Universal and Nintendo Sign Deal

Super Mario character [© CC BY-ND 2.0 Rob DiCaterino, https://www.flickr.com/photos/goodrob13/]
Super Mario character [© CC BY-ND 2.0 Rob DiCaterino, https://www.flickr.com/photos/goodrob13/]

On May 7, 2015, the Japanese video game company, Nintendo and Universal Parks and Resorts signed an exclusive agreement to bring Nintendo games and worlds to life in Universal parks around the world.

Nintendo has created many household name games including Pokemon, Super Mario Brothers, Donkey Kong and Zelda.

Can you just imagine an interactive real-life Mario Kart racing ride?

In the past, Universal has created haunted house attractions based upon video games as part of their Halloween Horror Nights; e.g. Resident Evil and Silent Hill.

In a separate announcement Universal have said they plan to open a new attraction in each of their major theme parks every year. Already slated for Orlando in 2016 is the new King Kong attraction at Islands of Adventure and a brand new water park so it is unlikely any Nintendo based attractions will appear before 2017 but with Universal you never know.

Universal and Marvel

Back in 1999, when Islands of Adventure opened, Universal bought the theme park rights to Marvel and developed a number of attractions based on the comic book characters in both Orlando and in California.

In Orlando, Universal built the Marvel Super Hero Island “land” in Islands of Adventure.

In 2007 Universal did not renew the rights for the western half of the United States and the Marvel characters left Universal Studios Hollywood.

Two years later in 2009, Disney bought Marvel Comics but the existing contract prevents them bringing Marvel characters to the Walt Disney World Resort theme parks in Orlando.

Today Universal only has Marvel inspired attractions east of the Mississippi; i.e. in Orlando and in Japan.

The new Disney contract means it is highly unlikely Universal would be able to introduce any new Marvel themed attractions in their Orlando parks but they should be able to continue with the existing attractions like Doctor Doom’s Fearfall, The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man, Storm Force Accelatron and the Incredible Hulk Coaster ride if they so choose.

As has been seen in the past, Universal is not shy of re-theming attractions with Dueling Dragons become Dragon Challenge at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter - Hogsmeade and the Back to the Future Ride morphing into the Simpsons Ride.

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