Have you ever whittled away a few hours with the world’s favorite little red plumber? Mario and other Nintendo properties like Pokemon, Zelda and Kirby have become household names in the past few decades. One day, you’ll be able to visit the Mushroom Kingdom yourself at Super Nintendo World Universal Studios.
Super Nintendo World is planned to be Universal’s follow-up to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, the most successful expansion in years. The Wizarding World of Harry Potter stretches across Universal Orlando’s two theme parks – Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios Florida – and continues to draw guests from around the world. It proved to Universal that an ultra-themed land based around a well-known property could be its own attraction. The rides are just gravy.
Super Nintendo World will first open as a land in Universal Studios Japan, in Osaka, before the 2020 Summer Olympics. Shortly afterward, a version of Super Nintendo World will open stateside in Universal Orlando Resort.
But what will Orlando’s Super Nintendo World be? And where will it be? The rumor mill won’t stop spinning around this highly anticipated expansion.
Super Nintendo World Universal Studios will be themed around the Mushroom Kingdom, the technicolor setting of most of the Mario games. Mario and all his friends will feature prominently, and the land’s centerpiece will be a recreation of Princess Peach’s castle. Characters and experiences based on Mario, Donkey Kong and Yoshi seem to appear in all of the park’s plans. Pokemon and Zelda appear in some maps and pieces of concept art, but not others. It’s too soon to say whether or not they’ll make it to the finished product.
Where will it be?
The location of Orlando’s Super Nintendo World has become somewhat of a mystery in theme-park circles. Originally, Super Nintendo World was supposed to be a “land” – a themed area that’s part of the larger park. It is believed that the land would have replaced the current Woody Woodpecker’s KidZone, an area in Universal Studios Florida. The KidZone is around 20 years old, and other than E.T. Adventure (which would have been spared) it’s a low-traffic area without big-ticket attractions.
However, recent land acquisitions by Universal indicate otherwise. In the past few years, Universal Orlando has purchased up to 576 acres of land, and as of April 2018 has the legal go-ahead to use that land for theme park development. This probably means that Universal Orlando is planning a third theme park (not counting its water park, Volcano Bay).
Super Nintendo World would probably not take up the entirety of this third park, but might be the new park’s centerpiece. Princess Peach’s castle would serve as a perfect park icon, and the colorful characters of Nintendo would attract guests similarly to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. A brand new park would also serve as a worthy competitor to Walt Disney World’s upcoming lands: Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge and Toy Story Land.
Rides and attractions
Super Nintendo World’s most anticipated ride is Mario Kart, based on the video game series of the same name. The Mario Kart games feature Mario and friends racing on go-carts through wild environments – some from existing Nintendo games. Mario Kart is a beloved fixture in many households, and the ride is guaranteed to attract riders of all ages.
The Mario Kart ride will supposedly be a mix of an actual dark ride and augmented reality, putting you and your family in the race of your lives. You’ll even get a chance to drive through Rainbow Road, the most beautiful (and most deceptively difficult) Mario Kart track. Other rumored Mario Kart environments include Bowser’s Castle, Twisted Mansion and Peach Beach.
In addition to Mario Kart, a Yoshi-themed ride is anticipated for Super Nintendo World. The slow-moving omnimover ride will snake around the entire land, peeking into different rides and attractions as it passes through. As you ride on the “back” of a series of rainbow-colored Yoshis, you’ll be able to see the entirety of the Mushroom Kingdom.
One of the rides you’ll be able to spot from Yoshi’s back is the Donkey Kong roller coaster. The coaster will take you on a rollicking adventure through Donkey Kong Country in a runaway minecart.
The Donkey Kong roller coaster will actually have two tracks layered on top of one another: the track that the riders can see and the track that is actually controlling the ride vehicle. A mechanical arm will extend from the bottom track to make it appear as though the cart is traveling on the top track. This will allow the minecart to perform what will look like death-defying stunts. The coaster will appear to leap over booby traps and unfinished pieces of track as you careen along.
There are other rides and attractions in the works for Super Nintendo World, but they’re under wraps for the time being.
What rides and attractions would you want to see at Super Nintendo World? Let us know in the comments below!