Universal to Bring Nintendo Characters to Theme Parks

By May 7, 2015

It seems like a match made in heaven. Kyoto-based video game hardware and software developer Nintendo has a vast library of characters that rank among the most well-known in the entire video game industry: Mario, Luigi, Bowser, Princess Peach, Donkey Kong, The Legend of Zelda, Metroid, Punch-Out!!, and many more are characters and franchises that have a great deal of cross-generational appeal.

Nintendo properties can both hark back to the days of 8-bit gaming, while also making people excited for the games in their respective series that are still to come. It doesn’t take a lot of imagination to see the likes of Mario or Donkey Kong walking around with the likes of Mickey Mouse or Pluto at Disneyland, and those concepts would likely be perfect for the creation of new ride experiences as well.

Well, move over, Disney: just announced this morning, Nintendo has reached an agreement with Universal Parks & Resorts to bring the characters and situations of Nintendo’s broad range of IP to their theme parks in Los Angeles, Orlando, Japan, and Singapore. The official release reads,

Nintendo and Universal Parks & Resorts today announced plans to bring the world of Nintendo to life at Universal theme parks – creating spectacular, dedicated experiences based on Nintendo’s wildly popular games, characters and worlds. The agreement brings two icons of entertainment together and represents a significant partnership for Nintendo as it expands the reach and popularity of its characters and intellectual property.

While no specific attractions or concepts were detailed in the initial release, Nintendo’s broad range of properties and characters can allow for a plethora of experiences, from the child-friendly, to the adventurous, to the horrifying. It would probably be both fun and exciting to get in a go-kart and compete in a fast and furious Mario Kart race, or exciting to fight alongside Link as he takes on Ganon in an experience inspired by The Legend of Zelda, or to creep through an underground alien world with Samus Aran as she watches for deadly Metroid. There are a lot of possibilities. All we know about the content is what was said at the end of the release:

The immersive experiences will include major attractions at Universal’s theme parks and will feature Nintendo’s most famous characters and games. More details will be announced in the future, as the Nintendo and Universal creative teams work to create specific concepts.

For more on this as it takes shape, keep a tab open to GeekNation.

Chris Clow
As a former comics retailer at a store in the Pacific Northwest, Chris Clow is an enormous sci-fi, comics, and film geek. He is a freelance contributor, reviewer, podcaster, and overall geek to GeekNation, Batman-On-Film.com, The Huffington Post, and Movies.com. He also hosts the monthly Comics on Consoles broadcast and podcast. Check out his blog, and follow him on Twitter @ChrisClow.
  • Thomas Kelly

    Awesome, I would like to see an entire Nintendo park , not just a Nintendo section at universal though

  • JessicaKx

    PERFECT! surprised they haven’t used Nintendo in Theme Park rides anywhere else before, Nintendo seem to be pretty slow at opening new avenues of business I have noticed.