As well as branching out into the smartphone gaming business in 2016, Nintendo is also looking to leverage its properties by hooking up with Universal Studios, with the aim of creating a theme park featuring the likes of Mario and company.
That particular deal was inked earlier this year, and Universal is now trying to drastically expand the amount of land it has available at its Orlando location in Florida. The company already has two theme parks in the area - Universal Studios Florida and Universal's Islands of Adventure - and this land-grab could indicate that a third is in the works.
The 474 acres of land in question lies north of the Orange County Convention Center, and is at present owned by private equity firm Colony Capital LLC. Known as the Sand Lake Road Complex, it was a previously owned by Lockheed Martin and was purchased by Colony Capital for $500,000 (plus some existing debt) at a foreclosure auction last month.
Unsurprisingly, Universal isn't the only firm which has tabled a bid for the plot of land, but its need to expand - combined with the incredible profits it has generated via its theme park business - could mean that the company's desire is greater than that of its rivals.
Universal's Orlando resort is essentially landlocked and has no room for expansion, so the plot will be incredibly attractive to the firm - especially as it has the potentially lucrative Nintendo deal on the table. There are rumours that Universal is planning an entire park based on video game properties, including the likes of Warcraft.
I never got to go to Universal while I was in the US, but lawd, if they reveal a dedicated Nintendo park just try and keep me away...
Screw Disney World, I want to go to Nintendo Land!!!
Thats most likely the new water park they're building, Volcano Bay. It looks really fun, but it won't be completed until about 2017.
Hope it's a Nintendo Land! A mario kart go kart ride with powerups? Is that too much to ask for? Seriously though It'd be so easy to have an amazing nintendo themed park. I'd drive 25 hours to get there. Pretend its a trip for the kid c:
It's just too bad that no reasonable human being will ever set foot in the state of Florida.
@Stu13 - except for those of us who were born and raised here
@JHardin1112 I kid, of course. I live in the south as well, but I have a mental image of being eaten by an alligator as soon as I crossed the Florida state line.
@Stu13 Correction: Reasonable humans would happily set foot in Orlando. Anywhere else in that state, though...
Damn, and I thought the Orlando/Islands of Adventure site was huge. This is bigger again! If they do get it, it's probably going to be various video games not just Nintendo. But still, a real life Nintendo Land? I've never been to America but...that wouldn't stay that way for long.
@Stu13 - no worries - I take it all in good humor. This great state of Florida has some real winners and of course, I'm not perfect either =D.
@PeterAndCompany - C'mon now, there are some other cities worth visiting. I live in the oldest city (St. Augustine) and I love it. A great, historic city. Honestly, I really don't like Orlando. My wife and I take our kids just about each year to SeaWorld time and time again (I'm kinda tired of it.) Of course, if they did open a new theme park based on Nintendo properties and other games.....well me and my sons will absolutely be there!
@JHardin1112 I can sympathize with you. I've lived just outside DC for almost my entire life and couldn't be more tired of all the monuments and museums. Every single school field trip was spent at the Smithsonian and after the first few times, it just loses most of its lustre.
Then after my wife (then-fiance) moved in after college, she couldn't WAIT to go to DC and see everything since she's from the south. I have to admit, her excitement at seeing everything for the first time definitely rekindled my interest in it, too. I can't wait to take our kids there in the future (at least until they get tired of it too, hehe).
@JHardin1112 My uncle lived in Naples next to Barbara Streisand for a few years, I dont think they would have let Stu into the city.
@PeterAndCompany it's always amusing to me when people patronize Florida because of media perception, but say Orlando is cool. Orlando is the most bat $h1t crazy area of the state. The home of Casey Anthony and George Zimmerman and the lawyer turned paganist who drinks goats blood and wants to run for president...and also made a career by defending neo-nazis. I understand, you're there for the roller coasters and stuff, but I'd prefer the beach or a kayaking trip through the crystal clear waters of the nature coast than spending a miserable day in the baking sun in a crowded theme park.
@EarthboundBren It could be both Volcano Bay and the theme park that will have Nintendo attractions. That "Land for Sale" is bigger than both Universal Studios Florida and Islands of Adventure combined.
I loved Universal Studios when I was there, it would be great to see them create a video game theme park!
I would suggest it might be the water park they've been wanting to make as well as a resort hotel. But if it can be themed to Nintendo then I would like to see a 'Splatoon' area.
I think they are trying to recover land sold by a previous owner of Universal named 'Vivendi' of which most of the land sold at that time became the new convention center almost 10 years ago.
That's a large amount of land there. If they use all of it to create a theme park based around video games, they would have the greatest theme park of all time!
Also, I wonder if they'll have video game mascots running around. Being able to take a picture with people like Mario, Samus, and maybe even Sonic would definitely entice more to come to the park.
@EarthboundBren It's not just going where Wet n' Wild was? Or are they developing hotels and stuff there, as i think i may have heard that. I also believe if you look on Google Maps there is clearly a great deal of development happening in the area, for something to open in 2017 it sure seems to me that development would have already been started, but i can't say i know for sure.
A theme park based entirely around videogames? Yes, please! Too bad it'll probably take a while to be finished, though...
If this was built, I would force my mom at nerf gun point to take my twin brother and I up there. Or, if my friend goes (and I'm pretty sure he will), I'll camp out in his suitcase
Tourists Are delicious.
@EarthboundBren volcano bay is already under construction isn't it, next to the cabana bay, this will be something completely different
@EarthboundBren I worked there 5 years ago, and their plan was to build a futuristic theme park (based on Back To The Future 2), with nintendo and sony (Sony has always been a part of them), I see them adding onto something like that, but with video games. Other than that, I think they were planning on adding a small water park, but Wet N Wild is owned by them.
@Soren They have Crash Bandicoot and Spyro the Dragon, they just don't use the characters anymore due to people not recognizing them. If they brought a video game island to the table, I can definitely see Mario, Pikachu, Peach and Link walking around. With Nintendo and Sony, they could make it really good!
That land is so much bigger than the two Universal Parks put together. If they're intending to make a Nintendo Land, it wouldn't be the only Park on the land. Could easily see two or three new parks there
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