I’ve never wanted to go to Universal Studios Japan so badly in my life.
Recently, the embargo on information regarding USJ’s Super Nintendo World has been lifted. That means tons of reveals about the brand new theme park section has been hitting the internet.
As reported in an article by IGN, a major source for your first look inside the park comes from Universal Parks News Today’s YouTube channel. The channel covers the goings-on at Universal Parks all over the world. On February 4, 2021, the channel posted 20 videos showcasing what you can do, ride, and eat at Super Nintendo World!
The release of these videos was probably set to line up with the official opening of Super Nintendo World, which was originally scheduled to be February 4. Unfortunately, Osaka Prefecture is currently in a state of emergency due to Covid-19, so the opening has been delayed for an unspecified amount of time.
This video provides a first-hand experience of the Mario Kart: Koopa’s Challenge Ride at Super Nintendo World, perhaps the crown jewel attraction of the theme park. Beware - spoilers in the video!
As you can see, the camera gives you a POV look walking through the building’s queue. At the end of the queue, park staff hand you AR goggles designed to look like Mario’s famous red cap. These goggles transport you into a virtual 360 degree Mario Kart race, which blends seamlessly with your perception of the physical ride track. You’ll enjoy seeing familiar Super Mario racers like Peach and Iggy Bowser shooting shells at each other and getting knocked around by classic traps.
Of course, this is just one of the many fun things you can do at Super Nintendo World. A special Power Band can be purchased for 3200 yen at USJ, which puts you in one of 6 teams facing off against the park’s other guests.
Back on December 18, 2020, Nintendo Direct released video of a special tour given by Mario creator himself, Shigeru Miyamoto! Miyamoto shows off how the Power Band interacts with items in the park and an app that you download to your phone.
I’ve never seen an amusement park so digitally gamified in my life. This Nintendo Direct video is what really made me wish to be at the park right now, stuffing my face with delicious Nintendo treats and punching life-sized coin blocks. And when I finally have to say goodbye to this magical land, I’ll be sure to buy a ton of awesome souvenirs to commemorate my visit. Like that Mario figure that Miyamoto showed off which does life-like walking without batteries!
My new life goal is to visit Super Nintendo World in Japan. But if it's too big of a trip for you, worry not. As Miyamoto-sama said, there are plans for Super Nintendo World to be built at Universal Parks all over the world!