Update: Super Nintendo World’s grand opening is delayed due to the State of Emergency for Osaka Prefecture. The new area was set to open officially on February 4, 2021. A new opening date is said to be decided once the State of Emergency is lifted (as of right now it’s set to go until February 7).
“Super Nintendo World” is the world’s first area based on beloved Nintendo characters at Universal Studios Japan. Before the official opening, a new cafe and store opened on October 16, 2020, at Universal Studios Japan!
Plan your trip to Universal Studios Japan with our 190-page travel guide. It has everything you need to plan an unforgettable trip to Osaka, Japan. Need more excuses to visit Universal Studios Japan? Here are 11 reasons why you need to visit.
Let’s take a look at what we know so far about this highly anticipated land at Universal Studios Japan!
Themed Cafe & Merchandise
On October 16, 2020, the world’s first Mario Cafe & Shop opened in the Hollywood Area at Universal Studios Japan. The cafe offers Mario-themed treats like the Pancake Mario Sandwich (Strawberry Shortcake) and the Fruit Cream Soda. There’s even a “Super Mushroom Drink!”
Beside the cafe is a selection of merchandise to choose from! Including a new design that incorporates “WHOSE CAP?” In 2019, Japan opened its first official Nintendo Store in Shibuya, Tokyo.
Inside Super Nintendo World is “Kinopio’s Cafe” that’ll serve a variety of food including a mushroom-shaped pizza bowl! There’s even a Super Star popcorn bucket!
Super Nintendo World Food
Below is a look at the food that’s currently available at the Mario Cafe, which is already open at Universal Studios Japan.
Kinopio’s Cafe is run by Toads and the inside looks adorable. Along with all the delicious-looking food!
Super Nintendo World Merchandise
Here’s a look at some of the merchandise that’s already available at Universal Studios Japan.
1UP Factory Merchandise Shop
Inside Super Nintendo World is a merchandise shop named “1-UP Factory” and sells, of course, Nintendo-themed goods. There’s an emphasis on a new toy called “Tokotoko Mario” where you push him to make him walk. Here’s a glance at what to expect for merchandise!
Super Nintendo World Opens with 2 Attractions
Peach’s Castle and Bowser’s Castle are two icons that’ll appear in the area alongside two attractions. Super Nintendo World opens with two attractions named Mario Kart: Koopa’s Challange and Yoshi’s Adventure using the world’s latest technology. There are also restaurants and shops for guests to enjoy.
This is incredibly exciting and this beloved franchise will without a doubt draw even more crowds to Universal Studios Japan in Osaka.
Universal Studios Japan was the 5th most attended theme park in the world in 2018, which makes it the most visited Universal Park in the world. I expect the crowds for the opening of this new area to reach park capacity, especially since it looks like it’ll open in the summer.
Mario Kart: Koopa’s Challenge Ride at Universal Studios Japan
We all dreamed of racing in a “real” Mario Kart when we first played the game back in 1992 on the Super Nintendo. Our dreams are finally coming true with what’s described as “ultra-immersive” Mario Kart” Koopa’s Challenge attraction. You’ll race through iconic Mario Kart courses throwing shells at your opponent while wearing AR glasses.
The attraction is 5-mins long where you hop into a 4-person Kart. While you don’t get to freely control the kart (it’s on a track), you’ll race other places through a set of iconic tracks from the Super Mario Kart franchise!
Here’s a video on what’s known so far about the Mario Kart attraction.
Yoshi’s Adventure at Universal Studios Japan
Yoshi’s Adventure is a family-friendly attraction that gives you an excellent view of the Mushroom Kingdom. You hang on to Yoshi as you search for Captain Toad on a treasure hunt to find 3 mysterious eggs. Yoshi’s Adventure is another childhood dream come true where you get to ride on the back of this iconic dinosaur!
Here’s also a look at what’s known about the new Yoshi attraction at Universal Studios Japan.
Power Up Band + Smartphone App
When you visit Super Nintendo World you’re able to buy what’s called a “Power Up Band” that’ll connect to the official Universal Studios Japan app (iOS & Andriod). Within the app, you’re able to collect coins and compete with other players. It’ll track your score and connect with a multi-level game area. You’ll also find the iconic “?” Blocks and other elements from Nintendo games.
Throughout Super Nintendo World are interactive blocks that you’re able to collect coins and other items with your Power Up Band!
Super Nintendo World has what is called a “Power Up Band Key Challenges” where you’ll help Princess Peach recover the Golden Mushroom taken by Bowser Jr. (pictured below). You’ll play through different games within the land and collect 3 keys. Once you collect these keys, the final challenge is a boss battle with Bowser Jr.!
