Monday morning in Japan saw the dissemination of more details from Nintendo regarding their partnership with Universal Studios theme parks. The first attraction will be named Super Nintendo World and is set to open in Japan just prior to the launch of the 2020 Olympic Games. You may remember that during the closing ceremonies for the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Nintendo’s iconic mascot, Mario, transformed into the Japanese Prime Minister. Now, Nintendo will be able to show the World of Nintendo to the world when the Olympic Games head to the Land of the Rising Sun.
The company is looking to capitalize on the sure influx of tourism that is generated by the Olympics. In addition, a lot of the testing ground for new ideas from Nintendo is right in the company’s home country. So often, Nintendo debuts their new concepts in Japan first, then abroad, and although we don’t know how soon afterward, we do look to see Super Nintendo World in the Orlando and Hollywood parks, as well.
“SUPER NINTENDO WORLD™” is coming to Universal Studios Japan and will be the first such opening in the world, featuring globally renowned characters and game worlds from Nintendo. Super Nintendo World is targeted to open in time for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. While Universal Studios Japan will be the first location to open, Nintendo themed areas are also coming to Orlando and Hollywood as announced by Nintendo and Universal Parks & Resorts on November 29, 2016.
Super Nintendo World will be comprised of expansive and multilevel environments filled with unprecedented, state-of-the-art rides, interactive areas, shops and restaurants, all featuring Nintendo’s most popular characters and games. Development cost at Universal Studios Japan is currently expected to exceed 50 billion Yen. Super Nintendo World will be developed mainly using the park’s current parking area and part of an area designated for future expansion. Katsuhiro Miyamoto, Professor Emeritus of Kansai University estimates that Universal Studios Japan — after opening Super Nintendo World — will bring economic benefits following its opening of approximately 6.2 trillion Yen for the Kansai region, 11.7 trillion Yen for Japan as a whole, and will create approximately 1.1 million jobs in Japan within a decade after opening. Universal Studios Japan will introduce the wonder of the world-class, Japan-based entertainment brand of Nintendo not only to Japan but to the world.
What stood out to me about the proposed development is the expected budget for it. 50 billion Yen, which is approximately $434 million US! That is a lot of money that I am sure Nintendo will guarantee to put to great use, even beyond what we could possibly imagine.
One of the most interesting things about Super Nintendo World is that it is primarily focused on themes and characters from the Super Mario Bros. series, with a little character representation from other franchises. Of course, this is just the first phase of work from this partnership, so why not begin with the most iconic of Nintendo’s many iconic works!
Super Nintendo World will feature characters and themes from the “Super Mario” series, which has continued over the years to win the hearts of devoted fans around the world. The attraction area will also feature a variety of other globally popular Nintendo characters. Nintendo characters and the worlds they inhabit will be re-created at the highest level of quality through the strong partnership between Mr. Shigeru Miyamoto, Creative Fellow at Nintendo, and Mark Woodbury, President of Universal Creative, renowned for creative and technical excellence. Super Nintendo World will allow guests to fully immerse themselves and all five senses in the worlds of Nintendo, and is expected to attract guests from Japan and the world over.
For many Nintendo fans, the idea of a “Super Nintendo World” has existed in their minds for decades, and to know that now it will exist in reality is surreal. I think it is important to note that as this World comes together, the ideas and concepts will be those of the original imaginators so I am sure we will truly have the opportunity to experience the essence of what their minds have intended to convey since conception of our favorite games–in real life.
What do you want to see from Super Nintendo World? Will you visit the park in Japan, or wait for it to open in Orlando or Hollywood, instead? What else would you like to see Nintendo and Universal Studios do with Nintendo’s IP?
As always, gaming is meant to be fun, so keep gaming!!