We learned last year that Universal Studios was partnering with Nintendo to develop some exciting ideas for theme parks, but we didn’t know exactly how that would materialize in the parks. We still don’t have many details, but we do know that Nintendo will be coming over the next few years to three Universal Studios resorts: Universal Studios Japan, Universal Orlando Resort, and Universal Studios Hollywood.
The plan is to create an entire Nintendo World that’s innovative, interactive, and full of the characters, action and adventure that fans of Nintendo video games have come to love. Instead of having an adventure through a screen, the world will now be all around you.
Shigeru Miyamoto, of Nintendo, and Mark Woodbury, President of Universal Creative explain what fans can expect from the Nintendo Worlds:
Each land is expected to have multiple attractions, shops, and restaurants themed to Nintendo games and characters. The plan is to make sure each land has something for every age level and gaming ability.
If I had to speculate about where in Orlando the Nintendo World will come, I’d guess it’s either going in the Lost Continent area of Islands of Adventure (the land formerly reserved for a Harry Potter expansion) or the Woody Woodpecker Play Zone at the studios (if so, say goodbye to ET). I expect each of the three parks will get a slightly different mix of attractions so the true Nintendo fan will want to visit all three.
There was some speculation that Universal would wait until it could build it’s third theme park in Orlando before adding Nintendo to its properties. But that’s a 10-15 year horizon and I think they want to get Nintendo in the parks much sooner than that.
That’s really about all we know right now. Universal’s creative team has been busy working on plans and each Universal theme park is expected to announce the specific details for its Nintendo areas very soon. So far, there is no more specific date for opening other than “next several years.”