Super Nintendo World is the latest addition to Universal Studios Hollywood in Southern California. The land features attractions, rides, settings, and characters from Nintendo’s various video games like Mario, Peach, Luigi, Bowser, Toad, and Yoshi. The attraction is nestled in the back of Universal Studios Hollywood on the park’s lower lot. It only features one ride but has plenty of other family fun opportunities. So without further ado, let’s jump into what makes Super Nintendo World one of the most excellent and immersive experiences out there.

The Good Of Super Nintendo World

Super Nintendo World at Universal Studios Hollywood, Jan. 13, 2023. (Photo/Michael Baker)

Like Galaxy’s Edge in Disneyland, there are no lines of sight outside of Super Nintendo World. Facades from the Mario games completely surround you. It’s a fantastic trick by Universal Studios Hollywood to make you feel like you’re inside the world of the video games.

Mario Kart: Bowser’s Challenge is the only ride in the land for now, but it makes up for that by being lengthy and entertaining. It’s not like some of the other rides at Universal Studios Hollywood, where it still uses screens and a visor/goggles, but it goes on an actual track. For thrill-seekers, it might not be the most thrilling, it moves at a pretty slow pace, but it makes up for it with interactive fun. You go on a ride trying to beat Bowser and the other Koopas. Your visor lets you shoot Koopa Shells at other racers and defeat Bowser. It was a fantastic ride that should set the bar for future interactive “shooting” rides.

The other interactive elements of Super Nintendo World are there to make it feel like you’re part of the world and not just doing small games. You can go around and get keys to enter Bowser’s castle, there are jump blocks that you can activate with the Power Band (sold separately for $40), and you can keep track of your progress on the Universal Studios app! Those blocks and games pit you against teams like Team Mario, Team Luigi, Team Peach, and more. The Power Band is expensive, especially if you’re bringing an entire family, but it makes up for it by being a one-time purchase, and you can use it whenever you return to the park.

The Not-So-Good Of Super Nintendo World

The food options at Super Nintendo World are plentiful, but they aren’t all the same quality. The Mario Burger and the Luigi Burger are decent options, but it felt like the burger wasn’t as good as it could have been. Besides a mustache printed on the buns for either burger, you couldn’t customize it or get it cooked a certain way. The garlic knots were a bread ball with garlic cheese flakes on top of them. It wasn’t garlicky enough and was quite a lot to eat.

The Power Band might be an excellent idea and executed well, but it will add up quickly if you’re bringing a family to Super Nintendo World. So on top of your tickets to the park, the food, and other merchandise, you’re adding at least $40 to that price. The functionality of some of the blocks isn’t apparent immediately, either. You have to smack the bottom of them quite hard. The key mini-games also aren’t clear as to who’s getting the key, particularly the clock near the entrance.

Is It Ultimately Worth It To Go To Super Nintendo World?

If you love video games, if you have kids that love Nintendo games, or if you’re just a theme park enthusiast, you’re going to love Super Nintendo World. It might be a fun novelty for people who might not be as into video games or Nintendo properties, but without the Power Band, the attraction is not as strong. You need it for a lot of the fun of the park outside of the Mario Kart ride. That ride is definitely an attraction that’s worth experiencing.

Outside of some lackluster food options and the overall cost, the land is magnificent. It’s one of the best-designed theme park attractions in recent memory, rivaling the likes of Disney or Six Flags. It’s immersive, creative, and breathtaking at its best.

Super Nintendo World is open now for the general public at Universal Studios Hollywood.

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