Details Revealed About SUPER NINTENDO WORLD at Universal Epic Universe

May 2, 2024

Universal Epic Universe, Universal’s fourth theme park in Orlando, is set to open in 2025 — and we’re counting down the days! It’ll contain five different unique worlds: Celestial Park, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Ministry of Magic, Dark Universe (based on the classic Universal Monsters), How to Train Your Dragon – Isle of Berk and SUPER NINTENDO WORLD.

Perhaps you’re familiar with the other locations of this world at Universal Studios Japan and Universal Studios Hollywood. These immersive experiences of SUPER NINTENDO WORLD take you into Super Mario Land and Donkey Kong Country and allow you to play alongside Mario, Luigi, Princess Peach, Toad, Donkey Kong, Diddy Kong, and many more iconic characters from beloved Nintendo video games. (While you’re here, check out our guide to SUPER NINTENDO WORLD at Universal Studios Hollywood.)

We spoke to some of the creative minds behind SUPER NINTENDO WORLD at Epic Universe, who gave us the inside scoop on this massive and immersive project. It’ll have all the SUPER NINTENDO WORLD attractions that the Hollywood and Japan parks have, all from Opening Day. The inclusion of Donkey Kong Country, in the U.S. for the first time, is certain to provide a new and unique experience.

Let’s-a go!


As discussed in our primer on Universal Epic Universe, the theme park entrance leads you into Celestial Park. This land is inspired by the night sky and outer space: expect a starry carousel, a comet-inspired coaster, and a galactic ambiance. (And some heavenly hotels, too!) Celestial Park is an experience unto itself, but it also contains the portals to the four other Epic Universe themed worlds. These portals are tall, obelisk-like structures that mark the entries to the other worlds. Head toward the portal and enter through the familiar green pipe to make your way into SUPER NINTENDO WORLD.  

You’ll first step into Super Mario Land and you’ll want to look at everything, in every direction, all at once. Everything in SUPER NINTENDO WORLD feels alive — because so much of it is constantly in motion. You’ll pop into the land outside of Peach’s Castle. Around you, Thwomps thud down, shells spin, Koopas pace back-and-forth. You’ll be eager to punch a ? Block and hear that delightful, endorphin-pushing, sound of earning a digital coin. Even Chris Bromby, the Senior Show Producer for the project, admits entering SUPER NINTENDO WORLD “kind of makes you a little teary, especially as a fan of the games.”

With SUPER NINTENDO WORLD, the Universal Creative team was tasked with an exciting, yet daunting question: How do you bring such a massive and beloved franchise to life in a whole new way? Even if you’re not a gamer, you’re likely tangentially familiar with the characters in SUPER NINTENDO WORLD. So where did this team even start?

“It’s not always the thing that everyone thinks about, but ultimately, it always starts with a story,” says Executive Producer Susan Cummings. For the creative team, Cummings continues, “it’s a matter of how the story works together, and how the worlds can be combined. And then it’s a matter of: What is the role of the guest in that story?”

Ultimately, over the course of nearly a decade and three different theme parks, Universal has found tried-and-true ways to do Nintendo characters and the world they inhabit justice. Here’s what you can expect to find in Super Mario Land at SUPER NINTENDO WORLD:

  • Mario Kart: Bowser’s Challenge: Wind your way through Bowser’s Castle and join Team Mario on the racetrack to defeat Team Bowser in this interactive ride. Just like in the Mario Kart games, you’ll collect coins and throw shells, all while driving through courses underwater and in the clouds. The attraction employs special goggles— just look at your target, press the button on the steering to toss a shell, and BAM!
  • Yoshi’s Adventure: Orlando will host the first Yoshi’s Adventure attraction in North America! On this family-focused ride, you’ll hop onto a Yoshi and embark on a search for glowing eggs. 
  • Key Challenges: At these interactive experiences throughout the land, you’ll test your quickness, skill, and timing in a variety of challenges. The challenges include: Thwomp Panel Panic, Goomba Crazy Crank, Piranha Plant Nap Mishap, Koopa Troopa POWer Punch, and the Bob-Omb Kaboom Room. (This’ll be the first Bob-Omb Kaboom Room in North America!) For each challenge you win, you receive a digital key. Collect three keys with a Power-Up Band and you can play Bowser Jr. Shadow Showdown, where you’ll battle to win the Golden Mushroom back from Bowser Jr.  
  • Toadstool CafeChef Toad is bringing his delicious concoctions to Toadstool Cafe! Menu details are to come, but in the meantime check out our guide to the Hollywood cafe here to get a feel for the kind of food that may be available.
  • Meet & Greets: It wouldn’t be Super Mario Land if you couldn’t snag a selfie with your favorite Super Mario characters! Mario, Luigi, Princess Peach and Toad will all be available for character meet-and-greets throughout the day. Plus, if you have a Power-Up Band, meeting these characters offers an enhanced experience.

