wristband, hopefully it’s optional.)
Besides devoting part of the Nintendo-themed land to Bowser, Polygon reported that Princess Peach's castle will be included too.
Super Nintendo World’s continued progress owes much of its existence to Universal’s other themed land, the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, and to the late Satoru Iwata. According to VentureBeat, Iwata was impressed with Universal’s detailed proposal to base theme park attractions on Nintendo.
"Also, as we met right after they had opened the Harry Potter attractions, we were able to learn precisely how they had been created,” Iwata told VentureBeat. After meeting with Universal, VentureBeat reported that Iwata told Shigeru Miyamoto that he "wanted to give positive consideration" to Universal's offer.
It’s exciting to hear new details about the content of Universal’s Nintendo-themed land. Although Mario and others in his world are clearly Nintendo’s main mascots, it’s hard to imagine they will be the only ones populating the famed game company’s first theme park endeavor. Here’s hoping there will be word about The Legend of Zelda and Metroid joining Super Nintendo World soon. And imagine who else could get a spot in the themed land—newcomers like Splatoon, other franchises like Pokémon and Star Fox. Picture Nintendo’s mega-crossover, Super Smash Bros.—though maybe Super Nintendo World will essentially turn into that when it features others alongside Mario’s universe.
Do you plan to check out Super Nintendo World? What Nintendo franchise would you like to see in a theme park experience? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.