The world’s first Super Nintendo World will grand open February 4, 2021, but select guests of Universal Studios Japan will be able to preview the land beginning December 23rd!
Ahead of these previews, Nintendo debuted new footage from inside different areas in the land. Let’s check out some of the new details we were able to learn from the Nintendo Direct, as well as information from the recently updated official app, in today’s news update. See the video version of this story below for additional visuals.
During the latest Nintendo Direct presentation, Mario creator Shigeru Miyamoto gave us our first real look inside of Super Nintendo World, starting with the warp pipe that guests must walk through to enter the land. At the other end of the pipe we pass through Peach’s Castle, featuring familiar music from Mario 64 and changing portraits on the wall.
This presentation focused heavily on the interactive aspects of Super Nintendo World, something that was only previously hinted at. As we learned, there will be a lot more to do than just punching question blocks. We now know that there is a QR code on the back of the Power Up Bands, the interactive wristbands that guests will be able to purchase to experience interactive activities. Scanning the QR code is how they are paired to the official app, which helps you keep track of your score.
Speaking of the app, the official Universal Studios Japan app added the Super Nintendo World’s interactive map functions shortly after the presentation. Now you can download the app and access the map yourself.
The app includes a brief story for the area, about how Bowser Jr. has stolen a Golden Mushroom and how you will need to complete activities around the land, and then face off against Bowser Jr., to retrieve it.
You can track your rankings on the app, as well as the top scores for the day, all time, and even the highest scores on the Mario Kart ride itself.
Miyamoto pointed out some of these challenges when touring the area. He demonstrated an activity where you must tap your Power Up Band to a POW block at just the right time to earn a key. Once you’ve earned three keys you’ll be able to face off against Bowser Jr..
He also showed an underground zone, where after a Bomb-omb explodes an optical illusion makes it look like you’re getting smaller as you walk deeper into the area. It looks like touch points will be located randomly around the land for activating hidden effects, and earning additional coins too.
We got our best look yet at the 1-Up Factory gift shop, including some of the new merchandise that will be exclusively sold only at Super Nintendo World.
One item that was highlighted is a Mario toy that walks without the use of batteries.
A star-shaped popcorn bucket filled with flavors like Caramel Peach or Mushroom was also highlighted. But that won’t be the only Mushroom related food you’ll find in the land.
The land’s quick service location includes unique “window” displays that display Toads in the kitchen preparing the food. We also got our first look at the dining area inside of the cafe, and a sneak peak at some of the dishes that will be available.
Fitting for the Mushroom Kingdom, there are plenty of items focused on Mushrooms, including the Mario Burger and Super Mushroom Pizza Bowl. On your way out of the restaurant, it looks like some touch points can be found, which can earn you some extra coins if you’re using a Power Up Band.
We got our first look at the land’s walk around characters in this presentation as well. These characters include facial movements, like eye blinks and moving mouths. It also seems like they can say several prerecorded phases as well.
In addition to the Mario and Luigi characters we saw in the video, the official app says you’ll also be able to meet Toad in the middle of the land, and Princess Peach in a gazebo near her castle.
The Mario Kart ride was briefly mentioned in the video, which Miyamoto says took six years to develop. Looking closely, we can see that the wait time sign does include a listing for Single Rider Line, something we had theorized about previously on the channel. We saw additional footage from inside the queue, but only showing the same areas we got a preview of a few weeks ago. New footage from inside the actual ride was not shown, and no additional details were given about the AR headsets, although they were mentioned.
There were however, additional details revealed about the story for the Mario Kart attraction. This special course for the theme park ride was designed by Bowser himself. And we will be racing as part of Mario’s team. This gives us some insight into the plot of the ride, and possibly how the interactivity will work. Rather than throwing shells and using power-ups against the other car, we may be focusing most of our attention towards characters and bad guys that have been sent by Bowser to help him win the race.
There was no mention of the Yoshi family ride, but Miyamoto did say they were only showing some of the land. He also said that Super Nintendo World lands are still planned for Hollywood, California and Orlando, Florida in the United States, and Singapore in Asia. Although, dates or timetables for these locations were not mentioned.
While previews for the land begin this coming Wednesday, December 23rd, Universal says on their website that guests are not to share photos or videos from their visit online. Previews will be extremely limited, and even once Super Nintendo World officially opens in February, all guests visiting Universal Studios Japan will also require a timed reservation to actually get into the land due to social distancing protocols in place.
That’s all for now, but be sure to check out the video version of this article for additional visuals. You can find the complete Nintendo Direct presentation on their official YouTube Channel. Follow our news feed to never miss an update, or enter your email below. Photos: Nintendo/Universal Studios Japan