These wearable bands come in different styles themed to familiar favourites such as Mario, Luigi, Peach, Toad, and more. This sounds like a ton of fun and adds another element of interactivity to a theme park area! I’m intrigued to see what we’ll be able to do.
Official Universal Studios Japan App Screenshots
— Chris Explorer (@tdrexplorer) December 19, 2020
Super Nintendo World Direct
On December 19, 2020 (Japan time), Shigeru Miyamoto took us on a detailed tour of Super Nintendo World. Watch it below! This is where we got a lot of our above screenshots from.
Area Timed Entry Ticket
It goes without saying that Super Nintendo World is going to be massively popular. In order to help with crowd control, you’ll need an “Area Timed Entry Ticket” or “Area Timed Entry Ticket: Advance Booking” to enter Super Nintendo World.
This is a set of either Park tickets or ExpressPass that you’ll buy before your visit to the Park. You’re also able to get a timed entry ticket the day of your visit through the Universal Studios Japan app or one of the kiosks.
Win an Advance Preview
Universal Studios Japan is holding an advance preview lottery for Annual Pass holders and Club Universal Members. If you live in Japan, you could see the new Super Nintendo World area before its grand opening! We have all the details.
Are You Excited!?
Still not convinced? Here are my reasons why you should visit Universal Studios Japan.
I’m a massive Nintendo Fan and I’m quite looking forward to the opening of Super Nintendo World. I have no idea what to expect (except large crowds) but that makes it all the more exciting when we finally get to step foot into a world that so many of us grew up with.
My fondest memories are having my father wake me up asking me to play Super Mario Bros. with him on my NES when I was 5-years-old. This touches on nostalgia heavily and I’m OK with that. With such a global brand, it’s about time something like this was done. I’m optimistic that it’ll be excellent.
Are you excited? Let me know in the comments!
More on Universal Studios Japan
Book Your Flight
I personally use Google Flights & Momodo to find affordable flights. Another great way is to sign up for Scott’s Cheap Flights to get notifications of cheap fares, which happens a lot to Japan. You’ll sometimes stumble on cheap flights to Kansai International Airport.
Buy Your Shinkansen Tickets (Bullet Train)
Getting around Japan by the world-renown bullet train, known as the Shinkansen, is incredibly fast, reliable, and affordable for visitors. You can travel from Tokyo to Osaka in just over 2-hours. Get yourself the JR Rail Pass to save a ton of money on the bullet train for your trip.
Book Your Hotel
Universal Studios Japan has affordable accommodations that are steps away from the Park with easy access to Osaka. I recommend checking prices through Booking.com followed by the hotels directly. Sometimes you’re able to score some incredible deals. Here’s a shortlist of hotels at Universal Studios Japan I recommend.
- The Park Front Hotel at Universal Studios Japan – You’re directly in front of the Park gates and have instant access to Universal CityWalk Osaka. The rooms are gorgeous and have restaurants and even a Lawson (Japanese convenience store).
- The Singulari HOTEL & SKYSPA – Attached to the train station is this simple hotel fantastic for those who want a comfortable, clean, and stylish place to sleep. After a long day at Universal Studios Japan, the rooftop sento (public bath) is great to unwind and relax.
- Hotel Universal Port – For the Minion fan in your family (I’m looking at you Mom and your Minion memes you share on Facebook) this is a great hotel only a 5-minute walk from Universal Studios Japan. It also boasts the largest breakfast buffet in Japan that’s a must during your visit.
Buy Your Tickets & Express Pass
Save yourself time and stress by buying your tickets and Express Pass for Universal Studios Japan in advance. The less time you spend in line buying tickets the more time you have to enjoy everything in the Park!
Universal Studios Japan only offers free wi-fi at the entrance to the Park. That’s not enough to stay connected and share your day with everyone back home to give them FOMO on Instagram. Here’s how you can stay connected while travelling in Japan.
- Pocket Wi-Fi – If you’re travelling with a group or have multiple devices this is your best and affordable way to stay connected to the internet. Pick up and drop off at the airport. Easy.
- Japan SIM Card – If you have an unlocked phone and need a Japanese phone number this is the best and easiest way.
Get Yourself Travel Insurance
While travelling aboard having travel insurance protects you against injury, cancellations, illness, and other things you’re never able to predict. Whenever I travel, I always budget for travel insurance to protect myself. I’ve had to use it in the past and I’m so glad I had it. My recommended company is World Nomads for travel insurance.
Learn More on Universal Studios Japan
Don’t forget to study our in-depth destination guide on Universal Studios Japan for even more information on this wonderful park in Osaka.
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