Thanks to a gentleman named Gary Snyder, we have our first glimpses into what is to be expected from Universal’s ambitious Super Nintendo World Project.
As you can see in the image below, this is all for the Universal Studios in Orlando. Lucky for many fans of original Universal attractions, looks like your favorite family friendly alien is here to stay for a while longer. ET looks to be untouched, as opposed to many of the rumors before the official announcement of the land. But as you can see on the picture below the new land is going to be to the right of MIB, between Simpsons and E. T. Adventure. The land it’s taking over would be: Woody Woodpecker’s Kid’s Zone including Curious George Play Area, Woody Woodpecker’s Nuthouse Coaster, Fievel’s Playland, Animal Actors Studio and the A Day in the Park with Barney show. I have a feeling these things will not be missed.
The Legend of Zelda – Zelda Kingdom
Also on the image above, it is shown to have a Legend of Zelda area of the land. Currently titled, “Zelda Kingdom” which includes something called “Hyrule Castle Attraction”. The current concept art (shown below) seems to utilize the “puzzle moving theater” patent that was seen months ago. It would be a shame to minimize The Legend of Zelda to a show especially since it has had a major impact on popular culture. Hoping that this show could be interactive in some way. It would be nice to see an attraction that allows you to wield a bow and arrow just like Link and shoot targets of some sort. Or even a dark ride where you are Link’s sidekick to help save Princess Zelda!
Mario Kart – The Mario Kart Experience
Below shows some extremely impressive artwork for the Mario Kart Experience. As of fan of Nintendo, this is going to be the major attraction that will have to win me over as well as other major Nintendo fans. This can simply make or break the land in my humble opinion. Even if they have a land on the level of Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley, people will always know the rides do not live up to the hype or level of the land. Having one step in the right direction, it seems as though the attraction will not be 3D and will not be a motion simulator (everyone cheers!). This begs the question, how will they incorporate the iconic baddies from the games like Bowser, Wario, Waluigi and many more? Possibly Augmented Reality or some type of projection onto screens possibly. It’s easy to make a Mario Kart themed attraction, but it’s incredibly difficult to make a TRUE Mario Kart Attraction.
Donkey Kong – Donkey Kong Island
Other artwork seen is for a Donkey Kong attraction in what seems to be called “Donkey Kong Island” (shown below). In the rendering, you can see tubes made of barrels, floating bananas, red balloons and letters which are all direct call backs to the game. This seems to be somewhat of a “Tarzan’s Treehouse” on steroids to me. It also shows Donkey Kong himself at the top of this behemoth of a playground. Could we possibly see an animatronic Donkey Kong out in the open? Something along the lines of a Mr. Potato Head (from Toy Story Midway Mania) or a larger version of Figaro in Fantasy Faire at Disneyland? I hope so! As for the ride, you can easily see in the rendered design that it is meant to simulate the mine cart sequences from Donkey Kong Country on Super Nintendo. Also, just think about it, the prospect of seeing Donkey Kong Vs King Kong at the Universal Parks is an incredibly exciting thought!
Although many of these images make all of our theme park nerd’s mouths water, it is important to remember that these are preliminary designs and concepts that could potentially be scrapped somewhere along the process. It is rumored that Mario and Donkey Kong are the only IP’s set to officially make the cut. That could possibly mean that the Zelda area and the Kirby Area would be possible expansions for the future? Another big question on everyone’s mind is how will this even FIT in Hollywood. It is a well know fact that Universal Studios Hollywood is running out of room and fast. Recently, they have been taking down sound stages and moving them deeper into the backlot. Could the new Super Nintendo Land be taking place on a new untouched piece of land? Or will it be taking something’s place? Only the future will tell. Either way, you can tell they are planning on bringing the most immersive Nintendo expereince that has ever been created. Universal seems to be truly working hard to give fans what they expect, give theme park fans what they need and give the general public what they want out of a theme park land. It is very easy to get excited about these types of projects coming online. Imagine walking through a green tunnel, warping to World 1-1 for the first time while hearing the famous music of your favorite Nintendo videos games! You have goosebumps thinking about it don’t you? It is an extremely fun time to be a theme park nerd and fan, especially when you have something like Super Nintendo World on the horizon.