Nintendo Land! Would Mario Rival Mickey Mouse?
Nintendo has teamed up with Universal and teased us with Nintendo-themed lands coming to Universal Studios Parks in California and Florida. As if we needed a reason to bring video gaming to life in a new way...
If live in or near California or Florida, you're likely no stranger to Disneyland. It's a cult following for thousands, chock-full of passionate fans that spend lots of money to travel to the theme park, stay in their hotels, wear their merchandise, and even spend their honeymoonsthere (ahem, this guy!). Nintendo has mastered the hardware, software and merchandising components of the business but this new foray into theme park attractions leaves us wondering if this will be the next big blockbuster for the company.
With a historic campaign of rigid licensing agreements, Nintendo has not been the easiest partner to work with. Universal, a large corporation with it's own preferences and nuances, leaves us to wonder how this venture came to be. At the very least, both companies see the enormous potential to make mountains of money but that's nothing new to these giants. So why now? What changed to make this partnership come to life? Well, perhaps it's just another notch on Mario's belt to become the most recognized animated persona in human history. Whatever the reasoning may be, gaming fans should get excited about the potential. It has to be a good sign that Shigeru Miyamoto has been involved with the park developers to ensure the attractions capture the true essence of the iconic games he brought to life.
Let's get ahead of ourselves for a moment. Imagine walking into the park, Hyrule Castle and Bowser's Castle both looming high above you in the sky. To your left, Samus is waving at children and signing autographs. To your right, Kirby is wobbling around taking pictures with fans and eating everything in sight. As you walk nearer the castles, you discover Link playing his ocarina to Princess Zelda while Epona clops around them. The Master Sword is set into a stone and kids are trying with all their might to pull it free. As you mosey further into the land, you come to the Mario Kart ride, where you sit alongside Toad or Yoshi (or Wario if you're into that sort of thing) and traverse through Moo Moo Farm while dodging green shells and bananas. After you've worked up an appetite, you sit down for lunch and enjoy an ice-cold Potion or Elixir that restores your waning HP. The possibilities seem endless. We are enthused to see what the reality becomes. At the very least, we hope we can purchase Mario mustaches for our day in the park.