Super Nintendo World's Mario Kart ride was built in a game engine so it can be updated

According to Nintendo, the Super Nintendo World theme park's Mario Kart experience was made to be flexible for special events and new content.


Universal Studios’ Super Nintendo World theme park in Osaka, Japan is now open for business and allowing visitors to see its many Super Mario-themed splendors. Prominent among the many attractions there is the Mario Kart ride and game inside Bowser’s Castle where players can engage in a holographic Mario Kart experience. Perhaps even more interestingly, Nintendo recently revealed the software behind this attraction was built in a game engine so it can be updated with new content and special events in Nintendo so chooses.

This tidbit of information was revealed by Universal Creative Senior Vice President Thierry Coup in a recent press conference, as reported by IGN. According to Coup, the Mario Kart attraction at Super Nintendo World was developed to be flexible for any kind of new content or special events the team might want to put together.

“Because it's in a game engine, we can keep updating, upgrading, putting new characters [in], changing themes, changing actions on the fly,” Coup explained. “So if there's a special event, anything we want to release can be done overnight if we really wanted to. That makes it so much more flexible – it freshens up the experience.”

Mario Kart itself is a pretty fun and varied franchise, much of which has been explored in the likes of Mario Kart 8 Deluxe. But that also means Nintendo and Universal have a lot to draw from when tuning and updating the experience. If there was a Donkey Kong thing going on, the team could focus on a Donkey Kong level or event. Likewise going for the likes of F-Zero, Animal Crossing, and The Legend of Zelda, all of which have historically had tracks and content in the game at this point. Heck, if Mario Kart 9 ever comes out, we could definitely see some fresh content and events based on it.

"Every time you come back you could experience something new and exciting," Coup concluded.

It sounds great and means that Super Nintendo World’s Mario Kart attraction should be a pretty flexible star attraction for the theme park for as long as Universal and Nintendo want it to be. Given the park is now open as of March 2021, we can’t wait to see how the experience continues to evolve over time.

Senior News Editor

TJ Denzer is a player and writer with a passion for games that has dominated a lifetime. He found his way to the Shacknews roster in late 2019 and has worked his way to Senior News Editor since. Between news coverage, he also aides notably in livestream projects like the indie game-focused Indie-licious, the Shacknews Stimulus Games, and the Shacknews Dump. You can reach him at and also find him on Twitter @JohnnyChugs.

Hello, Meet Lola