The continuing COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc on theme parks around the world. Universal had grand plans to open Super Nintendo World in Japan this year, but that soon proved to be unworkable. However, the Nintendo avalanche can't be stopped and Universal Studios Japan is now looking to open Super Nintendo World's doors in Spring 2021. And in the meantime, Mario fans can get an early Nintendo experience as soon as next week.
The Japanese pop culture site Kai-You reports that Super Nintendo World is estimating an early 2021 opening for the video game-themed park expansion. Kotaku has observed that Japan as a whole is looking to welcome tourists back in April 2021 in anticipation of next year's Olympic Games.
What can Japanese fans do while they wait? A Mario Cafe & Store are set to open in the Hollywood Boulevard area of Universal Studios Japan. This will feature Mario-themed treats, as well as Nintendo merchandise. The Mario Cafe & Store are set to open next Friday, October 16.
Super Nintendo World was originally estimated to open back in late July. It would feature attractions based on Nintendo's various properties, as well as a multifaceted digital experience. Attendees would wear "Power Up Bands" that sync up to a smartphone app, tracking various activities, granting users digital coins, and opening the door to a more immersive experience. The full experience is also set to come to Universal Studios Orlando, but that has been delayed indefinitely in the continuing wake of COVID-19. Given that COVID-19 cases are not close to coming down here in the United States, don't expect to see Super Nintendo World here for a while.
While the Orlando theme park expansion won't open anytime soon here in the United States, at least we can live vicariously through Japan. Keep it on Shacknews for the latest updates on Super Nintendo World.