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Mario Super Nintendo Land

The theme park industry is basically a complete mess right now and while a number of locations are open, noplace is anywhere close to being able to return to a level of functionality close to where things were when they closed down. Universal Orlando Resort has been blunt about the state of things, going through a couple rounds of recent layoffs, as well as confirming on Comcast's recent earnings call that the planned third theme park, Epic Universe, which had barely begun construction prior to the shutdown, won't be built until the economy improves, effectively delaying the park for years.

However, the delay in Epic Universe means the delay in the new park's key land, one based on the world and characters of Nintendo. That land has a lot of excitement behind it and certainly, neither Universal nor Nintendo wants to see it delayed for years. Now, a new rumor from Theme Park Shark has indicated that due to Epic Universe being put on hold, Universal may be considering going back to its original plan, adding Super Nintendo World to the existing Universal Studios Florida, rather than making it part of the brand new theme park.

The original plan for Super Nintendo World according to reports at the time, was too replace the existing KidsZone at Universal Studios Florida with all things Nintedo, and it seems that idea may be back on the table, as doing that would be far faster and cheaper for Universal than building the entirely new theme park.

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This makes a lot of sense if it's true. The fact is that the Super Nintendo World designed for Epic Universe was identical to the one being planned for Universal Studios Florida, and so nothing is being lost from an attraction or design standpoint by doing this, assuming that financial constraints don't change the plan further. And the fact is that with Universal Orlando Resort still suffering financially something new is likely going to be what's needed to draw guests back to the park.

It also seems likely, though this is pure speculation, that the agreement between Universal and Nintendo requires Universal to actually produce attractions by a certain date to avoid losing the licensing rights, and so it's probably in the resort's best interests to do something sooner rather than later. The Nintendo land at Universal's park in Japan is ready to open, and a smaller version of the land is currently under construction in California, but assuming Epic Universe gets built at all, it could be a decade at this point before it's done, and that's a long time to wait for the east coast.

Officially, Epic Universe is just on hold, and construction will begin at some point, but with no idea when that will be, the park is essentially dead. If Super Nintendo World gets built at the existing park, then Epic Universe will clearly go through some changes if and when it happens, but that was almost certain to happen anyway.

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