Oh, and one other thing. SUPER NINTENDO WORLD at Epic Universe will include even more! Beyond Super Mario Land, head through another archway and you’ll find yourself in the entrance of…Donkey Kong Country.



Donkey Kong Country has a more tropical vibe to it than Super Mario Land. Andrew Padua, Senior Art Director and Creative Lead for SUPER NINTENDO WORLD tells us that when you walk into the tunnel between the two lands, you’ll see the gradual change from the bricks and hills of Super Mario Land to the more jungle atmosphere of Donkey Kong Country. “There’s rockwork and gems and flowers. Everything’s overgrown and tropical,” he says.

Surrounding guests in Donkey Kong Country will be its flagship attraction, Mine-Cart Madness, a whirlwind roller coaster with cutting-edge technology.  

  • MINE-CART MADNESSHere’s the deal: the Tiki Tak Tribe has come to steal the Golden Banana. To protect it, guests will join Donkey Kong and his friends on a high-energy mine-cart ride. 

    But the cutting-edge technology is what will make Mine-Cart Madness a truly unique ride experience. The roller coaster uses a new ride system, developed in-house by Universal Creative, that recreates the thrilling maneuvers of the mine carts from the Donkey Kong Country video game series. 

    Mine-Cart Madness sits in a nice little space in-between a family coaster and a thrill coaster. Creative Director Dan Jenkins imagines kids excitedly reaching the right height for Mine-Cart Madness, getting hyped up in the queue and ultimately having a total blast.

Stay tuned to the Discover Universal Blog in the coming months to learn more about Donkey Kong Country.



While SUPER NINTENDO WORLD at Epic Universe won’t be the first of such lands, it will be the first to bring Super Mario Land and Donkey Kong Country to life in one fantastic moment. 

For the team working on this project, it’s all about the guests’ experiences. “It may be a cliche, but it is absolutely the truth: when you see a guest experience what your team has created for the first time, it’s like: ‘Oh, that’s right, that’s what it’s all for,’” says Susan Cummings, Executive Producer of SUPER NINTENDO WORLD.  

What are you most looking forward to at SUPER NINTENDO WORLD in Epic Universe? Let us know in the comments!

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  • Reply Veronica M May 3, 2024 at 4:48 am

    How will this new park be presented to the public in regards to annual passes? Will it be included with the other parks or will it have an annual pass of it’s own?

    • Reply Digital Guest Communications May 3, 2024 at 7:55 am

      Hi Veronica! More information on Annual Pass offerings for Universal Epic Universe will be revealed at a later time. Stay tuned to our website for any updates!

  • Reply David V May 4, 2024 at 1:05 am

    Super excited to be able to experience this next year. Will be a dream come true to enter the world of video games I played growing up in real life! Hoping there’s room for further expansion so other Nintendo series can have their own areas as well.

    • Reply Digital Guest Communications May 4, 2024 at 7:33 am

      We can’t wait to see you, David!

  • Reply Bobby May 5, 2024 at 8:23 am

    Cannot wait for this. I grew up with Mario and now I can play as if I am in the game. Dream come true! We cannot wait!!

    • Reply Digital Guest Communications May 5, 2024 at 8:32 am

      We can’t wait for you to experience this, Bobby!

  • Reply Kyle May 5, 2024 at 8:48 pm

    Hello! Do we have a rough Quarter as to when the park will open in ‘25!? Thanks!

    • Reply Digital Guest Communications May 5, 2024 at 8:52 pm

      Hi Kyle! We’ve officially announced that Universal Epic Universe will open in 2025. An official grand opening date will be revealed in the months ahead. We can’t wait to share more exciting details!

  • Reply Connie May 15, 2024 at 6:01 pm

    Hi, exactly what month in 2025 will it open? Coming from Canada and gotta make reservations well in advance with flights etc, may? June?

    • Reply Digital Guest Communications May 15, 2024 at 6:17 pm

      Hey Connie, we’re so excited that you’re getting ready to visit Universal Epic Universe! We anticipate this park, and all its new worlds, opening in 2025. While we don’t currently have an opening date, we encourage following our socials and checking our website as more information is revealed within the upcoming months. We can’t wait for you to explore our Universe!

  • Reply Colton Hanson May 20, 2024 at 7:48 pm

    I have been a big fan of Mario. I like playing the original on my Nintendo Switch online account and then the Super Mario Wonder, but if I had to pick a favorite game it’s a toss up between Mario Kart 8 and Mario and Sonic at the Olympic game series but the version I own is the Tokyo 2020 one

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