Wii have exciting news! (Ha. See what I did there?) Universal Parks & Resorts just announced today that they’ll be teaming up with Nintendo to bring brand new Nintendo-themed rides and attractions to Universal theme parks. NintendoLand has not been revealed as the official name, but using the 3DS app’s title as inspiration was too perfect to pass up.
This move further proves that Nintendo is eager for the first time in their 100+ year history to expand their brand outside their own walls. Recently, we discussed Nintendo’s move into mobile gaming and the possible impact it would have on the company. A themed destination park might actually be more well received among fans, however. The Harry Potter World attractions have proven to be a boon to the beloved book series, and characters like Mario, Link, Zelda, and Luigi have at least 10 extra years of exposure to fans all across the world.
Universal has stated that the rides and attractions are still in the conceptualization stage, and that specifics will be released later in the year once designs are approved. That sure isn’t stopping me from dreaming up as many possibilities as I can for the park though! For safety reasons, I’m sure we won’t see attendees leaping off of a brick staircase onto a flagpole, but I certainly can imagine a hyper-stylized obstacle course that pulls similar elements from those classic side-scrolling Super Mario Bros. stages from days of yore.
Metroid and Star Fox series are absolutely ripe for the interactive theater rides, while The Legend of Zelda could be an entire adventure park and maze attraction unto itself. And how about adding a waterslide in the shape of a green warp pipe? Complete with Super Mario Bros.’ classic “Underwater Theme”?
It’s been good times for Nintendo, as the company just posted its first annual profit since 2011. In recent years, Nintendo has garnered a reputation for being stubborn about letting their properties be utilized outside of their first-party video game releases. But one thwarted Legend of Zelda Netflix rumor, that new initiative to bring Nintendo games to mobile mentioned earlier, and a mountain of amiibo figurines sold later, and it looks like the company is learning spread its wings and fly finally. My body is totally ready for this, and you know who else’s is:
What say you, fine people? What kinds of rides are you hoping Nintendo and Universal team up to create? Which games are you hoping get their due in the physical world? Let us know in the comments below, or send me (@rvwalkerregrets) your ideas on Twitter!
Additional Reporting by: Malik Forté