Super Nintendo World Part 1: Cary in the Mushroom Kingdom

So you know how the Mario Bros. are plumbers and they fell into a pipe that led them to the Mushroom Kingdom?  Well, I work in the plumbing department of a major hardware store, so I guess the same thing happened to me!  So in this four-part blog series, you’ll read all about my adventures in the Mushroom Kingdom, and how I was able to defeat Bowser three times in one morning.  Take that, Mario!  So yeah, I went to Super Nintendo World at Universal Studios Hollywood a few weeks ago, so here’s my detailed account and experiences of the whole thing.

So you may be wondering why on earth would I even go now?  The Super Nintendo World in Orlando is supposed to be built in a couple of years, and will probably be better than the one in California, as it usually tends to be.  One reason is that I haven’t been on a vacation since 2019.  Yeah, in three years I haven’t been more than two hours away from my house, and even those times that I was, it was only a time or two.  So I was really ready for a vacation.  Also, a lot of things have happened in the past three years.  We had the pandemic, my mom got and recovered from breast cancer, and I won’t even go into all the personal family things that have gone on.  So who knows what the next two years will bring?  I may not even be able to go then.  All I know is that I had the money NOW, and I had a chance to do it NOW, so I did it!  Plus, I used to take my dad with me to E3 and PAX all the time, and we’re both getting older and may not be able to do that kind of thing much anymore, so I wanted to take him on this trip, too, since it may be one of the last times we get to do this together.  So that’s why I went now.  And even though it was expensive, I got a really good deal on the hotel and flight.  The only thing I didn’t like was how much the tickets were to get into the park!  Seriously, how are families supposed to afford to do stuff like this?  Anyway, let’s take a look at my adventures there!

We got there super early in the morning, about an hour before they opened, and I bought a special pass to get into Super Nintendo World an hour early, so I recommend doing that if you go.  The front entrance was advertising the heck out of Super Nintendo World!

So here’s me entering the Warp Pipe to Super Nintendo World.

And if you ever wanted to know what it looks like inside a warp pipe, here you go:

So the first thing you’ll want to do in Super Nintendo World is buy one of these special bands called Power Up Bands.  They fit on your wrist like a slap bracelet.  I’ve heard some complaints that they fall off too easily, but I didn’t have that problem.  Only time it almost did was when we played a mini-game that made you move your arms around a lot, and even then the employees suggested you hold the bands in your hand for that.  The bracelets are expensive at 40 bucks a pop, but they are very nice and even act as amiibo when you get home, and as an avid amiibo collector I was all about that.  Here are what the bands look like.  I got the Toad one for myself and the Luigi one for my dad, since those are my favorite Mario characters.

So the bands can be bought at the gift shop in Super Nintendo World.  But they can also be purchased at another Super Nintendo World gift shop outside the park.  Right beside the park is Universal CityWalk, a collection of restaurants and shops that you don’t have to have a ticket to get into. In fact, when my dad and I used to go to E3 a lot, we’d eat dinner at CityWalk nearly every night we were there.  Anyway, if you can, I’d suggest going to CityWalk the day before you go to the park and pick up the bands if you want them.  One less thing to worry about at the park.  Here’s the front of that shop:

And sorry to go on a tangent, but here’s some of the things they sell in the shop.  They all have a Mario theme to them.  My only problem is that they ONLY sold Mario stuff.  I would’ve liked to have seen other Nintendo properties you could buy merchandise of here, like Animal Crossing or Kirby or Zelda or Metroid, etc.

I was glad to see Luigi get a lot of love in these shops, though.

And there was a lot of Mario Kart stuff, since there was a ride based on that.

The shop in Super Nintendo World proper was called 1up Factory, but it wasn’t much of a big deal since every other shop had the same Mario stuff in it, too.  But at least this one had a bit of a factory theme.

Anyway, sorry to go off topic there.  So what do those Power Up Bands do?  Well everything you do in Super Nintendo World can be recorded onto an app when you do something.  Everything from hitting a block with coins in it, to finding special keys to open a secret area of the park.  Here’s some screens of the app you used.  Since I got a Toad bracelet, I was on Team Toad.

You get stamps for doing things at the park.  It’s kind of like game achievements.  Pretty neat idea.

You can tap the stamps to see how you got them, or see what you need to do to get them.  Some are impossible to get now, like one where you visit the park on opening day!  I tried to get stamps where you can see secret Pikmin and Rosalina, but they said you had to use some binoculars to find them, and I didn’t see any of that at the park.  And I scoured the whole area!  I don’t think they had them out that day, personally!

You can also see your scores and rankings on the Mario Kart ride.

And view a pixel map of the park.

So that’s what the bands do.  I don’t like how expensive they were, but at least they were well-made, came in a nice box, and even though you don’t HAVE to have them to enjoy the park, you’ll really get the full enjoyment out of it if you do.

So now here’s some general pictures of the Super Nintendo World area.  They had a tall mountain with lots of moving objects.

Here’s another shot of that from a different angle.

Here’s a shot of a desert area in the distance.  I like the small details, like the Pokey moving about on top.

Lots of mushrooms, with little toad”stools” you could sit on to rest.  They didn’t provide much shade, though.

More mushrooms.

Bowser’s Castle looms up high.  This is where you entered the Mario Kart ride, which I’ll go over tomorrow.

And here’s Peach’s castle on the other end.  You entered and exited the Nintendo area through here.

Here’s me inside Peach’s castle.

I wonder how many Mario 64 fans entered Peach’s castle here and looked up at the ceiling.  You know I did!

And here’s a painting from Mario 64.  I didn’t try to jump into it!

So far, all the pictures I took of Super Nintendo World makes it look pretty big!  But that’s one of the problems I had with this area is that it’s actually really small.  Here’s a shot I took from high up before entering Bowser’s castle for the Mario Kart ride.  What you see here is pretty much all there is!

And here’s another shot from above.  It may look empty now, but that’s only because I took these pictures first thing in the morning.  An hour later and this area was wall to wall people.  And I went during what I thought was an off season!  I wish they could’ve spread it out a little bit more, as it would’ve helped with crowd control.

I did like some of the small details, like the “Caution Wet Floor” signs were banana peels from Mario Kart!

Of course I got my picture taken with Mario and Luigi!  And yes I am wearing an Animal Crossing T shirt while everyone else was wearing Mario stuff.  Heck, the day before I wore my Mega Man shirt.  I even got comments about it.  I’m such a rebel.

The cool thing about the costumed characters is that they could talk with some pre-recorded phrases!  Like “Smile and say ‘Luigi’” and whatnot.  Their eyes also blinked!  I even have proof of that.  Don’t you hate it when you take a picture and someone has their eyes closed?  Well that happened here.  Oh Luigi!

And let it be known for the record that I’M the one who rescued Princess Peach, NOT Mario!  Peach had pre-recorded voice clips, too.  I thought it was really cute when a little girl would go up to get her picture taken, and Peach would say, “Oh look, another princess!”


And that’s all for Part 1!  In the next three parts, I’ll go over the three times I defeated Bowser at the park!  Next time we’ll go over Mario Kart: Bowser’s Challenge (the ride), and then Bowser’s Fireball Challenge (the restaurant), and finally we’ll take a look at the secret area: Bowser Jr.’s Secret Lair!  Be sure to check back then!  Later!  –Cary

One Response to “Super Nintendo World Part 1: Cary in the Mushroom Kingdom”

  1. I would’ve jumped right into one of those pictures. I have no ability to tell reality from fantasy. ha ha.

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