Over in Japan, work has kept going on the much-anticipated Super Nintendo World at Universal Studios. Earlier this year, we saw some of the first images of what this amazing expansion will look like when completed. You can see those below. But first, we’ve got a new video tour of the park, led by none other than Super Mario creator Shigeru Miyamoto.
Miyamoto leads viewers through various corners of the park. He shows off the Princess’ castle and plains and dungeon areas that’ll look familiar to any longtime fans of Mario games. The video shows different ways park visitors will be able to interact with park features, like power-up blocks and minor baddies. (A marching Koopa, snoozing Piranha Plant, and exploding Bob-omb make brief cameos in the video.) Miyamoto also makes mention of a face-off with Bowser Jr himself.
Thanks to some aerial photographs posted on social media, fans are getting a glimpse at what the nearly completed Super Nintendo World will be like. Even from these images of an incomplete themed land, you can see it really does look like an old Mario game come to life. We spotted several overhead shots at themeparX.
Just imagine what it’s gonna feel like to walk through that entrance warp pipe (lower right) and seeing the land appear before your eyes. pic.twitter.com/I3zu96YbTA— Cabel (@cabel) May 28, 2020
From the looks of things, many of the rumored locations from the beloved Mario games will indeed be a part of the land. Look closely at the aerial photos and you can make out Peach’s castle and Bowser’s castle. We can see Piranha Plants and Question Mark Blocks. In short, for anyone who grew up playing Super Nintendo Games, this land will be a dream come true. You’ll feel like you can drop into a Warp Pipe.
Video captured by Twitter user @29QuP2 shows some animated aspects of the new land. Yoshi circles a tree, coins rotate, koopa shells spiral, and more. Watch the above video to get a glimpse of how cool Super Nintendo World is going to be.
We also have our first look at the Mario Kart ride called Koopa’s Challenge, which takes us inside Bowser’s Castle. The ride uses “AR headsets” according to Polygon. But it’s not a free-wheeling ride—it’s on rails. The ride begins in the castle but also races through a lava world and the famous Rainbow Road.
Japan's #SuperNintendoWorld will open on Feb. 4, 2021 in Osaka.@rumireports gets a world’s first look at @USJ_Official's real-life #Mario Kart. More: https://t.co/T9nUMnB1UB #任天堂 pic.twitter.com/oZku1gwQTj— Bloomberg Quicktake (@Quicktake) November 30, 2020
Super Nintendo World is one of the most anticipated expansions in Universal Studios Japan‘s history. It reportedly cost nearly $600 million to build. Similar to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, this isn’t a theme park unto itself, but a separate land within an existing park. They announced this new land back in 2015. They intended to open at the same time as the Olympic Games in Osaka. But with the games now postponed, Super Nintendo World’s opening date could be pushed back too. Judging from these early images however, it looks darn near finished. And if it’s not, Super Nintendo World will be worth the wait.
Originally published on May 28, 2020 with updates on December 1 and December 21.