Ever since Super Nintendo World was first announced for Universal Studios Hollywood, the countdown has been on for just when the doors will open (do pipes even open?) Now that countdown has an end date, as Universal Studios has announced that we will be able to get a-going from 17th February 2023!
Much like the Super Nintendo World found in Osaka, Hollywood's theme park will be a location for all things Mario. Ever wanted to visit Peach's castle? They've got it! Want to ride on a Mario Kart? You can! Want to eat food shaped like Yoshi? Firstly, that's a weird dream, but hey, you can do that here too!
On top of the opening date announcement, the studio also confirmed some of the attractions that we will be able to find there. Previously, all that we knew of was the Mario Kart ride, so any information is welcome news to our ears. Expect Nintendo-themed food in the Toadstool Cafe, merch a-plenty in the 1-UP Factory and interactive exhibits thanks to some rather nifty Power-Up Bands.
For more details on all of these features and more, check out the following from Universal:
“Mario Kart: Bowser’s Challenge:” This all-new, technologically-advanced ride, inspired by the popular Mario Kart™ video game series, will seamlessly fuse cutting-edge augmented reality (AR) with projection mapping technology and actual set pieces along a moving ride track. Set against a multi-sensory backdrop of color, sound and movement, guests will be seated in stadium-style, four-seat vehicles as they navigate familiar courses through the creative use and integration of head mounted AR goggles. This unique feature is a key point of differentiation that distinguishes this ride from other theme park attractions.
The premise of “Mario Kart: Bowser’s Challenge” is simple but equally inspiring and challenging, appealing to guests of all ages regardless of gaming experience. As part of Team Mario, guests will steer through underwater courses and courses in the clouds to compete for the Golden Cup while collecting coins to defeat Team Bowser and win. “Mario Kart: Bowser’s Challenge” raises the stakes for guests as an intriguing and repeatable ride with a variety of outcomes.
Mount Beanpole: This towering landmark sits at the heart of the land and also serves as the entry queue for “Mario Kart: Bowser’s Challenge.”
Bowser’s Castle: Adorned with a breathtaking sculpture of a large and powerful Bowser, this structure serves as a key centerpiece of the land, home to SUPER NINTENDO WORLD’s signature ride, “Mario Kart: Bowser’s Challenge.” As guests navigate the winding corridors and pass through the hall of medallions and trophies of the ominous castle towards the “Mario Kart: Bowser’s Challenge” ride, they will learn more about Bowser’s calculated plans to defeat Team Mario for the coveted Golden Cup.
Power-Up Band™: These wearable, state-of-the-art wristbands sync with Universal Studios Hollywood’s free downloadable app to level-up the guest experience within the land and enhance its many interactive elements. These include, but are not limited to, keeping individual and team scores, collecting digital coins and obtaining keys after winning challenges throughout the land. Power-Up Bands will also invite guests to enjoy extra-special interactions with Mario, Luigi and Princess Peach. They will come in six design options with character themes and will be available for purchase both within the land and at SUPER NINTENDO WORLD retail shops located in the theme park and on CityWalk.
Interactive Gameplay: Within the land, guests will become fully engulfed in an engaging world of real-life gameplay, including punching ? Blocks to collect digital coins and a variety of interactives. They will discover a new dimension of SUPER NINTENDO WORLD via the interactive binoculars employing augmented reality technology positioned within the land. Guests can beat the four Key Challenges and collect keys from Goomba, Koopa Troopa, Piranha Plant and Thwomp interactive activities to ultimately allow access to the culminating boss battle with Bowser Jr. These energetic, familiar and fun interactive games will further enhance the entire kinetic experience within the land and immerse guests into the unique world of Super Mario.
Toadstool Cafe™: The land’s signature restaurant Toadstool Cafe will serve a gourmet menu perfected by Chef Toad where he will greet guests upon entry. Menu items prepared fresh daily include Toadstool Cheesy Garlic Knots, Super Mushroom Soup, Piranha Plant Caprese, Mario Bacon Cheeseburger, Luigi Pesto Chicken Burger, ? Block Tiramisu and Princess Peach Cupcake.
1-UP Factory: What better way to commemorate a visit to SUPER NINTENDO WORLD than to visit the 1-UP Factory retail shop to purchase collectable memorabilia. The 1-UP Factory will offer an extensive selection of merchandise from Mario and Luigi themed apparel to iconic character hats and an array of plush characters, including Mario, Luigi, Yoshi and Bowser.
With the look of Hollywood's park appearing very similar to that found in Osaka, we are imagining that the one announced in Orlando is going to be a mirror's image once again. This being said, it doesn't make us any less desperate to head on over and see what it's all about! Road trip anyone?